Free will

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Thinking critical
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Re: Free will

Post by Thinking critical » July 10th, 2018, 6:39 am

chewybrian wrote:
July 9th, 2018, 10:13 am

The last bit would fit with my choice 1) and not your choice 2). Under your choice, there would be a cause for everything, and it would only appear to us, due to limited knowledge, that there may have been no cause. Yet, somewhere, unknown to us, there would have been causes and effects with every movement of every electron or beam of light and idea in your head since the big bang. If we were omniscient, then we would know how it all would shake out (I don't know about you, but I'd be out at the race track, but I digress).
In a purely physical Universe free of conscious living agents then yes, this would be true.
A super quantum omniscient computer could in theory predict the course of the Universe from start to finish.
However in a Universe such as ours where conscious agents do exist, we need to consider the effects of the physical non physical relationship between matter and conscious agents. With this being said the same super quantum omniscient computer could still make accurate predictions, but there would now exist a finite amount of potential possible futures.
So the future would not be set in stone until the moment one of the multiple alternative possibilities had come to be.
Conscious agents are subject to a variety of influences which inanimate objects are immune to, such as emotions, reasoning, cognitive errors (unintentional acts) and the ability to intentionally interact and alter natural states.
The future would be set in stone, only we just wouldn't be able to predict it with certainty due to limited knowledge, not because it was uncertain. If there were real uncertainty (not simply perceived), then there would be someone re-charting the course of events at various points, like you or I exerting our will.
It is the action, regardless of intention (wilful action) that determines the future and alters outcomes. Sleeping in one morning racing to work, running a stop sign and hitting the pedestrian who wasn't looking cause he was on his phone texting his wife about his lunch he left at home drastically changes the course of the futures of multiple people, the chain of events which follow have a ripple effect which then flows on changing trillions of other potential futures, and so forth and so forth.
With this said, if we could some how rewind the clock the series of events would not change as each moment is contingent on the prior, X will always cause Y.....the inescapable consequence of reality.
I do understand the strength of the argument. Do you not have the experience of being in control of your actions, though? And does this experience not put the burden of proof on the other side? If this one thing does not match the rest of our experience, then perhaps it is, as it appears to be, different from everything else. But, if the proof has not yet been made, then why do you want to be on the side that denies your experience, and worse, your ability to control your own destiny in the slightest way?
I do experience the sensation of being in control of actions and thoughts, however on the same token I am also aware of the conscious narrative in my head which pleads with reason and emotion, argues with itself (myself) as to "should I, shouldn't I"? ""What should I say next"? "Why did I do that"?
There is always a reason, there is always purpose, my thoughts and actions don't just spontaneously appear and occur at random. They are normally emotional reactions or responses drawn from previous experiences.

I don't believe the absence of free will removes the ability to control our own destiny, as I have said the future cannot be set in stone because the future does not yet exist.
I can influence certain aspects of my life to navigate towards the future I want for myself, however things change that are beyond my control which may enevidabley cause my future to be what ever it may be.
This cocky little cognitive contortionist will straighten you right out

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Re: Free will

Post by chewybrian » July 10th, 2018, 8:16 am

Thinking critical wrote:
July 10th, 2018, 6:39 am
I don't believe the absence of free will removes the ability to control our own destiny, as I have said the future cannot be set in stone because the future does not yet exist.
I can influence certain aspects of my life to navigate towards the future I want for myself, however things change that are beyond my control which may enevidabley cause my future to be what ever it may be.
It seems we both see the world the same way, but differ dramatically in our interpretation of the meaning of what we see happening.

Your denial of free will can not coexist with the rest of what you say in that quote. Free will and control of destiny are the same thing. If I have no free will, then the future must be set in stone by the chain of causes and effects, in which I would only be a passive link. The totality of all past events would leave me only one course of action in the present, meaning only one possible future.

If I can "influence certain aspects of my life to navigate toward the future I want for myself..." (however much hindered I might be in my effort by outside events or other free wills), then I am free! Your second sentence is simply a definition of free will (unless you are God). You seem to both admit and deny free will at the same time.

Of course you don't control the universe, but you have near total control of your attitude and interpretation of events, and therefore your own happiness, no matter what happens outside your own mind. That is where you can exert your will freely and have the greatest impact, so that is where much of your efforts should be focused.

If you can spare 5 minutes, jump to 25:10 in this video for an excellent explanation of how much freedom you have and how important it is to becoming what you wish to be.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3biqEzI_Gns
"You are capable of self-determination. And, that's what makes the whole stoic philosophy itself have any point whatsoever. If you...had no real capacity for choice and for self-determination, there wouldn't be any point whatsoever in stoic philosophy, or really any moral philosophy."
I would take it further and question the whole point of living if you have no ability to determine any outcomes. I've said this before, but nobody wants to watch Evel Knievel ride a roller coaster.

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Re: Free will

Post by LuckyR » July 11th, 2018, 2:34 pm

ThomasHobbes wrote:
July 8th, 2018, 4:59 pm
LuckyR wrote:
July 8th, 2018, 2:02 am


Well, yes and no. If by predetermined you mean that someone "knows" ahead of time what is going to happen before it does, then you are right, only an omniscient being (god?), can routinely know that. OTOH, if everything that happens (including human behavior/choices) is ultimately caused by and through the actions of subatomic particles bouncing against and interacting with one another, then perhaps no one will "know" what all the outcomes will be, but they are predetermined by the original Big Bang that set those particles on their respective paths.
If the future remains unknown, then the prefix "pre-" does no work grammatically, and determinism does it all.

Fatalism is one step further. This means that the future is 'written', but even with free will, no matter what you choose **** happens in spite of it. That was Allah gets to have his way AND give you free will too. Having the cake and eating it.
I disagree. If all future events are to flow as a consequence of the actions of subatomic particles (and are thus determined), the fact that no human "knows" ahead of time what is going to happen does not counter the fact that there is no way to deviate from the "pre"-determined future.

As far as the term fatalism, that is a psychological response to a particular theory of how things work, not proof (or disproof) of how they work.
"As usual... it depends."

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Thinking critical
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Re: Free will

Post by Thinking critical » July 12th, 2018, 8:59 am

chewybrian wrote:
July 10th, 2018, 8:16 am

Your denial of free will can not coexist with the rest of what you say in that quote. Free will and control of destiny are the same thing. If I have no free will, then the future must be set in stone by the chain of causes and effects, in which I would only be a passive link. The totality of all past events would leave me only one course of action in the present, meaning only one possible future.
I disagree, free will and influencing our destiny are two different things. Our destiny is simply the destination we arrive at as a result of the path we have travelled. Yes, we may have choices and decisions which contribute towards the direction of the path, however this is not evidence that those choices are a not determined by underlying means.
If I can "influence certain aspects of my life to navigate toward the future I want for myself..." (however much hindered I might be in my effort by outside events or other free wills), then I am free! Your second sentence is simply a definition of free will (unless you are God). You seem to both admit and deny free will at the same time.
Free will is the ability to act at our own discretion without the constraints of necessity.
So let me ask you a question, do you have ability to simply stop believing you have free will?
Or is the belief of free will necessary based on what understand and how you understand it?
Do you have that choice?
Of course you don't control the universe, but you have near total control of your attitude and interpretation of events, and therefore your own happiness, no matter what happens outside your own mind.

But how much control do we actually have over our mind?
First let's look at the nature VS nurture aspect, the blue print of our brains are a result of a unique genetic code, information coordinates the cellular structure which eventually determines how our brain processes information. The brain is essentially the framework for the mind, the mind being the mechanism which deciphers information transcending into the experience. Information stimulates different areas of the brain causing chemical reactions (releasing hormones) which alters the mind state and influences behaviour.
So the unique design of each individual brain determines how the subject experiences reality, the experience is stored as information which influences how we may perceive future events. Information, knowledge and experience are all responsible for why we think how we think and do what we do, our personality traits reflect how we see the world and how we see the world is Influenced by the past.
Every aspect of the conscious experience is contingent on prior causes, from the physical foundation of the brain to the conscious experiences which mould our minds to make us who we are.
We are only as free as out minds let us believe..........
This cocky little cognitive contortionist will straighten you right out

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Re: Free will

Post by Halc » July 12th, 2018, 9:53 am

chewybrian wrote:
July 9th, 2018, 10:13 am
If we were omniscient, then we would know how it all would shake out (I don't know about you, but I'd be out at the race track, but I digress).
Thinking critical wrote:
July 10th, 2018, 6:39 am
A super quantum omniscient computer could in theory predict the course of the Universe from start to finish.
Something omniscient would have direct knowledge of the facts of what is the future of some point similar to how I am omniscient about the future of Napoleon as it relates to me. Nothing in this universe could even in theory deduce this knowledge even from an unobtainable full description of state prior to the thing to be predicted. So the deducing thing would need to be outside the system, in which case the statement would be true only in probably one interpretation of QM (de Broglie-Bohm), which introduced probably the most additional complexity in effort to preserve this dying vision of counterfactually definite hard deterministic Newtonian-era physics. In all the other interpretations, no ultimate supernatural quantum device can even in principle compute which horse will win from even a full description of initial state. In some interpretations (the ones with unique history), perhaps a god 'just knows' due to omniscient magic, but not due to working out the physics.

[quote"Thinking critical" ]In a purely physical Universe free of conscious living agents then yes, this [future is set] would be true.[/quote]Why not just say "In a purely physical Universe this would be true"? Is it not true in a purely physical universe that has conscious living agents? I mean the physicalist stance is not a model of a universe without us in it.

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Re: Free will

Post by chewybrian » July 12th, 2018, 11:36 am

Thinking critical wrote:
July 12th, 2018, 8:59 am
Free will is the ability to act at our own discretion without the constraints of necessity.
You are, perhaps unintentionally, creating a straw man to argue against. What proponent of free will is saying that they are Zeus or Superman or Wonder Woman? I'm not even Aquaman! I'm just a guy who can decide to change the course of his life, and break bad habits and create new and better ones if I make the effort. We all have this super power.

The stoic mindset is difficult for people to get their head around if they have not both read and practiced stoic philosophy. Again I highly recommend you give this 5 minutes and jump in at about 25:10:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3biqEzI_Gns
Thinking critical wrote:
July 12th, 2018, 8:59 am
So let me ask you a question, do you have ability to simply stop believing you have free will?
Yes! Clearly, many of us here have decided that they don't have free will despite their own experience to the contrary. Presumably, there must have been a time in their predetermined lives that they foolishly believed that they could decide what they wanted at the ice cream truck. Then, they 'grew up' and gave up notions of Santa Claus and free choice between creamsicles and rocket pops. I have made the choice to keep believing that I have free will.

1-Watch that part of that video. He says what I am trying to say more effectively than I am saying it.

2-Think again about what free will really is. It is not the ability to control the outside world--AT ALL! It is the ability to make choices, to control your attitude, to interpret events as you wish (no matter what events may be), and to direct your desires and aversions. If you direct your efforts at the outside world, you may fail, or even create the opposite of the effect you intended. But, you have a great opportunity and a great chance of success if you act INTERNALLY. Change yourself and the way you interpret the world if you want to make progress. For (most) people, whose focus has always been on externals, these ideas may be difficult to accept.

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Re: Free will

Post by ThomasHobbes » July 13th, 2018, 2:52 am

LuckyR wrote:
July 11th, 2018, 2:34 pm
ThomasHobbes wrote:
July 8th, 2018, 4:59 pm


If the future remains unknown, then the prefix "pre-" does no work grammatically, and determinism does it all.

Fatalism is one step further. This means that the future is 'written', but even with free will, no matter what you choose **** happens in spite of it. That was Allah gets to have his way AND give you free will too. Having the cake and eating it.
I disagree. If all future events are to flow as a consequence of the actions of subatomic particles (and are thus determined), the fact that no human "knows" ahead of time what is going to happen does not counter the fact that there is no way to deviate from the "pre"-determined future.

As far as the term fatalism, that is a psychological response to a particular theory of how things work, not proof (or disproof) of how they work.
"pre-" is redundant.
I know you disagree, you said that already. "Pre-" is till redundant, as nothing is yet written.

We are writing the future as we go, and each new day is a novel response to a multiplicity of causality.
The future remains a series of blank pages, for most people. Why not get out of your rut, which you seem dedicated to stay in and try something new. Give up your job and gor for a very long walk!
We you to do that this post would be a contribution to the cause of you doing that, and the rest would be determined by your circumstances, and your personality.

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Re: Free will

Post by Dachshund » July 13th, 2018, 3:54 am

chewybrian wrote:
July 12th, 2018, 11:36 am
-Think again about what free will really is. It is not the ability to control the outside world--AT ALL! It is the ability to make choices, to control your attitude, to interpret events as you wish (no matter what events may be), and to direct your desires and aversions. If you direct your efforts at the outside world, you may fail, or even create the opposite of the effect you intended. But, you have a great opportunity and a great chance of success if you act INTERNALLY. Change yourself and the way you interpret the world if you want to make progress. For (most) people, whose focus has always been on externals, these ideas may be difficult to accept.
At last, we finally see "eye to eye" on an issue, Chewybrian !

Yes, I agree. What you say above is exactly correct, and it is, moreover, the standard view held by mainstream experts in neuropsychology today; namely that: the exercise of what is typically called human "free will" entails a capacity for competent( rational), self-control/self-regulation of one's behaviour in the active pursuit of future goals ( desirable objectives in the temporal future).

The ability to competently ( i.e.rationally) self- control/ self-regulate one's behaviour in striving (acting) to achieve envisaged goals one has set for oneself ( which are situated in the temporal future) is mediated my a suite of high-level neurocognitive processes called Executive Functions which include: (1) Behavioural response inhibition,(2) Non-verbal Working Memory, (3) Reconstitution ( behavioural analysis and synthesis) and (4) the self-regulation of affect-motivation-arousal among others. These individual mental processes are mutually interdependent and their unified operation is referred as Executive Functioning in neuropsychology.

The individual Executive Functions are all anatomically localised in the prefrontal cortex of the human brain, for example, in such regions of the frontal lobe as the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (inhibition of behavioural impulsivity, emotional regulation, moral reasoning, etc.) and the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex ( non-verbal Working Memory, sustained attention).

So, in short, the ability that human beings have to "freely will" ( i.e. to effectively self- control and self- regulate) their own behaviours ( physical and mental) in ultimately acting as rational (reasonable) and responsible moral agents is biologically located in the prefrontal cortex of their brains. How much rational "free will" a person has is therefore dependent of how healthy, fully-matured, well-developed , disease/damage = free and efficient are the neural structures and neural functions of the brain tissue that exists in the "Executive" regions of their frontal lobe's prefronal cortex (PFC).

(Please note that in what I am saying above that I am not claiming to have any insight into the a solution for the hard problem of consciousness).



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Re: Free will

Post by Dachshund » July 13th, 2018, 7:36 am

Cheweybrian,

I forgot to mention that human beings, that is most ordinary, average, human beings typically use their capacity for free will towards the end of achieving future goals that they regard to be desirable in the sense that they are (morally) good goals, and obtaining them will enrich their lives in a positive way/s, for example by making their lives ( and the lives of their immediate dependents) happier and more satisfying/fulfilling more pleasant, comfortable, more vital and healthy more free of mental and physical pain and so on. To put it another way, generally speaking, the typical, "normal" person does not intentionally will and act towards the realisation of future goals/ life outcomes that are morally bad and will bring suffering to bear upon themselves and their family( and those others who will be negatively impacted in a more or less direct manner by their conduct), for instance the suffering of drug addiction, the destructive consequences violent criminality, the misery of incarceration in prison, infection with sexually transmitted diseases ( like HIV/AIDS, syphilis, hepatitis C) and the associated impairments in general health and well being that they create; long-term unemployment and the many ( material and psychological) privations of poverty or homelessness that can come as a result; the unhappy repercussions of domestic violence and child abuse and so on and so forth.

The problem is that the exercise of a rational free will in the process of acting towards the actualisation of morally good ends is dependent on possession of a capacity for competent "Executive Functioning" and this , in turn, necessitates that the possession of "competent" neural structuring and function within the ("Executive") prefrontal cortex of the human brain. To put it another way, how effectively and efficiently any given person's prefrontal cortex is able to function will depend upon how well- developed ( i.e. PROPERLY/CORRECTLY well- developed) the neural tissue ( grey matter and whit matter) happens to be in this anatomical region of their brain. Individuals who have, say, suffered a traumatic injury to their PFC (a head injury that has damaged the brain tissue of the PFC), or, who are afflicted with some kind of genetic neurodevelopmental disorder like autism or ADHD or an intellectual deficit disorder like Down's syndrome that generates material impairments ( i.e. deficits or deficiencies) in the functioning of the PFC, are very likely to have impaired "Executive Functioning"; that is a substantially diminished capacity for effective "Executive Functioning" relative to what is regarded normal. Also, even among the population of healthy, normal adults, those , that is, who do not have any traumatic injury to, or neurodevelopmental disorder that impairs the functioning of their PFC, there will doubtless be a continuous natural variation in the degree of structural and functional perfection that obtains in this region of the brain, and this will manifest itself in the fact some individuals have very efficient and sophisticated high order "Executive Functioning" capacities relative to others ( capacities which can, BTW, now be measured on standardised Executive Function behavioural rating scales). Therefore, if it is plausible ( and there is empirical scientific evidence extant to suggest that it is) to presume that human "Executive Functioning", can be conceptualised as a type of natural trait like IQ (i.e. "g-factor"/fluid intelligence), that is roughly normally distributed ( i.e. demonstrates a Gaussian -type statistical distribution), then the interesting upshot is that different individuals will naturally possess different "amounts" of rational "free will". On a hypothetical scale of 1 to 10 ,where 10 is the highest order of rational free will, most people will be observed to rate around 4-5-6. Those who rate particularly low on the scale ( say level 1 to 2) will be those who have a poor capacity/potential to freely (intentionally) will themselves towards desirable (i.e. morally good ) life outcomes, while those who rate high ( say 8-10) will typically be those who are "blessed" in having the best likelihood of living out a longest and happiest lives in virtue of their superior, naturally-endowed (or otherwise developed), ability to intentionally exercise a rational free will in the pursuit, and and ultimate securing of the best ( most desirable/morally good) life goals/objectives they have set for themselves in the temporal future.

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Re: Free will

Post by Thinking critical » July 13th, 2018, 8:47 am

Halc wrote:
July 12th, 2018, 9:53 am
Something omniscient would have direct knowledge of the facts of what is the future of some point similar to how I am omniscient about the future of Napoleon as it relates to me. Nothing in this universe could even in theory deduce this knowledge even from an unobtainable full description of state prior to the thing to be predicted. So the deducing thing would need to be outside the system, in which case the statement would be true only in probably one interpretation of QM (de Broglie-Bohm), which introduced probably the most additional complexity in effort to preserve this dying vision of counterfactually definite hard deterministic Newtonian-era physics.
Halc, I specifically described a computer in my example to remove any complications surrounding the use of word knowledge, obviously if someone knows everything the use of the word predict becomes redundant. The omnipotent quality of the computer represented the idea of an absolute understanding of the laws of physics so precise that it could calculate the position and size of every Galaxy, solar system and celestial body in the universe based on the size and mass of the Universe 10 to the hundredth of a second after its original state of existence. Just as we can retrace the steps back after a car crash to determine the speeds, positions and angles prior, we can also predict outcomes of accidents yet to occur using the same data. The arrow of time is not necessary in order to understand previous, present and future states, however it is necessary in order for them to exist.
In all the other interpretations, no ultimate supernatural quantum device can even in principle compute which horse will win from even a full description of initial state. In some interpretations (the ones with unique history), perhaps a god 'just knows' due to omniscient magic, but not due to working out the physics.
Which is why I stated that in a Universe with conscious agents (this includes horses) there exists multiple potential futures?
Why not just say "In a purely physical Universe this would be true"? Is it not true in a purely physical universe that has conscious living agents? I mean the physicalist stance is not a model of a universe without us in it.
Because the conscious experience is not solely contingent on matter, as I also said we have to consider the effects of emotions, reasoning and cognitive errors e.c.t.
This cocky little cognitive contortionist will straighten you right out

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Re: Free will

Post by ThomasHobbes » July 13th, 2018, 3:13 pm

Thinking critical wrote:
July 13th, 2018, 8:47 am
Halc wrote:
July 12th, 2018, 9:53 am
Something omniscient would have direct knowledge of the facts of what is the future of some point similar to how I am omniscient about the future of Napoleon as it relates to me. Nothing in this universe could even in theory deduce this knowledge even from an unobtainable full description of state prior to the thing to be predicted. So the deducing thing would need to be outside the system, in which case the statement would be true only in probably one interpretation of QM (de Broglie-Bohm), which introduced probably the most additional complexity in effort to preserve this dying vision of counterfactually definite hard deterministic Newtonian-era physics.
Halc, I specifically described a computer in my example to remove any complications surrounding the use of word knowledge, obviously if someone knows everything the use of the word predict becomes redundant. The omnipotent quality of the computer represented the idea of an absolute understanding of the laws of physics so precise that it could calculate the position and size of every Galaxy, solar system and celestial body in the universe based on the size and mass of the Universe 10 to the hundredth of a second after its original state of existence. Just as we can retrace the steps back after a car crash to determine the speeds, positions and angles prior, we can also predict outcomes of accidents yet to occur using the same data. The arrow of time is not necessary in order to understand previous, present and future states, however it is necessary in order for them to exist.
In all the other interpretations, no ultimate supernatural quantum device can even in principle compute which horse will win from even a full description of initial state. In some interpretations (the ones with unique history), perhaps a god 'just knows' due to omniscient magic, but not due to working out the physics.
Which is why I stated that in a Universe with conscious agents (this includes horses) there exists multiple potential futures?
Why not just say "In a purely physical Universe this would be true"? Is it not true in a purely physical universe that has conscious living agents? I mean the physicalist stance is not a model of a universe without us in it.
Because the conscious experience is not solely contingent on matter, as I also said we have to consider the effects of emotions, reasoning and cognitive errors e.c.t.
"... emotions, reasoning and cognitive errors e.c.t..."

These are all determined by physical states of cerebral matter, without exception.

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Re: Free will

Post by Halc » July 13th, 2018, 6:55 pm

Thinking critical wrote:
July 13th, 2018, 8:47 am
Halc, I specifically described a computer in my example to remove any complications surrounding the use of word knowledge.
I'm fine with that. I don't think life forms are any more significant than the different arrangement of matter that makes up computers, so I readily use words like 'know' with them. Sorry...
The omnipotent quality of the computer represented the idea of an absolute understanding of the laws of physics so precise that it could calculate the position and size of every Galaxy, solar system and celestial body in the universe based on the size and mass of the Universe 10 to the hundredth of a second after its original state of existence.
I think it would need more input than just the size and mass. Both values at that point are theoretically already not finite numbers. For simplicity, why don't we model a finite closed region, and just generalize up from there. That region (finite or not) can not contain a device that can make the calculation of which you speak. The device would need to be outside the region and use a different form of computing than what is physically possible. It wouldn't be physical, so this isn't a problem. That's what I was describing. Only the one QM interpretation that I know of allows this sort of prediction. Any other, and 'there will be Earth' would not follow from the initial state. A physical universe is not necessarily deterministic. It also does not have a 'current state' at a specific time (say .01 seconds old) under most of the major interpretations, and this initial state is required for our conceptual 'computation'.
Just as we can retrace the steps back after a car crash to determine the speeds, positions and angles prior, we can also predict outcomes of accidents yet to occur using the same data.
'We' cannot do this. Only from outside, and only if a certain kind of determinism is the case.
Which is why I stated that in a Universe with conscious agents (this includes horses) there exists multiple potential futures?
Your concept then. I don't find horses or humans to be anything more than just a different arrangement of fundamental particles. The arrival of horses on the scene didn't suddenly break the determinism if there ever was any. If horses constitute an external agent, then the universe is not deterministic. Even if horses are not, the universe is probably not deterministic.
Why not just say "In a purely physical Universe this would be true"? Is it not true in a purely physical universe that has conscious living agents? I mean the physicalist stance is not a model of a universe without us in it.
Because the conscious experience is not solely contingent on matter, as I also said we have to consider the effects of emotions, reasoning and cognitive errors e.c.t.
You are then not describing a purely physical universe. You tell me the rules then. I cannot quote science to say what can be done because this discards the assumptions upon which science is based.

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Re: Free will

Post by Dachshund » July 13th, 2018, 9:56 pm

I agree with Hobbes that the biological substrates of what we call "Freely (intentionally) willed" agency are anatomically located in the prefrontal cortex of the human brain's frontal lobe. The suite of rational neurocognitive/mental process known as the Executive Functions (e.g. non-verbal Working Memory and Behavioral inhibition) that work in unison to effect global "Executive Functioning" ( i.e. the overall process rational self regulation/self control of behaviour towards a desirable/morally good hypothesised future goal/s - i.e. the exercise of freely (intentionally) willed human agency - are all known for a scientific "fact-in-the-bag" to be located in different regions of the human PFC, such as: the dorsolateral PFC; the ventromedial PFC and the Anterior Cingulate Cortex, for example). In short, the capacity human beings have for effective, freely willed agency towards imagined ( morally good) goals/objectives located in the temporal future is contingent/(directly dependent) on how healthy ( how free of any kinds of deficts or deficiencies) is the structuring and functioning of the neural tissue that constitutes PFC. If an individual's PFC is damaged or its neural structures/ neural functioning are abnormally impaired ( defective or deficient or under-developed or abnormally developed) in any way, there will be a corresponding impairment in the capacity that person possesses for effective "freely willed" responsible moral agency . This has been demonstrated empirically by neuropsychologists investigating the behaviours (and life outcomes across all the major domains of human activity: social, educational, interpersonal, financial, occupational, etc) of subjects with lesions to the prefrontal cortex.

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Re: Free will

Post by Dachshund » July 13th, 2018, 10:25 pm

Halc wrote:
July 13th, 2018, 6:55 pm
Your concept then. I don't find horses or humans to be anything more than just a different arrangement of fundamental particles.
Halc, right now, as you ( a living human being) read this post you are not just an ensemble of physical particles, because you also possess consciousness. Right now you have a both a physical "flesh and blood" body PLUS a waking consciousness ( phenomenal/mental domain); and this waking consciousness does really /actually exist - no scientist denies this. In short, we know that there is such a thing as human diurnal consciousness, and we know that whatever is the essential "stuff" of which it is comprised, that "stuff" is certainly not physical matter of the kind that the "fundamental particles" (atoms, molecules, ions, etc.) you say that human beings ( like yourself at this moment) are exclusively comprised of. Right ?

Regards

Dachshund

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LuckyR
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Re: Free will

Post by LuckyR » July 14th, 2018, 4:41 am

ThomasHobbes wrote:
July 13th, 2018, 2:52 am
LuckyR wrote:
July 11th, 2018, 2:34 pm


I disagree. If all future events are to flow as a consequence of the actions of subatomic particles (and are thus determined), the fact that no human "knows" ahead of time what is going to happen does not counter the fact that there is no way to deviate from the "pre"-determined future.

As far as the term fatalism, that is a psychological response to a particular theory of how things work, not proof (or disproof) of how they work.
"pre-" is redundant.
I know you disagree, you said that already. "Pre-" is till redundant, as nothing is yet written.

We are writing the future as we go, and each new day is a novel response to a multiplicity of causality.
The future remains a series of blank pages, for most people. Why not get out of your rut, which you seem dedicated to stay in and try something new. Give up your job and gor for a very long walk!
We you to do that this post would be a contribution to the cause of you doing that, and the rest would be determined by your circumstances, and your personality.
Don't misunderstand me. I personally don't believe in Pre-determination, thus I do believe in Free Will. Therefore I agree with you that not only is the future not predictable due to a lack of knowledge about innumerable variables and a lack of computing power, it is truly not yet determined.

Of course most, if all physical situations are governed by causality and are determined. In my view behavior is a special case that is not solely determined by the paths of subatomic particles. Thus: Free Will.
"As usual... it depends."

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