This is a fantastic article, but I have to say that, indeed, compatibilism doesn’t satisfy me, but not because I want “real” free will. It’s because compatibilism seems to just describe (albeit usually in a convoluted way) human behavior at the level most suitable for describing and understanding it—that is, at the level of human psychology (“In lay terms: we think about stuff, and we learn from our experiences.”). If so, why is a fancy term needed for that? What does the compatibilism notion add to our everyday understanding of how we act, feel and think?

At any rate, I don’t believe in libertarian free nor do I find compatibilism compelling, yet I totally agree with this: “In other words, we shift from a retributive to a rehabilitative system of justice.” Perhaps my view could then be called compatibilist… I just don’t like the term. I don’t find the concept illuminating—rather the opposite.

Here I explore what the consequences would be if we all accepted that free will is an illusion: Fatalism and apathy? Nihilism? No justification for a criminal justice system?

Interested in natural selection, evolutionary psychology, neuroscience, science in general, human nature, consciousness, philosophy and ethics.

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