Free will is a topic that has been covered in depth on the internet pretty intensely, but it has a special place in my heart because of the amount of time I’ve thought contemplating it. During my undergraduate studies, free will occupied my thoughts during times of boredom (which was substantial) over several years, and I came to the conclusion on my own without much input from my favorite philosophers or mentors.
I’ve written a twenty-three page paper delving deeper into the arguments of determinism and free will, but the argument can ultimately be summarized into:
- Every decision animals make is due exclusively to the animal’s personality
- Every personality is due exclusively to a composition of genetics (nature) and upbringing/experiences (nurture)
- A person has control over neither their genetics nor their experiences
- Therefore, a person has no control over their personality
- Therefore, a person has no control over their decisions
Obviously this is an oversimplification and ignores counterpoints, but even by itself this logic holds up neatly. The only possible rebuttal is that a person does have control over their experiences, but that argument already assumes the existence of free will capable of influencing the experiences.