Video: Nature, Nurture, and Free Will
click here to jump to start of article
Join Our Newsletter

Get latest articles and videos with Jewish inspiration and insights​




Nature, Nurture, and Free Will

Every person has free will, but struggles on a unique playing field.

Published: August 30, 2008


Give Tzedakah! Help Aish.com create inspiring
articles, videos and blogs featuring timeless Jewish wisdom.

Visitor Comments: 8

(8) Anonymous, July 9, 2011 3:23 AM

very well said, actually we have an assignment about these nature,nurture and free will,,, now seems interesting for me, btw i am thankful you explained it well:))

(7) sonia ortega, September 10, 2008 10:28 AM

our will

Very interesting presentation. my position in that only the third part of your will is conscious, so we are most influencied by our unconscious mind and here is where we must work to have a positive personality.I don' t speak englih so well, I' m psychologist and work on it. thanks.

(6) s, September 2, 2008 9:46 PM

great message

R. Akiva Tatz mentions this too. Plus, he said that sometimes people don't take responsibiliy for their actions because they feel they couldn't help it. But really people Do have a choice. They might have had a hard childhood and grew up stealing things, but whether or not they steal at that moment is up to them.

(5) Andy, August 31, 2008 11:55 PM

it seems to me that we are responsible if we would not want it done to us

a person is responsible for his/her actions even when the level of conflict seems beyond his free will limit. you gave an example of a person growing up in an environment where murder is a normal option and his free will is in the realm of what weapon to choose.I disagree. I'd say that anyone who knows that he would not want it done to them has enough free will to stop him from doing it to others. Only humans have free will in the sense that it means we can choose to follow a weaker yaitzer tov over a stronger yaitzer hara

(4) Larry, August 31, 2008 8:06 PM

Thank you

Enjoyed this presentation on a long debated issue. The statement that everyone has freewill, but no two people have the same free will, emphasizes the many different factors that make up each of our experiences and/thus the exercise of our wills, our choices. What a complex milieu of nature and nurture the Creator provides for our development.

See All Comments

Submit Your Comment:

  • Display my name?

  • Your email address is kept private. Our editor needs it in case we have a question about your comment.


  • * required field 2000
Submit Comment
stub