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Do non-human animals have free will?
Posted: 02 November 2012 12:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 31 ]
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GdB - 02 November 2012 11:10 AM
TimB - 01 November 2012 01:56 PM

Don’t count out the 2 envelopes problem, as a thread that may never end.

Hey, I am just waiting till kkwan gives up his resistance!

I don’t expect to live to see the end of this 100 years war.

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As a fabrication of our own consciousness, our assignations of meaning are no less “real”, but since humans and the fabrications of our consciousness are routinely fraught with error, it makes sense, to me, to, sometimes, question such fabrications.

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Posted: 02 November 2012 01:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 32 ]
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StephenLawrence - 02 November 2012 12:10 AM
TromboneAndrew - 01 November 2012 02:18 PM

Now, how in the world does some determining factor force someone to act against their will when they actually do do what they want? hmmm

The will is forced upon them.

Stephen

No, that doesn’t work. If a factor forces a direction in someone’s will, then this someone will still want to act in accordance with their will, not against it. Where the will came from doesn’t matter. Will it ever be possible for a conversation about free will to make sense? Is there a William on this board? Will William please will us some goodwill?

Sorry. William willed that I will to write that swill. It wasn’t actually my will at all - oh wait, yes it was.

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Posted: 02 November 2012 01:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 33 ]
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TromboneAndrew - 02 November 2012 01:06 PM

Where the will came from doesn’t matter.

It matters a great deal as far as blame, guilt, praise, shame, responsibility, punishment and so on are concerned.

The point is where the will came from is out of our control and so we are merely lucky or unlucky to have the will we have.

People imagine that what happens to us as a result of our chosen actions is fair in a way it just can’t be if we are merely lucky or unlucky to get the will we get.

It’s like imagining that someone can deserve to win or lose the lottery.

Agreed the only version of free will that makes sense is compatible with the will we get being the luck of the draw, but it matters because that isn’t the version that is predominantly believed in.

Stephen

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Posted: 02 November 2012 02:37 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 34 ]
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StephenLawrence - 02 November 2012 01:36 PM
TromboneAndrew - 02 November 2012 01:06 PM

Where the will came from doesn’t matter.

It matters a great deal as far as blame, guilt, praise, shame, responsibility, punishment and so on are concerned.

The point is where the will came from is out of our control and so we are merely lucky or unlucky to have the will we have.

People imagine that what happens to us as a result of our chosen actions is fair in a way it just can’t be if we are merely lucky or unlucky to get the will we get.

It’s like imagining that someone can deserve to win or lose the lottery.

Agreed the only version of free will that makes sense is compatible with the will we get being the luck of the draw, but it matters because that isn’t the version that is predominantly believed in.

Stephen

And we’re back to the social definition of free will, not a metaphysical. Blame and responsibility are social constructs.

But also consider that there is a familiar ‘great hole of logic’ problem here: if William (to use my above inane example) wills me to will something, who or what wills William? There is an infinite-regression problem in that definition of free will.

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Posted: 02 November 2012 03:29 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 35 ]
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TromboneAndrew - 02 November 2012 02:37 PM

And we’re back to the social definition of free will, not a metaphysical. Blame and responsibility are social constructs.

Yep. But, TromboneAndrew, according to many people here only what is physical really exists…

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Posted: 03 November 2012 12:04 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 36 ]
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TromboneAndrew - 02 November 2012 02:37 PM
StephenLawrence - 02 November 2012 01:36 PM
TromboneAndrew - 02 November 2012 01:06 PM

Where the will came from doesn’t matter.

It matters a great deal as far as blame, guilt, praise, shame, responsibility, punishment and so on are concerned.

The point is where the will came from is out of our control and so we are merely lucky or unlucky to have the will we have.

People imagine that what happens to us as a result of our chosen actions is fair in a way it just can’t be if we are merely lucky or unlucky to get the will we get.

It’s like imagining that someone can deserve to win or lose the lottery.

Agreed the only version of free will that makes sense is compatible with the will we get being the luck of the draw, but it matters because that isn’t the version that is predominantly believed in.

Stephen

And we’re back to the social definition of free will, not a metaphysical. Blame and responsibility are social constructs.

Perhaps but this misses the point. People believe that it isn’t luck who gets the bad stuff and who gets the good stuff. They believe we have the power to overcome the luck.

The “social construct” is, at the moment, based on this “mean social myth”. People who draw the short straw really don’t need the extra burden of they deserve it and it really doesn’t help for the lucky ones to think they do either.

And that is why it does matter a great deal that we are merely fortunate or unfortunate to get the will we do, the belief we have libertarian free will has tremendous influence.

But also consider that there is a familiar ‘great hole of logic’ problem here: if William (to use my above inane example) wills me to will something, who or what wills William? There is an infinite-regression problem in that definition of free will.

Of course I agree, but this is of no consequence because 1) People predominately believe in it regardless. 2) It doesn’t stop the myth influencing people.

Belief in ultimate responsibility is a curse.

Stephen

[ Edited: 03 November 2012 12:06 AM by StephenLawrence ]
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Posted: 03 November 2012 12:41 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 37 ]
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Stephen,
Belief in ultimate responsibility is a curse.

vampire  A burden perhaps, but a curse?.. snake    WHHHOOOoooooo!

OT, yes, I believe that non-human animals can have and do use free will in he same context that humans exercise free will.

[ Edited: 03 November 2012 12:51 AM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 03 November 2012 08:44 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 38 ]
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. . . Aaaaaaaand, we’re all in complete agreement. It’s beautiful when arguments come together!

tongue laugh

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Posted: 03 November 2012 08:46 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 39 ]
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Write4U - 03 November 2012 12:41 AM

Stephen,
Belief in ultimate responsibility is a curse.

vampire  A burden perhaps, but a curse?.. snake    WHHHOOOoooooo!

OT, yes, I believe that non-human animals can have and do use free will in he same context that humans exercise free will.

Hi Writer4U,

I’m gonna wrap this up here because I have nothing new to add, of course.

But the point is it is a curse, we aren’t ultimately responsible and it matters.

You need to realise what compatibilist free will is compatible with. The person who get’s the blame could have selected another option but not without the entire causal chain stretching back to the big bang also being different. They were merely unlucky that it wasn’t.

This is a far cry from the free will that people’s thoughts and feelings about this are based upon in which the agent is totally and alone at being at fault.

Stephen

[ Edited: 03 November 2012 10:45 AM by StephenLawrence ]
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Posted: 03 November 2012 11:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 40 ]
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StephenLawrence - 03 November 2012 08:46 AM
Write4U - 03 November 2012 12:41 AM

Stephen,
Belief in ultimate responsibility is a curse.

vampire  A burden perhaps, but a curse?.. snake    WHHHOOOoooooo!

OT, yes, I believe that non-human animals can have and do use free will in he same context that humans exercise free will.

Hi Writer4U,

I’m gonna wrap this up here because I have nothing new to add, of course.

But the point is it is a curse, we aren’t ultimately responsible and it matters.

You need to realise what compatibilist free will is compatible with. The person who get’s the blame could have selected another option but not without the entire causal chain stretching back to the big bang also being different. They were merely unlucky that it wasn’t.

This is a far cry from the free will that people’s thoughts and feelings about this are based upon in which the agent is totally and alone at being at fault.

Stephen

I feel your pain.

(By which I mean that we should get the word out that libertarian free will does not exist, but that the effort to do so may be futile.)

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As a fabrication of our own consciousness, our assignations of meaning are no less “real”, but since humans and the fabrications of our consciousness are routinely fraught with error, it makes sense, to me, to, sometimes, question such fabrications.

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Posted: 03 November 2012 11:44 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 41 ]
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TimB - 03 November 2012 11:34 AM

I feel your pain.

(By which I mean that we should get the word out that libertarian free will does not exist, but that the effort to do so may be futile.)

smile

Well, sounds like you’ve got why it matters and there are a growing number of people.

But you’re right mostly it’s futile, most don’t get it and worse many get fatalistic instead of seeing the positives.

Oh Well.

Here’s a recent piece from Sam Harris’ blog http://www.samharris.org/blog/item/life-without-free-will

Stephen

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Posted: 04 November 2012 01:20 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 42 ]
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Vyazma,

If you still can read German, try this article:

Gibt es einen freien Willen?

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Posted: 04 November 2012 01:13 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 43 ]
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StephenLawrence - 03 November 2012 11:44 AM
TimB - 03 November 2012 11:34 AM

I feel your pain.

(By which I mean that we should get the word out that libertarian free will does not exist, but that the effort to do so may be futile.)

smile

Well, sounds like you’ve got why it matters and there are a growing number of people.

But you’re right mostly it’s futile, most don’t get it and worse many get fatalistic instead of seeing the positives.

Oh Well.

Here’s a recent piece from Sam Harris’ blog http://www.samharris.org/blog/item/life-without-free-will

Stephen

Thanks Stephen, for the link. Excellent presentation.

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Posted: 04 November 2012 03:23 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 44 ]
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Write4U - 04 November 2012 01:13 AM

Thanks Stephen, for the link. Excellent presentation.

You’re welcome, glad you liked it.

Stephen

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Posted: 07 November 2012 09:43 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 45 ]
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GdB - 04 November 2012 01:20 AM

Vyazma,

If you still can read German, try this article:

Gibt es einen freien Willen?

I’ kann nicht mehr gut lesen. Ich hab zu viel schon vergessen.
Plus, I never had a good enough command of German to read complex reading such as philosophy or car repair manuals etc.
Mein Deutsch is nuer gut fuer einfach diskutierren.
Aber vielen dank, u. ich wuensch dir alles.  Obama ist immer noch unsere President hier!
Wir sehen uns spaeter alter. Firtig…

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