In general, a philosophical doctrine holding that every event inevitably follows some antecedent event or events, that the course of nature is rigidly fixed by what has occurred in the past; in particular, that the human will is not free, all volition being the necessary outcome of inherited tendencies, acquired habits, irresistible impulses, under the influence of present circumstances or mental conditions. The will is determined, mechanically, by the strongest motive; it cannot act otherwise. The doctrine does away with responsibility, merit and demerit, right and wrong, morality of any sort.

New Catholic Dictionary

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