Beyond the Animal in Man: Freewill vs. Determinism by Yonasan Rosenblum

The belief in man’s elevation over the animals is under assault in the West. Denial of free will — and with it the possibility of morality — is central to that attack. If man does not possess the freedom to choose, he is no more morally culpable for his actions than a lion for eating its prey. At the end of the day, he is just another animal whose actions are determined by his instincts.

God’s Greatest Gift: The Freedom to Choose by Rabbi Jonathan Sacks

Jewish law is an ongoing training regime in willpower. Can you eat this and not that? Can you exercise spiritually three times a day? Can you rest one day in seven? Can you defer the gratification of instinct? To be a Jew means not going with the flow, not doing what others do just because they are doing it. It gives us 613 exercises in the power of will to shape our choices. That is how we, with God, become co-authors of our lives.

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