Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Dictionary

A modern dictionary of Catholic terms, both common and obscure. Find accurate definitions of words and phrases.

Search:

Or browse the dictionary by selecting a letter!
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

VOLUNTARISM

The doctrine of the primacy of the will. This takes on a variety of forms: 1. that in God his will takes precedence over his intellect, with the result that truth and goodness are what they are because God wants them that way (Duns Scotus); 2. that one's will, including one's freedom, is what makes that person distinctively human (St. Augustine); 3. that the world is the representation of the will, a blind and aimless cosmic power (Schopenhauer); 4. that each person's free will determines for the individual what is morally good or bad (Kant); 5. that what mainly constitutes a human person is his or her lifetime exercise of free will (Existentialism). (Etym. Latin voluntarius, at one's pleasure, intentional, freely desired.)

All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org
Shop Amazon

Recent Catholic Commentary

Church Fathers: St. Polycarp and St. Papias January 24
On News Both Good and Fun January 23
Guess who thinks Pope Francis shouldn't give so many interviews? January 23
A rare “win” in the Venerable League: Laity 4, Priests and Religious 3 January 23
The Didache Bible Is Here January 21

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis names 20 new cardinals CWN - January 5
In ‘state of the world’ address, Pope decries ‘throwaway culture’ CWN - January 12