Any of a number of doctrines emphasizing the existence, nature, or role of the will; whether a cosmic will, as with Artur Schopenhauer (1788-1860), or (more commonly, and also including Schopenhauer) the human will.

Such doctrines may emphasize the role of the will in our thinking or acquisition of knowledge, or the reality of free decisions as against universal determinism, or the power of individuals’ choices in shaping the course of history.

A Schopenhauer, The Will to Live, R Taylor, ed. (1962)

Voluntarism may refer to:

  • Doxastic voluntarism
  • Voluntarism (action), any action based on non-coercion
  • Voluntarism (philosophy), a perspective in metaphysics and the philosophy of mind that prioritizes the will over emotion or reason
  • Voluntarism (psychology), the doctrine that the power of the will organizes the mind’s content into higher-level thought processes
  • Voluntaryism, a libertarian ideology based on contractualism and the absence of initiatory force or coerced association by any person, state, or collective
  • Volunteering, donating one’s labor without monetary compensation

3 thoughts on “Voluntarism

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