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Thread: Free Will ? yes, no, or maybe

  1. #1 Free Will ? yes, no, or maybe 
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    First, it seems as though we do have free will. Until we begin to wonder how this manifests itself. I can chose to do this, or say that, but is that exercising free will or not ?
    Do we make dinner because we know the time for dinner is near, or is it hunger ? (definitely not a 'choice').
    Do we procreate to replenish the species, or because we like to have sex ? You tell me.
    Do we have children because they're so cute (and costly) ? Or because we want to leave some lasting form of ourselves to posterity ? Is a desperate "stab" at immortality ?
    Do we practice faith for much the same reason ?
    Did I write this on purpose ? I think so. But what is that purpose and why do I feel compelled to ask it ?
    Do I wish I had some answers as well as questions ? Probably


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    Is it your brain making those decisions based on its memories, emotions, perceptions of internal and external senses, and ability to figure stuff out and respond (or not)? Than of course it's freewill, because there is nothing else.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Is it your brain making those decisions based on its memories, emotions, perceptions of internal and external senses, and ability to figure stuff out and respond (or not)? Than of course it's freewill, because there is nothing else.
    Sexual desire is free will ? What part do pheromones play ? None ?
    I think free will is an illusion. What seems apparent isn't always so. It seems apparent (from our senses) that the sun orbits earth, yet we know this is not the case. Free will may, similarly, appear
    evident, but are we responding to bio/chemically produced desire, to biochemically produced imperatives, or to free choice ? I have no supporting data; this is merely suspicion.
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    Sexual desire is free will ?
    Free will is about the choices you make and the actions you take.

    You like the clothes in the shop window - but you don't steal them.
    You don't like some foods - you choose whether to be polite in either eating them anyway or refusing tactfully or making a fuss or a fight about it. A public artwork is really, really attractive/ unattractive as you perceive it. You can choose to admire it at length, you can choose to ignore it, you can choose to tell all the passersby how much you dis/like it, you could carve your initials into it or spray it with a tag or you could write down the artist's name so you know to follow up or to avoid their work in the future. Free will determines what you do and don't do about your liking or your distaste for the piece.

    Some people appeal to you sexually. Free will comes into play when you think about what happens next.

    Do you just smile as you keep walking, or say a polite hello, or try to get close to the person, or try to strike up a conversation. (Heav'n forbid) you could also choose to follow them, or to call out something suggestive or wolf-whistle or some other aggressive/creepy thing. It's all your choice. It's your free will to make a good or a bad choice. It's also your choice to gracefully apologise if your chosen action turns out to be unwelcome or you could do what many men in do when women rebuff them (don't know about men), you could insult and or yell at this unfortunate person. Your choices all the way. You exercise your free will at every single step.

    You have biological urges to eat when you're hungry. Do you snatch food from people or do you continue walking to the cafe or lunchroom or kitchen? Your choice. Your free will determines how you act in such circumstances. The only time you see people totally driven by their own or their children's hunger by grabbing at what they can from wherever they can get it is when the delivery trucks arrive at refugee camps. The rest of us can live with our hunger long enough to make real choices about our behaviour as we go about getting some food.
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    I think in this subject it helps to understand the brain and nervous system has two fundamental positions of unconscious action ie reflex reaction and conscious action. The reflex reaction can be physical as in the knee tendon jerk or abstract as in implicit associations (you can take tests yourself here - I have misogynistic reactions which is rather annoying....). But really free will as such can only be associated with conscious thought ie your initial physiological or mental reaction is not free will but conscious thought can overcome it and that can be constituted as free will.
    As in Adeladys exampe - you cant help who you feel attracted on a chemical basis but you do have control over what you do about it.

    See here for a comprehensive discussion on the Libet experiments taking an sceptical view of free will. And here for a view of how the Libet experiments may have been misinterpreted. And then make your own mind up........
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    Free will does exist, but is limited.
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    i think man always has a choice. at all junctures in life man has a choice. that choice may be difficult. it may be so difficult as to seem impossible but still a choice can be made. therefore i think free will exists. and it is not limited.
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    Free will is only a problem in religious philosophy.
    It is centered around the idea of whether God has decided the future or not.
    If God has a plan and knows the future then free will is an illusion.
    If free will exists then the future is unknown and God is not allknowing so there is no divine plan.

    Since I don't believe gods exist I just decide day by day what I will do.
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    I had no free will in choosing to be born or in the manner of my nurturing when I was a small child. At a fairly early age, I became aware that it was possible to influence outcomes by the manner of one's actions, conduct and conversation. By choosing to be helpful, I was often rewarded in small ways for my assistance and so I sought choices because making good choices conferred an advantage.

    It is a sunny late afternoon here and after an arduous night at work, where many of my choices were determined by operational difficulties, I now choose to spend time with my horses and will use my free will to make it easier for them to select the right choice in response to my 'suggestions'.
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    Some people appeal to you sexually. Free will comes into play when you think about what happens next.

    But the 'choice' in gender preference is hardwired into me. I would be, and am, attracted to females, but I can't say that this is exercising free will. I just happen to be hetero. My decision to steal or not steal is very much a result of environmental/social conditioning, most of which comes to me by chance, pretty much. Again, these don't seem as optional as you suggest. I'm not speaking of moral choices, really. And I do agree conscious reasoning is a part of our decision-making, but how big a part seems in question, still. I still suspect many of our drives and behaviors are from random genetics and even more random environmental sources and behavioral imperatives, like procreating. I hope this makes sense; I don't aim to excuse behavior, particularly mine. But I'm thinking about a guy in Texas in about 1964, or so, who climbed a clock tower with a scoped rifle and started shooting people at random. Texas university campus, if I recall. He shot multiple victims before being killed by authorities. Just another psychopath, today, but rare for that time. In reading about that incident in the wake of that horrible act, it was revealed that the shooter had complained to others about bad headaches and told a few friends that he thought he had a brain tumor which was making him feel angry and murderous. His autopsy revealed a tumor in the part of his brain which involves aggressive behavior.
    Now, maybe this is a bad example, because the guy WAS medically sick. But it started me thinking about why people do some of the things we do. I doubt the guy made what we would call choices. But, again, he was abnormal. So, I don't know if this offers any good insight to human behavior.
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    Quote Originally Posted by LuciDreaming View Post
    I think in this subject it helps to understand the brain and nervous system has two fundamental positions of unconscious action ie reflex reaction and conscious action. The reflex reaction can be physical as in the knee tendon jerk or abstract as in implicit associations (you can take tests yourself here - I have misogynistic reactions which is rather annoying....). But really free will as such can only be associated with conscious thought ie your initial physiological or mental reaction is not free will but conscious thought can overcome it and that can be constituted as free will.
    As in Adeladys exampe - you cant help who you feel attracted on a chemical basis but you do have control over what you do about it.

    See here for a comprehensive discussion on the Libet experiments taking an sceptical view of free will. And here for a view of how the Libet experiments may have been misinterpreted. And then make your own mind up........
    Yes, I agree conscious thought can overcome psych/mental reaction and even innate/ instinctual drives like hunger or sex, but learning HOW to do this requires some exposure to ethical/moral teachings, which, as I've stated, come to our experiences willy-nilly. Where is FREE WILL at work, here ? Not sure what is meant by misogynistic reactions. Are these related to some of my posts ? Or are you speaking solely about your own experiences with men in general ?
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    Quote Originally Posted by looshooz View Post
    Free will does exist, but is limited.
    What could be more chaotic than an entity with free will? However chaotic it may seem certain patterns arise in daily routines and there is a boundary, a limit to what is physically possible. A person could not physically become another person, or another element like gold. Because of a person’s inherited genes given an eternity of lifetimes to due over they may never become a doctor, or scientist. If there are boundaries set forth in one of the most chaotic entities in the universe “Humans” then there should be boundaries in all things. This makes a starting point from nothing (zero) not very likely.
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    Quote Originally Posted by umbradiago View Post
    Not sure what is meant by misogynistic reactions. Are these related to some of my posts ? Or are you speaking solely about your own experiences with men in general ?
    Neither - you will need to have a look at the links I embedded.

    I was trying to explain abstract reflex reactions in thinking. The brain learns by making associations and the more often those associations are repeated the stronger and faster they get - for example when you learn to drive, the whole of the brain is involved including the prefrontal cortex and thats what makes people crash gears and stall and generally be uncoordinated. But as you practice the original 'whole brain' connections are whittled down to specific connections that dont involve the prefrontal cortex and they become stronger and faster resulting in a reflex reaction that does not require conscious thought. (All you have to do to test this is get in your car and think about how to drive and you will bunny-hop down the road like you have never driven before).

    The same applies to abstract learning - the more you are exposed to something the more it becomes a reflex reaction. I grew up in the 'women are useless' era of the 60's and 70's and constantly exposed to all the things women can't/shouldn't do. Those tests in the first link expose these underlying reactions by testing how quickly the brain connects one concept to another by using good words and bad words. When I am exposed to images of women my brain makes quicker connections to the bad words than it does to the good words showing my initial reflex reactions are misogynistic which I then have to overcome with conscious thought.

    In fact its quite a good example of free will/no free will in that I spent most of my 20's/30's actively avoiding women dentists/hairdressers/doctors/mechanics and bosses because I felt men were better at those things. I thought it was my own choice to feel that way but in reality it was my particular social conditioning that had made those 'instincts' a reflex reaction. The free will I have is in rejecting my initial thoughts of 'women are rubbish'. I would urge you to take some of the tests they can be an eye-opener.

    There are some social psychologists who state that free will comes only in choosing which narrative we take up and adhere to from the social world - so free will comes down to rejection or acceptance of an already existing idea.
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    Ah, thanks for that additional information. I did click on those links but didn't take the tests. I 'm sorry for personalizing your statements; I'm aware that I come across to some as a misogynist, but I'm really not one. I was way ahead of the curve about women's abilities and their rights. My mother was an incredibly accomplished woman in an era which
    didn't much care about women's untapped potential or about women's rights. My romantic past was littered with broken relationships but not because I thought too little of women; mostly the other way around and that makes me a bit cynical about, not women, per se, but romance in general. I have met many psychologically damaged women and they seem to have gotten that way via their prior experience with men. Some of them seemed to expect to occasionally be thrown down a flight of stairs or beaten. I never have and could not do such things. I swear, this is clearly what some expected and seemed to even desire, as a sign of my "love". Made me very skittish about relationships. Several complained I was not possessive enough. I never wanted to "possess" any women, nor be possessed. That is not love, as far as I'm concerned. More like ownership, which turns me off.
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    First things first: What is free will? It depends entirely on your definition. Isn't there a difference between Will and Free Will?

    And to me, we labour only under the illusion of "free will".
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    Quote Originally Posted by umbradiago View Post
    Ah, thanks for that additional information. I did click on those links but didn't take the tests. I 'm sorry for personalizing your statements; I'm aware that I come across to some as a misogynist, but I'm really not one. I was way ahead of the curve about women's abilities and their rights. My mother was an incredibly accomplished woman in an era which
    didn't much care about women's untapped potential or about women's rights. My romantic past was littered with broken relationships but not because I thought too little of women; mostly the other way around and that makes me a bit cynical about, not women, per se, but romance in general. I have met many psychologically damaged women and they seem to have gotten that way via their prior experience with men. Some of them seemed to expect to occasionally be thrown down a flight of stairs or beaten. I never have and could not do such things. I swear, this is clearly what some expected and seemed to even desire, as a sign of my "love". Made me very skittish about relationships. Several complained I was not possessive enough. I never wanted to "possess" any women, nor be possessed. That is not love, as far as I'm concerned. More like ownership, which turns me off.
    I haven't noticed any misogyny from you - so no worries there.

    People only know what they experience and then they think its normal sadly.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Is it your brain making those decisions based on its memories, emotions, perceptions of internal and external senses, and ability to figure stuff out and respond (or not)? Than of course it's freewill, because there is nothing else.
    Well then we have no free will, our choices are based on our past experiences and we stick to it.OnTopic: the only freewill we have is when we resist our desires, like to eat a cake or not to.By eating it you give it to them, but resisting them will give you freewill.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Painter View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Is it your brain making those decisions based on its memories, emotions, perceptions of internal and external senses, and ability to figure stuff out and respond (or not)? Than of course it's freewill, because there is nothing else.
    Well then we have no free will, our choices are based on our past experiences and we stick to it.OnTopic: the only freewill we have is when we resist our desires, like to eat a cake or not to.By eating it you give it to them, but resisting them will give you freewill.
    Unless your desire to resist is based on something you learned as part of your past experiences, which is always the case, no?
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

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    My standard answer to this question is to say, I feel compelled to say free will is real.
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    Quote Originally Posted by KALSTER View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Painter View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Is it your brain making those decisions based on its memories, emotions, perceptions of internal and external senses, and ability to figure stuff out and respond (or not)? Than of course it's freewill, because there is nothing else.
    Well then we have no free will, our choices are based on our past experiences and we stick to it.OnTopic: the only freewill we have is when we resist our desires, like to eat a cake or not to.By eating it you give it to them, but resisting them will give you freewill.
    Unless your desire to resist is based on something you learned as part of your past experiences, which is always the case, no?
    so

    that begs the question if it is real or we just imagine it all O.o
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    Stars and galaxies formed absent a "will". How'd they do that ?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Is it your brain making those decisions based on its memories, emotions, perceptions of internal and external senses, and ability to figure stuff out and respond (or not)? Than of course it's freewill, because there is nothing else.
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    Quote Originally Posted by umbradiago View Post
    Stars and galaxies formed absent a "will". How'd they do that ?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Is it your brain making those decisions based on its memories, emotions, perceptions of internal and external senses, and ability to figure stuff out and respond (or not)? Than of course it's freewill, because there is nothing else.
    Not sure what your point is. They form based on physicals laws. Our brains also makes decisions also based on physical laws.

    You'll note most of the posters between my original comment and this one parse out those decisions made in our conscious, a parts of our brain's processing, as free will (see Luci's excellent post); Western courts would agree with him and also add a criteria about level of freedom based on something extremely compelling--the person who robs a convenience store because their kids was held a gun point in the get-away vehicle would probably not be considered to have free will. The legal definitions are practical and reasonable. They are also completely consistent with definitions of "freewill" that are entirely deterministic based on physical laws--in other words given the exact same conditions, the brain considers and acts the same every time.
    Last edited by Lynx_Fox; March 27th, 2014 at 04:07 PM.
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    But it seems our brains, thus our 'consciousness' is formed by natural, physical laws, as well. Our "Will" is formed by genetics+personal experience+(hopefully) our ability to apply Reason, which all seem to have origins in selection by Nature. Well, not personal experience but the use of reason is vital to comprehending an experience, isn't it ? This may not be a 'glass is half-full or half-empty' matter, or perspective-related. Control of action may seem quite obvious to us, and I admit, does. But can we control what thoughts enter our minds ? When we 'try' not-thinking of something, (pink elephants is the popular model) we find this near-to-impossible ? Why this seems so lies near the heart of the Free Will question.
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by umbradiago View Post
    Stars and galaxies formed absent a "will". How'd they do that ?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Is it your brain making those decisions based on its memories, emotions, perceptions of internal and external senses, and ability to figure stuff out and respond (or not)? Than of course it's freewill, because there is nothing else.
    Not sure what your point is. They form based on physicals laws. Our brains also makes decisions also based on physical laws.

    You'll not more of the poster between my original comment and this one parse out those decisions made in our conscious, a parts of our brain's processing, as free will (see Luci's excellent post); Western courts would agree with him and also add a criteria about level of freedom based on something extremely compelling--the person who robs a convenience store because their kids was held a gun point in the get-away vehicle would probably not be considered to have free will. The legal definitions are practical and reasonable. They are also completely consistent with definitions of "freewill" that are entirely deterministic based on physical laws--in other words given the exact same conditions, the brain considers and acts the same every time.
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    I think the answer to free will should not be made on individuals but on the collective human race over its existence. In this case I believe we are driven by instinct not free will. We are trapped in a cycle of our human nature. To go against it would be free will. Politics, ethics go round in loops. Ideologies come and go but human nature always remains the same. We are trapped by what we are. Will has nothing to do with it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by umbradiago View Post
    First, it seems as though we do have free will. Until we begin to wonder how this manifests itself. I can chose to do this, or say that, but is that exercising free will or not ?
    Do we make dinner because we know the time for dinner is near, or is it hunger ? (definitely not a 'choice').
    Do we procreate to replenish the species, or because we like to have sex ? You tell me.
    Do we have children because they're so cute (and costly) ? Or because we want to leave some lasting form of ourselves to posterity ? Is a desperate "stab" at immortality ?
    Do we practice faith for much the same reason ?
    Did I write this on purpose ? I think so. But what is that purpose and why do I feel compelled to ask it ?
    Do I wish I had some answers as well as questions ? Probably
    ~ Firstly what is 'free will' ~ Free = at no cost.. But any choice involves cost, be it consequence or action. , but if free is a determination of cost then yes it can be free as a choice is made.. freely. Unencumbered.
    ~ I interpret will as want. With this in mind I can look at your points and; .. Time for dinner? Yes that is free will at work. You can just not have a meal. You are free to make that decision. Do you have the will to do it. I think I do. Dependent on how hungry I get may determine a change of values and another free choice will enter the mind, whats for tea ?
    ~ I have free will as a interdependent person of my own set of values.
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    We make dozens of choices every day and because we are free to choose between the options at least much of the time, we consider that we have 'free will' because we do have that opportunity of choice.
    Not choosing is also a choice and demonstrates our will yet if we only elect to exercise the option of not eating, not drinking, not sleeping etc. we shall eventually be in a condition where others intervene or we cease to exist. When others intervene, we do not have free will. If we cease to exist, we are free from making choices.

    We do not seem to have an option regarding making decisions as options present, so by default, free will is a concept that we cling to in order to make the whole process of existence somewhat more meaning full and palatable, in my opinion.
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    Whenever the topic of free will comes up, my first question is "free from what?" Do you really want to be free from millions of years of finely honed evolution, years of valuable personal learning and experience, the wisdom of family, culture and civilization? Do you truly wish to approach each challenge or task as if it were the first encounter, unswayed by instinct, biological need, extensive training, or past experience?
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    Totally depends on your definition. I say yes, because of how I define free will, but if you mean some magical ability for the human mind to break causality be sheer force of will than no.
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    I didn't want to post this.
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    Haha. Oopsies, I read the title of this thread as "Free Willy..."
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    “No one has free will until they are an adult, and by then the choices that were made for them, have already set them on a course that gives limited freedom in the choices to be made.”
    ― J.D. Stroube, Caged in Darkness


    “We gallop through our lives like circus performers balancing on two speeding side-by-side horses--one foot is on the horse called "fate," the other on the horse called "free will." And the question you have to ask every day is--which horse is which? Which horse do I need to stop worrying about because it's not under my control, and which do I need to steer with concentrated effort?”
    ― Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love



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    I've always seen the concept of Free Will as environmentally and socially limited, the choices one makes tend to be regarded as a practice of free will, but the choices are being already determined by the circumstances and knowledge of each individual. People hate that concept because it lacks spontaneous decision making, it's highly limiting and it goes against most people concept of "freedom"(whatever that means). You're limited both in your ability to choice as well as what you choose between.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CDdude55 View Post
    I've always seen the concept of Free Will as environmentally and socially limited, the choices one makes tend to be regarded as a practice of free will, but the choices are being already determined by the circumstances and knowledge of each individual. People hate that concept because it lacks spontaneous decision making, it's highly limiting and it goes against most people concept of "freedom"(whatever that means). You're limited both in your ability to choice as well as what you choose between.
    Precisely.

    Every other living being and creature is also out there, exercising what options may be available unto it, and the outcome of the cascade of all of these expressions of 'free will' act as parameters upon our own 'free will'.

    Sometimes you really do not have any other choice, if you wish to survive to choose another day.
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    Choice only exists when we choose other than what we already want. A giant amount of what we do, we make no choice about it what so ever. We want to do it so unconsciously we do. No choice necessary!
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    Doesent matter what you believe if the universe is truly deterministic in nature.
    A lie is a lie even if everyone believes it. The truth is the truth even if nobody believes it. - David Stevens
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raziell View Post
    Doesent matter what you believe if the universe is truly deterministic in nature.
    Scientifically, it may not be, though.
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    Our free will is very limited.

    We are heavily influenced by culture, friends and family, public propaganda which essentially is passive suggestion, then there's the active suggestion.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FnT2FcuZaYI
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ah5lBPr_iAY
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mnBY0FCqJU0

    Already in ..uhmm think it was in 1934 +/- that most goverments around Euromen understood that people could be heavily manipulated, but if they didn't get suggested they could make up their own will in limited amounts.

    Some are hysterically easy to suggest, but others can totally resist suggestion.
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    Free will is usually pitted against determinism. But if there is no determinism and randomness is the rule, then where do we get the control to exercise free will?
    There are no paradoxes in relativity, just people's misunderstandings of it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by KJW View Post
    Free will is usually pitted against determinism. But if there is no determinism and randomness is the rule, then where do we get the control to exercise free will?
    Maybe some choises of free will are inconsequencial towards determinism.
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    free will is an illusion.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantum immortal View Post
    free will is an illusion.
    I just love it when someone makes unequivocal unsupported claims.
    They're so convincing...
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    i usually find philosophy discussions kind of pointless nitpicking. That's the main reason i didn’t and will not bother much with it.
    Conscience is also an illusion.

    I think its reasonable to assume that the brain is a deterministic machine.
    The brain is a machine, i mean it 100%.
    A neural net, is a machine that is capable of performing automated machine learning from examples.
    Do i have to explain why an animal, needs a device like that?
    And that's it. The brain is just a machine. Humans are just biological robots made by natural selection.
    The human brain has 100 billion neurones and 1 quadrillion synapses. Try to see the mechanocal nature of the brain with these numbers. Also, the brain is US, so trying to understand the brain is a bit circular, since we need a smarter brain to understand the human brain .

    If we tried to make a smart enough robot. We would end up in practice, recreating the same "errors" in the way it see's it self.
    In practice that is hard to do. So in practice, we'll need to wait 100-200 years until the brain is sufficiently mapped for a scientific proof of what i'm saying. And this is why questions like these are in the philosophy forum.

    From a psychological point of view. I would say, that an animal, need to be convinced it can make decisions that can change it's fate. And also want things that help it reproduce.
    There is no peculiar reason to want anything. There is no reason why a been would want to be free, protect it self and reproduce. Its hard to imagine an animal evolving naturally that way however. Strictly speaking there is no evil or good, it's only stuff that help us reproduce or not.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantum immortal View Post
    i usually find philosophy discussions kind of pointless nitpicking. That's the main reason i didn’t and will not bother much with it.
    And yet you bothered to jump in.

    Conscience is also an illusion.
    Oh look, another unsupported claim.

    I think its reasonable to assume that the brain is a deterministic machine.
    Oh right.
    It's "reasonable".
    That's your argument...

    If we tried to make a smart enough robot. We would end up in practice, recreating the same "errors" in the way it see's it self.
    And I presume your "support" for this claim is that "you think it's reasonable"?

    In practice that is hard to do. So in practice, we'll need to wait 100-200 years until the brain is sufficiently mapped for a scientific proof of what i'm saying.
    Oh no!
    Another irrefutable argument.
    You think science will prove you right in a century or so.
    I'm convinced.

    There is no reason why a been would want to be free, protect it self and reproduce.
    Er, right...

    Its hard to imagine an animal evolving naturally that way however.
    Whut?

    Strictly speaking there is no evil or good, it's only stuff that help us reproduce or not.
    Of course!
    Because our ONLY concern is reproduction, right?
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    Why you are aggressive like that?
    I don't see any of your counter arguments.

    My initial premise is determinism. I don't think you need more then determinism to fully explain the observations.
    For a fuller scientific proof, you have no other choice then to wait .... a few centuries.....
    That's not my fault...

    There is evidence, that suggest that something more then determinism going on?

    Natural selection only cares about reproduction.
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    ~ Stated clearly as a question, because my answer has no more value than yours...
    'Do you agree that this question of free will, choice, to determine a course.. is yours ?'
    I detect a clear path of thought ( mine ) That as I have no religious view, I have free will.
    To make choices.. Some for my good and some not so...
    That I mentioned religious doctrine was it's self a choice because I have detected a view of the religious that a 'God' has made all the choices for you. Part of some sort of 'grand plan'... and as a advocate of the scientific view. I find such thinking as daft... unsupported rubbish. If you have the will and the ability you can argue..or not. My personal view is that I must make those decisions that effect my life.. I do not pass the buck or blame others.. My free will is mine.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantum immortal View Post
    Why you are aggressive like that?
    Why do you post nothing more than unsupported claims?
    Why do think "I think it's reasonable" as some sort of argument?
    Why do you assume aggression?

    I don't see any of your counter arguments.
    That's because you haven't made any points worth a "counter argument".
    The only "counter argument" to "Well that's what I think" is "Well I don't agree".

    My initial premise is determinism. I don't think you need more then determinism to fully explain the observations.
    In other words your argument is... an argument that hasn't been show to be true.

    For a fuller scientific proof, you have no other choice then to wait .... a few centuries.....
    And your other argument is the unsupported supposition that - some time in the future - you'll be proven correct.
    I counter that with the argument that the arrival of Giant Space Elves in 3015 (late September probably) will overturn everything we found out in the prior centuries.

    There is evidence, that suggest that something more then determinism going on?
    The point is: what evidence we have is conclusive in neither direction.

    Natural selection only cares about reproduction.
    Which has nothing to do with the fact that humans live with other humans and are required to conform to certain behaviours.
    I.e. "good" and "evil" are societal constructs and rely on many things other than reproduction pressures.
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    little hairy troll

    ultimately, everything is for reproduction.
    Our ability to have a culture is natural selection's doing.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantum immortal View Post
    ultimately, everything is for reproduction.
    Which doesn't alter the fact that, as I stated, "good" and "evil" are societal constructs and rely on many things other than reproduction pressures.
    Society is not solely or even entirely built around reproduction.

    Our ability to have a culture is natural selection's doing.
    So what?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Quantum immortal View Post
    ultimately, everything is for reproduction.
    Which doesn't alter the fact that, as I stated, "good" and "evil" are societal constructs and rely on many things other than reproduction pressures.
    Society is not solely or even entirely built around reproduction.
    Not directly. But ultimately everything does.

    What other things?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    And your other argument is the unsupported supposition that - some time in the future - you'll be proven correct.
    I counter that with the argument that the arrival of Giant Space Elves in 3015 (late September probably) will overturn everything we found out in the prior centuries.
    Sorry Dywyddyr, but this is patently absurd.

    First contact with space elves is going to occur sometime around the fifteenth millennia, and I wouldn't call them giants. 2-3 feet taller than the average human, tops. And they prefer Eldar, elves is an offensive term. (Say what you will, gents, at least I provided a source.)
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    Quote Originally Posted by SowZ37 View Post
    First contact with space elves is going to occur sometime around the fifteenth millennia,
    Bah!
    GW... I remember the 1st edition (and wrote a letter to Rick Priestly - which got a reply).
    Then they sucked all the fun out of it for the sake of profit and more profit,

    nd I wouldn't call them giants. 2-3 feet taller than the average human, tops.
    Compared to "modern day elves" 2-3 feet taller than a human IS giant.

    And they prefer Eldar, elves is an offensive term
    According to Tolkien Eldar is nothing more than Elf-talk for "Elven or Elvish".
    (Just one more example GW not having any ideas of their own - they'll happily rip off other people's ideas and then sue anyone who tries to use something written in their publications. Did you see the fuss over GW claiming they'd copyrighted the term "space marine"?)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by SowZ37 View Post
    First contact with space elves is going to occur sometime around the fifteenth millennia,
    Bah!
    GW... I remember the 1st edition (and wrote a letter to Rick Priestly - which got a reply).
    Then they sucked all the fun out of it for the sake of profit and more profit,

    nd I wouldn't call them giants. 2-3 feet taller than the average human, tops.
    Compared to "modern day elves" 2-3 feet taller than a human IS giant.

    And they prefer Eldar, elves is an offensive term
    According to Tolkien Eldar is nothing more than Elf-talk for "Elven or Elvish".
    (Just one more example GW not having any ideas of their own - they'll happily rip off other people's ideas and then sue anyone who tries to use something written in their publications. Did you see the fuss over GW claiming they'd copyrighted the term "space marine"?)
    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 



    I didn't actually know all that. I mean, I knew GW could be derivative, but not those details. Interesting.
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    Quote Originally Posted by SowZ37 View Post
    I didn't actually know all that. I mean, I knew GW could be derivative, but not those details. Interesting.
    Oh, there's a long list (among the general gaming community) of GW rip-offs.
    There's more details of the space marine thing here. (But just Google "space marine court case").
    Essentially GW claimed that ANYONE using the term "space marine" automatically meant their version (ignoring the long history of the term) and should either pay royalties or stop using it.
    It started - and turned into a big thing - when they convinced Amazon to withdraw from sale a kids' SF book called "Spots the Space Marine" by an independent (i.e. not very rich and not well-connected) author.
    From what I remember the case took a fair while, and included VAST amounts of evidence - including previous artwork of "space armour" an dthe like and it ended well.
    GW was also informed that much of their work was derivative (well duh! like that wasn't known to anyone except for locked-in GW fans i.e. those who only read GW-based science fiction and ignore the classic stuff: Heinlein, Clarke, Moorcock etc) and was also NOT copyright protected.

    Which is why I and my fellow gaming colleagues usually take a little visit to the GW trade stands when we go to games shows and take the piss out of them.

    ETA: Oh, and don't forget the "shady" business tactics, nor the rabid exclusivity.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by SowZ37 View Post
    I didn't actually know all that. I mean, I knew GW could be derivative, but not those details. Interesting.
    Oh, there's a long list (among the general gaming community) of GW rip-offs.
    There's more details of the space marine thing here. (But just Google "space marine court case").
    Essentially GW claimed that ANYONE using the term "space marine" automatically meant their version (ignoring the long history of the term) and should either pay royalties or stop using it.
    It started - and turned into a big thing - when they convinced Amazon to withdraw from sale a kids' SF book called "Spots the Space Marine" by an independent (i.e. not very rich and not well-connected) author.
    From what I remember the case took a fair while, and included VAST amounts of evidence - including previous artwork of "space armour" an dthe like and it ended well.
    GW was also informed that much of their work was derivative (well duh! like that wasn't known to anyone except for locked-in GW fans i.e. those who only read GW-based science fiction and ignore the classic stuff: Heinlein, Clarke, Moorcock etc) and was also NOT copyright protected.

    Which is why I and my fellow gaming colleagues usually take a little visit to the GW trade stands when we go to games shows and take the piss out of them.

    ETA: Oh, and don't forget the "shady" business tactics, nor the rabid exclusivity.
    Interesting. My biggest deal with GW, (which I don't think is a huge ethical violation by them but I still find it annoying,) is that to play Warhammer at local tournaments I must purchase their figurines. But I can purchase figurines of the exact same scale of the same or higher quality for half the price from other sources. This quandary is a little different than, say, using official MtG cards, since a wargame is generally seen as primarily a rules set as opposed to collectibles. Not to mention to play MtG without the official cards requires proxies, (which are confusing and hurt playability some,) or to perform actual illegal counter-fit. Whereas playing Warhammer Fantasy with Reaper minis doesn't hurt playability at all, as long as you find similar enough figurines. And you still need to purchase two books to play the game, so GW makes money either way. But I've never met a Warhmamer player who wouldn't play a casual game with someone using non-official minis. I understand why GW does this and don't accuse them of actual wrong-doing here. But it keeps me from playing, at least, and I respect companies with an open attitude towards their IPs a great deal more than companies with a closed attitude.
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    Quote Originally Posted by SowZ37 View Post
    companies with a closed attitude.
    I read (in Dragon magazine back when it was still a TSR publication) of one young kid ejected from a game at a Con when they saw one of his figures (which his dad had just bought him) wasn't one made by GW.
    I used to know (I moved town since) another young kid who was thrown out of one of GW's Saturday Games Days (the local shop used to have Saturdays as "come and play" in an attempt to get people to buy more stuff) because his figures weren't painted in GW paints. Someone asked what colour he'd used to get a certain effect, and as soon as he declared that he'd used non-GW (it was Humbrol I think) paint they told him he could no longer participate in the game and was asked to leave the shop.

    By all means encourage players to buy proprietary stuff, suggest it as much as possible. But what they did there is neither good business nor a good attitude. And doesn't do the overall hobby much good.
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    They kicked him out for buying non brand paint? That's like, Scrooge McDuck level absurd greed. Say what you will about WoTC, but they don't penalize people for using off brand card sleeves. Are there any non-profit unofficial Warhammer tournaments where people can use whatever miniatures and paints they like? I'm sure GW would love to sue such an organization, but they couldn't if no money was being passed around.
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    Quote Originally Posted by SowZ37 View Post
    Are there any non-profit unofficial Warhammer tournaments where people can use whatever miniatures and paints they like?
    Not sure about "tournaments" but my local club has a Games Day this coming Saturday with a number of other clubs coming from various town for games.

    I'm sure GW would love to sue such an organization
    I'd like to see them try!

    I'm not sure where you are but here in the UK there's a big initiative for a national "organisation" of gaming clubs. But, on investigation we found that the upside is cheap insurance for figure collections/ armies and stuff like CRB registration.
    The downside is that you have to conform to their rules as to what games you can play and how you play them: and it's largely financed and pushed by GW.
    In other words an attempt to regulate the entire hobby.
    They ALREADY have a "GW Approved" thing going - that specifies precisely that any games you play (unless it's a "friendly" between members of the same club) MUST use the official rules with no modifications and official figures.
    We get new kids joining our club who seem to have been brought up thinking this the way ALL wargames are played and are absolutely gobsmacked when someone says "If you don't have the official figure use whatever you like".
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by SowZ37 View Post
    Are there any non-profit unofficial Warhammer tournaments where people can use whatever miniatures and paints they like?
    Not sure about "tournaments" but my local club has a Games Day this coming Saturday with a number of other clubs coming from various town for games.

    I'm sure GW would love to sue such an organization
    I'd like to see them try!

    I'm not sure where you are but here in the UK there's a big initiative for a national "organisation" of gaming clubs. But, on investigation we found that the upside is cheap insurance for figure collections/ armies and stuff like CRB registration.
    The downside is that you have to conform to their rules as to what games you can play and how you play them: and it's largely financed and pushed by GW.
    In other words an attempt to regulate the entire hobby.
    They ALREADY have a "GW Approved" thing going - that specifies precisely that any games you play (unless it's a "friendly" between members of the same club) MUST use the official rules with no modifications and official figures.
    We get new kids joining our club who seem to have been brought up thinking this the way ALL wargames are played and are absolutely gobsmacked when someone says "If you don't have the official figure use whatever you like".
    I'm in Denver. There arWait, GW actually tries to keep you from playing friendly games with members of other chapters? Paizo doesn't try and keep you from doing non Pathfinder Society Pathfinder games with people from other chapters as long as they are off the books. I don't even think you have to use Paizo minis in official games, do you?

    Also, I'm in Denver. I do more Tabletop RPGs then wargame type stuff. Wargames are up my alley, but the price has always deterred me. Of course, you can spend just as much on D&D rulebooks if you are so inclined.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post

    Strictly speaking there is no evil or good, it's only stuff that help us reproduce or not.
    Of course!
    Because our ONLY concern is reproduction, right?

    Reproduction of what, though? Just our DNA? Certainly not just that. Humans pass on both memes and DNA to the next generation.

    Your brain is full of memes that found their way in from other brains, and now they seek to make copies of themselves so they can make their way into someone else's brain before you die. In a way they are quite a lot like parasites, although they are often beneficial to the host.

    But are "you" defined more by your memes, or more by your DNA?

    If we wish to discuss the trait of "free will", then we might want to start by trying to figure out what entity is supposed to be in possession of this trait. What part of "us" makes the decisions?
    Some clocks are only right twice a day, but they are still right when they are right.
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    our ability to have memes is it self genetic....
    memes is just a more flexible way for the animal to adapt in a changing environment....

    again, everything is mechanical and deterministic....
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantum immortal View Post
    our ability to have memes is it self genetic....
    memes is just a more flexible way for the animal to adapt in a changing environment....

    again, everything is mechanical and deterministic....
    Have you heard of the uncertainty principle?
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    quantum physics is probabilistic, yes
    can you call that deterministic? What you call that?
    but the brain follows those probabilistic rules
    the brain can't go beyond them.
    again no free will....
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantum immortal View Post
    quantum physics is probabilistic, yes
    can you call that deterministic? What you call that?
    but the brain follows those probabilistic rules
    the brain can't go beyond them.
    again no free will....
    Im not talking about free will. I'm saying the universe itself isn't deterministic. Not entirely. There's countless paths the universe could take, not just one. It isn't deterministic. If it was, and there was no uncertainty, the Big Bang, (if it even still happened,) probably would have spread all matter and energy uniformly.
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    i think this derails the tread a bit
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantum immortal View Post
    i think this derails the tread a bit
    How? You keep insisting the universe is deterministic. Showing that no, it isn't, is entirely relevant. Determinism implies there is only one potential, deterministic, future for the universe to take. This is not so.
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    i'm not denying the probabilistic nature of quantum physics.
    I was trying to argue about free will, not physics.

    call the universe what you want. The universe works with a set of rules.
    Our brain is constrained by these rules. So there is no free will.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantum immortal View Post
    i'm not denying the probabilistic nature of quantum physics.
    I was trying to argue about free will, not physics.
    Okay.

    call the universe what you want. The universe works with a set of rules.
    Excellent.
    Oh, wait. Aren't those rules that the universe works with called, er, what is it?.. oh yeah: physics.

    Our brain is constrained by these rules. So there is no free will.
    I understand.

    The universe runs on physics.
    We're constrained by physics.
    THEREFORE physics is nothing to do with how our minds work.
    Got it.

    So physics being probabilistic doesn't matter when talking about minds and stuff like that.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantum immortal View Post
    our ability to have memes is it self genetic....
    memes is just a more flexible way for the animal to adapt in a changing environment....

    again, everything is mechanical and deterministic....

    Yes. Our ability to carry memes is the result of having a brain that provides those memes with a good host. Much like our ability to be infected with certain diseases is the result of having a genetic makeup that serves as good food for those diseases.

    Or sometimes our bodies serve as a host for helpful parasites, like the bacteria in your intestines that help in getting all the water out of your food.

    Gut flora - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    But the question is: are the memes the real "you"? Or is your DNA the real "you"? Or is your brain structure the real "you"? What is the "you"? If we don't know that, then how can we determine whether it has free will?
    Some clocks are only right twice a day, but they are still right when they are right.
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  70. #69  
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    Quote Originally Posted by kojax View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Quantum immortal View Post
    our ability to have memes is it self genetic....
    memes is just a more flexible way for the animal to adapt in a changing environment....

    again, everything is mechanical and deterministic....

    Yes. Our ability to carry memes is the result of having a brain that provides those memes with a good host. Much like our ability to be infected with certain diseases is the result of having a genetic makeup that serves as good food for those diseases.

    Or sometimes our bodies serve as a host for helpful parasites, like the bacteria in your intestines that help in getting all the water out of your food.

    Gut flora - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    But the question is: are the memes the real "you"? Or is your DNA the real "you"? Or is your brain structure the real "you"? What is the "you"? If we don't know that, then how can we determine whether it has free will?
    There's also a case to be made that living and non-living particles is a distinction that is only meaningful in the context of arbitrary definitions, the universe makes no distinction, and the whole thing is unquantifiable and illusory. This further complicates the matter.
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    Yeah. That is a good point.

    How do we know that a rock doesn't have free will, or a photon? Photon behavior at the quantum level would tend to suggest they either behave randomly, or that they choose their own paths from those available.

    The mind of a photon would probably be much simpler than a human mind. Perhaps simple to a level that barely seems to use any thought at all. However, I'm not aware that high intelligence or high complexity is necessarily a requirement for free will.

    Why couldn't a very simple object also have free will?
    Some clocks are only right twice a day, but they are still right when they are right.
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    that's overcomplicating things....
    just call a spade a spade
    B[
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quantum immortal View Post
    that's overcomplicating things....
    just call a spade a spade
    B[
    And let's just call a non-deterministic universe a non-deterministic universe.
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    With a realization that a free will has a implication of thought processes and that in animate objects such as a rock may not have proven as yet to be able to draw a conclusion of thought.. But yet I know of people who do not think..
    To determine a process of free will does not exist and is not fore filled is a thoughtless assumption and unfounded by facts shown.
    You get what you get because you make choices.. You might want to blame others and including God for your own form of stupid..
    I can argue free will and can demand you also exhilarate the same.. You are free to argue,.. That's you..
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    The only people who have free will are those who believe they have free will.
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    Quote Originally Posted by A_Seagull View Post
    The only people who have free will are those who believe they have free will.
    Even if they have been forced to believe it?
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    Certainly! And that is why we have to force (though I think 'encourage' is a better word) people to believe it. It liberates their soul!
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  78. #77  
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    Quote Originally Posted by A_Seagull View Post
    The only people who have free will are those who believe they have free will.
    Unsupported supposition.

    Quote Originally Posted by A_Seagull View Post
    Certainly! And that is why we have to force (though I think 'encourage' is a better word) people to believe it. It liberates their soul!
    Right.
    The way to get people to have free will (or at least do so if your unsupported claim is correct) is to remove (or negate) their choices by forcing them to subscribe to your belief.

    PS, what's a "soul"?
    "[Dywyddyr] makes a grumpy bastard like me seem like a happy go lucky scamp" - PhDemon
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    A soul is that which is liberated upon the assimilation of the realisation that one has free-will.
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  80. #79  
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    Quote Originally Posted by A_Seagull View Post
    A soul is that which is liberated upon the assimilation of the realisation that one has free-will.
    Ah right.
    Liberated from what?
    Could you point out how you distinguish a "confined soul" from a liberated one?
    Other than a circular argument which runs along the lines "he thinks he's got free will, so his soul is liberated, she thinks she doesn't have free will, so hers isn't".
    And when you say "realisation that one has free will" don't you actually mean "comes to believe that one has free will"?
    "[Dywyddyr] makes a grumpy bastard like me seem like a happy go lucky scamp" - PhDemon
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  81. #80  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by A_Seagull View Post
    A soul is that which is liberated upon the assimilation of the realisation that one has free-will.
    Ah right.
    Liberated from what?
    Could you point out how you distinguish a "confined soul" from a liberated one?
    Other than a circular argument which runs along the lines "he thinks he's got free will, so his soul is liberated, she thinks she doesn't have free will, so hers isn't".
    And when you say "realisation that one has free will" don't you actually mean "comes to believe that one has free will"?
    If Ecktart Tolle is correct, there is essential one soul like entity of sorts...consciousness. If we are all different expressions of this one same unknown source, it could suggest the only true freedom is acceptance of it and going with the flow as it were. The universe is then a paradox, one that freewill and determinism MUST be odds with in order for this unique thing we call existence to be possible. Without this contradiction, in a sense, we wouldn't exist.
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    Exkhart Tolle, yes thanks for reminding me that the real road to riches is a career in hucksterism.
    Eckhart Tolle is like a stale and rewarmed serving of Tony Robbins
    Tony Robbins - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Last edited by dan hunter; September 17th, 2014 at 09:28 AM.
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    To me the "question" of free will results in a pretty simple analysis. There are two possibilities:

    1) Free will is an illusion. Our destiny is predetermined and there is nothing we ca do to change it. If this is true, asking the question of whether free will exists is essentially meaningless, because no possible action can be taken to use the information.

    2) Free will is real. If this is true, then it is very much to your benefit to use your ability to exercise your will by making decisions that will improve your life.

    So, to me, the only sensible course is to assume free will is real and act on that basis.
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    Quote Originally Posted by danhanegan View Post
    So, to me, the only sensible course is to assume free will is real and act on that basis.
    I have always felt compelled to act on that basis.
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  85. #84  
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by danhanegan View Post
    So, to me, the only sensible course is to assume free will is real and act on that basis.
    I have always felt compelled to act on that basis.
    LOL! but it took two readings before I was forced into laughing at it.
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    Women are the embodiment of 'free will'.

    We are known for changing our minds and thereby also changing outcomes.

    The only fly in the ointment comes from other people also assuming that they have the right to exercise this option.

    Every person exercising 'free will' simultaneously is going to result in gridlock in some locations.
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    Quote Originally Posted by scheherazade View Post
    Every person exercising 'free will' simultaneously is going to result in gridlock in some locations.
    Yes, even if there are traffic lights and cops at the intersections.

    So where are people on the idea of limited free will, ie you get to choose and decide but those decisions are restricted by the conditions you are subject to?
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    Quote Originally Posted by umbradiago View Post
    First, it seems as though we do have free will. Until we begin to wonder how this manifests itself. I can chose to do this, or say that, but is that exercising free will or not ?
    Do we make dinner because we know the time for dinner is near, or is it hunger ? (definitely not a 'choice').
    Do we procreate to replenish the species, or because we like to have sex ? You tell me.
    Do we have children because they're so cute (and costly) ? Or because we want to leave some lasting form of ourselves to posterity ? Is a desperate "stab" at immortality ?
    Do we practice faith for much the same reason ?
    Did I write this on purpose ? I think so. But what is that purpose and why do I feel compelled to ask it ?
    Do I wish I had some answers as well as questions ? Probably
    I thank what ever Gods there MAY BE for allowing my soul to be free.
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    Quote Originally Posted by dan hunter View Post
    Exkhart Tolle, yes thanks for reminding me that the real road to riches is a career in hucksterism.
    Eckhart Tolle is like a stale and rewarmed serving of Tony Robbins
    Tony Robbins - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    proof? that's a pretty serious allegation. your reductive thinking aside (Tony robbins? really now??) I couldn't find any evidence that Tolle is a con-artist.

    your post, however, is plenty of proof of your immaturity.
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    Quote Originally Posted by dan hunter View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by scheherazade View Post
    Every person exercising 'free will' simultaneously is going to result in gridlock in some locations.
    Yes, even if there are traffic lights and cops at the intersections.

    So where are people on the idea of limited free will, ie you get to choose and decide but those decisions are restricted by the conditions you are subject to?
    This is my personal interpretation of 'free will'. We all have options available to us, but the number of options and outcomes is affected by so many other variables that in many cases, it would seem that we really have no choice in matters. As children, most decisions in our life are made by others. As adults, many decisions are determined by governments and regulating bodies, so the extent of our 'autonomy' is ever within parameters not of our own making.

    The very fact that we were born was not of our free will and the autonomous functions that enable homeostasis are also beyond our control although we are capable of influencing, to some degree, our breathing and heart rates with practice.
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    @ post #88

    Tolle delivers what he delivers, rehashed new-age platitudes.
    He would have been preaching at revival meetings or conducting seances if he was living in the 1930s.

    Sorry if you are offended, but I am a rather jaded old man when it comes to new age spiritual gurus.
    During my lifetime I have seen lots of them appear, do their act, and then disappear.

    If you are shocked at the comparison of Tolle to Robbins then read their bios and compare them. Maybe have a friend present them to you with identifying traces removed so you can do a blind taste testing.
    I could have compared him to a host of similiar deepity talking Babas, maybe even to Meher Baba.

    Oh, just so you understand what deepity means.
    http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2013/may/25/change-your-life-life-deepities-oliver-burkeman
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    'Deepity'...my new word of the day, lol.

    The definition had me nearly in hysterics. Words are great fun simply because they require other words to define them, to give them context.

    Not unlike 'free will'.
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  93. #92  
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    Quote Originally Posted by whypie View Post
    I thank what ever Gods there MAY BE for allowing my soul to be free.
    You shouldn't try to pass off stuff you write as your own. If you don't give the source for things you post then it borders on plagiarism, admittedly a common practice on the internet.

    "I thank whatever gods may be for my unconquerable soul." is from the poem Invictus by William Ernest Henley.


    .
    Last edited by Chucknorium; September 18th, 2014 at 10:58 AM. Reason: Corrected
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    Quote Originally Posted by dan hunter View Post
    @ post #88

    Tolle delivers what he delivers, rehashed new-age platitudes.
    He would have been preaching at revival meetings or conducting seances if he was living in the 1930s.

    Sorry if you are offended, but I am a rather jaded old man when it comes to new age spiritual gurus.
    During my lifetime I have seen lots of them appear, do their act, and then disappear.

    If you are shocked at the comparison of Tolle to Robbins then read their bios and compare them. Maybe have a friend present them to you with identifying traces removed so you can do a blind taste testing.
    I could have compared him to a host of similiar deepity talking Babas, maybe even to Meher Baba.

    Oh, just so you understand what deepity means.
    http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2013/may/25/change-your-life-life-deepities-oliver-burkeman
    Having read both, and hated Robbins (other than his cameo in "Shallow Hal"), I can say with conviction they are nothing alike. Your sweeping generalization is the same kind of cynical anti-intellectualism I would expect from Donald Trump defending the birther movement. I never pretended to praise Tolle. I was using him as a point of reference no different than someone might use a philosopher or another thinker to better make my point.

    For now on: use milk on your cheerios, not whiskey.
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    Giggle, giggle, snort, snuffle, giggle...

    Surely some of the exchanges on this thread stand as evidence for free will?

    Or perhaps there is another (scientific) reason that explains why tongues wag in such unceremonious fashion?

    I mean really...

    Who would dream of wasting a good single malt whiskey on a processed grain product?

    It's best reserved for pouring over haggis.

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    Quote Originally Posted by scheherazade View Post
    Giggle, giggle, snort, snuffle, giggle...

    Surely some of the exchanges on this thread stand as evidence for free will?

    Or perhaps there is another (scientific) reason that explains why tongues wag in such unceremonious fashion?

    I mean really...

    Who would dream of wasting a good single malt whiskey on a processed grain product?

    It's best reserved for pouring over haggis.

    It is much better poured straight over tongue instead.
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    Actually, I have heard the argument made for pouring 'the cheap stuff' on the haggis, for to make the wee haggis more palatable and to keep the single malt for enjoying after the repast, pure and unadulterated.
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    Quote Originally Posted by scienceofdesign View Post
    I can say with conviction they are nothing alike. Your sweeping generalization is the same kind of cynical anti-intellectualism I would expect from Donald Trump defending the birther movement..
    Moderator Comment: "Your sweeping generalization" is an acceptable criticism of an observation. Your characterisation of the writer - "cynical anti-intellectualism" - is not. Please refrain from that in future.

    Please note that if other members prompted that reaction through earlier comments attacking the person and not the idea, that is also unacceptable.
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    This maybe getting off the track but people on a train travelling from London to Glasgow are combining destiny and free will.
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    Quote Originally Posted by whypie View Post
    This maybe getting off the track but people on a train travelling from London to Glasgow are combining destiny and free will.
    Would that not be 'destination' and free will?

    I think your spell check 'jumped the track'. (traveling)
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    "Traveling" with one L is American spelling and "travelling" with two L's is the British way.
    In most of Canada you can find both spellings.
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