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Religious Determinism

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by

Rebecca Pallotto

on 1 October 2012

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Transcript of Religious Determinism

Religious
Determinism •An agent is a person who acts freely and knowingly, who chooses to do or not to do something.
•If God has predetermined that He will condemn some people and save some (according to the Puritan tradition), then humans have absolutely no freedom and therefore are not agents.
•Under the Catholic tradition of God’s providence and humans’ freedom, humans are agents because they have the free will to choose their actions. Religious Determinism and Agency Determinism: a point of view that holds that human behaviour, not of free will, but of a complex array of physical, social, cultural, psychological and historical causes What is Determinism? Determinism: a point of view that holds that human behaviour, not of free will, but of a complex array of physical, social, cultural, psychological and historical causes What is Determinism? •In the past, some churches within Christianity have denied human freedom based on a belief in God who has predetermined the world and its history, and each action of every individual.
•Today most Christians believe in providence- God’s influence upon events and actions. •By contrast, French Protestant reformer and theologian John Calvin (1509-1564), believed that freedom and ethics have no place in providence.
•The Puritan tradition strongly believes that humans are born and live their entire lives deserving eternal damnation.
•They believe that God loves some people and rejects others- a person can do nothing to change this.
•God does not give salvation to the elect few because they had more faith or led more perfect lives. •This is God’s freedom at the expense of human freedom.
•In contrast, the Catholic tradition has always struggled to maintain that humans are free precisely because of God’s providence.
•Salvation is God’s initiative of love, but God’s love requires our cooperation. An agent is a person who acts freely and knowingly, who chooses to do or not to do something.
•If God has predetermined that He will condemn some people and save some (according to the Puritan tradition), then humans have absolutely no freedom and therefore are not agents.
•Under the Catholic tradition of God’s providence and humans’ freedom, humans are agents because they have the free will to choose their actions. Religious Determinism and Agency 1.Why does religion have such an influence on our belief of free will? 2.If God’s plan to save some and damn others in inevitable, then what role do humans and their freedom play? 3.Do you believe that religion determines whether or not we have free will?
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