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The Paradox of “Involuntary Moral Responsibility”: On the Contradiction in Su Dechao’s Naturalist Position

China Social Science Review

No.2, 2020

 

The Paradox of “Involuntary Moral Responsibility”: On the Contradiction in Su Dechao’s Naturalist Position

(Abstract)

 

Liu Qingping

 

Su Dechao convincingly refuted the theory of radical will which held that free will was not restricted by the chain of cause and effect. However, his naturalist position rejected the existence and meaning of the will; he believed that “involuntary moral responsibility” can unify freedom and nature. Failure to realize the dualistic structure of freedom and necessity makes his views self-defeating. In reality, free will not only exists in the subjective psychology of cognition and emotion, but also plays a crucial role in one’s life in the world through the chain of cause and effect, especially as it constitutes the necessary prerequisite for moral responsibility.