Fatal. Compare French fatalisme and Italian fatalismo.
- 1: The belief in fatality; the doctrine that all things are determined by fate; a particular form of this doctrine.
In early use not distinguished from ‘the doctrine of necessity’, i.e. the doctrine that all events take place in accordance with unvarying laws of causation. In strict etymological propriety, and in the best modern usage, it is restricted to the view which regards events as predetermined by an arbitrary decree.
Fatalism generally refers to several of the following ideas:
- 1.That free will does not exist, meaning therefore that history has progressed in the only manner possible and that man has no power to influence the future, or indeed, his own actions. This belief is very similar to predeterminism.
- 2. That actions are free, but nevertheless work toward an inevitable end. This belief is very similar to compatibilist predestination.
- 3. That acceptance is appropriate, rather than resistance against inevitability. This belief is very similar to defeatism.