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Do non-human animals have free will?
Posted: 18 January 2013 11:59 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 346 ]
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Hi Writer4U

Write4U - 17 January 2013 03:44 PM

My choice to use the word “travelled” was an act of free will.

Can you explain what makes that an act of free will? I will add I’m utterly skeptical, why not pick a really important life changing choice to examine?

Thanks for the link on slime molds.

Stephen

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Posted: 18 January 2013 12:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 347 ]
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can we be free of explanations, acts, additions, picks, choices     can one`s will be free of attractions of associative thinking   history helps   through the last 12,000 years   has religion and philosophy   changed to faith and reason   now changing to understanding one`s place in creation and nature   by searching for values of being alive

[ Edited: 18 January 2013 01:31 PM by arnoldg ]
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Posted: 19 January 2013 03:38 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 348 ]
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StephenLawrence - 18 January 2013 11:59 AM

Hi Writer4U

Write4U - 17 January 2013 03:44 PM

My choice to use the word “travelled” was an act of free will.

Can you explain what makes that an act of free will? I will add I’m utterly skeptical, why not pick a really important life changing choice to examine?

Thanks for the link on slime molds.

Stephen

I purposely picked a situation where it makes no difference how the word is spelled, either is acceptable. I looked up the correct spelling and “discovered” that either way is correct.  In previous conversations I have spelled the word both ways. 

But IMO, the greater the impact of choice has on me or my environment the more restricted my choices become. Does that place me in the “compatibilist” camp?

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W4U

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Posted: 19 January 2013 03:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 349 ]
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Do non-human animals have free will?

In an experiment with cuttlefish, it was clear that the cuttlefish learned from experience and “decided” on a course of action.

They showed a crab in a glass jar to the cuttlefish.  It attempted to capture the crab several times, but each time was repelled by the solid water (the glass). After three tries the cuttlefish decided it was no use, lost interest and actually gave up trying, even though he was just inches away from the crab and clearly within reach.

This was a considered act and I wonder if that may not be an example of free will decision making.

[ Edited: 19 January 2013 05:35 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 20 January 2013 11:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 350 ]
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Write4U - 19 January 2013 03:38 PM

But IMO, the greater the impact of choice has on me or my environment the more restricted my choices become. Does that place me in the “compatibilist” camp?

No.

Freedom doesn’t come from what you do making no difference so what the heck.

People freely choose to do the most incredibly important things with serious consequences if they freely choose at all.

It’s just a case of “back to the drawing board”.

Stephen

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Posted: 21 January 2013 08:51 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 351 ]
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Is freedom from function (practice) a movement towards free will?

[ Edited: 27 February 2013 01:29 PM by arnoldg ]
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Posted: 02 March 2013 07:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 352 ]
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Found this funny way of describing the free will problem in a Swiss Newspaper, in my translation:

A few decades ago the uncertainty principle of quantum physics was supposed to prove that free will exists, today brain activities would show that there can be no free will. Both supposed proofs lead to nothing else than metaphysical mumbo jumbo. This is not surprising, because the concept of “free will” does not describe any physical or neurological reality, but it is part of a way of life - in which no one gets the idea to return an ordered pizza Margherita with the argument that he is sorry, but he did not voluntary put the order, it was only his brain that was responsible for this unfortunate action, and in fact he would prefer a lasagna.

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Posted: 02 March 2013 08:24 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 353 ]
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It doesn’t describe any physical or neuorogical reality? I guess it’s like the question of God’s existence which desrbibes spiritual feeling and not physical reality, right?

Not funny at all, GdB.

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Posted: 02 March 2013 08:59 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 354 ]
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George - 02 March 2013 08:24 AM

It doesn’t describe any physical or neuorogical reality?

I do not get it. For you only physical or biological reality exists? E.g. the meaning of a word does not exist because ‘meaning’ is not something physical?

George - 02 March 2013 08:24 AM

I guess it’s like the question of God’s existence which desrbibes spiritual feeling and not physical reality, right?

No. There is an everyday context in which the distinction between coerced and free actions makes sense, and I am pretty sure you make this distinction too in your daily life. However, you dogmatically insist that we can only call some action a free action when it rises from a non-physical, non-caused homunculus.

In you example: you would deny the feelings of awe and wonder exist that some people call spiritual, because you insist on your dogma that spiritual means that there is a God.

I come back to atoms: at the same way you deny that free actions exist, I deny that natural selection exists, because there is no copying and selecting on physical level. Natural selection is a higher order phenomenon, and higher order phenomena do not exist. Seriously saying this would be just as plain stupid as your remarks.

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Posted: 02 March 2013 09:30 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 355 ]
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The problem here is that we do decide if we’ll have a pizza or lasagna on the neurological level. I still don’t find the arcticle funny. But to each his own, I guess.

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Posted: 02 March 2013 09:48 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 356 ]
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GdB - 02 March 2013 08:59 AM
George - 02 March 2013 08:24 AM

It doesn’t describe any physical or neuorogical reality?

I do not get it. For you only physical or biological reality exists? E.g. the meaning of a word does not exist because ‘meaning’ is not something physical?

I do think this is a straw man.

George’s problem with free will is what it means to him is this: We could do otherwise in the actual situation in a way that makes us ultimately responsible for our choices.

And he finds any attempts to define it differently don’t ring true (for want of a better way of putting it).

[ Edited: 02 March 2013 09:54 AM by StephenLawrence ]
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Posted: 02 March 2013 10:00 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 357 ]
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Does the possibility of free will change at any moment?

Our—touching—the keyboard should satisfy understanding reality questions—-

Leaving us time to try to understand questions about—-ones`self and reality questions—-

[ Edited: 02 March 2013 12:45 PM by arnoldg ]
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Posted: 02 March 2013 10:27 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 358 ]
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Write4U - 19 January 2013 03:48 PM

Do non-human animals have free will?

In an experiment with cuttlefish, it was clear that the cuttlefish learned from experience and “decided” on a course of action.

They showed a crab in a glass jar to the cuttlefish.  It attempted to capture the crab several times, but each time was repelled by the solid water (the glass). After three tries the cuttlefish decided it was no use, lost interest and actually gave up trying, even though he was just inches away from the crab and clearly within reach.

This was a considered act and I wonder if that may not be an example of free will decision making.

It doesn’t show free will.  It shows that his “decisions” are created by experience and environment.  If it were free will he might keep on trying.

Lois

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Posted: 02 March 2013 10:32 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 359 ]
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George - 02 March 2013 09:30 AM

The problem here is that we do decide if we’ll have a pizza or lasagna on the neurological level. I still don’t find the arcticle funny. But to each his own, I guess.

We only “decide” from experience and environment and perhaps from genetic influences.  A person who had never experienced either would probably not choose either.  If he did it would be a random choice.  The point iswe can’t consciously overcome other factors that would lead us to choose one or the other.

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Posted: 02 March 2013 10:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 360 ]
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GdB - 02 March 2013 07:34 AM

Found this funny way of describing the free will problem in a Swiss Newspaper, in my translation:

A few decades ago the uncertainty principle of quantum physics was supposed to prove that free will exists, today brain activities would show that there can be no free will. Both supposed proofs lead to nothing else than metaphysical mumbo jumbo. This is not surprising, because the concept of “free will” does not describe any physical or neurological reality, but it is part of a way of life - in which no one gets the idea to return an ordered pizza Margherita with the argument that he is sorry, but he did not voluntary put the order, it was only his brain that was responsible for this unfortunate action, and in fact he would prefer a lasagna.

How would quantum physics prove that free will exists?

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