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As Good as It Gets Review - Determinism

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Determinism is the general philosophical thesis that states that for everything that happens there are conditions such that, given them, nothing else could happen. There are many versions of this thesis. Each rest upon various alleged connections, and interdependencies of things and events, asserting that these hold without exception. The wide variety of deterministic theories throughout the history of philosophy have sprung from diverse motives and considerations; some of which overlap considerably. All should be considered in the light of their historical significance, together with certain alternative theories that philosophers have proposed. At the same time, some forms of determinism may be emprically testable, and this page mentions some relevant ideas from physics and the philosophy of physics. The opposite of determinism is some kind of indeterminism (otherwise called "Nondeterminism").

Determinism is often taken to mean simply Causal determinism: an idea known in physics as cause-and-effect. It is the concept that events within a given paradigm are bound by causality in such a way that any state (of an object or event) is completely, or at least to some large degree, determined by prior states. This can be distinguished from other varieties of determinism mentioned below. Other debates often concern the scope of determined systems, with some maintaining that the entire universe (or multiverse) is a single determinate system and others identifying other more limited determinate systems[clarification needed]. Within numerous historical debates, many varieties and philosophical positions on the subject of determinism exist. This includes debates concerning human action and free will, where opinions might be sorted as compatibilistic and incompatibilistic.

Determinism should not be confused with self-determination of human actions by reasons, motives, and desires. Determinism rarely requires that perfect prediction be practically possible - only prediction in theory.

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