Clairvoyants believe in free will

What is fatalism? What is determinism?



Let's start with a few general definitions:

Determinism: The view that every event has a cause and that everything in the universe is absolutely dependent on laws of causality (cause and effect or action and reaction) and is governed by it. Since determinists believe that all events, including human actions, are predetermined, determinism is typically considered incompatible with free will.

Fatalism: The belief that “what should happen, will happen” and that all past, present, and future events are predetermined by God or some other almighty power. In religion this view can be called predestination; it means that it is clear even before we are born and regardless of our own decisions whether our souls will go to heaven or hell.

Free Will: The theory that human beings have freedom of choice or self-determination; i.e., a person could have acted differently in a situation than he did. Philosophers argue that free will does not go together with determinism.

Indeterminism: the view that there are events that have no cause; many free will advocates believe that choices need not be determined by physiological or psychological causes.

Theological fatalism is an attempt to demonstrate that there is a logical contradiction between omniscient God and free will; Free will is defined as the ability to choose between alternatives. In this it is comparable to the riddle: "Can an almighty God create a stone that is so heavy that even he cannot lift it?"

The premises of theological fatalism are expressed as follows: God is omniscient. Since God is omniscient, God has infallible foreknowledge. If God has infallible foreknowledge that one will be attending an event tomorrow (e.g. mowing the lawn), then one must invariably take part in that event (mowing the lawn).

Therefore, free will is not possible as there is no alternative but to participate in the event (mowing the lawn). In the event that one does not participate, God is not omniscient. Alternatively, if one attends the event, then one has no free will to choose an alternative because of the inability to choose.

A contradicting argument can be that God is omniscient. Since God is omniscient, he is also infallible. If God has infallible foreknowledge that one will be attending an event tomorrow, then one will choose freely on the basis of one's free will, not out of predestination or lack of choice. You can freely decide whether to take part; All God knows beforehand is the choice that will be made. You are not determined to make choice A (mowing the lawn), you could also make choice B (playing tennis). If you change your mind, God saw it beforehand, so you still have free choice in all things. One also makes this choice (by free will) even if God has chosen not to see the future. Whether or not God sees the future does not change free will.

Passive prior knowledge, if it is not evident, does not disqualify free will either logically or rationally. The person who chooses Event A would make the same choice whether God knew it or not. The (passive) knowledge or ignorance of God about the future would in no way affect a person's free will. Free will is only destroyed if God made His knowledge publicly known; that would change future free will and could make decisions an obligation. A simple example is a clairvoyant who sees someone on the other side of the world fall and break their leg while running after the bus. The clairvoyant would not change reality by foreseeing the event because that event would also occur whether someone foresaw it or not. The same is true of God's omniscience: as long as it is passive and does not interfere with reality or coincide with someone else's knowledge of it, it does not violate people's free will.

If, on the other hand, God has created everything there is, then the passive knowledge of God poses a problem. An understanding of omniscience must be paired with an understanding of omnipresence in good time. If God knows all events - past, present, and future - then He would also know about all events and the respective decisions of a person, although from that person's perspective, that event and the decision have not yet taken place. This could imply a suspension of a person's free will, although no mechanism of God's apparent prior knowledge interferes with freedom of action, this principle is adopted in theological fatalism. Since God is timeless (exists outside of time) according to Christian theology, God has known the entire path of life of every person since creation, regardless of whether the person acknowledges his divine authority or not. Given these preconditions, it seems that for some only an absolutely fatalistic theological position is possible.

To go a step further, here are a few other use cases: There is a vast difference between predestination, fatalism, and chance (or luck).

Fatalists teach that there is a blind, impersonal force over which no one has control - not even God - and that events are driven by this blind and unintentional force. That is fatalism.

Chance (or luck) is an arbitrary force that supposedly causes things to happen "happily" without any control or guidance from God. In a world ruled by chance, God can foresee what will happen, but that is all. Everything depends purely on luck. And if you ask the proponent of chance why or how things happened, the only answer he has ready: "It just happened that way".

Predestination, the teaching of the Bible, says that God has a purpose and that He brings all things together according to His will and mind (Ephesians 1:11; Daniel 4:35; Isaiah 14:24 and 46:10). Predestination teaches that God will do nothing or allow anything that does not serve its purpose (Psalm 33:11). This means that GOD IS SOVEREIGN over the entire world, the one who determines all things as he wants them.

Those who blindly believe that “whatever will be, will be” are just as wrong as those in favor of chance. It is true that events are certain, but only because of the sovereign God making his own decisions.

Serious Bible students do not believe that things "just happen". They understand that a wise, holy, good, and sovereign God is in control of every detail in life (Matthew 10: 29-30). The person who does not want God to have this control, or who rejects the truth about God's sovereignty, is a person who does not love God and who does not want God in his life. He wants to go his own way. Like those possessed by unclean spirits, he would say "What have we to do with you [...]?" (Mark 1; 24). But that is not the case - God is superior and he cannot deny himself.

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What is fatalism? What is determinism?
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