Home | Community | Message Board

Mycohaus
Please support our sponsors.


Welcome to the Shroomery Message Board! You are experiencing a small sample of what the site has to offer. Please login or register to post messages and view our exclusive members-only content. You'll gain access to additional forums, file attachments, board customizations, encrypted private messages, and much more!

Shop: Kraken Kratom Red Vein Kratom   Left Coast Kratom Buy Kratom Extract, Kratom Powder For Sale   Original Sensible Seeds Autoflowering Cannabis Seeds, Bulk Cannabis Seeds, Feminized Cannabis Seeds, High THC Strains, USA West Coast Strains   North Spore Bulk Substrate, North Spore Mushroom Grow Kits & Cultivation Supplies   Unfolding Nature Unfolding Nature: Being in the Implicate Order   PhytoExtractum Buy Bali Kratom Powder, Kratom Powder for Sale, Maeng Da Thai Kratom Leaf Powder   Bridgetown Botanicals CBD Edibles, CBD Topicals

Jump to first unread post Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8  [ show all ]
Invisiblebuttonion
Calmly Watching

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 303
Loc: Kansas
"Freewill problem" check
    #2424210 - 03/12/04 03:40 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

So I just wanted to check in with everyone about the good old "problem of freewill." Whooppdee doo. Eggh. Anyone cracked this nut yet? (he, he) Every once and a while one of the ?unsolvables? of philosophy really starts to bug me- I realize that I have two dissonant cognitions and can?t stand it anymore!

Seriously, I don?t expect anyone to have ?solved? it. I just want to hear how you ?cope? with it. The problem as I see it is as follows:

We utilize the concept of causality to explain all phenomena. When we ask ?why did X do that?? we answer with ?because A led to B led to C? and caused X.? But we peoples have another option to explain why it is we did something. I ask ?Why did you do that?? and you respond ?Because I wanted to? So we have the apparent ability to step outside of the causal chain and cause things to happen independent of past influences on us. We get to take ?responsibility? for our actions. We are held ?accountable.?

Eggh.. I want to write more but I?m kind of sick of thinking about it?. How do you cope with the contradiction between the utility of causality in explaining phenomena and your apparent exemption from the casual chain? It seems one has to go.


--------------------
Concepts which have been proved to be useful in ordering things easily acquire such an authority over us that we forget their human origins and accept them as invariable.- Albert Einstein


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhluck
Carpal Tunnel
 User Gallery

Registered: 04/11/99
Posts: 11,394
Loc: Canada
Last seen: 25 days, 20 hours
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2424250 - 03/12/04 03:50 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

There isn't that much of a mystery.

The claim that freewill exists is pretty flawed: nobody even knows what freewill is.

We can think of two distinct possibilities: the mind is random, or the mind is ordered and follows a specific system.

Freewillers think there's a third possibility: free will. "What is free will?", you ask them, and they say "the ability to make choices on your own".

I think humans naturally feel as though they have some special degree of control. That's part of the system involved in making choices.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblebuttonion
Calmly Watching

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 303
Loc: Kansas
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phluck]
    #2424383 - 03/12/04 04:13 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

All right. But having embraced the idea that you are a completely determined thing, have you completely rid yourself of the idea that you make free choices? And so as not to be hypocritical, do you NOT hold others to be accountable for their actions because they are just effects of causes, not having any free choice over their behavior?


--------------------
Concepts which have been proved to be useful in ordering things easily acquire such an authority over us that we forget their human origins and accept them as invariable.- Albert Einstein


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefireworks_godS
Sexy.Butt.McDanger
Male

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,855
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 1 year, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2424441 - 03/12/04 04:28 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

This is one I think we as humans will be struggling with for awhile.....

Isn't it sort of a discrepancy involving time? Its like.... obviously, what happened before led us to this very moment. The choices that are made in the present are made because of what happened in the moments in the past.. cause and effect.

However. I think it should be noted that cause and effect can't be determined until after it happened... how the hell are you going to be able to determine the future before it happens?

We can predict what happens in the future in vauge, general terms, analyzing a set of variables, where we are at now, watching what has gotten us where we are now.... I suppose the failure to predict the future 100% accurately has to do with not accounting for all the variables, correct?

Well, how do you account for all the variables? To account for all of the variables would be to... figure out Existance, right? How do we do that within Existance? To know every variable... we would have to be outside of the system..... which is why it is so easy to find the cause and effects in the past, as it has already happened.....

Well, cause and effect relies on "time". Free will..... would have to be independant of cause and effect, right? And of time as well?

Hehe, sorry, just thinking "out loud", so to speak.... :lol:
Peace.


--------------------
:redpanda:
If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2424448 - 03/12/04 04:34 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

The problem is, you are thinking in black and white. It's not that we either have free will or we don't. It's simply that we don't have 100% free will. Humans are programmable automatons, and very reliable in their Pavlovic responses as well as their survival-instinctual wants and needs. As one becomes more conscious, one gains more free will. This is because as one becomes more conscious, one becomes more aware of choices and gains ability to act on those choices. How much free will does a rock have? None. How much free will do humans have? More than a rock, but not total free will. There are undoubtedly beings in the universe that are more conscious than humans and thus have more free will than us.

See? That wasn't too hard.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhluck
Carpal Tunnel
 User Gallery

Registered: 04/11/99
Posts: 11,394
Loc: Canada
Last seen: 25 days, 20 hours
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2424455 - 03/12/04 04:35 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

"have you completely rid yourself of the idea that you make free choices?"

I'm not sure entirely what you mean. I still hold myself accountable for my actions, and I still carefully consider what I do. This is part of the process of decision making.

Holding others accountable for their actions is an influence upon the system of decision making. By holding others accountable for their actions, you cause them to make better choices.

They don't have free will over their behaviour, but their behaviour is influenced strongly by outside ideas and influences.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleSkorpivoMusterion
Livin in theTwilight Zone...
 User Gallery

Registered: 01/30/03
Posts: 9,954
Loc: You can't spell fungus wi...
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: ]
    #2424484 - 03/12/04 04:42 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

Max Headroom said:
The problem is, you are thinking in black and white. It's not that we either have free will or we don't. It's simply that we don't have 100% free will. Humans are programmable automatons, and very reliable in their Pavlovic responses as well as their survival-instinctual wants and needs. As one becomes more conscious, one gains more free will. This is because as one becomes more conscious, one becomes more aware of choices and gains ability to act on those choices. How much free will does a rock have? None. How much free will do humans have? More than a rock, but not total free will. There are undoubtedly beings in the universe that are more conscious than humans and thus have more free will than us.

See? That wasn't too hard.




Thank you. After reading this thread, I almost went:


But, you saved the day.

:wink:


--------------------
Coffee should be black as hell, strong as death, and sweet as love.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblebuttonion
Calmly Watching

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 303
Loc: Kansas
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: fireworks_god]
    #2424674 - 03/12/04 05:22 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Yeah, great thoughts.

I would say that the notion of ?cause and effect? (or more generally change) and ?time? are inseparable ideas. And so, like you said, if free will is somehow outside of the causal chain, it would have to be ?timeless.?

After reading your post, I?m more hung up on the idea that if freewill is independent of cause and effect, not only is it not a caused thing, but it could have no causal power either- it couldn't influence anything.


--------------------
Concepts which have been proved to be useful in ordering things easily acquire such an authority over us that we forget their human origins and accept them as invariable.- Albert Einstein


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblebuttonion
Calmly Watching

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 303
Loc: Kansas
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: ]
    #2424753 - 03/12/04 05:42 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

There is a deeper philosophical issue. All of the physical world is explained in terms of cause and effect. Atoms, molecules, cells, cell tissue, organs? it all behaves in the way that it does because of prior and current causes and conditions. The human body is made up of these things. How do we ever transcend the cause and effect nature of these things? In terms of biology, we are giant walking cell-cities, cells being giant molecule cities. If we are going to accept the idea that the physical world arises because of prior and current conditions, how are we, an organization of physical things that we know are just effects of past causes, exempt from causality?

Humans are complex, no doubt. Human brains are the most complex forms in the known universe. But all that you described is just highly complex reactionary behavior in response to a bunch of causes.


--------------------
Concepts which have been proved to be useful in ordering things easily acquire such an authority over us that we forget their human origins and accept them as invariable.- Albert Einstein


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineSpecialEd
+ one

Registered: 01/30/03
Posts: 6,220
Loc: : Gringo
Last seen: 6 years, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2425656 - 03/13/04 12:42 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

I don't have anything intelligent to add (suprise suprise), but what part of kansas are you from buttonion?


--------------------
"Plus one upvote +1..."
--- //
-- :meff:
  /l_l\/
--\-/----


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2425750 - 03/13/04 01:06 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinepattern
multiplayer

Registered: 07/19/02
Posts: 2,185
Loc: Canada
Last seen: 1 year, 7 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2426240 - 03/13/04 05:17 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

If everything is causal (no freewill) then people must be held accountable for their actions since: they are destined to repeat the same mistakes again.

If people have freewill then people must be held accountable for their actions since it was their choice, and therefore their fault.

Either way there is still responsibility.


--------------------
man = monkey + mushroom


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefireworks_godS
Sexy.Butt.McDanger
Male

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,855
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 1 year, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2426347 - 03/13/04 06:53 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

buttonion said:
After reading your post, I?m more hung up on the idea that if freewill is independent of cause and effect, not only is it not a caused thing, but it could have no causal power either- it couldn't influence anything.




Hmmm... been doing some thinking.... maybe free will would tie in somehow with awareness? Consciousness? Its like, hhm...... back into the shadows I go.  :laugh:
Peace.  :mushroom2:


--------------------
:redpanda:
If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefilthysock
puresoul

Registered: 01/12/04
Posts: 2,080
Loc: Bergen, Norway
Last seen: 15 years, 4 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: pattern]
    #2426352 - 03/13/04 06:59 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

I think we have complete free will, one hundred percent free will. But we are still chained to cause and effect, meaning we have free will but our choices must always be made according to a certain situation. This does not diminish the fact that we have complete free will. We can always turn left, right, go straight or even go revers (not in time but in choice) but wherever we take these turns we are doing it withing a situation. It seems as though what some of you are saying is that for there to be 100% free will then situation cant exist. Sorry if I have misunderstood.


--------------------
Magic mushrooms are not addictive, the shroomery is!


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefireworks_godS
Sexy.Butt.McDanger
Male

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,855
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 1 year, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: filthysock]
    #2426368 - 03/13/04 07:07 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Inevitably, however, the choice that you make was the ONLY choice you would have made, based on cause and effect. The way you think was all determined by cause and effect, from external cirumstances.

And in your mind, following thoughts. Every thought leads up to the next thought for a specific reason. Cause and effect. Our decision making process relies on cause and effect, as does everything. Our entire way of thinking was formed by a chain of thoughts over time, each individual thought coming about due to a cause before it.

I admit I don't even know what free will is anymore. I thought I knew once and now I don't.... when most people speak of free will, it usually means the freedom to make any available choices that they wish, without pressure from external sources.... However, there is a big difference between that and what some people consider free will.... THAT free will is not free of cause and effect at all.

Of all the available choices that we are free to make in one moment, we can only make one. And the one we make was going to be made anyways, due to the flow of our thoughts, cause and effect. :grin:
Peace. :mushroom2:


--------------------
:redpanda:
If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefilthysock
puresoul

Registered: 01/12/04
Posts: 2,080
Loc: Bergen, Norway
Last seen: 15 years, 4 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: fireworks_god]
    #2426436 - 03/13/04 07:48 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Say you like apple and banana just the same. You are a bit hungry for a snack and you have one apple and one banana, your randomn choice goes to show you have free will. Your choice isnt related to chain and effect and how your mind has been created by cause and effect situations throughout your life, in some cases yes, but in some cases you just have to go eeny meeny miney moe, meaning you have free will to make a randomn choice.


--------------------
Magic mushrooms are not addictive, the shroomery is!


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefireworks_godS
Sexy.Butt.McDanger
Male

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,855
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 1 year, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: filthysock]
    #2426445 - 03/13/04 07:54 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

It isn't a random choice, however. Computers aren't even capable of making a random choice. There is always some sort of code involved that allows them to come up with the "random" number.

Have you watched your thoughts in a situation like that? You might even come down to "eeny meeny miney moe", but that doesn't make it a random choice, free of cause and effect. The fact that you did "eeny meeny miney moe" to select which one of the two you were going to eat makes it a rather good example of cause and effect, actually.

You started at one of the two and did the little selection game and the fruit you ended up eating was the effect of that cause. :wink:
Peace. :mushroom2:


--------------------
:redpanda:
If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefilthysock
puresoul

Registered: 01/12/04
Posts: 2,080
Loc: Bergen, Norway
Last seen: 15 years, 4 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: fireworks_god]
    #2426642 - 03/13/04 09:48 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Interesting...
I agree with you partially. One example: Right now I had to go to town to buy groceries, I had to do that because I need groceries, I need the groceries because I would die from hunger if I didnt buy my food/groceries... this is a cause and effect reaction. Though I could've done that yesterday. Its only because I decided to do so today that I did it today. It is possible to predict the future, but not to the finest detail, thats what I believe, because when looking at cause and effect chain reactions you can predict the future when it comes to things on a larger scale, but its the less meaningfull things that are more randomn. Things are controlled by cause and effect continuosly, but who is in charge of the cause? Me, you, people...

So when it all comes down to it we are causing the cause, the effect can result in someone elses hands, and thats where they make a choice which will result as an effect in someone elses hands...etc. My point is you always choose a choice by free will as a result of and because of cause and effect. I think its plain to see that free will and cause and effect go hand in hand in some weird codependant way.


--------------------
Magic mushrooms are not addictive, the shroomery is!


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineFrog
Warrior
Female User Gallery

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 4,284
Loc: The Zero Point Field
Last seen: 8 years, 8 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: filthysock]
    #2427159 - 03/13/04 01:13 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Yes, I agree with filthysock.

There's no pure free will, and things are not completely predetermined. We have free will within the construct of the results of choices that have already been made.


--------------------
The day will come when, after harnessing the ether, the winds, the tides, gravitation, we shall harness for God the energies of love. And, on that day, for the second time in the history of the world, man will have discovered fire.  -Teilard


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Frog]
    #2427853 - 03/13/04 05:37 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

This just depends on how far you want to take your materialism. If you want to take it to its logical conclusion, of course we have no free will!

I guess we still have some dualists, but I can't imagine that they're appealing to argument.

It seems to me that "free will" cuts much like how "mind" cuts. I can't see many eliminativists w.r.t., say, qualia, suggesting that we also have free will. It depends on what you want to carry to completion, materialism or qualia or free will or whatever thing you desperately want to have but cannot ultiamtely provide a material account of =].


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineFrog
Warrior
Female User Gallery

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 4,284
Loc: The Zero Point Field
Last seen: 8 years, 8 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2427912 - 03/13/04 06:01 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

I am not understanding what you mean by "materialism" in the context of your statement.

I will have to go look up "qualia.

"material account of" ???


--------------------
The day will come when, after harnessing the ether, the winds, the tides, gravitation, we shall harness for God the energies of love. And, on that day, for the second time in the history of the world, man will have discovered fire.  -Teilard


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Frog]
    #2427953 - 03/13/04 06:12 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Materialism: "The view that everything that actually exists is material, or physical. Many philosophers and scientists now use the terms `material' and `physical' interchangeably (for a version of physicalism distinct from materialism, see physicalism). Characterized in this way, as a doctrine about what exists, materialism is an ontological, or a metaphysical, view; it is not just an epistemological view about how we know or just a semantic view about the meaning of terms." (Dictionary of Philosophy of Mind, http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~philos/MindDict/)

Qualia: "The 'what it's like' character of mental states. The way it feels to have mental states such as pain, seeing red, smelling a rose, etc." (Same as above.)

I perhaps maybe should have said physicalism instead of materialism, but I think that in an informal way, materialism captures what I want to say.

If everything is material, how does free-will emerge? It seems at least "possible" for a dualist to say that his mind somehow has a freedom because it is not subject to material constraints, but given what we think about matter and material interactions, it does not seem as though freedom can come from them. We can perhaps get systems where the final output is not determinate---but I think we can with fairly good accuracy make statements of the form "between N and M" for lots of various types of statements. Some people believe that free-will and _determinism_ are compatible. I do not believe in that sort of nonsense =]


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinegotmagog
searching fortruth andlogic...

Registered: 01/18/04
Posts: 239
Loc: Europe
Last seen: 13 years, 1 month
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2427980 - 03/13/04 06:21 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

Mal_Fenderson said:

It seems to me that "free will" cuts much like how "mind" cuts.




Yeah, exactly, the real problem of free will is whether our brains or minds have free will, what is controlling our thoughts and emotions, and so on, which influence our choices and actions. Is it a soul with free will, or a completely deterministic result of interaction of hormones, neurons, electrical forces and chemical reactions?

And about the argument of causality, of course we are influenced by it, even if free will exists. The world around us is the work of many independent actors and random factors. The point is whether the part of us that observes this , our mind, our "self", is free to observe and change things.

A bit off topic, I am really interested in this, this semester I took a course of artificial intelligence. The philosophical questions excited me much. The notion of "Free will" is crucial to the question of whether "real" artificial intelligence (in the sense of a machine thinking as good as a man) is possible, is the mind a unique feature of living creatures, or a possibly programmable deterministic program.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: gotmagog]
    #2428014 - 03/13/04 06:29 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Well, it really has to do with whether we really have "minds" in the sense that many of us every-day think we do. I don't know how much recourse we can have to "souls", tho, if we want to do philosophy instead of theology.


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefilthysock
puresoul

Registered: 01/12/04
Posts: 2,080
Loc: Bergen, Norway
Last seen: 15 years, 4 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: gotmagog]
    #2428031 - 03/13/04 06:37 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

I think the answer to that is no in my opinion. You can detail an artificial brain with as much technology as you want but when it comes down to it it has been programmed to do programmed things randomnly to simulate free will, but it will in any case have artifical programmed free will. Therefor I think our free will roots down to our soul and emotions and feelings and our individuality... our soul in other words. I think our soul is both independant and codependant so all our choices affect others and others can choose what they will do about how they've been affected. The action is independant, the result is codependant.


--------------------
Magic mushrooms are not addictive, the shroomery is!


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: filthysock]
    #2428061 - 03/13/04 06:47 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

filthysock, this is the question. How are we substantively different from very complex computers? Are we? even if we _are_ different insofar as computers are deterministic, does a lack of determinism give us anything closer to freewill? I can even grant that I have emotions and feelings and qualia and all sorts of strange things...but does this mean that I could have done other than write this message? I don't know how I can ever get that sort of idea as true.


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefilthysock
puresoul

Registered: 01/12/04
Posts: 2,080
Loc: Bergen, Norway
Last seen: 15 years, 4 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2428132 - 03/13/04 07:10 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

I'm convinced that we have souls that go on after our life... I'm convinced to such and extent that its not a philosophy of mine even, I know this doesnt help my arguement any more than to prove how I feel about my own arguement, huh:smirk:... Moving on...
We can build anything we want as humans, there is no end to what our imaginations can come up with and create, we can create a human body to the finest detail when the day that our technology provides us with what we need for such an operation, but to give that aritifcial human free will would be impossible as it needs a soul to have free will.  Say you create the perfect AI with everything looking exactly the way it does in a human body... you would still need to attach a program to the AI giving it randomn feelings at randomn.  It is that "attached program" if you will that is our soul for us, except our soul controlls itself and doesnt go by programmed randomn, it goes how it pleases....


--------------------
Magic mushrooms are not addictive, the shroomery is!


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: filthysock]
    #2428263 - 03/13/04 07:56 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Well, OK, as soon as you're going to say that there's a soul and it has properties X Y Z and these are not material properties but somehow different, you've made it very difficult for there to be much discussion...it's a bit like trying to frame a discussion about elephants with someone who insists that there are pink elephants. In the strictest sense, you can't prove that there are no pink elephants, but you can certainly demonstrate, I think, that even if there were pink elephants, it wouldn't matter one bit =]


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinegotmagog
searching fortruth andlogic...

Registered: 01/18/04
Posts: 239
Loc: Europe
Last seen: 13 years, 1 month
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2428281 - 03/13/04 07:59 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Well, I also believe there is a soul, my personal experiences with salvia and shrooms somehow made me even more aware of it and I am less of the materialist than I was before.

But than again, this is just intuition, a personal feeling. The more materialistic explanation that we are more like computers may also be equally valid. Chaos theory in math and physics show how from apparently "deterministic" rules, the inevitable natural laws, random behaviour comes, quantum mechanics also predicts some random behaviour.

Perhaps one day "free will" will be scientifically defined like a force to change the quantum particles which exactly of their probable trajectories they take, a scientific descripiton of souls in action? (I am being creative now , it is 2 am by me , but I won't sleep yet )

The feeling of a soul may be just a high level function of programs. There are not proofs yet, and here we are just saying our personal opinions and whatever information makes it a bit more probable.

This reminds me again of my AI course. At the end we discussed the strong and weak AI hypothesis, will machines think like humans, or will they only become to act like a thinking human in the same situation. But if they act "like" a human in this situation, and the only thing different in machines than humans is the supposed invisible and not materialistic free will and soul, than is this strong enough argument to dismiss that the machine is thinking?

And in general, what does it mean a machine can think, can a machine swim or fly like a bird ? It depends on the definition.

But going back to free will, I thought right now whether its existance is directly connected to the queston of whether we have souls or not, is this one and the same question?


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineFrog
Warrior
Female User Gallery

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 4,284
Loc: The Zero Point Field
Last seen: 8 years, 8 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2428348 - 03/13/04 08:17 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

I'm going to have to pick up where I left off tomorrow in this discussion.  I went to your link, and found "Page Not Found @artsci !" 

I've had a scotch and water and there will be no further serious conversation out of me today.  Or, I should say, conversation that makes me have to think.  :grin:


--------------------
The day will come when, after harnessing the ether, the winds, the tides, gravitation, we shall harness for God the energies of love. And, on that day, for the second time in the history of the world, man will have discovered fire.  -Teilard


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefilthysock
puresoul

Registered: 01/12/04
Posts: 2,080
Loc: Bergen, Norway
Last seen: 15 years, 4 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: gotmagog]
    #2428535 - 03/13/04 08:54 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

Mal_Fenderson said:
Well, OK, as soon as you're going to say that there's a soul and it has properties X Y Z and these are not material properties but somehow different, you've made it very difficult for there to be much discussion...it's a bit like trying to frame a discussion about elephants with someone who insists that there are pink elephants. In the strictest sense, you can't prove that there are no pink elephants, but you can certainly demonstrate, I think, that even if there were pink elephants, it wouldn't matter one bit =]




Well yes I see this, and I even predicted this would be the situation after my last arguement, thats because it IS hard to discuss something that goes beyond the physical when discussing the nature of its function upon the physical since there is very little people know about spiritual and especially how our physical lives interact with the spiritual. Spirits... Our Souls are just the sense that is your self, the "I" in you, your conscience clean from any material values or material impressions... the soul is what controls the machine you are in right now which is your physical body. From our discussion I think we can agree that free will doesnt and cant come from our brain alone, will doesnt come from a series of biological tissue and nerves and whatever... its being driven through our brains to be able to move our body's and function on the physical much like you drive a car to function on the road. Does this seem illogical to you?

Quote:

This reminds me again of my AI course. At the end we discussed the strong and weak AI hypothesis, will machines think like humans, or will they only become to act like a thinking human in the same situation. But if they act "like" a human in this situation, and the only thing different in machines than humans is the supposed invisible and not materialistic free will and soul, than is this strong enough argument to dismiss that the machine is thinking?




Well the action of the robot is enough to say its thinking, cause its doing the action of thinking.. IMO. But its only thinking based on what is the norm from a human.

Quote:

But going back to free will, I thought right now whether its existance is directly connected to the queston of whether we have souls or not, is this one and the same question?




I brought up this about the soul up because I think it is the prime source to free will, I think free will and soul are one and the same (just that souls is more ofcourse).

Ofcourse this is from my beliefs and anybody who believes this is bull shit feel free to criticize...


--------------------
Magic mushrooms are not addictive, the shroomery is!


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhred
Fred's son
Male

Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 12,949
Loc: Dominican Republic
Last seen: 6 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2428815 - 03/13/04 10:14 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

buttonion writes:

So we have the apparent ability to step outside of the causal chain and cause things to happen independent of past influences on us. We get to take ?responsibility? for our actions. We are held ?accountable.?

Nothing "apparent" about the ability at all. It is readily observable.

You are still hung up on your inability to describe to your own satisfaction the mechanism by which the ability is exercised, yet you persist in handcuffing yourself to a limited set of possibilities.

If everything that occurs in a deterministic universe is predestined, then clearly there can be no such thing as free will. But there is free will. Therefore, not everything that occurs in a universe in which living entities exist is predetermined.

Perhaps the truth is that entities which exercise free will act in the observable universe, but are not entirely of the observable universe.

pinky


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2429621 - 03/14/04 12:05 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Sorry, action is not evidence for free will.

But you're perfectly free to think that it is, I guess.

This ability that you find so "intuitive" could very easily be made quite unintuitive if enough people were raised as such.


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhred
Fred's son
Male

Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 12,949
Loc: Dominican Republic
Last seen: 6 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2429687 - 03/14/04 12:23 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Mal_Fenderson writes:

Sorry, action is not evidence for free will.

Action per se is not, agreed. Purposeful action is. The series of actions required to compose and type a coherent response to a post on a message board, for example, demonstrates the existence of free will.

This ability that you find so "intuitive" could very easily be made quite unintuitive if enough people were raised as such.

I'm not speaking of intuitive at all here. I refer to actions that are directly observable. And no matter how people are inculcated during their rearing, some would be capable of observing that their actions are self-directed.

pinky


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2429762 - 03/14/04 12:43 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Well, I seem to be able to observe that it seems like my actions might in one sense be free. But I need to know how this freedom is at all compatible with materialism, and either determinism or the idea that everything is random. Neither of those seems able to give me free will. It seems that our senses give us the hypothesis, but shouldn't there be an empirical test?


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhred
Fred's son
Male

Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 12,949
Loc: Dominican Republic
Last seen: 6 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2429851 - 03/14/04 01:07 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

But I need to know how this freedom is at all compatible with materialism, and either determinism or the idea that everything is random. Neither of those seems able to give me free will.

Agreed. If all is predetermined, there can be no free will. Therefore, since there is free will, all is not predetermined. Similarly, since there is free will, all is not random. Even a mixture of predetermination and randomness does not adequately explain free will.

The thing is, buttonion and I have been round this merry-go-round before. He (and others) seem to have convinced themselves that all actions of all living entities must be either pre-determined or random. They admit no possibility of a third alternative; that some actions of some living entities are neither predetermined nor random but purposeful and self-initiated.

This amounts to nothing more than saying, "My theory cannot explain free will, therefore free will does not exist."

The way to approach it is instead to say, "Free will exists, therefore since my theory cannot explain it, my theory is at best incomplete and at worst incorrect."

pinky


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineBleaK
paradox
Registered: 06/24/02
Posts: 1,583
Last seen: 7 years, 10 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2429989 - 03/14/04 01:55 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

i didnt take time to read through all your posts. but id like to bring up a term i came across in sociology; "soft-determinalism" the idea that u have to make choices among a certain set of options that was pre-determined.

like u go to an ice cream store and u can pick whatever flavor u want.. as long as its something they have stocked.

but then u ask youself. "why did i pick that?" cause it tastes better.....
so mebe we should look into biochemistry now.. and see why 1 thing tastes better to one person, and worse to another.

i see the problem where it seems choices are determined by pre-cursing phenomenon, that one may or may not be aware of. but how about if we could tap into our unconsicous? would that change anything?


--------------------
"You cannot trust in law, unless you can trust in people. If you can trust in people, you don't need law." -J. Mumma


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineThe_Visionaire
Torch

Registered: 02/16/04
Posts: 111
Loc: Indra's Net
Last seen: 13 years, 8 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2430471 - 03/14/04 06:13 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

One of the problems in your reasoning is that you think the laws of nature are in a way "out there" and that they rule YOU. This is a strange and incorrect way to separate the world.

I shall not begin to write my whole reasoning once again (it obviously does not have effect anyway...), but an essential issue to comprehend here is that of wholeness. It is not like effect only goes one way, from matter to mind. There is also a cause going from mind to matter as well. If you try to make a dualistic interpretation of this you will end up with all sorts of problems. Why is it so hard to see that we ARE the universe. We are not some kind of explicate phenomena suddenly caught in the grip of some mechanical external forces. We go much deeper than that.

We ARE meaning. We do not stand "outside" of anything, making a free choice. But the higher your consciousness, the higer the comprehended context. The meaning unfolding from such "higher" perception, is quite different from the "pursuit of pleasure" driving meaning in the lower realms.


--------------------
There are no differences between men and gods,
one blends softly causal into the other.
-Frank Herbert, Dune.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefireworks_godS
Sexy.Butt.McDanger
Male

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,855
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 1 year, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: The_Visionaire]
    #2430605 - 03/14/04 07:50 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

I'm going to have to agree with Visionaire here. :thumbup:

Our way of thinking and consequently what we feel, etc, was all picked up from our interaction with the outside world. From the very beginning, we have been observing, and the same time interacting. We aren't a computer that is programmed and then booted up. We are programmed (taking in meaning, basically) while we are running the program itself. We make ourselves as we go, and what meaning we take on depends on our interactions with the external as we go along.

Quote:

pinksharkmark said:
If everything that occurs in a deterministic universe is predestined, then clearly there can be no such thing as free will. But there is free will. Therefore, not everything that occurs in a universe in which living entities exist is predetermined.




How did you come to the conclusion that there is free will? The fact that we are living entities and are capable of self reflection and making conscious choices doesn't say anything for free will.

Every moment and every action before this exact moment has led up to this one and any action or further moment in this exact moment and beyond it definitely relied on what happened in the previous moments.

Look at the way water flows in say a river. Water is formless. It follows the path of least resistance. Where the river was flowing two minutes ago IS going to determine where it is flowing two minutes after that.

While, theoretically, the water *could* flow anywhere, as it is formless, where it starts IS going to determine where it flows next. This is unavoidable. (until, perhaps, time is transcended and no longer binds us)  :laugh:

What is the difference between water and us? The only difference is that we are conscious (could be attributed to a soul, or perhaps just the insanely structured brain of ours, sort of like mycelium in a way.... multiplied by 5 trillion or so. :lol:) of the fact that we are flowing. This allows us to make choices, basically we have more possibillities for where we will direct our flow, but that doesn't in any way make us free from this Universe and the way it works. :grin:

Hehe, one thing I was thinking of is how we can consciously direct our flow agansit the path of immediate least resistance to reach some future, better position.... like how someone might have an addiction and will resist that addiction in order to break free of it... something like that....

But ja. The more conscious we become the more ability we have at influencing our interactions with what is in this reality and the more ability we have at influencing how this reality interacts with us... :nut:

Who we are is who we were and who we, in this moment, decide to become over the future moments approaching.  :grin:
Peace.  :mushroom2:


--------------------
:redpanda:
If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2430956 - 03/14/04 12:45 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: ]
    #2431061 - 03/14/04 01:34 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

No, all is particular, and what is particular we have far less of than we'd generally like to think... I guess I'm an eliminativist when it comes to various things---qualia, holes, fictional characters, etc. etc.

It's good that you brought up God, because I think that there are many parallels to the free-will debate. It's ultimately a matter of faith---there's nothing that one can point to and say "that's free-will". At best you can point to something, X, and say "X is evidence of free-will". It strikes me as the same for God. I can raise my arm---that is not free will, but it _could_ be evidence of free-will.

And now, for some fun and to see what you people think, I will paraphrase Ryle's argument against freedom of the will:

When we say some act Q is undertaken volitionally by an agent, what we mean is that this act, Q, was selected from a set of possible actions that the agent could have undertaken. But it seems that the selection of Q, the act Q`, must also have been a volitional act of the same type. The selection of Q`, therefore, Q``, must have been of a similar type. Therefore it seems as though in "willing" an action, there would be an infinite regress involved. Is this problematic? It seems to me that at no point can any of the Q-primes ever stop, otherwise we would be admitting that our actions would be predicated on unwilled antecedents...but how can this happen? We certainly do not do an infinite number of things before raising our arms, do we?


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2431067 - 03/14/04 01:42 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: ]
    #2431083 - 03/14/04 01:49 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Well, I believe that we have terms which refer to things, and we have terms which refer to classes of things, but at no point does this necessitate a universal thing. We certainly have fancy webs of reference and complex relationships between our referants---that is, if you were to model the way we do "real life" reference inside of language as a formal system, it would probably be quite complex.

I guess that one way to justify what I've said (well, "justify"---this is not a rigorous argument) is Berkeley's statement, I guess, of what qualifies as a ground for ontological committment to a thing.

"esse est percipi". To be is to be perceived.

I've never perceived a universal; only a particular. In fact, I have trouble thinking about how I could ever perceive a universal---if I did, would it not have to be a particular and therefore not _really_ a universal?

(Is dogmatic empricism really so much worse than dogmatic realism? =])


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleEvolving
Resident Cynic

Registered: 10/01/02
Posts: 5,385
Loc: Apt #6, The Village
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2431097 - 03/14/04 01:54 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

You're free to choose a belief that free will exists or that it doesn't, that doesn't change the facts. Think of the consequences for people if no one was held accountable for their actions, if it was universally accepted that no one has free will...

"Oh those poor Nazi's, they couldn't help themselves. Imagine the horror they must have felt knowing that all those Jews would be horribly put to death and they had no choice in their actions."

"It's not my fault the investors were defrauded and they lost all their retirement money, I had no choice in the matter, my actions were predetermined."

"Sorry about sodomizing and killing all those teenage boys detective, but I have no free will." "That's okay son, destiny has made the decision so it's not your fault and I can't make a decision about what to do about you..."


Ideas have consequences.

I choose not to elaborate any more.


--------------------
To call humans 'rational beings' does injustice to the term, 'rational.'  Humans are capable of rational thought, but it is not their essence.  Humans are animals, beasts with complex brains.  Humans, more often than not, utilize their cerebrum to rationalize what their primal instincts, their preconceived notions, and their emotional desires have presented as goals - humans are rationalizing beings.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Evolving]
    #2431124 - 03/14/04 02:02 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Yes, and if everyone's actions really _were_ pre-determined, there would be no use saying that the nazis could have helped themselves. Your final example is probably the best for seeing why this is not a problem. The sodomy and killing were deterministic outcomes of the universe running its course---so is whatever moral outrage or lack thereof that the detective has. If we have no free will and determinism is true:

We are perfectly justified in assigning moral responsibility for an action to the person who performed it, basically, because we have no _choice_ in the matter.

A lack of free-will doesn't just mean you aren't free to kill or rape or murder---it applies to everything, from mundane to incredible. You have no more choice as to whether to put jam or butter on your toast in the morning than whether or not you hold a murderer morally responsible.

It is an interesting question how interactions between free and non-free people might need to go, but I think that it is more an exercise in "what if" than an exercise in some problem that is likely to happen. It seems as though we are either all free or none of us are free.


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinezappaisgod
horrid asshole

Registered: 02/11/04
Posts: 81,741
Loc: Fractallife's gym
Last seen: 5 years, 4 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Evolving]
    #2431178 - 03/14/04 02:18 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Indeed, there is no practical value in adopting a absolute determinist view of the universe, inclusive of human behaviour. There is a concept in physics regarding the Conservation of Information which states that if you know the current state of all the particles of the universe you can run this backward to any point in time and know the state of the universe at that time. This however runs into some difficulty when particles, and their information, disappear into black holes. There is also the problem of virtual particles popping into existence all the time, usually to be annihilated immediately by their antiparticles, but not always. Another inconsistency is illustrated by half-life. Given a piece of uranium we can say with absolute certainty that half of it will decay in a certain period of time. However we can say nothhing about when a certain, single particle will decay. Schroedinger's cat and all. There seems to be enough indeterminacy here to allow for the actual existence of free will. But, more importantly, there is no value in denying it.


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2431204 - 03/14/04 02:22 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: ]
    #2431332 - 03/14/04 02:56 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Sure.
I don't think that gets us universals.
I don't quite see how solipsism is self-refuting---it's just not very _useful_. A solipsist can't really draw useful ethical conclusions for living within a society. So I can completely agree with you, for a moment, that if enough people perceive X, we can reliably infer that there is an X. But this gets us some particular X, not any sort of universal of which X is a particular instantiation.

Also, I think that your characterization of hallucination is incorrect. We have one way in which we perceive, but it does not seem to be the only thing that I might call perception. A bat, for example, performs activities which I would like to call perception, but can I ever know what they are? Nagel's question is can I ever know "what it is like" to be a bat? And his answer is no, and I agree.

I don't think that reversing the maxim fundamentally changes it. I don't think that your translation of the reversal is quite the fullest scope of the reversal. Literally, (Six credits of latin, so, if this is incorrect, I apologize!) To be perceived is to be. And in this case, "to be" seems to mean "exist"

And so, we end up with:

Esse est percipi => To be is to be perceived => To exist is to be perceived
Percipi est esse => To be perceived is to be => To be perceived is to exist.

I think I can agree with both of those statments without being inconsistent and without assenting to universals.


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2431407 - 03/14/04 03:28 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefireworks_godS
Sexy.Butt.McDanger
Male

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,855
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 1 year, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: ]
    #2431457 - 03/14/04 03:45 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Out of curiousity, do you feel that I was on the mark or off, in my last reply up there? Did what I say hold water? I'm interested 'cause if not then I have to do a whole lot of serious thinking because that was really deep of me... a lot of stuff I think about has to be rethunk if so.  :confused:
Peace.  :mushroom2:


--------------------
:redpanda:
If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2431474 - 03/14/04 03:50 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: fireworks_god]
    #2431484 - 03/14/04 03:53 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: ]
    #2431578 - 03/14/04 04:25 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

P1 Nothing immaterial exists.
P2 Universals sound to me like they cannot be material---material things are particular. (Is this wrong?)

C1 And so universals do not exist.

Is P1 the place to attack this argument? P2? Both? I'm certainly open to your arguments...

I'm not so sure about which definitions we're disagreeing on... Is it universal/particular? It seems to me that a universal, if one believes in such a thing, is a thing such that it receives no particular instantiation but is the general thing referenced by any given particular. For example, a given car references the Universal Car. Or a given blue is the particular instance of Blueness. Perhaps with colours this makes more sense. I see these things---and all of my thoughts about them---as fundamentally material. I do not see where these universals could come.


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleinfidelGOD
illusion

Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 3,040
Loc: there
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: ]
    #2431579 - 03/14/04 04:25 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Of course universals exist, they exist in the mind.

this is a completely meaningless and contradictory statement.

Truth does not emanate from a three pound mass of flesh within a human skull, no matter how bloated and self-important it may be. how arrogant of man to think that on this speck of dust in a sea of stars, we have found "Truth" or "universals" by examining human thoughts in human minds. we are bit players in the cosmic drama, IT is greater than anything you can possibly comprehend. to think that human beings can grasp TRUE universals by examing the HUMAN mind is laughable at best.
simply put, this is a philosophy from another era, when the earth was thought to be the center of creation.
I hope the more progressive minds here can see it for what it is - the death throes of a dying philosophical paradigm.

seeing universals in the human experience is a bit like looking for God on the insides of your eyelids... he's always there...
I guess if your desperately seeking something, you'll eventually find it, somewhere.



Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: infidelGOD]
    #2431681 - 03/14/04 05:12 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Slightly more rhetorical than argumentitive, but well said =]


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhred
Fred's son
Male

Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 12,949
Loc: Dominican Republic
Last seen: 6 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: fireworks_god]
    #2431902 - 03/14/04 06:35 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

fireworks_god writes:

How did you come to the conclusion that there is free will?

Through observation.

The fact that we are living entities and are capable of self reflection and making conscious choices doesn't say anything for free will.

It says everything about free will. If you make a conscious choice, then by definition you are exercising free will. If there is no such thing as free will, there is no such thing as a choice, either.

pinky


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2433050 - 03/15/04 12:32 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblekaiowas
lest we baguette
 User Gallery

Registered: 07/14/03
Posts: 5,501
Loc: oz
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2433210 - 03/15/04 01:06 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

the ability to make a conscious choice...what does that mean exactly? 

I have a question for people here...can you or can you not control your emotions?? Why is this important?  well it may not be important, but isn't it your emotions that will ultimately determine HOW you are going to act?  Maybe I've been cut off in traffic 3 times and that 3rd time was "enough" for me and so I snap, honking and yelling at them. Why did I act that way?  because the world didn't fit what I thought it "should be" What my ego has an idea of the way "the world should be"  This was a desire that wasn't met and so I got pissed.

Could I, my awareness, ask myself, hey...why am I getting mad?  there's no reason to because I can never change the world around me, just my inner world (the way I see things happening with an emotional response). 

What i am getting at is the whole idea that everything is predetermined.  If everything is based off of cause and effect, then can I ever "catch" myself in the moment of me getting emotional and say, "hey why am I doing this?"  the ability to ask yourself and self reflect..I dunno, I guess you could say that something that happened before could have made me look at myself.  But if I make the choice of trying to determine my own emotional responses...can that be free will?

Can I work on myself over and over and consciously focus, and then realize why I feel the way I do when something I don't like happens?  I like to see this as a computer.  The mind is a the computer, you are not the computer.  you are the operator.  how you feel emotionally, depends on what programming you have had in your past life. If I focus enough, I (the operator) can erase one program and replace it with another.  The operator to us is our conscious-awareness, the thing that doesn't change no matter what happens in the world around you. 

so maybe it's our mind (ego and rational mind) that is based on cause and effect.  My mind (the computer) can change often.  If I (the operator) put a new program in, then what happens in my mind (the computer) is determined by my conscious-awareness (the operator).

heh...hope I didn't confuse :grin: 

Infidel...you bring up a really good point about the mind and universal truths. Why do we have the idea in our heads that there is something such as "universal truth"??  Why is it that humans came up with math?  we all know that 1+1=2 and that's a fact. surey ou can say that's a concept that we made up, but isn't everything around us made up? And the best aprt of all is that science works a lot of the time using math. If you look at things, most things involve math.  how did it come down to this?

you could say that math doesn't prove anything in here, but that fact that we can use math to PROVE, and that these proofs have a real tangeakbe effect says to be that the mind is capable of grasping what a universal truth IS.  :stoned:


--------------------
Annnnnnd I had a light saber and my friend was there and I said "you look like an indian" and he said "you look like satan" and he found a stick and a rock and he named the rock ooga booga and he named the stick Stick and we both thought that was pretty funny. We got eaten alive by mosquitos but didn't notice til the next day. I stepped on some glass while wading in the swamp and cut my foot open, didn't bother me til the next day either....yeah it was a good time, ended the night by buying some liquor for minors and drinking nips and going to he diner and eating chicken fingers, and then I went home and went to bed.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinepsikooz
Stranger
Registered: 07/19/03
Posts: 1,023
Loc: Los Angeles
Last seen: 10 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2433354 - 03/15/04 01:48 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

This is very interesting. At the root of all action there is one simple drive that controls all other actions: procreation. By default we are driven towards the opposite sex, and we will use other higher level actions to come closer to procreation with the opposite sex.

We have a certain degree of free will. We can choose what tv show to watch. What car to buy. what food to eat, etc...
But we really have no choice to eat, breathe, be attracted, etc...


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineSquishySquid
Stranger
Registered: 01/23/04
Posts: 6
Last seen: 17 years, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: ]
    #2433848 - 03/15/04 05:35 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Do universals exist? I don't know.

What is a universal? To me, the word implies not only that it is something that applies to everything, but something that applies equally to everything at all times. We make distinctions based on differences. Generally, the more universal something is, the less aware of it we are. How often do you notice the nature of the air you breathe? Probably when some change brings your awareness to it, like an odor, or change in temperature, humidity, etc. Some change from the norm. If something always applies equally to all things, there is nothing to bring our awareness to it.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefireworks_godS
Sexy.Butt.McDanger
Male

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,855
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 1 year, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2433918 - 03/15/04 07:23 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

pinksharkmark said:
It says everything about free will. If you make a conscious choice, then by definition you are exercising free will. If there is no such thing as free will, there is no such thing as a choice, either.





So, essentially, you are saying that the ability to make a conscious choice IS free will? If that is your definition of free will than no problems here, but I didn't think that was the definition that we were discussing here. :wink:

This is more or less what I thought was being debated here in regards to free will, which is the second definition (the first was the ability to make free choice. :grin:):

The power of making free choices that are unconstrained by external circumstances.

What I am saying is that our ability to make free choices has came about from external circumstances and can only be used dependant on them. The way we think has been programmed by our interacting with this world. There is no way that I've seen to use free will outside of cause and effect, at least from what we have seen from existance... :lol:

Mr. Mushrooms, you should get ahold of me sometime and hook me up with the long answer. :wink:
Peace.  :mushroom2:


--------------------
:redpanda:
If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhred
Fred's son
Male

Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 12,949
Loc: Dominican Republic
Last seen: 6 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: fireworks_god]
    #2433987 - 03/15/04 09:12 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

fireworks_god writes:

So, essentially, you are saying that the ability to make a conscious choice IS free will?

Yes.

This is more or less what I thought was being debated here in regards to free will, which is the second definition (the first was the ability to make free choice).

Why did you choose the second definition? What was wrong with the first?
Quote:

The power of making free choices that are unconstrained by external circumstances.


The fact that external circumstances may occasionally thwart your ability to exercise your free will does not mean free will doesn't exist. If you get thrown in jail for shooting heroin, then of course you will be unable to hop in your car and drive down to MacDonald's for a quarter pounder with cheese.

What I am saying is that our ability to make free choices has came about from external circumstances and can only be used dependant on them.

To the extent that you can choose to eat (for example) an orange lying on the grass closer to your left foot rather than an orange closer to your right foot, then yes of course you can choose only among alternatives available in reality -- i.e. "external circumstances". If "external circumstances" provided you with only oranges rather than oranges and apples both, then yes, your choices are limited. That in no way means it is something other than you making the choice.

The way we think has been programmed by our interacting with this world.

If true, what does this have to do with whether or no we make purposeful choices between available alternatives?

There is no way that I've seen to use free will outside of cause and effect, at least from what we have seen from existance...

I don't understand what you are saying. For example, you are freely of your own will choosing to invest your time answering my post. Are you saying that my post caused you to type your reply? That you had no choice but to reply? You couldn't have just ignored my post? Or used a different arrangement of words in your reply, even to the point of replying in a language other than English?

This is what I find so ironic about free will debates on internet message boards. Every single post made by someone questioning or even denying outright the existence of free will is in itself the most eloquent possible proof that free will exists.

The poster carefully sifted through (and freely chose) every single word of his reply, in many cases probably even going back and editing the post from what was originally typed in order to give the post more impact in support of his case. How anyone can fail to recognize this process as a demonstration of free will in action baffles me.

pinky


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleSkorpivoMusterion
Livin in theTwilight Zone...
 User Gallery

Registered: 01/30/03
Posts: 9,954
Loc: You can't spell fungus wi...
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2434009 - 03/15/04 09:21 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

pinksharkmark said:

This is what I find so ironic about free will debates on internet message boards. Every single post made by someone questioning or even denying outright the existence of free will is in itself the most eloquent possible proof that free will exists.

The poster carefully sifted through (and freely chose) every single word of his reply, in many cases probably even going back and editing the post from what was originally typed in order to give the post more impact in support of his case. How anyone can fail to recognize this process as a demonstration of free will in action baffles me.

pinky




:grin: :thumbup:



--------------------
Coffee should be black as hell, strong as death, and sweet as love.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineFrog
Warrior
Female User Gallery

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 4,284
Loc: The Zero Point Field
Last seen: 8 years, 8 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: SkorpivoMusterion]
    #2434059 - 03/15/04 09:48 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

I agree with pinksharkmark and evolving, and whoever else said what they said.

MM, what should I read to understand the different arguments better? Who should I read?

Personally, without having the requisite background in philosophy, at this time I have this to say about free will:

I believe in free will, but that the choices we might make are narrowed down because of the circumstances of our childhoods. And free will is also narrowed down because of previous choices made that will naturally limit future choices.


--------------------
The day will come when, after harnessing the ether, the winds, the tides, gravitation, we shall harness for God the energies of love. And, on that day, for the second time in the history of the world, man will have discovered fire.  -Teilard


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblekaiowas
lest we baguette
 User Gallery

Registered: 07/14/03
Posts: 5,501
Loc: oz
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Frog]
    #2434085 - 03/15/04 10:05 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

" believe in free will, but that the choices we might make are narrowed down because of the circumstances of our childhoods. And free will is also narrowed down because of previous choices made that will naturally limit future choices. "

When something happens in the world, there is a reaction. the way we respond is based on what we have experienced beforehand, no matter how small, it has an effect. the words that we choose is based on our experience in debate, what words we have been accostumed to using, the grammer of people used us, the type of posts we read, how often we read vs how often we reply.

our experince in the way we debate depends on how often we have debated, who we have debated with..and so on. how often we have debated could depend on many more factors, and those factors before them, and so on.





here's my only question. what about abstract thoughts?? ideas that don't directly relate to experience??? where's the cause and effect there?


--------------------
Annnnnnd I had a light saber and my friend was there and I said "you look like an indian" and he said "you look like satan" and he found a stick and a rock and he named the rock ooga booga and he named the stick Stick and we both thought that was pretty funny. We got eaten alive by mosquitos but didn't notice til the next day. I stepped on some glass while wading in the swamp and cut my foot open, didn't bother me til the next day either....yeah it was a good time, ended the night by buying some liquor for minors and drinking nips and going to he diner and eating chicken fingers, and then I went home and went to bed.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineSeussA
Error: divide byzero

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 04/27/01
Posts: 23,480
Loc: Caribbean
Last seen: 4 months, 15 days
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: kaiowas]
    #2434100 - 03/15/04 10:17 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

We both have freewill and do not have freewill depending upon where you look at the system from. I had no say in my birth, and will have no say in my death; therefore, I have no freewill. If I had freewill, then I would never die. You have freewill? Prove it, don't die... ever.

Of course this morning I chose to get up out of bed and come into work. I chose to eat breakfast, etc... nobody forced me to do these things... therefore, I have free will.


--------------------
Just another spore in the wind.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblekaiowas
lest we baguette
 User Gallery

Registered: 07/14/03
Posts: 5,501
Loc: oz
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Seuss]
    #2434120 - 03/15/04 10:31 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Seuss, we would be "GOD" if we could do the first definition of free will.

"Of course this morning I chose to get up out of bed and come into work. I chose to eat breakfast, etc... nobody forced me to do these things... therefore, I have free will. "

was there a reason for you to get out of bed?

was there a reason for you to get up?

was there a reason for you to eat breakfast.  how about what you ate?  that depends on what you like, or what you bought...and so on.

how about how you respond to when you wake up.  depends on how many days you thought were shitty at work vs. how many great days you thought you had at work.

you think that a day is shitty because things happened that your mind didn't agree with.  well do you choose what you agree and disagree on?  that depends on if you even believe in right or wrong first. if you believe in a right or wrong..why? Is it because we say so, or is it because someone else did?  is it because we've seen many others point out what they think is right and wrong and so on.  it's liek a huge web. 

hell good things could happen to you and you could jsut ignore them and have a shitty day...right!  :grin:


--------------------
Annnnnnd I had a light saber and my friend was there and I said "you look like an indian" and he said "you look like satan" and he found a stick and a rock and he named the rock ooga booga and he named the stick Stick and we both thought that was pretty funny. We got eaten alive by mosquitos but didn't notice til the next day. I stepped on some glass while wading in the swamp and cut my foot open, didn't bother me til the next day either....yeah it was a good time, ended the night by buying some liquor for minors and drinking nips and going to he diner and eating chicken fingers, and then I went home and went to bed.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefireworks_godS
Sexy.Butt.McDanger
Male

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,855
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 1 year, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2434137 - 03/15/04 10:42 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

pinksharkmark said:
I don't understand what you are saying. For example, you are freely of your own will choosing to invest your time answering my post. Are you saying that my post caused you to type your reply? That you had no choice but to reply? You couldn't have just ignored my post? Or used a different arrangement of words in your reply, even to the point of replying in a language other than English?

This is what I find so ironic about free will debates on internet message boards. Every single post made by someone questioning or even denying outright the existence of free will is in itself the most eloquent possible proof that free will exists.

The poster carefully sifted through (and freely chose) every single word of his reply, in many cases probably even going back and editing the post from what was originally typed in order to give the post more impact in support of his case. How anyone can fail to recognize this process as a demonstration of free will in action baffles me.





I fail to recognize it as a process of free will because it is a process of cause and effect. You have to understand that the way any mind works is a DIRECT result of past events that have occured and DIRECTLY depends on the thoughts that come before it.

Our decision making process? Its a program that evolves with the decisions we make and the experiences we are faced with.

Think of a computer. It is programmed to carry out processes. The computer has no choice of what processes it is going to carry out. It is already programmed, by an operator, and the computer has no choice.

The only difference here is that we have limited choice and THIS is what is being mistaken for free will here. The fact remains is that the thing making the choices IS another mental program filling out the duty.

Oh, I'll agree that it is very advanced and that to "us" (keeping fully in mind that we are just a set of programs and stored memories from those programs) we are even making conscious, free choices.... but the choices we do make directly are linked to past performance and new thoughts that we construct based on the thoughts we already have and influenced by the outside environment.

Remember that computer up there? With no control over the processes it carries out? Haha. Well, see, it *can* have control. All we have to do is give it a program that can control. Artificial intelligence, basically...

What is the difference? Well, what boundaries we give the computer, how powerful it is, what the computers tasks are.... Very primitive, at any rate, compared to us and our ability to manage our own mind and our processes.

Then again, we've had a few thousand years to evolve all of that... haven't we?

We have the ability to program our own mind.

You have to understand that everything about the way our mind works comes down to cause and effect. I would like to see a choice being made completely independant, not just of the external conditions, but also the cause and effect in our mind which is a result of those external conditions.

Free will? It is out there... but not within these physical reality boundaries or in this body. The essence knows of free will... but no amount of words or discussion will be able to do any justice to THAT. :grin:
Peace. :mushroom2:


--------------------
:redpanda:
If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineSeussA
Error: divide byzero

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 04/27/01
Posts: 23,480
Loc: Caribbean
Last seen: 4 months, 15 days
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: kaiowas]
    #2434206 - 03/15/04 11:06 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

> Seuss, we would be "GOD" if we could do the first definition of free will

Which is my point. Freewill depends upon how we look at it. In one sense, we have full free will to do as we please. In another we have no free will what-so-ever.

I have always looked at it as if life were a string tied between two poles. One pole is birth, the other death. We have free will, within the limits of where the string will reach, between the two poles.

It doesn't matter how much free will I have, if I want to be king of England, it simply isn't going to happen. At the same time, I have the freedom to choose if I want to be happy or sad.


--------------------
Just another spore in the wind.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhred
Fred's son
Male

Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 12,949
Loc: Dominican Republic
Last seen: 6 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: fireworks_god]
    #2434290 - 03/15/04 11:32 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

fireworks_god writes:

I fail to recognize it as a process of free will because it is a process of cause and effect.

To the extent that it is my consciousness causing fingers to transcribe my thoughts, then yes it is a process of cause and effect. But it is my will freely causing my fingers to move. It is not my third grade teacher who first taught me the basic rules of grammar who is typing this post, it is me. If I deliberately mangle the rules of grammar, it is my decision to do so, not hers.

You have to understand that the way any mind works is a DIRECT result of past events that have occured and DIRECTLY depends on the thoughts that come before it.

Of course I realize that. I normally think in English because it is the first language I was taught. If past events were such that the first language I was taught was Norwegian, I would normally think in Norwegian. That doesn't alter the fact that I have free will.

Our decision making process? Its a program that evolves with the decisions we make and the experiences we are faced with.

Of course. A child reaches for a pretty colored bee because it attracts him. He gets stung. Next time he is faced with the choice of grabbing a bee, he has more information, and may perhaps not make the same decision he did originally. But he remains free to grab the bee or not.

Think of a computer. It is programmed to carry out processes. The computer has no choice of what processes it is going to carry out. It is already programmed, by an operator, and the computer has no choice.

Correct. Need I point out a computer is not a human?

The only difference here...

The only difference? Support that assertion, please.

... is that we have limited choice...

Choice is choice. The computer has none. Humans have many.

...and THIS is what is being mistaken for free will here.

Nothing is being "mistaken" here. If you have the ability to initiate more than one action, you have free will. It doesn't matter that in some very clear cut situations the options are limited to two or three actions and in others there may be dozens.

The fact remains is that the thing making the choices IS another mental program filling out the duty.

That is not a fact. Human minds are more than programs.

but the choices we do make directly are linked to past performance and new thoughts that we construct based on the thoughts we already have and influenced by the outside environment.

You are saying nothing more here than that humans learn from experience, and that normally the greater their experience the less chance there is that they will exercise their free will capriciously. This in no way invalidates the demonstrable existence of free will.

You have to understand that everything about the way our mind works comes down to cause and effect.

Why do I "have" to "understand" a flawed concept on your say so?

I would like to see a choice being made completely independant, not just of the external conditions, but also the cause and effect in our mind which is a result of those external conditions.

You would? Okay --

Pantiflex marmot excruciating dumbrowski nt'aaki sympathy.

Free will? It is out there... but not within these physical reality boundaries or in this body.

Or perhaps not entirely within. See my first post to buttonion in this thread re something acting in this universe but not entirely of it.

The fact that we are as yet not able to agree upon a theory by which our consciousness functions does not mean that we have no free will. Simple observation confirms we do.

pinky


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblekaiowas
lest we baguette
 User Gallery

Registered: 07/14/03
Posts: 5,501
Loc: oz
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Seuss]
    #2434318 - 03/15/04 11:45 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

"At the same time, I have the freedom to choose if I want to be happy or sad. "

what does happy and sad depend on?


--------------------
Annnnnnd I had a light saber and my friend was there and I said "you look like an indian" and he said "you look like satan" and he found a stick and a rock and he named the rock ooga booga and he named the stick Stick and we both thought that was pretty funny. We got eaten alive by mosquitos but didn't notice til the next day. I stepped on some glass while wading in the swamp and cut my foot open, didn't bother me til the next day either....yeah it was a good time, ended the night by buying some liquor for minors and drinking nips and going to he diner and eating chicken fingers, and then I went home and went to bed.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2434423 - 03/15/04 12:30 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

OK.
What is it, then, that allows for freedom?
I can't at all reconcile this with the idea that only matter exists. I am not a rock, no, but I differ from a rock only in terms of complexicty, not the "types" of actions that are available to me. Is freedom something that the mind can exercise? Then it seems we need to know what the mind is. If mental states supervene on physical states, I don't see how we could ever have any sort of freedom at all, even with regard to the thoughts we hold. We hardly say that a dam has any freedom in breaking...

If both my mind and a dam are material objects, what is the material difference which allows my mind to have such an extended range of possible action-types, when compared with a dam.

Also, I guess, how is it that I can know that other minds are free in the same way that I am? It can't, it would seem, be tied at its most general point to my biology as a human, so what is it? Can't we just accept that there's no real possible account for this? The reason it persists is that we have a culture which dogmatically asserts it at every possible turn. Maybe this is a good move socially, but it's certainly not a good move if one holds that believing true or possible true things is a thing one ought to do.

As an example:
I have some arbitrarily complex computer program that can for all practical purposes fool any person who might ask it questions---that is, they never doubt that they are talking to a person. Being a computer program, i.e., deterministic, I think we can agree that it could not possibly have any freedom.

It has, however, been programmed to respond to the question "do you have free-will?" With something like (after all, if there was a canned response, it would become rather obvious that this was not a person!)

Well, of course I do! Watch this!
This is me freely outputting a sentence!
Look at me go, more evidence of my freedom.

It seems as though you'd need to assign this "computer mind" free-will in the same way that you assign it to other people---by analogy. Or are computers incapable of having minds? Or do you not assign having a mind/free-will to other people by analogy but instead by some other method?


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefireworks_godS
Sexy.Butt.McDanger
Male

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,855
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 1 year, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2434497 - 03/15/04 12:47 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

pinksharkmark said:
To the extent that it is my consciousness causing fingers to transcribe my thoughts, then yes it is a process of cause and effect. But it is my will freely causing my fingers to move.




Ja, and your thoughts that are directing your consciousness are also a process of cause and effect, and the way your mind works and thinks in the first place is a process of cause and effect and was formed by the process of cause and effect.

Quote:


It is not my third grade teacher who first taught me the basic rules of grammar who is typing this post, it is me. If I deliberately mangle the rules of grammar, it is my decision to do so, not hers.




However, who you are is at least some part defined by your interactions with that third grade teacher and those basic rules of grammar. While there is an entity that is you and is making conscious choices, who you are was all determined beforehand and is being determined now, dependant on what has already happened.

Quote:


But he remains free to grab the bee or not.





Indeed he does. But any reflection on his choices is determined by what has already happened previously. In his mind as it is all happening, there is a systematic order of thoughts continuing the chain of cause and effect, and he isn't "free" in an absolute sense to make just any choice.. only one choice is going to be made because of all that has happened before.

Quote:


The only difference? Support that assertion, please.




Well, I think I meant the distinguishing difference relevant to the discussion... but anyways it isn't the main issue which I will now get to. :wink:

Quote:


If you have the ability to initiate more than one action, you have free will. It doesn't matter that in some very clear cut situations the options are limited to two or three actions and in others there may be dozens.




And I, at least I think, what I am saying is that we have no ability to initate action. Look at the weather, for example. The weather is a process where catalysts are initating action. What happened before in the weather inevitably creates what happens now, which sets the stage for what happens next.

All there is in this existance, I think, is processes. Our ability to create new actions was given to us by the processes before, and we are just an individual perspective experiencing this body and mind carrying out these processes.

If you are saying that free will is the ability to make a choice, then I still do not argue with that. I fully realize that I can make a choice... but what I am questioning is who "I" is. What I question is... is there actually a choice being made?

Perhaps in the beginning one conscious choice was made. Everything else is flowing from that, cause and effect. It is all a process. We just get to glimpse it first hand and "make" our choices that were already mapped out to be made. :grin: Perhaps.. still thinking about that one. hehe

Good question for you: If free will is the ability to make a choice, and we as humans are able to make choices, then animals and computers ALSO have free will. Right or wrong?

Quote:


Pantiflex marmot excruciating dumbrowski nt'aaki sympathy.





Definitely not free of cause and effect. :wink: A computer program designed to pick "random" numbers never actually picks a random number. 
Peace.  :mushroom2:


--------------------
:redpanda:
If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineSeussA
Error: divide byzero

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 04/27/01
Posts: 23,480
Loc: Caribbean
Last seen: 4 months, 15 days
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: fireworks_god]
    #2434564 - 03/15/04 01:00 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

> A computer program designed to pick "random" numbers never actually picks a random number.

Thats not 100% true. You are correct, most random number generators are pseudo-random number generators... however, there are some very clever, very complex designs out there that generate truely random numbers through software. Most of them use a variety of metrics from the computer itself to seed and generate the numbers... things like system load, cpu temperature, uptime, number of running processes, number of inodes in use, etc.

There are also cards which one can add to a computer that generate true random numbers using hardware. Some use radioactive decay for their source, others use temperature variations, and others use quasi-stable transistor states.


--------------------
Just another spore in the wind.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefireworks_godS
Sexy.Butt.McDanger
Male

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,855
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 1 year, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Seuss]
    #2434580 - 03/15/04 01:05 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

But my point is being that the numbers are being chosen based on something. Right? Whatever they are using to make these "random" numbers, there is still some sort of program that produces a number, correct? That is my point.
Peace. :mushroom2:


--------------------
:redpanda:
If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Seuss]
    #2434658 - 03/15/04 01:20 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Well, that's sort-of-correct. A computer as an abstract mathematical object is incapable of generating a random number. Now, if you treat a computer as an abstract object with some particular realization, i.e., the computer that I am typing this with, there may be very good access to lots of entropy for generating numbers. But it seems to me that when people say "computer" in the sense that it was used, they really mean "what all computers have in common", that is, the computer treated as an abstract object, not as a particular implementation. And these abstract objects are deterministic!

And yes, there is also the idea that if we live in a fundamentally deterministic universe, then there can be no such thing as a random number at all. Although I don't know how you'd know from the inside whether it was deterministic or completely random itself, but I guess that is another discussion!


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhred
Fred's son
Male

Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 12,949
Loc: Dominican Republic
Last seen: 6 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2434709 - 03/15/04 01:34 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Mal_Fenderson writes:

What is it, then, that allows for freedom?

I don't know.

I can't at all reconcile this with the idea that only matter exists.

Then perhaps more exists than just matter.

I am not a rock, no, but I differ from a rock only in terms of complexicty, not the "types" of actions that are available to me.

How can you say that? Can a rock type on a keyboard?

Is freedom something that the mind can exercise?

Not only can it, it does. If you are uncomfortable with the terms "freedom" or "free will", substitute "volition".

Then it seems we need to know what the mind is.

If we wish to arrive at a hypothesis which adequately explains the existence of volition, then yes we do.

If mental states supervene on physical states, I don't see how we could ever have any sort of freedom at all, even with regard to the thoughts we hold.

Did you mean to say, "Unless mental states supervene physical states..." ?

If both my mind and a dam are material objects, what is the material difference which allows my mind to have such an extended range of possible action-types, when compared with a dam.

The fact that your mind is conscious, while a dam is not. Consciousness is a prerequisite for volition.

Also, I guess, how is it that I can know that other minds are free in the same way that I am?

Through observation.

It can't, it would seem, be tied at its most general point to my biology as a human...

It can't? Why do you say that?

Can't we just accept that there's no real possible account for this?

I am unsure of the question. Are you asking should we accept the existence of volition without trying to understand its precise mechanism? We could do that.

The reason it persists is that we have a culture which dogmatically asserts it at every possible turn.

The reason what exists? The belief in volition? If that is what you meant, the reason people believe it exists is not that they are brainwashed into accepting it at every turn but that their daily experience gives them countless demonstrations of volition in action.

Maybe this is a good move socially, but it's certainly not a good move if one holds that believing true or possible true things is a thing one ought to do.

It is not just a good move socially, it is an essential move in order merely to survive.

It seems as though you'd need to assign this "computer mind" free-will in the same way that you assign it to other people---by analogy.

Perhaps a sufficiently complex computer may be capable of exhibiting free will. Since I do not pretend to understand the "why" of the mechanism by which volitional behavior occurs, it would be foolish of me to assert that inorganic entities are forever forbidden to possess volition regardless of their complexity.

Or are computers incapable of having minds?

I don't know. Perhaps sufficiently complex computers are capable of having minds.

Or do you not assign having a mind/free-will to other people by analogy but instead by some other method?

I don't assign it only to other people, but to other living entities. My cat exhibits volition. So do the lizards he chases. At some point on the continuum of complexity which encompasses living entities, volition arises. Do bacteria exhibit volition? Probably not. Does a gorilla? Certainly.

pinky


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineSeussA
Error: divide byzero

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 04/27/01
Posts: 23,480
Loc: Caribbean
Last seen: 4 months, 15 days
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2434726 - 03/15/04 01:39 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

> Although I don't know how you'd know from the inside whether it was deterministic or completely random itself, but I guess that is another discussion!

Very good!  :smile:


--------------------
Just another spore in the wind.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhred
Fred's son
Male

Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 12,949
Loc: Dominican Republic
Last seen: 6 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: fireworks_god]
    #2434796 - 03/15/04 02:02 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

fireworks_god writes:

Ja, and your thoughts that are directing your consciousness are also a process of cause and effect, and the way your mind works and thinks in the first place is a process of cause and effect and was formed by the process of cause and effect.

So you are saying that it is not my mind that is ultimately causing my fingers to type this message -- that it is rather something instead causing my mind to send the necessary signals? Something using my mind as a mere intermediary or agent?

Assuming this is true, that doesn't eliminate the fact that volition exists, it merely moves the "source" one step further up the line.

However, who you are is at least some part defined by your interactions with that third grade teacher and those basic rules of grammar.

Of course. That is irrelevant to the question of whether or not I am corresponding with you volitionally.

While there is an entity that is you and is making conscious choices, who you are was all determined beforehand and is being determined now, dependant on what has already happened.

Who I am? Perhaps. What I do? Not at all. The fact that I at some point took typing lessons just means I can type my replies more quickly than I would otherwise, for example.

But any reflection on his choices is determined by what has already happened previously.

"Determined"? Not at all. Note that if the child values possessing the pretty bee more than he values having a "sting free" finger, he may choose to grasp it again anyway.

In his mind as it is all happening, there is a systematic order of thoughts continuing the chain of cause and effect, and he isn't "free" in an absolute sense to make just any choice.. only one choice is going to be made because of all that has happened before.

Of course only one choice will ultimately be made in any particular case. We cannot grasp and not grasp the same bee at the same moment in time. But that is not predetermined by all that has happened before. The child may choose to immediately grasp the bee, or leave it alone and grasp the next one, or follow it for a while and then grasp it, or search for a bottle with a cap in which to capture it. But in every case, it is the child who decides which course of action he will take. The child is not acting as a programmed automaton.

And I, at least I think, what I am saying is that we have no ability to initate action.

We don't? Who is it then who is typing these messages?

Look at the weather, for example.

What relevance does weather have to a discussion of volition? Storm clouds are not living entities.

Our ability to create new actions was given to us by the processes before, and we are just an individual perspective experiencing this body and mind carrying out these processes.

You mean our consciousnesses are nothing more than passive observers along for the ride in a body over which they have no control? That is demonstrably untrue. You are in essence telling me that you had no choice but to respond to my last post -- that something other than "you" compelled your fingers to type that message. If you really believe this, there is no point continuing this discussion. I hope you enjoy your ride through life as a passenger.

If you are saying that free will is the ability to make a choice, then I still do not argue with that.

Good.

I fully realize that I can make a choice... but what I am questioning is who "I" is.

That is a question for a different thread, no?

What I question is... is there actually a choice being made?

Wait a minute! You just said there was a choice being made but that you were unsure who it was making the choice. Make up your mind.

If free will is the ability to make a choice, and we as humans are able to make choices, then animals and computers ALSO have free will. Right or wrong?

Some living entities possess volition, true. Computers? At this point, I doubt it.

Definitely not free of cause and effect. A computer program designed to pick "random" numbers never actually picks a random number.

What I typed wasn't random. I deliberately chose each and every "word" in that string. As a matter of fact, I went back a few times and changed some of the "words" before finally sending the post. No one forced me to invent the word "nt'aaki". I invented it of my own volition. I didn't just randomly hit keys to come up with it.

pinky


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineSeussA
Error: divide byzero

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 04/27/01
Posts: 23,480
Loc: Caribbean
Last seen: 4 months, 15 days
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2434906 - 03/15/04 02:29 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

> No one forced me to invent the word "nt'aaki". I invented it of my own volition.

Just because you don't perceive anybody forcing you, doesn't mean that they didn't.


--------------------
Just another spore in the wind.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhred
Fred's son
Male

Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 12,949
Loc: Dominican Republic
Last seen: 6 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Seuss]
    #2434964 - 03/15/04 02:43 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Seuss writes:

Just because you don't perceive anybody forcing you, doesn't mean that they didn't.

Nor does it mean they did. Absent any indication whatsoever that I was in fact forced, it is foolish to assume I was.

As I said earlier, even if there were some other agent directing me to first assemble the string "nt'aaki" in my mind, then type it on a keyboard, it only moves the question of volition one step further up the line.

pinky


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineSeussA
Error: divide byzero

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 04/27/01
Posts: 23,480
Loc: Caribbean
Last seen: 4 months, 15 days
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2434979 - 03/15/04 02:48 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

> Absent any indication whatsoever that I was in fact forced, it is foolish to assume I was.

Why is it foolish to assume that you were forced, absent any indication whatsoever... but is not foolish to assume that you were not forced, absent any indication whatsoever?  :smile:

> it only moves the question of volition one step further up the line

Which would indicate free will lies elsewhere, no?  :grin:


--------------------
Just another spore in the wind.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhred
Fred's son
Male

Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 12,949
Loc: Dominican Republic
Last seen: 6 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Seuss]
    #2435032 - 03/15/04 03:05 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Seuss writes:

Why is it foolish to assume that you were forced, absent any indication whatsoever... but is not foolish to assume that you were not forced, absent any indication whatsoever?

Following that line of reasoning, anything goes. There are invisible lizards controlling the movements of your eyeballs, for example.

Which would indicate free will lies elsewhere, no?

It would indicate (again, if the assumption is valid) only that there is a part of the "me" that is not housed in my cranium.

pinky


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleSkorpivoMusterion
Livin in theTwilight Zone...
 User Gallery

Registered: 01/30/03
Posts: 9,954
Loc: You can't spell fungus wi...
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2435051 - 03/15/04 03:12 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

I hope you enjoy your ride through life as a passenger.

LOL. :thumbup:

Cheezus crust, some people in this thread are just all caught up in over-analysis.



--------------------
Coffee should be black as hell, strong as death, and sweet as love.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePed
Interested In Your Brain
 User Gallery

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 08/31/99
Posts: 5,494
Loc: Canada
Last seen: 4 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2435087 - 03/15/04 03:22 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

As human beings, we have a greatly limited scope of the effects of our actions. Even more so, we have a severely limited scope of the motivations behind our actions. We are drawn in certain directions and to commit certain actions by an immeasurable number of factors, of which we have very little awareness.

If our free will were perfect and complete, then there would be no suffering in this world, because nobody wishes to suffer. If we had perfect awareness of the causes and effects of each of our actions, we would not commit actions which lead us into places of discomfort. We would only commit to those actions which bring us happiness, because happiness is our most essential wish.

If our free will were perfect and complete, we would be able to accomplish all of our wishes effortlessly. Because we have ignorance, we cannot accomplish all of our wishes, and those we do accomplish demand a great deal of hardship and mistake. Therefore, because we have ignorance, our free will is less than we typically believe it to be.

While yes, we have the freedom and ability to choose, we are not able to fully appreciate the scope of our choices, and therefore when it comes to matters of the heart we more closely resemble fish in a pond, guided primarily by instinct, and not by conceptual awareness. With a lesser scope of awareness, there must be a lesser appreciation of the scope of our actions. Our free will, therefore, can be seen as being directly proportionate to our awareness of the scope of our actions, their motivating factors, and their effects.


--------------------


:poison: Dark Triangles - New Psychedelic Techno Single - Listen on Soundcloud :poison:
Gyroscope full album available SoundCloud or MySpace


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleSkorpivoMusterion
Livin in theTwilight Zone...
 User Gallery

Registered: 01/30/03
Posts: 9,954
Loc: You can't spell fungus wi...
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Ped]
    #2435109 - 03/15/04 03:27 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Yes, and just to expand:
If our free will were perfect and complete, we would be able to accomplish all of our wishes effortlessly.

And likewise, if our free will were non-existant and volition were just a complete myth...

well, then what? :wink:



--------------------
Coffee should be black as hell, strong as death, and sweet as love.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleEvolving
Resident Cynic

Registered: 10/01/02
Posts: 5,385
Loc: Apt #6, The Village
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Ped]
    #2435128 - 03/15/04 03:33 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

Ped said:
Even more so, we have a severely limited scope of the motivations behind our actions.



Really, this is an overgeneralization.

Quote:

If our free will were perfect and complete, then there would be no suffering in this world, because nobody wishes to suffer.



I don't understand how you arrive at the conclusion that there would be no suffering, please explain.

Quote:

If we had perfect awareness of the causes and effects of each of our actions, we would not commit actions which lead us into places of discomfort.



Speak for yourself. People often place themselves in situations knowing full well that they can or will experience discomfort.

Quote:

If our free will were perfect and complete, we would be able to accomplish all of our wishes effortlessly.



So natural laws would no longer apply? If I had complete free will and I decided to fly by flapping my arms I could actually fly?

Quote:

Therefore, because we have ignorance, our free will is less than we typically believe it to be.



Bullshit alarm, bullshit alarm!!! There is no logical reason to say that ignorance limits our free will, it only limits our knowledge. Don't confuse not being fully informed with lack of free will. This muddies up things quite a bit.


--------------------
To call humans 'rational beings' does injustice to the term, 'rational.'  Humans are capable of rational thought, but it is not their essence.  Humans are animals, beasts with complex brains.  Humans, more often than not, utilize their cerebrum to rationalize what their primal instincts, their preconceived notions, and their emotional desires have presented as goals - humans are rationalizing beings.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefireworks_godS
Sexy.Butt.McDanger
Male

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,855
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 1 year, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2435164 - 03/15/04 03:43 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

pinksharkmark said:
Ja, and your thoughts that are directing your consciousness are also a process of cause and effect, and the way your mind works and thinks in the first place is a process of cause and effect and was formed by the process of cause and effect.

So you are saying that it is not my mind that is ultimately causing my fingers to type this message -- that it is rather something instead causing my mind to send the necessary signals? Something using my mind as a mere intermediary or agent?




I'm not saying that it isn't your mind causing your fingers to type that message. What I am saying is that every thought you have comes about because of the previous thought. What I am saying is that if you arrive in a situation, that the choice you make WAS going to be made based on everything that has happened before it.

The point I am trying to make by this is that the last moment created this moment. Based on the last moment and every moment before it, this moment WASN'T going to happen any other way. If it is possible, time could be reversed and played out again and the exact same would happen.

This doesn't necessarily mean we don't make choices... but the choices that we DO make are inevitable. No matter how free it seems to us as we are making them, every single thought that we think that ends up leading to the decision to make the action led to the action being made.

Remember when I mentioned the stream of water thing? That is what I meant, sort of.

Think of a root growing in the soil. Where it starts growing is going to determine where it ends up because it is growing in a system. Where the nutrients and water is, how hard the soil is or what else is there, it is all going to create where it does grow. A root probably isn't conscious of it as it happens, but if it was, it would be experienced the same way that we experience it.

Quote:


Of course. That is irrelevant to the question of whether or not I am corresponding with you volitionally.




It isn't irrelevant because how you corresponding (and the fact that you are) is somewhat dependant on it. Your experiences create who you are and how you think.. and how you think determines what actions are taken.

Quote:


Who I am? Perhaps. What I do? Not at all. The fact that I at some point took typing lessons just means I can type my replies more quickly than I would otherwise, for example.




Exactly. The fact that you at one point took typing lessons changes the way you think and the actions you experience as being chosen... typing faster.

Quote:


"Determined"? Not at all. Note that if the child values possessing the pretty bee more than he values having a "sting free" finger, he may choose to grasp it again anyway.




Exactly. And what makes him value one thing more than the other? Past experience and his way of thinking, which based on prior experiences and previous thoughts, led him to experience making the choice he made.

Quote:


But that is not predetermined by all that has happened before. The child may choose to immediately grasp the bee, or leave it alone and grasp the next one, or follow it for a while and then grasp it, or search for a bottle with a cap in which to capture it. But in every case, it is the child who decides which course of action he will take. The child is not acting as a programmed automaton.




Sure the kid is. Our minds are programmed, as is our decision-making process. Of course, we have the ability to actively program ourselves, and it happens continously, in every moment, subconsciously anyways.

Quote:


We don't? Who is it then who is typing these messages?




I can't answer that one with certainty. My experience mostly suggests that it is me, but then other experience I have suggests that who "me" is isn't me at all. That anything I hold to as "me" isn't exclusive to me and isn't something I should necessarily hold onto..... the consciousness, the awareness is what "I" am and I just have a seat here to learn, for the purpose of evolving and gaining more experience. But that is just a belief of mine, and it doesn't negate living my life positively or with control in any way.. rather, it promotes it. :laugh:

Quote:


What relevance does weather have to a discussion of volition? Storm clouds are not living entities.




Exactly. But storm clouds DO create action, in a sense. Right? The weather is a complex system that does a lot of things, and all the elements that comprise the weather are dependant on each other. They work together to create action.. movement of clouds, rain, lightning..... everything that happens in the weather is a direct result of its interactions with other elements of the same system and those actions further move along the process of the weather....

The only difference in regards to this arguement is that we are conscious of the processes around us and the processes that we are furthering...

Quote:


You mean our consciousnesses are nothing more than passive observers along for the ride in a body over which they have no control? That is demonstrably untrue. You are in essence telling me that you had no choice but to respond to my last post -- that something other than "you" compelled your fingers to type that message. If you really believe this, there is no point continuing this discussion. I hope you enjoy your ride through life as a passenger.




At that point I was referring to what I touched on up there... the essence of who we are, that isn't attached to this life and which is only an impartial observer. Check Kaiowas' "Essence Of You" thread for that one... anyways, that is just a belief that can't be proven, at least now. :wink:

And I am not suggesting we have no control, not at all. Well, in a sense, I am. :grin: As far as our direct experience, we have control of what we do and should definitely make the most of that, to whatever end I guess... but that is just our experience. This is more or less discussing WHY we experience what we do, and how what we experience is still dependant on everything else in the system and relies on that to make us who we "are". Shaky ground, eh? :lol:

Who said I am living life as a passenger? And anyways, I don't see it as possible to live life as a passenger. :grin:

Quote:


That is a question for a different thread, no?




Not exactly because it is directly related to making choices. :wink:

Quote:


Wait a minute! You just said there was a choice being made but that you were unsure who it was making the choice. Make up your mind.




Let me reword that, I meant to say that there was an experience of a choice being made, but I was unsure of any entity making the choice. Like the weather thing... is something making the choice for rain to fall, or is it just an action occuring because of other dependant variables?

Quote:


Some living entities possess volition, true. Computers? At this point, I doubt it.




I think it would be even easier to show that animals do not make conscious choices... they have very limited allowances for changing their programming. Well, maybe with the exception of some of the higher order animals, monkeys and dolphins and such... :grin: *shrugs*

Quote:


What I typed wasn't random. I deliberately chose each and every "word" in that string. As a matter of fact, I went back a few times and changed some of the "words" before finally sending the post. No one forced me to invent the word "nt'aaki". I invented it of my own volition. I didn't just randomly hit keys to come up with it.





Ja. hehe. And what I am saying is that every thought led you to do what you did... a huge chain of cause and effect. I mentioned the random computer thing because there is always some sort of method, or order... I don't know if randomness can exist or if it only is there because of something unknown to us.


--------------------
:redpanda:
If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePed
Interested In Your Brain
 User Gallery

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 08/31/99
Posts: 5,494
Loc: Canada
Last seen: 4 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Evolving]
    #2435214 - 03/15/04 03:59 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

>> I don't understand how you arrive at the conclusion that there would be no suffering, please explain.

>> People often place themselves in situations knowing full well that they can or will experience discomfort.

>> There is no logical reason to say that ignorance limits our free will, it only limits our knowledge

What motivates us to place ourselves in uncomfortable situations? Do we have an expectation of resulting benefit from an uncomfortable experience? It causes us discomfort to drive in rush hour, yet every morning prior to work we submit ourselves to that discomfort. Often times, we are uncomfortable and unhappy in our jobs, yet every day we arrive at our place of employment. We do this because we are confident that the funds which are derrived from that discomfort will earn us a degree of happiness in the future. It may be the happiness of luxurious possessions, or simply the happiness of a full belly.

Ignorance, a lack of knowledge, inhibits our ability to accomplish that which we desire. My understanding of free will is that it entitles us to apprehend what we desire. If it's true that free will is a fundamental characterstic of the human being, and if it's true that our most fundamental wish is to be happy and to avoid suffering and problems, then our free will must therefore enable us to accomplish our fundamental wish.

We can see that this is not so. Therefore, it's either free will which is not a fundamental attribute of the human being, or it's chaos and confusion which is actually our most primary desire. Since we can see through observation that our most fundamental wish is to be happy and to avoid difficulty, it must follow that free will is not an inherent attribute of the human being. We can infer that with greater awareness comes greater depth of free will, and greater freedom to accomplish our deepest wishes. Free will, then, is an emergent property of awareness, and not a fundamental characteristic of the human being.


--------------------


:poison: Dark Triangles - New Psychedelic Techno Single - Listen on Soundcloud :poison:
Gyroscope full album available SoundCloud or MySpace


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefireworks_godS
Sexy.Butt.McDanger
Male

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,855
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 1 year, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2435345 - 03/15/04 04:45 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

pinksharkmark said:
You mean our consciousnesses are nothing more than passive observers along for the ride in a body over which they have no control? That is demonstrably untrue. You are in essence telling me that you had no choice but to respond to my last post -- that something other than "you" compelled your fingers to type that message. If you really believe this, there is no point continuing this discussion. I hope you enjoy your ride through life as a passenger.




Just to clarify, I hope no one is making any sort of assumptions as to my beliefs (other than where I specifically said something as my belief), or how I live my life. :grin: This thread has served as an exploration of something I don't normally think about.

I've gained some further understanding about a lot of things, not necessarily what has been presented in my replies, and if I have "overanalyzed", it was well fucking worth it.  :tongue:

Discussing anything as large as this topic has to have time taken out to exchange a lot of words and perspective, and if any sort of gain is made by anyone involved, than it was worth it. That is what we are here for in this forum anyways, for the most part....

Well, at least what I am here for. To take in new perspectives and to interact and to take some time to chill out from life and reflect.

Anyways, I think free will does exist, in a sense... just as water is formless but it has to fall somewhere, and when it falls, its following of least resistance determines where it goes from there.

Our minds have free will and they are formless as well... but once we step into this system known as physical reality, and begin interacting and observing, and are a part of the system, our mind takes on form. The only way I see at the moment to go back to the state of formlessness and free will is to transcend all systems... exactly what that means I don't know yet, but free will lies there. :grin:

Anyways, just advancing the processes of a part of a system that I happen to be conscious of... :lol:
Peace. :mushroom2:


--------------------
:redpanda:
If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleEvolving
Resident Cynic

Registered: 10/01/02
Posts: 5,385
Loc: Apt #6, The Village
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Ped]
    #2435420 - 03/15/04 04:59 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

Ped said:
What motivates us to place ourselves in uncomfortable situations?



That really depends upon the individual and the particular situation. Don't pretend to have the answers for all people, because you don't.

Quote:

Ignorance, a lack of knowledge, inhibits our ability to accomplish that which we desire.



I agree that this may happen, but your are confusing having optimal conditions with the exercise of free will.

Quote:

My understanding of free will is that it entitles us to apprehend what we desire.



No, you appear to be confusing comprehension with free will. Besides, apprehension often precedes desire, which precedes exercise of free will.

Quote:

... then our free will must therefore enable us to accomplish our fundamental wish.



No, free will means we have the ability to make choices.

Quote:

Since we can see through observation that our most fundamental wish is to be happy and to avoid difficulty, it must follow that free will is not an inherent attribute of the human being.



No, it doesn't follow.

Quote:

We can infer that with greater awareness comes greater depth of free will,



No we can't. A blind man can choose between a red plate and a green plate to eat his dinner off of. Does a sighted man have any more free will given the same two choices? No.


--------------------
To call humans 'rational beings' does injustice to the term, 'rational.'  Humans are capable of rational thought, but it is not their essence.  Humans are animals, beasts with complex brains.  Humans, more often than not, utilize their cerebrum to rationalize what their primal instincts, their preconceived notions, and their emotional desires have presented as goals - humans are rationalizing beings.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2435746 - 03/15/04 06:20 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

I don't know how self-evident free-will or volition is. I think that it would be an interesting historical/anthropological exercise to research/determine whether this is something that "happens" to come about in all cultures or if it's possible for there to have been signifigant cultural development without a western notion of free-will/volition. My guess would be no---it seems likely to me, at least, that as long as I can remember I've thought I had far more in common with a leaf in the wind than with some theorized entity that somehow ignored the wind and instead did what it wanted....

This rises or falls on what you find more intuitively satisfying, especially as we work on our scientific picture of the world.

If it's more intuitively satisfying to have free-will than not, then we, it seems to me, need to posit non-physical or non-extended or immaterial objects, but we also need to provide for these objects a method whereby they can interact with the world. This seems, however, closed to science.

If it's more intuitively satisfying that the world is ultimately explicable through science---at least in principle---then it seems to me that you need to, at leasts given our current picture of the world, deny free-will and suggest that we can't find a good basis for it, so why would we believe in it?

I can hallucinate an object in front of me.
If five billion other people hallucinate the same object, that doesn't grant it existence as anything more than a hallucination, does it?

To a degree we need hypotheses about what sorts of things can happen---from there we can get the mechanism. It seems very strongly to me that free-will removes this mechanism from scientifici discovery, and that makes me regard it very skeptically.

And, to pinky specifically, is it possible, although highly improbable, that this entire thread is really nothing more than the output of some transmission errors (i.e., randomness) between you and your ISP?

If it is, I think you may have a strong case for intuitive belief that _you_ have free-will, but I don't see how you could ever believe that anyone else is necessarily free---at best they might be convincing random things or convincing determinsitic things, neither of which seem to be necessarily free.


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleSkorpivoMusterion
Livin in theTwilight Zone...
 User Gallery

Registered: 01/30/03
Posts: 9,954
Loc: You can't spell fungus wi...
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2435816 - 03/15/04 06:39 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

In the belief of Fate, or Reincarnation, the lack of Free-will fits rather well.

In that case, a good analogy would be "You may not be able to control the winds of life...but you can adjust your sails."

Actually, a determinist universe would make PERFECT sense in a system of Reincarnation; that is, if the whole purpose of our existence in THIS plane, or dimension...is to LEARN from our lives that we planned out for ourselves prior to incarnating..

In other words, we've jumped into a current in the river that has it's own unique path just like all currents in the river--although they still all flow in the same general direction, (alive/life)--from point A to point B. And we want to learn from ALL the experiences that the particular current in the river of Life will go through, from point A to point B, so we incarnate into that life--the current.

The concept of reincarnation and fate really seems to ring a bell with me.


--------------------
Coffee should be black as hell, strong as death, and sweet as love.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: SkorpivoMusterion]
    #2435850 - 03/15/04 06:52 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

I think the problem here is that for the metaphor of "adjusting our sails" to make sense given our modern scientific knowledge, we need to somehow locate it---the sails---outside of the material world, and this is all sorts of strange to me.

It's a return to Descartes, and that seems OK, I guess, if you like talking about magical forces that just happen to work.


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleSkorpivoMusterion
Livin in theTwilight Zone...
 User Gallery

Registered: 01/30/03
Posts: 9,954
Loc: You can't spell fungus wi...
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2435928 - 03/15/04 07:16 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

It's a return to Descartes, and that seems OK, I guess, if you like talking about magical forces that just happen to work.

What came first, the Chicken, or the Egg?

Lets say that the Universe, IS Determinist.

All one elaborate chain of cause and effect.

What came first...The Cause...or The Effect?

One might say, Cause, because without Cause, there is no effect.

But, Cause DID come first, then, what was the EFFECT, that caused that? It goes on for an infinity.

So tell me, personally, What does that tell you?



--------------------
Coffee should be black as hell, strong as death, and sweet as love.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: SkorpivoMusterion]
    #2435981 - 03/15/04 07:29 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Science theorizes, I guess, that the egg came first, although it wasn't a step from not-chicken to egg to chicken...it was not-chicken->egg->not-chicken-but-slightly-more-chickenish->egg->...->egg->chicken.

That seems OK to me.

I'm not entirely sure what you're getting at.

My mentioning of Descartes was to suggest that people who want to have strong beliefs about phenomena being explicable in terms of science are going to need to locate consciousness outside of science's ken---that is, the immaterial. That's fine, but to me, modern philosophy dealing with immaterial minds sounds very much like medieval philosophy involving how many angels might dance on the head of a pin...

But if you can show me how a Cartesian dualsim is useful and proper, I am more than willing to change my views...but as it stands to my mind, Cartesian dualism offers us nothing more than our "common western" conception of the mind---we don't get any more utility from it, and if we deny it, what do we lose? Something we only ever thought that we had.


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleSkorpivoMusterion
Livin in theTwilight Zone...
 User Gallery

Registered: 01/30/03
Posts: 9,954
Loc: You can't spell fungus wi...
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2436022 - 03/15/04 07:40 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Well, the chicken/egg was a rhetorical question...more of a prelude to the main question:

"What came first, Cause, or Effect?"

And it was more directed towards the "magical forces" that you seemed to include in your sentence with a hint of skepticism...

But I will come back tomorrow and expand on this, hopefullly...

Meanwhile, feel free to choose to continue your contributions, though. :wink:



--------------------
Coffee should be black as hell, strong as death, and sweet as love.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2436065 - 03/15/04 07:52 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2436074 - 03/15/04 07:54 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2436107 - 03/15/04 08:08 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2436120 - 03/15/04 08:11 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2436136 - 03/15/04 08:14 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2436150 - 03/15/04 08:17 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhred
Fred's son
Male

Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 12,949
Loc: Dominican Republic
Last seen: 6 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: ]
    #2436807 - 03/15/04 10:36 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Yeah, what he said.

Who wrote that essay? I couldn't help noticing it was unattributed. Morty Adler, perhaps?

pinky


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinewhiterabbit13
I'm late

Registered: 02/21/04
Posts: 1,360
Loc: Down the rabbit hole
Last seen: 15 years, 11 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2437013 - 03/15/04 11:13 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

freewill my friend


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2437188 - 03/16/04 12:01 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleSkorpivoMusterion
Livin in theTwilight Zone...
 User Gallery

Registered: 01/30/03
Posts: 9,954
Loc: You can't spell fungus wi...
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: ]
    #2438110 - 03/16/04 06:35 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Damn... :thumbup:

I feel silly now.

For not thinking of asking The Great Google if there is freewill.

Well, good job!

:wink:


--------------------
Coffee should be black as hell, strong as death, and sweet as love.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblemuhurgle
Turtles all theway down

Registered: 10/29/03
Posts: 299
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: ]
    #2438264 - 03/16/04 08:46 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

The cause can only be rational insight, and this must be based on truth, because human nature cannot lead man into an irresistible error in something which affects his essential well-being and happiness.

Wow. Is this supposed to be philosophy? It's nothing but blind faith.

Whatever makes you comfortable, I guess.


--------------------
"To make this mundane world sublime
Take half a gram of phanerothyme."

Aldous Huxley


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineSeussA
Error: divide byzero

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 04/27/01
Posts: 23,480
Loc: Caribbean
Last seen: 4 months, 15 days
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: muhurgle]
    #2438318 - 03/16/04 09:09 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

> because human nature cannot lead man into an irresistible error in something which affects his essential well-being and happiness.

Lets check in with our local crack addict and see what he thinks about that statement.


--------------------
Just another spore in the wind.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: ]
    #2438922 - 03/16/04 01:02 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Freedom of the will transcends determinism.
It's not as though the problem is determinism or freedom of the will.  There are plenty of compatibilist theories, not that I agree with them.

The problem here is postulating some sort of mechanism whereby freedom of the will might function and be compatible with the idea that only material things exist.  But freedom of the will, it seems to me, cannot be material on the account given.  So where is it?

And, as an interesting side-note, which I think has a parallel insofar as intuitive thoughts are concerned.

When I was little, there was this donut shop that my family would drive by on the way to the local skating rink.  It was called "Duffin's Donuts".  For whatever reason my parents decided to always call it "Duffy's"---I think this was to rhyme with another donut shop, Nuffy's.  I mention this because the error persisted long after I had learned to read.  I was ~11 and in a car with a friend and I said "oh, there's Duffy's!", and she looked at me---"No, that's Duffin's".

And once I see it as Duffin's, I can hardly read the same characters as Duffy's.  This wasn't just that I'd refer to Duffin's as Duffy's, but that I'd read "Duffin" as "Duffy". When I was informed that I was wrong, I was almost incredulous.  But then I looked at the evidence.  Belief revision is a wonderful thing---even if your parents have conditioned you to believe lies, it is possible

:smile:


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleSwami
Eggshell Walker

Registered: 01/19/00
Posts: 15,413
Loc: In the hen house
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Seuss]
    #2439384 - 03/16/04 03:05 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

At the same time, I have the freedom to choose if I want to be happy or sad.

Perhaps, perhaps not.

Depressed (and less happy) people generally have lower levels of serotonin than non-depressed (happy) people; hence the general success of SSRIs (anti-depressants). Is it a conscious choice to have a lower level of serotonin or merely a result of biology and environment?

A recent well-written tome (sorry, cannot remember the title) on depression explored most every modality, both physiological and psychological, and came to the conclusion from extensive research, that depression may be controlled, but not cured. Merely "choosing" to be happy through positive affirmations, meditation, etc. had only sub-clinical levels of efficacy, while increasing levels of neurotransmitters was the only effective treatment.

You are what you transmit (on a chemical level).

Can one choose to take anti-depressants or not? Perhaps, perhaps not. A Christian Scientist's upbringing may preclude them exploring that route while another brought up in a houseful of prescription drugs might find it the only route.


--------------------



The proof is in the pudding.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhred
Fred's son
Male

Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 12,949
Loc: Dominican Republic
Last seen: 6 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2439505 - 03/16/04 03:34 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Mal_Fenderson writes:

The problem here is postulating some sort of mechanism whereby freedom of the will might function and be compatible with the idea that only material things exist. But freedom of the will, it seems to me, cannot be material on the account given. So where is it?

Yep. There's the conundrum. It would therefore appear logical to conclude (given our current state of scientifically verifiable knowledge re the interactions of strictly material entities) that not only material things exist.

pinky


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2439534 - 03/16/04 03:40 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

If I accept that I have good evidence for my own free-will and that free-will cannot be materially explicable.
I don't have this intuitive sense of it, so the argument fails. Although if I did I can certainly see how the argument would work.


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhred
Fred's son
Male

Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 12,949
Loc: Dominican Republic
Last seen: 6 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2439621 - 03/16/04 04:04 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

You don't believe you have the capacity to act volitionally? Every action you take, every thought you experience is pre-ordained? You are nothing more than a helpless passenger along for the ride aboard the vessel that is your body?

Bummer.

pinky


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2439745 - 03/16/04 04:29 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Oddly enough, I enjoy things all the same.


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleSkorpivoMusterion
Livin in theTwilight Zone...
 User Gallery

Registered: 01/30/03
Posts: 9,954
Loc: You can't spell fungus wi...
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2439843 - 03/16/04 04:48 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Are you a Fatalist, by any chance Mal?



--------------------
Coffee should be black as hell, strong as death, and sweet as love.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleMal_Fenderson
Space Monkey

Registered: 07/31/03
Posts: 132
Loc: North American Plate.
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: SkorpivoMusterion]
    #2439991 - 03/16/04 05:23 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

I don't know what I am, really.
I don't think that I believe things are fixed, i.e., that the future state of the universe could be known simply as a function of the current state. That might be the case, but I do not know how I would ever know that it was.


--------------------
----
"Better Dead than Red."


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleSwami
Eggshell Walker

Registered: 01/19/00
Posts: 15,413
Loc: In the hen house
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2440337 - 03/16/04 07:31 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

You don't believe you have the capacity to act volitionally? Every action you take, every thought you experience is pre-ordained?

Was watching the History channel about the trial in Mississippi in the mid-50s that sparked that Civil Rights Movement. A black teenager was beaten to death for wolf whistling at a white woman.

The all-white jury acquitted the two white murderers even though it was pretty clear that they did it (and they later wrote an article in Life maagazine describing their crime!)

Not one white person in the town spoke out against the atrocity. Basically this was for one of two reasons:

1. Enculturation - they were brought up to be racist and knew no other way to view the events.

2. Fear - of violence or at least societal shunning.

Apparently the whole white community was exercising their free-will or were they?


--------------------



The proof is in the pudding.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2441602 - 03/17/04 01:24 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Mal_Fenderson]
    #2441618 - 03/17/04 01:29 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Anonymous

Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: SkorpivoMusterion]
    #2441628 - 03/17/04 01:34 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

- Post History Deleted Upon User's Request -


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineFrog
Warrior
Female User Gallery

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 4,284
Loc: The Zero Point Field
Last seen: 8 years, 8 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #2441632 - 03/17/04 01:35 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

pinksharkmark said:
You don't believe you have the capacity to act volitionally? Every action you take, every thought you experience is pre-ordained? You are nothing more than a helpless passenger along for the ride aboard the vessel that is your body?

Bummer.

pinky




I agree. 

"Baron Paul Henri d Holbach (1723-1789) (a hard determinist) compared humans on the earth to the fly in an ancient fable:

? ?The fly in a fable?: D?Holbach tells the story of the fly, who alights on a large carriage (coach) being pulled by horses. The fly begins to think that it (the fly) is determining where the carriage will go.

o Humans on the earth are comparable to the fly, according to d?Holbach

? Both (fly and human) think they are free, but they are not free? because there are forces that determine what they do."

What I believe, was said best by Emerson:

"A little consideration of what takes place around us every day would show us, that a higher law than that of our will regulates events; that our painful labors are unnecessary, and fruitless; that only in our easy, simple, spontaneous action are we strong, and by contenting ourselves with obedience we become divine.

Belief and love, ? a believing love will relieve us of a vast load of care. O my brothers, God exists. There is a soul at the centre of nature, and over the will of every man, so that none of us can wrong the universe.

It has so infused its strong enchantment into nature, that we prosper when we accept its advice, and when we struggle to wound its creatures, our hands are glued to our sides, or they beat our own breasts.

The whole course of things goes to teach us faith. We need only obey. There is guidance for each of us, and by lowly listening we shall hear the right word.

Why need you choose so painfully your place, and occupation, and associates, and modes of action, and of entertainment? Certainly there is a possible right for you that precludes the need of balance and wilful election.

For you there is a reality, a fit place and congenial duties. Place yourself in the middle of the stream of power and wisdom which animates all whom it floats, and you are without effort impelled to truth, to right, and a perfect contentment.

Then you put all gainsayers in the wrong. Then you are the world, the measure of right, of truth, of beauty. If we will not be mar-plots with our miserable interferences, the work, the society, letters, arts, science, religion of men would go on far better than now, and the heaven predicted from the beginning of the world, and still predicted from the bottom of the heart, would organize itself, as do now the rose, and the air, and the sun."

In the almighty words of fireworks_god, "Peace".  :grin:


--------------------
The day will come when, after harnessing the ether, the winds, the tides, gravitation, we shall harness for God the energies of love. And, on that day, for the second time in the history of the world, man will have discovered fire.  -Teilard


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineThe_Visionaire
Torch

Registered: 02/16/04
Posts: 111
Loc: Indra's Net
Last seen: 13 years, 8 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2442883 - 03/17/04 12:36 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

I see that there is a lot of confusion regarding this topic. And even if Mr.Mushrooms tries to clarify concepts with long and elaborate posts, it makes me wonder if such a demonstration of intellectual refinement does not make matters even more obscure and the truth harder to see. Truth is after all simple (although it may be infinitely deep).

I`ll try to clarify my view... Some of my statements is not graspable in terms of Flatland-logical thought patterns so look within and beyond.

What do we mean by a free choice? Certainly not a random choice?
If it is not random, then, what is it?
Something that is not random is presumably part of an order, ja?

But what is order?

It is really not easy to define what exactly order is. It does not confine to any particular theory, but lays rather in the whole infrastructure of ideas, concepts and values. It's in the very framework in which human thought is understood and action carried out.

As I have argued before, perhaps order is the language of meaning?

"Meaning to whom?", you may ask. Well, the human body is also ordered, a relatively stable structure (all structures are relatively stable) that has somehow emerged from some primordial soup. Why should we have meaning if we are only matter?

But what is matter then?
Matter is structure and structure is an order that is somewhat stable.

But if all is order, who are there to interpret all this?
"The most incomprehensible thing about creation is comprehensibility"- Albert Einstein

Where does the ability to understand come from?

To answer this we first have to introduce the concept of a context.

A context is a system of order by which other systems of order is understood. The word implies something that holds the text together. If anything is to be understood it has to be understood in a context.

The human brain is thus a context by which to measure order. But the context itself is also an ordered system! And by understanding something trough a context, the context is also changed (Thus we have a non-linear system, i.e. the system is implicit in the varibles defining the system).

But back to the question; why is there such a thing as understaning?

Because order is the manifestation of meaning. Meaning is being! To ask "where does meaning come from?", would be like chasing your own tale; you do not realize that the tail is an inherent part of you!

The will commands the body, and the body obeys, but what commands the will?
Thought is a subtle order which is able to inluence matter. Matter is able to influence thought. The awareness that this is so, is a new perspective, a new order, which carries higher meaning.

As I have argued, matter is structure, and so is thought. Thought is more subtle, that is 'finewoven', than matter. But in essence there is really no difference.

The feeling of exhilaration following a serotonin boost goes hand in hand with the chemical activities in the brain. But once again; there is no dualism in this. It is ONE process.

Mr.Mushrooms said that the will has a tendency to flow towards good.
I will rather phrase it like meaning has a tendency to flow towards coherence.

Higher meaning has a wider horizon of action, thus avoiding inconsitencies and incoherence. You may wander lost, but sooner or later you will encounter incidents which leads you onto the path of higher meaning flowing towards the sea of coherence, which is Go(o)d.

Will is the ability to establish a structure that carries out higher meaning and thus is able to overrule lower orders of meaning (i.e. the pursuit of pleasure).

Higher meaning 'is gained' as a consequence of increased awareness.

You may then ask "is it not determined then, if I get higher awareness, or is not my ability to exersice free will a part of the way I was raised?"

Well once again you chase your own tale. Ultimately there are no separation between you and the universe. The outside is the inside is the internal is the external is the manifested is the unmanifested is the implicate is the explicate is the unfolded is the enfolded is the Brahman is the Athman and so on. You determine the universe as the universe determines you.

Let me introduce the Klein bottle, a moebius strip rotated around its mirror image.



What is special with this mathematical construction, is that you can follow the surface of it, and without any breake in continuity you will pass from the outside 3D bottle to the 4D space 'inside' the bottle.

If we equate the inside 4D-space with your awareness and the outside 3D-space with your body (or the external universe), we see that it is the combined system that gives meaning. A single 3D bottle is empty of soul, and a inner 4D space has no expression. It is one process!

No wonder that ancient civilizations have used the snake that eats its own tale as a symbol of the universe. If you get hold of your own tale and swallow yourself you have trancended into the Klein-bottle realm.


--------------------
There are no differences between men and gods,
one blends softly causal into the other.
-Frank Herbert, Dune.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefireworks_godS
Sexy.Butt.McDanger
Male

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,855
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 1 year, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: ]
    #2443087 - 03/17/04 01:40 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

First off, I read that huge thing and I understand it, but I don't see how the hell I will be able to reply to it all, because that would mean I would have to construct my own huge fucking writing with the same type of structured words that suck the meaning right out of it.. don't have the time or that much of a structured mind. :grin:

I do have some things I wish to address of that writing, however, and a lot to say on my own, to try to fully bring my point acrossed.

Well, I definitely won't argue with the fact that we experience free will.... observation proves that. A thought in my mind decides to move my arm parallel with my shoulder, and then my arm moves. I can even choose to stop it half way and pause for a second, and then I see that it physically does happen.. I've observed my making a choice and then that choice being externally carried out.

Quote:


Mr. Mushrooms said:
This type of "freedom applies to the will when we speak of "free will, and we mean that the will is free from intrinsic necessity or determination in at least some of its acts. Hence, when it is said that the will is "free," it is implied that the will is not necessitated by its nature to act in a determined manner, but is capable of choice even when all the conditions for acting are present.




I guess that would be a good definition of freedom of the will... but I don't see how it is true in our case, with our will. Every thought and our mental programming that we use to make choice is all determined.

We are NOT free of cause and effect. Remember me moving my arm before? Well, to map out specifically what all caused my arm to actually move would take quite awhile.. which is why creating artificial intelligence isn't so easy. :grin:

But we all know the physical aspect of it. Once "we" decided to move our arm, the impulse was sent out (cause and effect), and everything necessary for the movement of our arm carried out in sucession. Every little step along the way was the effect of the previous step, which was the cause for that effect. From the thought that set into motion the movement of the arm, we have a small chain of cause and effect that carried out the process of the arm moving. 

Now does that say anything agansit free will? Of course not, we still made the choice to move the arm, right? That was just the physical result of our choice, and there was no conscious choices being made along the way, just physical processes......

Well, then let us speak of the mind itself. It gets pretty damned complicated here... However, in the spirit of striving to share perspective with others, here we go!  :smirk:

Let me ask this: Is our mind free of cause and effect? Nope. On closer inspection, it is impossible to be free of cause and effect. If we WERE free of cause and effect, we would inevitably be Gods in the sense that we would beyond the workings of time and space.

Of course, first off, all our thoughts and the way we look at the world and judge new experiences and situations was determined. Our interations with the system that we are in make us who we are.

So, then, the way we treat every new moment and what that moment consists of depends on the moments before. Every single thought we think was led up to being thought by the previous thought. Not only that, but our environment also has an effect on our mind as well, in each moment.

So, at this point, I say, "yes, I know that, although limited options are available for choices and that our experiences create who we are, we still have the ability to experience making a free choice." That isn't the issue.

What I am saying, first of all, is that our decision making processes ARE determined. We certainly experience making a free choice, but experience and what is actually happening are a different story. There has NEVER been a human that has made an action that has been free of influence.

Every action, and every thought (which, of course, is still an action) has a cause, and is the cause of the next effect. When we enter a moment, there is an interaction of us and the moment. "Us" has already been determined in the moments before, and is going to act in this moment according to what has led them up to the moment and what is being presented in the moment. Furthermore, the interaction between us and the moment, as well as every other variable in the moment, thereby leads up to the next moment. 

There is NO seperation between us and the moment and all the other variables also in this system. My whole point I am trying to make comes from a perspective outside of the individual perspective (although, of course, it is accessed by an individual perspective. :grin:)

It is obvious that everything that we consider ourselves to be came from our interactions with the system we are in, and that every single moment interacting within this system that we are also a part of further creates our meaning and our perspective and our way of thinking.

In the sense that we experience making a free choice, that is a result from our individual perspective. It is a blessing and a curse.. I don't think it is possible altogether to escape the individual perspective, at least in this lifetime, but I do believe it is possible to expand our understanding to the very brink of losing it entirely..... There is a lot of perspective and understanding that requires expanding from the indivdual perspective to realize. It is out there and to someone else who is confined in a stricter sense of vantage point, and hasn't experienced it, then it wouldn't make sense.

Quote:


Mr. Mushrooms said:
In other words, the determinist is living a lie; he or she is saying one thing but acting contradictory to what is said; he or she is affirming one thing in theory and the opposite in practice; to put it bluntly, the determinist is a con artist promoting a philosophical fraud.




:rolleyes:

Well, I can't speak for a "determinist", but I can speak for myself. What I am proposing, or at least attempting to, doesn't involve any contradictions between my understanding and how I actually live. I fully acknowledge the experience of free will and hell, the understanding that I have come to find allows this experience to take place, and it fits within that understanding.

We are within a system and an active part of that system and there is quite the interaction there. The seperateness and the freedom from this system is an illusion and a necessary one. The fact that it is an illusion and that we are not free in any way from cause and effect does not subtract from, in any way, our experience of free choice. The view that it does is simply a misunderstanding of what cause and effect really is.

So ja.. I guess I will just end with asking for an example of any situation that has ever laid outside of the realm of cause and effect.... :lol:
Peace.  :mushroom2:


--------------------
:redpanda:
If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefireworks_godS
Sexy.Butt.McDanger
Male

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,855
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 1 year, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: The_Visionaire]
    #2443155 - 03/17/04 01:58 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Oohh, killer fucking post! Du er sikkert fremskreden i tanke. (Did I say that right?) :grin:
Peace.  :mushroom2:


--------------------
:redpanda:
If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineThe_Visionaire
Torch

Registered: 02/16/04
Posts: 111
Loc: Indra's Net
Last seen: 13 years, 8 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: fireworks_god]
    #2443330 - 03/17/04 02:37 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Takk, takk  :smile2:
You are getting hold of the Norwegian language, ja? :thumbup:


--------------------
There are no differences between men and gods,
one blends softly causal into the other.
-Frank Herbert, Dune.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefireworks_godS
Sexy.Butt.McDanger
Male

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,855
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 1 year, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: The_Visionaire]
    #2443440 - 03/17/04 03:11 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Nei. Jeg kjenne lite.  :frown:

No, I got lazy and didn't actively pursue learning it, and I just kept shrugging it off... see, I'm even talking in the past sense, even though I still have two months yet to learn. :grin:

And I can type more than I can say... I can't carry on a conversation with anyone in Norsk or anything. hehe. But I still intend to learn it, even if I don't pick it all up during my stay here....

I still experience consciously choosing to desire learning it! :lol:
Peace.  :mushroom2:


--------------------
:redpanda:
If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblemuhurgle
Turtles all theway down

Registered: 10/29/03
Posts: 299
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: The_Visionaire]
    #2443455 - 03/17/04 03:15 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Mr.Mushrooms said that the will has a tendency to flow towards good.
I will rather phrase it like meaning has a tendency to flow towards coherence.


That meaning flows towards coherence might be true.

The article posted by Mr.Mushrooms assumes that there is an independent concept of good and evil, that there is a universal metric to measure these things by. If one chooses to believe that, that's fine, but it's still a belief. Assuming this without reservations is religion.

Equating good with coherence takes an even greater leap of faith.


--------------------
"To make this mundane world sublime
Take half a gram of phanerothyme."

Aldous Huxley


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineThe_Visionaire
Torch

Registered: 02/16/04
Posts: 111
Loc: Indra's Net
Last seen: 13 years, 8 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: muhurgle]
    #2443512 - 03/17/04 03:27 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

When something is coherent it is whole unto itself. That is, there is no conflict within. I see this as good, and it fits right into common definitions of what good is.


--------------------
There are no differences between men and gods,
one blends softly causal into the other.
-Frank Herbert, Dune.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblemuhurgle
Turtles all theway down

Registered: 10/29/03
Posts: 299
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: The_Visionaire]
    #2443608 - 03/17/04 03:48 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Ok, that's fine. So good = coherent is one way of defining good. But what is 'good'? Common defintions are just common definitions.

Moral relativism is not a fringe philosophy. Asserting moral absolutism, without even mentioning it, to 'prove' free will, is in my opinion absurd.


--------------------
"To make this mundane world sublime
Take half a gram of phanerothyme."

Aldous Huxley


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineThe_Visionaire
Torch

Registered: 02/16/04
Posts: 111
Loc: Indra's Net
Last seen: 13 years, 8 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: muhurgle]
    #2443669 - 03/17/04 04:03 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

>>Asserting moral absolutism, without even mentioning it, to 'prove' free will, is in my opinion absurd.

So that was the reason I rephrased what Mr.Mushrooms said in the first place. Coherence is a neutral phenomena.

>>Ok, that's fine. So good = coherent is one way of defining good. But what is 'good'? Common defintions are just common definitions.

What definitions do you want?

And by the way; we are off topic...


--------------------
There are no differences between men and gods,
one blends softly causal into the other.
-Frank Herbert, Dune.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleSkorpivoMusterion
Livin in theTwilight Zone...
 User Gallery

Registered: 01/30/03
Posts: 9,954
Loc: You can't spell fungus wi...
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: The_Visionaire]
    #2443742 - 03/17/04 04:16 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

And by the way; we are off topic...

Time to take it to tha STREETS!

OTD TIME!

:wink:

(seriously, I'd love to see this topic get subjected to the pool of piranhas over there :grin:)


--------------------
Coffee should be black as hell, strong as death, and sweet as love.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblemuhurgle
Turtles all theway down

Registered: 10/29/03
Posts: 299
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: The_Visionaire]
    #2443767 - 03/17/04 04:27 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

So that was the reason I rephrased what Mr.Mushrooms said in the first place. Coherence is a neutral phenomena.

You also said that you see coherence as good.. :smile: But this is beyond the point is was trying to make.

What definitions do you want?

Give me an objective definition of 'good' :smile:


--------------------
"To make this mundane world sublime
Take half a gram of phanerothyme."

Aldous Huxley


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineThe_Visionaire
Torch

Registered: 02/16/04
Posts: 111
Loc: Indra's Net
Last seen: 13 years, 8 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: muhurgle]
    #2443872 - 03/17/04 05:06 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

>>Ok, that's fine. So good = coherent is one way of defining good.

Well you agreed yourself :wink:

That coherence is good is pretty objective if you ask me.

Your problem is that once I have given you this definition of good, you compare it with other definitions and start to pull in moral values. You ask for objectivity, but are unable to clear the word 'good' from its subjective connotations.

What we do here is developing meaning as we go along. If you know of other aspects of the word good that you feel lack in my definition, then come with them, and let us have a dialouge. But that is again probably the domain of another topic.

Im off into dreamspace then :yawn:


--------------------
There are no differences between men and gods,
one blends softly causal into the other.
-Frank Herbert, Dune.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleinfidelGOD
illusion

Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 3,040
Loc: there
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: The_Visionaire]
    #2444012 - 03/17/04 06:11 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

I'm not a determinist, and I DO "observe" free will (whatever that means), but my problem with philosophical "evidence" for the existence of free will is that it seems to boil down to one thing:

determinism is self-defeating

my question is this:
"why can't the universe be self-defeating"?

who says there has to be a purpose?
who says the universe has to be coherent?
who says truth has to be "good"
aren't these basically human value judgements?

I freely admit that I believe in free will because I want it to be true, and because it is practical, not because I see any compelling evidence for it. I don't claim that free will is Truth. and anyone who claims to have "solved" the problem of free will through "observation" or "philosophical examination" is merely making value judgements.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblebuttonion
Calmly Watching

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 303
Loc: Kansas
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: ]
    #2444902 - 03/17/04 10:50 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Cheers.....:beer:
And again ......:beer:
And one more time.......:spliff:


You guys I would like to refocus this a bit. There are obviously a lot of sharp minds here, but this is going off in all kinds of (fascinating) directions.

Mr M: I read a little bit from each of those essays and they didn?t do much for me. It seemed like the content and level-headedness of the articles would provoke as much fruitful debate as Pinksharkmark's comments (not much).

The Visionare, Fireworks God: Great posts. I definitely need to reread them and consider implications. I'm hoping this might meet Mr Mushrooms and friends at their level.

The question I posted was "how do you reconcile the notion of cause and effect with our belief in freewill?" (something like that)



These are generally the positions:

Compatibilists: Prove to me that I don?t have free will. It is plain as day that I can choose what I want to do. Yes there are restrictions, but I clearly can exercise choice when behaving when I want to. SEE! I chose to write this! And what would happen if we didn?t? Ahh.. the consequences!

Incompatibilitists: Prove to me that every behavior we engage in is not the result of a infinitely complex chain of causality. Show me that even your most evolved, higher-order abilities, are not EXTREMELY complex reactionary behavior in response to stimuli.


Each places the burden of proof on the other because neither can conclusively prove his position. But THIS is why I side with the compatibilisits currently: An object that has an effect on the world that is not the result of past causes, an object that can apparently go in and out of the causal chain- can exert an influence on things, but itself not be influenced by things- simply does not fit with the casual order of things as we know it. Acknowledging freewill is analogous to explaining the reason the river is flooding is because it is not pleased with the acts of the nearby community or that a person is schizophrenic because of demonic possession.

Saying that freewill is ?self-evident? is bunk. This is not an argument. There are many things that people consider to be self-evident- some people think that reincarnation is self-evident. But this belief is not the result of rational analysis. It?s not rational. I?m not saying therefore it is bad or wrong, we all have such metaphysical beliefs, but they?re just not rational. Perceptions deceive.

And pointing out the consequences of not accepting the doctrine of freewill is also not a valid argument against freewill. I?m not saying that we should all deny freewill and plunge our society into absolute chaos (which would no doubt happen at this time). But this has not bearing on whether or not we can ?freely? choose to act. This is just pragmatism.



It comes down to parsimony. Shall we explain human behavior in terms of cause and effect, a useful framework that we apply to other aspects of reality? Or should we invoke some metaphysical object that is sometimes a cause-effect object and sometimes not? This is the same as the existence of God discussion.

Conclusion: If you are going to include cause and effect into your way of looking at things, you cannot also coherently accept freewill, to ANY degree, without introducing some metaphysical object, and this object needs to be accounted for if your view is rational.

SO THE QUESTION(S) IS: How do you account for it? Many of the freewillers here would not be to keen on accepting the idea of a ?soul? or some other spiritual idea. How do you EXPLAIN it? From where does it arise? In what dimension does it exist? Incompatibilists have cause and effect- all things are things that are effects of causes, which in turn are themselves effects of causes- what do compatibilists have? What is this theory of freewilling things, the framework through which a self-causing, freely choosing object makes sense? You have to have some framework. Is it just willy-nilly right? We all know that our senses can deceive us. What is the rational explanation to accompany your perception? No, social consensus does not count.


--------------------
Concepts which have been proved to be useful in ordering things easily acquire such an authority over us that we forget their human origins and accept them as invariable.- Albert Einstein


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhred
Fred's son
Male

Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 12,949
Loc: Dominican Republic
Last seen: 6 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2445908 - 03/18/04 03:04 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Buttonion writes:

But THIS is why I side with the compatibilisits currently: An object that has an effect on the world that is not the result of past causes, an object that can apparently go in and out of the causal chain- can exert an influence on things, but itself not be influenced by things- simply does not fit with the casual order of things as we know it.

I have never stated or implied that the objects outside the materialist "causal chain" -- i.e. those entities which possess volition -- are not themselves influenced by things.

Saying that freewill is ?self-evident? is bunk. This is not an argument.

Since free will can only be demonstrated ostensively, there is no other way to say it. It isn't an argument, correct. It is axiomatic.

Your above statement has implications broader than just the question of free will. It extends not just to actions (volitional or otherwise) but also to entities. The only way to prove the existence of the lighter I just used to ignite my fine Dominican cigar is to toss it to you. I need not "prove" the existence of the lighter to you. Once you have it in your hand its existence is self evident.

There are many things that people consider to be self-evident- some people think that reincarnation is self-evident.

And those people are mistaken. People who believe the existence of the Earth is self-evident are not mistaken.

But this belief is not the result of rational analysis. It?s not rational.

Something which can be directly experienced need not be analysed rationally.

Perceptions deceive.

All perceptions?

Conclusion: If you are going to include cause and effect into your way of looking at things, you cannot also coherently accept freewill, to ANY degree, without introducing some metaphysical object, and this object needs to be accounted for if your view is rational.

Correct.

SO THE QUESTION(S) IS: How do you account for it?

My best guess is that there is some component of volitional entities (the driving force behind volitional action -- the "initiator", if you will) which is capable of acting in the observable four-dimensional universe, but is not entirely of the observable universe.

In what dimension does it exist?

Perhaps in the fifth dimension. Or the sixth. Many physicists are at least halfway convinced there are more than six dimensions. It helps them resolve some stubborn problems in quantum mechanical theory.

A fairly famous thought experiment involves hypothetical creatures inhabiting a three dimensional world rather than our four dimensional world. These creatures live on an infinitely thin plane -- one with just width and breadth, but no height (an X and Y axis but no Z axis). Their third dimension is time, just as our fourth dimension is time.

These hypothetical creatures, being incapable of directly perceiving the dimension of "height", would be hard-pressed indeed to explain how the four legs of a chair (one of our four dimensional chairs, of course) could possibly move in unison. They perceive only four apparently unconnected disks (the bottom of the chair legs), yet when they push one disk, the other three move as well. Magic!

pinky

edited for typo


--------------------


Edited by pinksharkmark (03/18/04 03:20 PM)


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinefireworks_godS
Sexy.Butt.McDanger
Male

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 24,855
Loc: Pandurn
Last seen: 1 year, 6 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2446087 - 03/18/04 05:07 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

buttonion said:
The question I posted was "how do you reconcile the notion of cause and effect with our belief in freewill?"




In a short answer, I would have to say that one would go about resolving cause and effect and our experience of free will by realizing that our experience of free will is created by and continues the process of cause and effect.

Quote:


And pointing out the consequences of not accepting the doctrine of freewill is also not a valid argument against freewill.




Especially since the experience of having free will is still being experienced by all. It is entirely possible to continue to experience making free choices while knowing that there is no actual free choice. After I dream I know that the experiences that seemed so real were in fact just a dream, just an experience produced by my mind.... but yet every night, I continue to experience it. Knowing that our experience of free will is just an illusion (an essential one at that), but yet we continue to experience it, can be seen in the same light.

Quote:


Conclusion: If you are going to include cause and effect into your way of looking at things, you cannot also coherently accept freewill, to ANY degree, without introducing some metaphysical object, and this object needs to be accounted for if your view is rational.




Well, the experience of having free will can be accepted without introducing some metaphysical object. Cause and effect and the experience of making free choices, as I understand it, coexist in perfect harmony. Cause and effect shows how this moment and all it encompasses was arrived at by the previous moments, and the interaction between all the variables in the system in this moment inevitably creates the next moment and what interactions take place in that moment. I don't understand how this can be escaped or what could possibly lie beyond this.

Meanwhile, the experience of free will, I think, comes about from the fact that we have developed awareness and our minds are capable of advanced thought processes. We experience free will because it serves as a means of making more advanced actions that are impossible without some sort of consciousness and self reflection; advanced understanding... while this does, in fact, really advance and make more complex the cause and effect process, it isn't by any means free from it.

The experience of free will and the principle of cause and effect can coexist without any need of a metaphysical object. :wink:

Quote:


SO THE QUESTION(S) IS: How do you account for it? Many of the freewillers here would not be to keen on accepting the idea of a ?soul? or some other spiritual idea.




Well, I am one to believe that we have a soul, something beyond this physical reality that is attached to us in order to learn and to experience, for further evolution... but that's just a spiritual belief of mine, and I certainly don't try to pin free will as coming from that source, especially since I see that said soul as an impartial observer, like someone in a play's audience that doesn't interact with the people on stage (hehe, although it is possible for the people in the play to be aware of the presence of the audience, so to speak. :grin:). :lol:

Why look to something beyond this reality as we know it for free will when we can already find why we experience it here in this one?  :smirk:
Peace.  :mushroom2:


--------------------
:redpanda:
If I should die this very moment
I wouldn't fear
For I've never known completeness
Like being here
Wrapped in the warmth of you
Loving every breath of you

:heartpump: :bunnyhug: :yinyang:

:yinyang: :levitate: :earth: :levitate: :yinyang:


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineThe_Visionaire
Torch

Registered: 02/16/04
Posts: 111
Loc: Indra's Net
Last seen: 13 years, 8 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2446455 - 03/18/04 10:11 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

buttonion said:
But THIS is why I side with the compatibilisits currently: An object that has an effect on the world that is not the result of past causes, an object that can apparently go in and out of the causal chain- can exert an influence on things, but itself not be influenced by things- simply does not fit with the casual order of things as we know it.




There are higher orders that can penetrate the lower orders in a seemingly acausal way, measured from the perspective of the lower order.

But when I exersice free will it comes from a sense of purpose and meaning. This purpose and meaning do not depend on anything then? How can anything act with purpose and meaning from an unmanifested realm if there is no sense of purpose and meaning in this realm?

If A is to influence B it means that A cannot be separate from B, because they are really 'parts' of the same system. One process, remember?

So if there is an effect (will) that influence an element (the causal chain) it means that the effect and the element influenced is both part of a 'higher' system! They can NOT be separate from each other!

Quote:

buttonion said:
There are many things that people consider to be self-evident- some people think that reincarnation is self-evident. But this belief is not the result of rational analysis. It?s not rational. I?m not saying therefore it is bad or wrong, we all have such metaphysical beliefs, but they?re just not rational.




It would be useful to define what socalled rational analyzis really is. Rationality stems from ratio, that is relationships. We could i.e. have a relationship between two elements measured from some kind of categorization. But we can also have relationships of realtionships and so on indefinetely.

Rationality is thus and order that measures relationships, and indeed the essential order of thought.

True rationality is when the order of thought reflects the order of the universe.

So a belief in reincarnation can be quite rational if this is what honest investigation leads you to believe (yes there are ways in which to investigate these things).

Quote:

buttonion said:
Perceptions deceive.




Perceptions does not deceive, but the interpretations of these can deceive if we are not careful. Interpretation meaning the categorization of the percieved within your tought-system. The only way to develope a categorization system that does not decieve is to try and fail. There is no safe haven, but we help each other along right :smile:

Quote:

buttonion said:
It comes down to parsimony. Shall we explain human behavior in terms of cause and effect, a useful framework that we apply to other aspects of reality? Or should we invoke some metaphysical object that is sometimes a cause-effect object and sometimes not? This is the same as the existence of God discussion.




One man's metaphysics is another man's reality. If one fish was taken from the sea and lifted into space, how could he convey what he saw to his fellow fish? This fish would at first hardly know what he saw himself. But then he might get to know some space-man friends that took him at regular trips to space. And although space always reveals new mysteries the fish will certainly have a more stable opinion of what space is as his visits continues.

Now, how shall he proceed in convincing the other fish that their sea is on a planet that floats in space? He can`t. His theories would be deemed metaphysical and crazy. Truth is something that is shared and the proof of the pudding is in eating it.

The fish sees the sun from below the surface, and certainly the moon, and perhaps also some stars. So instead of like the deepwater fish, gnawing his jaws, and thinking that there can be anything or nothing 'up there', why not like the fly-fish develop wings and take a closer look?

A consitent theory is a boat and a inquireous mind the wind in the sail,
together plowing the waters of life, towards the horizon of truth.
And if the boat is leaking you'll have to tighten the hole, and if there is no wind, then damn it use your lungs!

Some like to sail,
some like to stay at their respective reality-island.

Quote:

buttonion said:
Conclusion: If you are going to include cause and effect into your way of looking at things, you cannot also coherently accept freewill, to ANY degree, without introducing some metaphysical object, and this object needs to be accounted for if your view is rational.




Yesterdays metaphysics is todays science.

Free will and causality go together like hand in glove, causality is the houshold of meaning (and will). Like the kleinbottle is the home of the genie :grin:


Quote:

buttonion said:
Many of the freewillers here would not be to keen on accepting the idea of a ?soul? or some other spiritual idea. How do you EXPLAIN it? From where does it arise? In what dimension does it exist? Incompatibilists have cause and effect- all things are things that are effects of causes, which in turn are themselves effects of causes- what do compatibilists have? What is this theory of freewilling things, the framework through which a self-causing, freely choosing object makes sense? You have to have some framework. Is it just willy-nilly right? We all know that our senses can deceive us. What is the rational explanation to accompany your perception? No, social consensus does not count.




You show the strength and weaknesses of each standpoint, but I think the view I hold reconciles these two views.

As Hegel taught, every thesis (free will) when explored, leads to it's antithesis (determinism), thereby creating a paradox which can only be solved going to a higher (or deeper) level.


--------------------
There are no differences between men and gods,
one blends softly causal into the other.
-Frank Herbert, Dune.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Offlinezappaisgod
horrid asshole

Registered: 02/11/04
Posts: 81,741
Loc: Fractallife's gym
Last seen: 5 years, 4 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2446501 - 03/18/04 10:42 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

I'm glad you brought this back.

My take on the free will issue is that there must be a mechanism for it, something that avoids the strict constraints of the cause and effect doctrine and the omnipotent being doctrine. The omnipotent being doctrine cannot be addressed; there is no argument that cannot be refuted by making recourse to an omnipotent being. There is no evidence for it and it's a logical dead end. If you want to believe in an omnipotent being, fine. I have lost interest in discussing it with you.

As to the cause and effect argument, which posits that every action is the inevitable result of previous actions, we require that there be some mechanism for creative activity, something that steps outside of the linear cause and effect stream. Since I believe that humans are in essence biological machines and that there is no mystical soul force involved, and that the biological processes are a direct result of the effects (quantum mechanicals) of the particles we are made of, there must be some method for the introduction of creativity (I use this in the sense of non-linear cause and effect activity).

There is a concept in physics of the Conservation of Information. This says that if you know the current state of all the particles in the universe you can essentially run the tape backwards and be able to describe the state of the universe at any time. If this is so, then the idea of free will has real problems. But I do not believe this to be so. The idea of Conservation of Information runs into difficulty when particles are lost into black holes, their information is gone. There is also the matter of particles popping into existence out of nothing all the time. (Strange as it seems this is accepted by most physicists). These are known as virtual particles and they are usually anihilated by their anti-particles, but not always. Then there is the nebulous nature of electrons, they mostly exist as probabilities. Likewise the existence of radioactive decay. We can say with certainty that half of the particles in a radioactive sample will decay in a certain period of time (half-life) but we can say nothing about when a specific particle will decay. It gives no clue that it is about to, it just does.

This may seem somewhat removed from human behaviour, but I believe that humans are the sum total of their particles, no less and no more, and this is how I refute the strict cause and effect guys. There is no arguing with the god people so I don't (well maybe a little but not here).

The line of reasoning which goes that there is no point in arguing free will because without believing it we would have chaos is valid in the sense that this discussion is just a glorious wank. But if you're gonna have a wank it might as well be a good one and this is one of my favorites.


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblebuttonion
Calmly Watching

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 303
Loc: Kansas
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: fireworks_god]
    #2448651 - 03/18/04 08:58 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

Especially since the experience of having free will is still being experienced by all. It is entirely possible to continue to experience making free choices while knowing that there is no actual free choice.




Quote:

Well, the experience of having free will can be accepted without introducing some metaphysical object. Cause and effect and the experience of making free choices, as I understand it, coexist in perfect harmony.




But freewill and cause and effect completely contradict each other- the world is a bunch of objects caused by previous objects etc vs. an object can behave independent of past causes.

It seems the question here might be ?can you know something about the world and then experience the world in a different way?? I would say that we typically just have a superficial knowledge of cause and effect if we can then act on assumptions that contradict it. If you knew it ?in your bones? I don?t think it would be possible- any thought that implied freewill (what shall I do today?) would be experienced as dissonant. We would have to engage in some pretty serious denial maneuvers.

But it?s the blatant contradiction between the two beliefs that makes them irreconcilable without reference to something metaphysical (not physical, traditional cause and effect) object.


--------------------
Concepts which have been proved to be useful in ordering things easily acquire such an authority over us that we forget their human origins and accept them as invariable.- Albert Einstein


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblebuttonion
Calmly Watching

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 303
Loc: Kansas
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: The_Visionaire]
    #2448659 - 03/18/04 09:01 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

OK, I do get that delineating objects is an act of mind and all ?things? are interconnected. One unfolding process.

Scratch my rationality example. Yeah, that was pretty lame. What I?m trying to say is that a rational belief is a conclusion derived from premises. But I guess all beliefs are this in one way or another. Some, however, are based on more evidence than others, and these are more comprehensive and can account for more of the world- and so in this sense, they are ?better?- they can account for more of the varied "nature of reality" than others. For example, the belief that a sickness is due to viral infection rather than demonic possession. One is more ?right? than the other only in the sense that it can better account for the phenomenon.

Quote:

Perceptions does not deceive, but the interpretations of these can deceive if we are not careful. Interpretation meaning the categorization of the percieved within your tought-system. The only way to develope a categorization system that does not decieve is to try and fail. There is no safe haven, but we help each other along right




OK, I?ll buy that. I guess what I meant is that we can develop some relatively poor snapshot conceptualizations to explain our perceptions. But upon further inquiry, they do not hold under all circumstances.

Quote:

Yesterdays metaphysics is todays science.




Thank you for reminding me. That?s a great quote. I completely forgot a point that I was so adamant about arguing for in the past- theories, beliefs are just tools, maps of the territory.

Quote:

Free will and causality go together like hand in glove, causality is the houshold of meaning (and will). Like the kleinbottle is the home of the genie




So I don?t quite understand this. I do owe it to you to go back and reread your posts though.


--------------------
Concepts which have been proved to be useful in ordering things easily acquire such an authority over us that we forget their human origins and accept them as invariable.- Albert Einstein


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePed
Interested In Your Brain
 User Gallery

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 08/31/99
Posts: 5,494
Loc: Canada
Last seen: 4 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2449554 - 03/19/04 12:15 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Isn't it the depth of our awareness of the principle of cause and effect which is directly proportionate to the actuality of our free will?


--------------------


:poison: Dark Triangles - New Psychedelic Techno Single - Listen on Soundcloud :poison:
Gyroscope full album available SoundCloud or MySpace


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflineThe_Visionaire
Torch

Registered: 02/16/04
Posts: 111
Loc: Indra's Net
Last seen: 13 years, 8 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2450661 - 03/19/04 06:49 AM (17 years, 7 months ago)

I can summon up a vision where I see a non-linear system of whirls and patterns. If I want to change some whirl in this system and shape it into another, I see other things change as well, all around me. Ultimately the entire system changes, but the effect is insignificantly small further away. May we agree on this model of creation? You see reality is not objects, it is only patterns.

The hard step is to identify the will here. There was after all a willing from my part that changed the vision. When I changed the whirl in the first place I did this as a consequence of purpose and meaning. This purpose got its form from my knowledge of the system as I saw it there and then. When I began to shape the whirl there never was a discontinuity in the system. I got my whirl, but the rest of the system adjusted and compensated for the change as well.

The center of the system was my center of attention and intention, which of course is myself, but I think it is possible to project this center of attention elsewhere as well.

Some of the 'adjustments' in the system (as a consequence of my intention) I may have forseen, some not. This has to do with awareness, the higher my awareness, the more of the pattern I see.

I.e. a drug addict may want to create a pleasure-whirvl by shooting some heroine. A really heavy addict has a hard time seeing anything else than this whirvl, and will only care for the sustainment of it. Thereby she is narrowing her awareness as the pursuit of pleasure takes hold. The drug-addict may feel she is trapped in this pattern, so where is the will? Will is the horse of the champion Awareness. It is a structure that serves the higher goals. It is not an acausal effect but a tool to harness and utilize. It is there to rise its rider above those lower 'immediate-reward' whirvls flowing around us on all sides. The drug addict may have the ability to create her own will-structure, but in most cases she will have to get help from other systems (i.e. persons, institutions, mind-altering drugs (ibogain is extremely efficient here) etc.)

I say we are all drug addicts! (here in the shroomery that is :grin:) We have all our dreams and higher goals we strive for, but do we have the will to carry them out? The far-reaching utopia is often swept away by the erosive forces of the lower whirvls of pleasure-seeking alogritms. The champion Awareness may climb a giant mushroom and look far into the horizon, but he is unable to get to the horizon of his dreams without his steed. (perhaps even more dangerous is a wild stallion on the run without a rider; as ambitious, money-seeking, nature-destroying and power-hungry humans(?)). Rider and horse must work together.

But back to the vision; you see, this gets even stranger. The system consisting of the enfolded awareness-aspect of 'me' and the patterns unfolding could itself be a pattern in a higher system. The realization of this would bring new order and meaning. This could i.e. be equated with the trancendence from an ego-centered world-view to the attainment of Bhuddahood or Christ-awareness.

But even the Bhudda and the Christ may not have reached the top of the ladder. How could they? We are after all talking about creation. There are always new revelations coming from within the system, and it's a JOY! (..hmm sometimes anyway..) And we are not 'trapped' in the system, because the boundary conditions of the infinite are not defined.


--------------------
There are no differences between men and gods,
one blends softly causal into the other.
-Frank Herbert, Dune.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblebuttonion
Calmly Watching

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 303
Loc: Kansas
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Ped]
    #2452829 - 03/19/04 10:14 PM (17 years, 7 months ago)

Quote:

Isn't it the depth of our awareness of the principle of cause and effect which is directly proportionate to the actuality of our free will?




So the more we are aware of cause and effect, the less we actually have free will? And the less we are aware, the more we have free will?

I don't understand how being aware of cause and effect has an impact on whether we can choose to do something independent of past conditions. I can see how the more we explain ourselves in terms of cause and effect, the less we are able to experience the perception of freewill, but that seems different.


--------------------
Concepts which have been proved to be useful in ordering things easily acquire such an authority over us that we forget their human origins and accept them as invariable.- Albert Einstein


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePed
Interested In Your Brain
 User Gallery

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 08/31/99
Posts: 5,494
Loc: Canada
Last seen: 4 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2454126 - 03/20/04 01:50 PM (17 years, 6 months ago)

>> So the more we are aware of cause and effect, the less we actually have free will? And the less we are aware, the more we have free will?

The reverse, actually. The greater our awareness, the greater our ability to choose our own course of action. The lesser our awareness, the lesser our ability to choose our own course of action.


Karma comes to mind when we discuss cause and effect.

Free Will: 2. The power of making free choices that are unconstrained by external circumstances or by an agency such as fate or divine will.

The principle of cause and effect can be thought of as an external circumstance which impedes our ability to make choices freely. Because this is true, we can view our karma as an obstacle to our freedom.

Karma is a special instance of cause and effect whereby our actions are the cause, and our experiences are the effect. Each mental action, whether translated into a physical action or kept as wish or intention, behaves similarly to a seed being planted in the continuum of our mind. Later, when the proper causes and conditions are assembled, those seeds will "ripen", and we will experience the effect of our past action. Ripened effects which cause us happiness are considered the fruit of virtuous actions, and the ripened effects which causes us suffering and disatisfaction are considered the fruit of non-virtuous actions. We can assume for the sake of this discussion that karma is an actual principle, the momentum of which we are indeed subject.

At present, the depth of our awareness of this ongoing process is very limited. We do not understand that our actions in the present create the potential for future effects. By the same token, we do not understand that our experience of the present is shaped entirely by the effects of our past actions. Our actions are therefore dictated by compulsive responses to our surroundings. We are very reactionary, instinctivly guided toward objects of attraction and away from objects of aversion. We commit many actions without the ability to pause and consider their ramifications. It is similar to be tossed about by waves on an ocean.

In a highly charged or tense situation, for example, we might commit many rash actions that later cause us to experience deep and painful regret. Since nobody wishes to experience painful regret, it can be said that in a sense we are guided to such undesirable places out of our control, by our own minds, absent of our free will.

"All living beings wish for happiness, but out of ignorance they destroy it like a foe." --Shantideva

With lesser ignorance and greater awareness of the principle of cause and effect, however, comes the ability to create only the causes which ripen as beneficial effects. If our understanding of karma were a deep and profound one, we would be much less liable to commit actions which later give rise to effects which cause us pain. Rather than being tossed about by the waves of an ocean, we would be like a sea captain in full control of his vessel.

With this awareness we would naturally excercise the ability to halt our potential for committing rash actions which cause us to experience painful feelings later on. Rather than allowing our compulsive response to surrounding events to dictate our future experiences, we would be determining our future experiences by properly navigating given situations.

To reiterate, a proper awareness of the principle of cause and effect allows us to create only the causes which give rise to effects that fulfill our wishes. Since free will is the unconstrained ability to choose what we wish, and since in this case it is awareness which affords us the ability to choose what we wish without constraint, it can be said that the depth of our awareness of the principle of cause and effect is directly proportionate to the actuality of our free will.


--------------------


:poison: Dark Triangles - New Psychedelic Techno Single - Listen on Soundcloud :poison:
Gyroscope full album available SoundCloud or MySpace


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblebuttonion
Calmly Watching

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 303
Loc: Kansas
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Ped]
    #2456949 - 03/21/04 12:19 PM (17 years, 6 months ago)

So it seems that you are making a distinction between

1)a reactionary, ignorant state in which a person is largely not aware of the fact that all current experience is the result of past behavior

2)an aware state in which the idea of karma, the notion that all that we do plants the seeds for future behavior (a type of cause and effect), is realized. In this state we know to avoid certain behaviors and gravitate toward others because of their implications for karma (and all the while, I assume, not being too attached to the whole process).


And you are saying the 2) is a freewill state, in which "free choices that are unconstrained by external circumstances or by an agency such as fate or divine will."

Although I do agree that this higher awareness state is worthy of cultivating, to the extent that it would leads away from suffering, I do not see how it makes sense to characterize this as freewill. ?We? never become completely ?unconstrained by external circumstances.? Because I know you agree with this, your freewill seems to be of a different variety than freewill as you defined it. But then again, maybe I?m missing something?a piece of the puzzle? what is it??!! *excited*


--------------------
Concepts which have been proved to be useful in ordering things easily acquire such an authority over us that we forget their human origins and accept them as invariable.- Albert Einstein


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePed
Interested In Your Brain
 User Gallery

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 08/31/99
Posts: 5,494
Loc: Canada
Last seen: 4 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2457829 - 03/21/04 06:18 PM (17 years, 6 months ago)

>> Although I do agree that this higher awareness state is worthy of cultivating, to the extent that it would leads away from suffering, I do not see how it makes sense to characterize this as freewill. ?We? never become completely ?unconstrained by external circumstances.? Because I know you agree with this, your freewill seems to be of a different variety than freewill as you defined it. But then again, maybe I?m missing something?a piece of the puzzle? what is it??!! *excited*

I'm not sure exactly what is meant by this question, but I'll speak to it regardless.

Free will is authenticated by an awareness of the principle of cause and effect with regards to our actions if we consider the most essential wish of sentient beings. The essential wish of sentient beings is to be happy, and to avoid suffering and problems. No sentient being wishes to be confused, and none wish to be trapped in anguish. All wish to escape these afflictions and enter a permanent happiness. Indeed, it is this most essential wish which is the momentum behind all of the decisions we make.

If we consider this when contemplating what it means to have free will, we discover that our ability to fulfill this wish -- that is, our freedom to choose between happiness and suffering -- is at present severely obstructed. Though we may commit to certain actions or habitual behaviours with the intent to generate lasting happiness for ourselves, very often we experience the opposite result: suffering, hardship, confusion. We must then ask: What is the source of this constraint?

To reiterate: Karma is a special instance of cause and effect whereby our actions are the cause and our experiences are the effect. It should be noted that no action is excluded from this category, nor is any experience. Each element of our experience -- even the most subtle and pervasive -- is shaped in it's totality by our own past actions.

All mental phenomenon can be classified as either an action or an experence. Since the mental phenomena of "happiness" and "suffering" are experiences and not actions, we can conclude that in order to enter the experience of happiness and avoid the experience of suffering, we need to understand how to generate the causes of happiness, and abstain from creating causes for suffering. At present, we do not understand how to do this.

Because we have ignorance, we continue to create causes for suffering with the intent to create causes for happiness. We commit very many negative actions which sometimes have very sudden and harmful repercussions. There are periods in our lives when it seems almost as though we are careening out of control, and all of the things we worked hard to obtain suddenly begin to disappear. Although we wish for happiness, we experience much hardship, much confusion. Our freedom is thereby constrained by ignorance of the experiential effects of our past actions. It is our karma which is the source of our constraint.

Since it is happiness and freedom from suffering which is our most essential wish, all of our common wishes and intentions can be seen as extensions of this fundamental desire. Each intention that we carry into fruitition can be seen as an attempt on the part of the sentient being to choose between happiness and suffering. Although we have the perfect ability to choose between one action and another, we are completely impaired when it comes to the choice between one effect and another. Therefore, it can be said that our freedom to choose between the effect of happiness and the effect of suffering is absent, and our perception of free will therefore inauthentic.

So long as we have ignorance and not awareness, we will be bound from exercising our divine freedom to choose between happiness and suffering. Drowning in the ocean of our karma, we do indeed have the option to escape; though it is extremely rare that a sentient being exercises this freedom to it's full extent.


"Happiness is free to take, yet rarely is it freely taken."

-- A Kadampa Buddhist Poet


--------------------


:poison: Dark Triangles - New Psychedelic Techno Single - Listen on Soundcloud :poison:
Gyroscope full album available SoundCloud or MySpace


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblebuttonion
Calmly Watching

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 303
Loc: Kansas
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Ped]
    #2458064 - 03/21/04 08:02 PM (17 years, 6 months ago)

I acknowledge that human behavior appears to be more or less directed at obtaining happiness and allaying suffering, effective or ineffective, in one form or another. I acknowledge that our attempts at obtaining this goal our obstructed in some way- Karma as you explained it appears to be a useful model in helping us attain the goal of happiness/freedom from suffering- we need to understand that our actions lead to experiences, and thus, if we are interested in being happy (an experience), we should choose only those behaviors that are antecedents of happiness. While we may think that some actions we engage in would lead to happiness, they often lead to suffering. If we thoroughly understood karma, if we were constantly engaged in actions that were in fact antecedents of happiness, we would be happy. We are always choosing happiness over suffering, even though we don?t realize it, but this ability to choose can vary in the extent to which it is impaired, our unawareness of cause-effect karma being the obstacle.

I think that is a great model. But it has no bearing on the question of whether or not there is freewill. It assumes freewill. The ?choosing? you are taking about- that is what I am questioning. You have characterized a state in which someone, because of the absence of ignorance, is now unaffected by his context, the state in which freewill is actualized. And you defined freewill as being ?unconstrained by external circumstances.? I do not see how you can propose this.

I see the self, the ego, the controller, the ?chooser? as a useful convention- a very useful convention. Do you agree with this? Maybe this is where Zen and Tibetan Buddhism part? Please let me know if you understand my dilemma here. We may be missing each other semantically and if so, I?ll try to rephrase.


--------------------
Concepts which have been proved to be useful in ordering things easily acquire such an authority over us that we forget their human origins and accept them as invariable.- Albert Einstein


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePed
Interested In Your Brain
 User Gallery

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 08/31/99
Posts: 5,494
Loc: Canada
Last seen: 4 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2459914 - 03/22/04 12:57 PM (17 years, 6 months ago)

I :heart: your posts.  You are always so clear and lucid.  Though, I'm still not sure where we're missing eachother.  None the less:

At present, our freedom to choose between the experience of happiness and the experience of suffering is constrained by an external circumstance, our karma.  In this instance, karma is being presented as an external circumstance.  It can be seen this way because it operates out of our own control, due to our ignorance.  In dispelling that ignorance, we come to realize the internal nature of our karma, that in fact karma is a functioning aspect of our own continuum, in the same way that our arm is a functioning aspect of our body.  With this awareness, our karmic continuum becomes like a happiness generating engine that we may use to fulfil our wishes.

With ignorance, our freedom to choose between the experience of happiness and the experience of suffering is constrained by an external circumstance, our karma.  With awareness, our freedom to choose between the experience of happiness and the experience of suffering is actualized as an internal circumstance which is no longer bound by the swift currents and strong undertow of cause and effect.

Implicit in this view is an available free will is indeed waiting to be actualized.  It has been argued earlier that free will is not a reality, presently attained nor attainable, because each element of our decision making process is susceptible to the influence of innumerable factors relating to cause and effect.  My position has been that while it seems cause and effect do impair our freedom, this impairment does not necessarily constitute the permanence of our uncontrolled state, as this would be an extreme.  Instead, I've suggested that it's not cause and effect which are the objects of our impairment, rather it is our ignorance which creates the appearance of an obstruction between us and the actualization of our freedom.

In short, my opinion is that it's not correct to say we do not have free will because we are subject to a continuum of innumerable causes and effects.  It appears this way only because we have ignorance.  If we no longer have ignorance, we discover a certain freedom which can be called "free will".  Since we can infer that an awareness of (and patient attitude toward) our karma entitles us the freedom to fulfil our wishes uninhibited, we can also infer that free will is an attribute of conciousness waiting to be fully realized.

Even the Buddha's are subject to the effects of their karma.  Karma is a function of the mental continuum, the actual momentum which propells conciousness itself shaping our entire experience of reality.  Although Buddha's are subject to the effects of their karma, they are not constrained by those effects, as we are.  A Buddha has purified all of his or her negative actions, including the remaining imprints of past negative actions (a negative action is one which creates as the potential for suffering), and therefore the experience of a Buddha is completely non-deceptive, a pure and blissful reality.


>> I see the self, the ego, the controller, the ?chooser? as a useful convention- a very useful convention. Do you agree with this? Maybe this is where Zen and Tibetan Buddhism part?

Ego has two parts:

1. Self Sense:  The sense of "I" which appears to all sentient beings.
2. Concept of Self:  The ideas, perceptions, feelings and characteristics assumed to be inherent attributes of the sense of "I".

Each living being naturally and correctly has a sense of self.  The self sense is nothing greater than the a sense of "I"; it is an awareness of the phenomenon which apprehends and isolates objects within a radius of sensory awareness.

A concept of self, on the other hand, is a set of ideas imputed upon the sense of "I".  We think things like "I am intelligent" or "I am stupid", and conceive of these ideas as being inherent attributes of the "I".  There is no idea which can be imputed atop the sense of "I" which can be considered truthful, because the "I" is merely the transitory effect of innumerable causes and conditions, what's called a "dependent arising phenomenon".  Attempting to impute inherent attributes upon a dependent arising phenomenon is like attempting to paint a picture atop a rushing stream.

According to Buddha, problems with self-awareness arise when either of two mistaken views are adopted:

1. The notion that a concept of self is a permanent and unchanging entity.
2. The notion that a concept of self is of higher importance than others. 

These two mistaken views are called self-grasping and self-cherishing, and are the root of all our ignorance, thereby all our suffering.  I'll elaborate on this further if requested.


--------------------


:poison: Dark Triangles - New Psychedelic Techno Single - Listen on Soundcloud :poison:
Gyroscope full album available SoundCloud or MySpace


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Invisiblebuttonion
Calmly Watching

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 303
Loc: Kansas
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Ped]
    #2461124 - 03/22/04 07:24 PM (17 years, 6 months ago)

Thank you for your kind words. I look forward to your posts also... especially during this odd phase in my life of "underlying metaphysical theory reconstruction." (he, he)


Quote:

With ignorance, our freedom to choose between the experience of happiness and the experience of suffering is constrained by an external circumstance, our karma. With awareness, our freedom to choose between the experience of happiness and the experience of suffering is actualized as an internal circumstance which is no longer bound by the swift currents and strong undertow of cause and effect.




Can you elaborate on this please? I?m not sure what the difference between external and internal circumstance is here. And I don?t understand how the experience of freedom includes no longer being bound by cause and effect, while earlier you said that understanding cause and effect leads to freedom.


--------------------
Concepts which have been proved to be useful in ordering things easily acquire such an authority over us that we forget their human origins and accept them as invariable.- Albert Einstein


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePed
Interested In Your Brain
 User Gallery

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 08/31/99
Posts: 5,494
Loc: Canada
Last seen: 4 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: buttonion]
    #2467033 - 03/24/04 11:47 AM (17 years, 6 months ago)

The implications of cause and effect are present in our experience at all times, either with ignorance or with awareness. With ignorance, our karma can be viewed as an external circumstance not because that's what it is, but because that is how it appears to us and our ignorance minds. We can see this with the misunderstanding of karmic principles in the West; it is largely believed that Karma is an external sort of divine irony, arbitrating justice only where it is most specifically due. Karma is nothing of the sort.

With greater awareness, though, comes the recognition that karma is a purely internal phenomenon. Karma is an attribute of mind, in the same way clouds are an attribute of climate.

So, with ignorance, we typically mistake our karma as an externally unfolding phenomenon, and in this ignorance we are bound apart from our divine freedom. With awareness, however, we recognize our karma as an internal phenomenon, and while we will always be subject to it's effects, we are no longer bound by it's effects.


--------------------


:poison: Dark Triangles - New Psychedelic Techno Single - Listen on Soundcloud :poison:
Gyroscope full album available SoundCloud or MySpace


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
InvisibleDiploidM
Cuban

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 01/09/03
Posts: 19,274
Loc: Rabbit Hole
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: zappaisgod]
    #2532326 - 04/06/04 06:24 PM (17 years, 6 months ago)

Quote:

There is also the matter of particles popping into existence out of nothing all the time. (Strange as it seems this is accepted by most physicists). These are known as virtual particles and they are usually anihilated by their anti-particles, but not always. Then there is the nebulous nature of electrons, they mostly exist as probabilities. Likewise the existence of radioactive decay. We can say with certainty that half of the particles in a radioactive sample will decay in a certain period of time (half-life) but we can say nothing about when a specific particle will decay. It gives no clue that it is about to, it just does.





Science seems to keep running into more and more impenetrable barriers. Not the kind of barriers previously believed to exist in the absence of supporting credible evidence (humans will never travel faster than sound) but real barriers like the inability to experiment with scales below the Planck Constant, or G?del's proof, Ernst Ising's Model, Werner Heisenberg's Uncertainty.

These barriers keep popping up all along the edges. It's like there is an intrinsic (metaphysical?) limit to knowledge about the universe, and by extension, free will.

-Diploid


--------------------
Republican Values:

1) You can't get married to your spouse who is the same sex as you.
2) You can't have an abortion no matter how much you don't want a child.
3) You can't have a certain plant in your possession or you'll get locked up with a rapist and a murderer.

4) We need a smaller, less-intrusive government.


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
OfflinePhred
Fred's son
Male

Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 12,949
Loc: Dominican Republic
Last seen: 6 years, 9 months
Re: "Freewill problem" check [Re: Phred]
    #6821090 - 04/23/07 12:13 AM (14 years, 5 months ago)

bump


--------------------


Extras: Filter Print Post Remind Me! Notify Moderator Top
Jump to top Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8  [ show all ]

Shop: Kraken Kratom Red Vein Kratom   Left Coast Kratom Buy Kratom Extract, Kratom Powder For Sale   Original Sensible Seeds Autoflowering Cannabis Seeds, Bulk Cannabis Seeds, Feminized Cannabis Seeds, High THC Strains, USA West Coast Strains   North Spore Bulk Substrate, North Spore Mushroom Grow Kits & Cultivation Supplies   Unfolding Nature Unfolding Nature: Being in the Implicate Order   PhytoExtractum Buy Bali Kratom Powder, Kratom Powder for Sale, Maeng Da Thai Kratom Leaf Powder   Bridgetown Botanicals CBD Edibles, CBD Topicals


Similar ThreadsPosterViewsRepliesLast post
* Freewill vs. Determinism: ....???
( 1 2 3 all )
buttonion 6,314 52 04/16/03 03:39 AM
by JuR
* Predeterminism versus Freewill
( 1 2 all )
TheProphet 3,770 20 10/13/05 12:39 PM
by MarkostheGnostic
* Eastern Mysticism and Freewill buttonion 801 4 03/15/04 10:44 PM
by SYCOdelik
* Etheralised cosmic-astral influences... Swami 685 2 09/17/02 05:21 AM
by Pynchon
* imagine > no really, check it out psychopsilocyber 837 13 05/11/03 09:20 PM
by You_are_God
* 13 Moons... check it out
( 1 2 all )
Adamist 3,447 25 07/09/02 06:57 AM
by BBin
* Influencing random numbers... Jared 2,620 18 03/22/03 06:18 AM
by xganon
* I, me alone, have solved all your problems.. behold!
( 1 2 all )
Dogomush 2,462 38 07/30/03 06:51 AM
by Tavarua

Extra information
You cannot start new topics / You cannot reply to topics
HTML is disabled / BBCode is enabled
Moderator: Middleman, Jokeshopbeard, DividedQuantum
17,326 topic views. 0 members, 1 guests and 3 web crawlers are browsing this forum.
[ Print Topic | ]
Search this thread:

Copyright 1997-2021 Mind Media. Some rights reserved.

Generated in 0.097 seconds spending 0.01 seconds on 16 queries.