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By Frank Ruda

Pushing again opposed to the modern fable that freedom from oppression is freedom of selection, Frank Ruda resuscitates a primary lesson from the background of philosophical rationalism: a formal suggestion of freedom can come up merely from a security of absolute necessity, utter determinism, and predestination.

Abolishing Freedom demonstrates how the best philosophers of the rationalist culture or even their theological predecessors—Luther, Descartes, Kant, Hegel, Freud—defended not just freedom but in addition predestination and divine providence. through systematically investigating this commonly ignored and doubtless paradoxical truth, Ruda demonstrates how actual freedom conceptually presupposes the idea that the worst has consistently already occurred; in brief, fatalism. during this brisk and witty interrogation of freedom, Ruda argues that in basic terms rationalist fatalism can medication the modern illness whose paradoxical identify this day is freedom.
 

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Additional info for Abolishing Freedom: A Plea for a Contemporary Use of Fatalism (Provocations)

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Erasmus thus introduces a distinction between two types of necessity: antecedent necessity (which predetermines free will) and consequent (after-the-fact) necessity. With consequent necessity one can still account for guilt, sin, merit, and human responsibility tout court.  . ”12 God would not be good; he would be a sadist. Mankind would be his nasty object, and the world would be nothing but one gigantic stage for a sadistic play that cannot even turn into a proper tragedy. A good God punishes only someone who deliberately violates the law of nature or of good works and may even hate him in advance.

When servants obey 20 · Protestant Fatalism their master, they are active and their works are their own. Just like them, we are the cause of our good works, even though they depend on God’s grace. ) Erasmus explains the causality of human action as follows: First there is thinking, then willing, and finally doing. There is no free will in thinking and doing (both are caused by God’s grace), but a deliberate act of will (consent of the agent) necessarily mediates thought with action. God is thereby the main cause of an action, even if free will is a necessary secondary cause: a causal cooperation leaving room for freedom.

Faith begins with loving the one who brought this fate upon us. The first imperative of true belief is thus the following: Love only someone who makes you anxious! But how can we then grapple with the question of why God punishes someone if he himself forced this person to do evil? Here we get Luther’s first account of the concept of necessity (and thus draw nearer to the issue of predestination). He distinguishes between necessity (necessitas immutabilitatis) and compulsion (necessitas coactionis).

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