There is a debate among philosophers about free will. Is this debate necessary? If a man commits a crime and the man has free will, then we should punish the man in order to deter him from committing the crime again. If a man commits a crime and the man does not have free will, and he does not have free will because his mental state or his diet or the foods he ate or his upbringing drove him to commit the crime, then we should punish the man in order to deter him from committing the crime again.
Regardless of the motivation, unless it is coercion, a person that commits a crime can be considered to be a defective person, and action needs to be taken to attempt to remove the defect from the person, or to see to it that the person’s defect does not cause harm to others in the future.
My co-worker and I both volunteer a lot of time helping the homeless and needy. Recently we did a project together, and I learned something unfortunate during the event. My friend places “service to God” ahead of “service to others”. For him, the reason he helps the needy is that by doing so he is serving God and bringing the needy closer to God. I, on the other hand, place “service to others” ahead of “service to God”. I have considered, and am still considering, working with some “inter-faith” groups on projects to help the needy, but this experience causes me to hesitate. I guess I don’t trust the motives of the inter-faith groups. If the mission is to put aside our religious differences and do some good in the world, then count me in. But if the mission is to say, “all of us that believe in a god can work together”, then count me out. If the purpose is to put aside religious differences, then why call it an “inter-faith” group. Why not just say several groups of people came together?