voluntary action is automatic; every act is disintegrated from every other; that character, if acquired, would be incompatible with freedom. Character is a choice yet a choice which persists, which modifies sensibility and intellect, and which influences subsequent determinations.?
My freedom then is freedom within limitations. Heredity and environment, and above all the settled dispositions, which are the product of past acts of will, render a large part of human action practically automatic. The deterministic theory is valid for perhaps nine-tenths of human activity. Mason Faith of the Gospel, 118, 119 ? ?We naturally choose evil because of a bias toward it To act according to the perfection of nature would be true freedom and man has lost this. He recognizes that he is not his true self. It is only with difficulty that he works toward his true self again. By the fall of Adam, the will, which before was conditioned but free, is now not only conditioned but also enslaved. Nothing but the action of grace can free it.? Tennyson, In Memoriam, Introduction: ?Our wills are ours, we know not how; Our wills are ours, to make them thine.? Studying the action of the sinful will alone, one might conclude that there is no such thing as freedom. Christian ethics, in distinction from naturalistic ethics, reveals most clearly the degradation of our nature, at the same time that it discloses the remedy in Christ: ?If therefore the Son shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed? ( <430836>John 8:36).
Mind, Oct. 1882:567 ? ?Kant seems to be in quest of the phantasmal freedom which is supposed to consist in the absence of determination by motives. The error of the determinists from which this idea is the recoil, involves an equal abstraction of the man from his thoughts, and interprets the relation between the two as an instance of the mechanical causality which exists between two things in nature. The point to be grasped in the controversy is that a man and his motives are one, and that consequently he is in every instance self-determined. Indetermination is tenable only if an ego can be found which is not an ego already determinate; but such an ego, though it may be logically distinguished and verbally expressed, is not a factor in psychology.? Morell, Mental Philosophy, 390 ? ?Motives determine the will, and so far the will is not free but the man governs the motives, allowing them a less or a greater power of influencing his life, and so far the man is a free agent.? Santayana: ?A free man, because he is free, may make himself a slave but, once a slave, because he is a slave, he cannot make himself free.? Sidgwick, Method of Ethics, 51, 65 ? ?This almost overwhelming cumulative proof [of necessity] seems, however, more than balanced by a single argument on the other side: the immediate affirmation of consciousness in the moment of deliberate volition. It is impossible for me to think, at each moment, that my volition is completely
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