Posted: Aug 04, 2019 12:05 pm
by zoon
LucidFlight wrote:Encouragement and discouragement are still useful for educating people about the sort of behaviour that is deemed to be beneficial.

Before making use of encouragement or discouragement, and in particular before using any major discouragement, it still makes sense to be reasonably clear that the behaviour was not coerced, and that the person was mentally capable? This is the concept of free will as minimally defined. I’m happy enough to go on using the term “free will” as meaning for practical purposes what it’s always meant, like “sunrise” or “sunset”, but if people feel it comes with too many metaphysical or generally unscientific overtones, I won’t argue too strongly.

Perhaps any atheist position on free will often needs to be stated with clarifications? To say firmly that there is no such thing as free will may imply a view, for example, that the law should be radically overhauled, which may or may not be the atheist’s opinion.