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Anonymous

materialism, determinism, and free will revisited
    #3187756 - 09/27/04 08:19 PM (13 years, 25 days ago)

for those who weren't around for the original discussions, the problem basically came down to what seems like a contradiction between materialism and the doctrine of free will.

let me define some terms:

materialism - a theory that physical matter is the only or fundamental reality and that all being and processes and phenomena can be explained as manifestations or results of matter.

determinism - a theory or doctrine that acts of the will, occurrences in nature, or social or psychological phenomena are causally determined by preceding events or natural laws

free will - freedom of rational beings to make choices that are not determined by prior causes or by divine intervention

the problem discussed in past threads was what appears to be a contradiction between materialism and free will. materialism leads to determinism, and does determinism mean no free will?

these are the old threads:

can there be free will in a material world?

free will is bullshit

science, chaos, predictability, humans

i found a pretty good article on the subject which attempts to reconcile determinism and free will:

http://www.benbest.com/philo/freewill.html

it's kinda long, but a good read. maybe we can get this discussion started again. it didn't seem like we really got to the bottom of it last time.


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Offlinedeff
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Re: materialism, determinism, and free will revisited [Re: ]
    #3187993 - 09/27/04 09:07 PM (13 years, 24 days ago)

Free will, relative to the seemingly seperate indivudal consciousness, doesn't exist (in my opinion). This is because seperation itself is an internally created illusion, a very complicated ripple effect between the illusion of multiple realities, all truly existing within the single Now. We, these fragments of conscious observation, believe ourselves to be free yet confined within this consensus reality simuntaneously.

Now this is where it gets tricky. Relative to the whole of existence, our own seemingly seperate existence is based upon the result of infinite causes "before" us (negative travel in the dimension of time), and even our actions and thoughts are the results of pre-emptive neurological happenings, the cause of which appears external to our own conscious awareness. So, it appears that we are nothing more than the observer behind this predestined and unfolding absolute state, all relative to our subjective perception, interalized into the Now.

However, one could argue that if it is possible to trace back all causes until a point of causless action is reached, then that single moment was the true point of free will, whereby everything following was freely decided, including our seemingly lack of free will.

Another thing, this apparent 'lack of free will' is itself a self created thought. Brings back the old "I think therefore I am" quote. As well, these limitations to freedom appear to only be within the "physical" - seemingly external - dimension. There are states one can reach whereby these limitations dissolve and they are free within their own existance, no boundaries and no illusions. These inward states, however, could also be dictated to be considered a lack of free will, as one examining the physical counterpart of these could argue that they too are the result of neurological impules, and then too the causes of those, and those, and those...

But, the most important thing I think to remember is, that we are here right now within this framework of existence. Whether or not we believe we have "free will" will not change this. Free will itself is a concept created by us, and if it holds true that it is non-existant, than the idea itself came from non-freewill dictated beings, and therefore a paradox is raised.

I used to think a lot about this topic, until one day I realized it was only holding back my experience. :smile:


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InvisibleSkorpivoMusterion
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Re: materialism, determinism, and free will revisited [Re: deff]
    #3188359 - 09/27/04 10:20 PM (13 years, 24 days ago)

When one is forced into intense-present-moment-awareness, and hence is not giving/projecting any situation a past or future or any such identity of that sort... I believe that person's actions, thoughts, and behaviors differ quite differently from someone who is completey muddied up in their past/future egoic thinking mode, who would typically always be subject to such laws of cause and effect, as it seems for cause and effect to come about in such a chain, a track-record, i.e., past, is needed, in a sense.
So when an individual who has completely overshadowed that aspect of their consciousness in complete and powerful presence in their consciousness and in the Now, I wouldn't be surprised if that person then becomes the cause. They create their own causes. This, is why I suspect that the higher level of conscious awareness and presence, the more real free will becomes, and more freedom from the otherwise mechanical-thinking mode found in the spiritually unconscious and so on.

Ahh..Caveat Lector, just some armchair brainstorming before I go take another vivid tour of Dreamworld.



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InvisiblePaou
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Re: materialism, determinism, and free will revisited [Re: SkorpivoMusterion]
    #3188429 - 09/27/04 10:31 PM (13 years, 24 days ago)

:thumbup:


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Offlinedeff
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Re: materialism, determinism, and free will revisited [Re: SkorpivoMusterion]
    #3188449 - 09/27/04 10:35 PM (13 years, 24 days ago)

Or maybe, the less one is deluded by the illusions of 'free will' limitations :smile:

I agree though, that there are conscious states that appear to be outside cause/effect


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