Greetings philosophers! I’ve always wondered if free will is a problem for atheism. In particular, if there was no designer (God), isn’t it unlikely that something as strange as free will would arise?
It is said that happiness should be attained from the "inside out". That it should be unilaterally seeked, and not externally determined. On a philosophical standpoint, is this view tenable, considering that we do not live in a vacumn? It is, to a large extent, true that we can choose the way we respond to a situation. But wouldn't undesirable or negative events (or even harassment) trigger the need to choose to respond in a way that does not allow for the event to determine one's happiness, and that that itself connotes that external events have a role to play? I may be stretching the notion too far, in which case, a rephrasing of the question would involve asking the extent to which happiness should/could be unilaterally determined?
On a general level, is happiness a concept that is consensually determined (a social construct) or is it a subjective pursuit, such that one can "choose to be happy" for real?
Thanks for all the great answers so far.
A (seemingly) quick question. If everything is determined, does this mean that everything is necessary and nothing is contingent. Because if determined means 'could not be otherwise' then isn't that the same as saying it is necessary?
Thank you, Christina
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