Combining Free Will and Determinism.

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NicoL
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Combining Free Will and Determinism.

Post by NicoL » September 14th, 2018, 11:49 am

"Causal determinism is, roughly speaking, the idea that every event is necessitated by antecedent events and conditions together with the laws of nature".Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

Fair enough, but why are we reluctant to consider the following?

Guided determinism: the idea that every event is necessitated by antecedent events and conditions together with the laws of nature, or caused by an agent's act of free will.

Is it because it sounds a lot like a cop-out? Is it because of ontological parsimony considerations? Is it because it entails a contradiction? Is it because an explanation of the emergence of free will would not be a causal explanation? Is it because we cannot objectively observer the mental aspects of persons, including will?

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Hereandnow
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Re: Combining Free Will and Determinism.

Post by Hereandnow » September 14th, 2018, 8:42 pm

It is because causality seems pat. But it seems that way because there is a simple model of causality that is allowed to serve as applicable to all cases, neglecting, a) that when we say an effect must have a cause we are really just throwing interpretation at a thing that is utterly alien, and b) that when you put 100 billion neurons together, the "effect" should not be held to an account based on a such a simple pool ball model.

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Re: Combining Free Will and Determinism.

Post by Burning ghost » September 15th, 2018, 12:52 am

There is Compatibilism.
AKA badgerjelly

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LuckyR
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Re: Combining Free Will and Determinism.

Post by LuckyR » September 15th, 2018, 1:48 am

Hereandnow wrote:
September 14th, 2018, 8:42 pm
It is because causality seems pat. But it seems that way because there is a simple model of causality that is allowed to serve as applicable to all cases, neglecting, a) that when we say an effect must have a cause we are really just throwing interpretation at a thing that is utterly alien, and b) that when you put 100 billion neurons together, the "effect" should not be held to an account based on a such a simple pool ball model.
So are you supposing that the complexity of the 100 billion neurons makes "causality" impossible or impractical.
"As usual... it depends."

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Hereandnow
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Re: Combining Free Will and Determinism.

Post by Hereandnow » September 15th, 2018, 10:10 am

LuckyR
So are you supposing that the complexity of the 100 billion neurons makes "causality" impossible or impractical.
Here is a different take: Watch a pool ball collide with another and you have a model of causality. Witness also that it is not like gravity, say. Gravity could fail before your eyes and it would be surprising, but not like causality. this is a firm intuitive principle that for every effect there must be a cause, that cannot be undone. It's like math in this and it is odd as can be. Anyway, the pool balls are acknowledged in what they do BY you, the observer, a 100 billion neuron system with capacities for relational possibilities that are beyond measure. These are, and this is the tricky part, held to the principle of causality just as the pool balls are; but then you have one system of causality making a statement about causality! Can this possibly hold "knowledge" of causaility? Only answer: You, the observer, "make" the principle of causality, and this is so with all knowledge.

A mirror making a reflection of another mirror can present no more than the mirror being mirrored.

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ThomasHobbes
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Re: Combining Free Will and Determinism.

Post by ThomasHobbes » September 15th, 2018, 12:11 pm

NicoL wrote:
September 14th, 2018, 11:49 am
"Causal determinism is, roughly speaking, the idea that every event is necessitated by antecedent events and conditions together with the laws of nature".Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

Fair enough, but why are we reluctant to consider the following?

Guided determinism: the idea that every event is necessitated by antecedent events and conditions together with the laws of nature, or caused by an agent's act of free will.
Because the last phrase adds nothing to the axiom, since all acts of will are also events which are necessitated by antecedent events, and conditions - specifically life experience, learning, capabilities, mood, and motivation.

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LuckyR
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Re: Combining Free Will and Determinism.

Post by LuckyR » September 16th, 2018, 1:45 am

Hereandnow wrote:
September 15th, 2018, 10:10 am
LuckyR
So are you supposing that the complexity of the 100 billion neurons makes "causality" impossible or impractical.
Here is a different take: Watch a pool ball collide with another and you have a model of causality. Witness also that it is not like gravity, say. Gravity could fail before your eyes and it would be surprising, but not like causality. this is a firm intuitive principle that for every effect there must be a cause, that cannot be undone. It's like math in this and it is odd as can be. Anyway, the pool balls are acknowledged in what they do BY you, the observer, a 100 billion neuron system with capacities for relational possibilities that are beyond measure. These are, and this is the tricky part, held to the principle of causality just as the pool balls are; but then you have one system of causality making a statement about causality! Can this possibly hold "knowledge" of causaility? Only answer: You, the observer, "make" the principle of causality, and this is so with all knowledge.

A mirror making a reflection of another mirror can present no more than the mirror being mirrored.
Agreed, but "all knowledge" includes pool balls and most accept the causality in that model.
"As usual... it depends."

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Hereandnow
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Re: Combining Free Will and Determinism.

Post by Hereandnow » September 16th, 2018, 8:44 am

But it does, LuckR, reduce all that we are to a causal priniciple, and if we are not willing to say that there must be more than simple causality (free will being some non reducible acausal reality) to explain the breadth and depth of being human, then we must rather say, and this is where I find agreement, that causality is not at all what it seems: it IS more, not that it must yield to something else but that our observations of such events see much less than there is. Same with ethics as it is not that the world is a-ethical and we are just some jot of anomolous stuff, but ethics IS the world, only we don't have full disclosure as to its nature.

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Thinking critical
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Re: Combining Free Will and Determinism.

Post by Thinking critical » September 17th, 2018, 6:35 am

The attempt of using the principles of causality to describe freewill runs into axiomatic problems, the two frameworks are fundamentally different from each other and therefore require different language to describe them.
At a macro level it is useful to say that humans display something like freewill because they are agents which make conscious choices. At a deeper level, neurology can describe a deeper understanding of how the mind functions and processes the data which determines each individual choice. Just as the description of macroscopic behaviour and quantum behaviour aren't mutually compatible neither is conscious behaviour and the neuro processing, as they each describe different levels of reality.
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Hereandnow
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Re: Combining Free Will and Determinism.

Post by Hereandnow » September 17th, 2018, 9:23 am

Thinking critical:
The attempt of using the principles of causality to describe freewill runs into axiomatic problems
One thing to consider is that causality is unique among "observed" phenomena in that is grounded in necessity. It is intuitively impossible for an effect to be without a cause. this is not like other empirical principles, like gravity. On the other hand, gravity is by being a principle at all derived from logic, albeit inductive logic, and since logic in both is not something independent of our contribution to the perception of something but is rather exactly what we contribute, principles of physics are expressions of human logic. The differences we acknowldge certainly are bona fide, but since they are by nature understood through logic then a look at the logical differences would be needed. Inductive logic is far different from the "irreducible" intuition of causality, the former being the drawing from particulars to establish generalities, the latter being spontaneous and beyond refutation (imagine a causeless effect: can't be done).
Since they are understood entirely differently, there should be a discussion of these differences figured in to a conception of what they are. If causality is apodictic, and the rules of behavior for all things are bound to causality, the behavior must be apodictically construed. Their must be, that is, in our actions an element of necessity, and when I decide, judge or do or say anything, the analysis of the notion of choice involved must yield to this.
Now the trouble with all of this is that causality says nothing whatever as to the qualitative conditions that apply, and by qualitative conditions I mean reality: causality may apodictic, but how is this apodicticity to be understood in the matrix of cerebral events? That they must be somehow apoditic is undeniable, but since observations about causal apodictivity are confined to models that are observable and relatively simple, it is in human choice that we must observe what apodictivity is IN this mileau, for it is not that of the pool table or in predicting the trajectory of a rocket. One must observe the choice phenomenon to understand apodictivity in human "freedom".

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