29 of 73
29
Do non-human animals have free will?
Posted: 07 March 2013 06:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 421 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2602
Joined  2012-10-27
dougsmith - 07 March 2013 12:43 PM
Lois - 07 March 2013 12:35 PM

Or are you saying that you believe that free will can overcome the effects of quantum mechanics? If so, by what mechanism would that take place?

Yeah, OK, it’s pretty clear you aren’t understanding what’s going on in this thread, Lois. All I can suggest is that you reread what’s gone before. Perhaps something will click eventually.

 


Yeah, OK, it’s pretty clear you aren’t understanding what’s going on in this thread, dougsmith.  All I can suggest is that you reread what’s gone before. Perhaps something will click eventually.

Lois

Profile
 
 
Posted: 07 March 2013 06:26 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 422 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2602
Joined  2012-10-27
Lois - 07 March 2013 06:20 PM
dougsmith - 07 March 2013 12:43 PM
Lois - 07 March 2013 12:35 PM

Or are you saying that you believe that free will can overcome the effects of quantum mechanics? If so, by what mechanism would that take place?

Yeah, OK, it’s pretty clear you aren’t understanding what’s going on in this thread, Lois. All I can suggest is that you reread what’s gone before. Perhaps something will click eventually.

 


Yeah, OK, it’s pretty clear you aren’t understanding what’s going on in this thread, dougsmith.  All I can suggest is that you reread what’s gone before. Perhaps something will click eventually.

Lois

 


Yeah, OK, it’s pretty clear you aren’t understanding what’s going on in this thread, dougsmith.  All I can suggest is that you reread what’s gone before. Perhaps something will click eventually.

Lois

Profile
 
 
Posted: 07 March 2013 06:49 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 423 ]
Jr. Member
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  97
Joined  2012-12-01

Lois and Doug and others—your dwelling in the past—-but you are getting close to what Being is—-

you have written—-

“If so, by what mechanism would that take place?“and “aren`t understanding”—-

replace “mechanism” with means—-and “aren’t understanding” with do not know—-


modern physics is for function—-what is taking place;

modern philosophy is for Being—-what is is my place;

understanding our place may give us the means for free will—-

Profile
 
 
Posted: 07 March 2013 08:55 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 424 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  4576
Joined  2008-08-14

Lois, don’t waste your time.  This is just like arguing the existence of god with a couple of evangelicals.
A page or two back you hit the nail right on the head.  Some people can NOT process the true concept of determinism as it
relates to them and what they are as a brain.
You are just going round in circles here.

 Signature 

Row row row your boat gently down the stream.  Merrily Merrily merrily merrily life is but a dream!

Profile
 
 
Posted: 07 March 2013 11:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 425 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  6171
Joined  2006-12-20
Write4U - 07 March 2013 03:24 PM

Or if we build a dike now we may avert flooding, no matter how hard it rains. Thus if we had not acted with foresight, we’d all be swimming for our lives.
IOW, we purposefully and actively participated in building a passive defense against a perceived future threat, which “may or may not” happen, i.e. a choice in priorities. All deterministic, but with a component of choice and free will in the mix.

Looks right.

Keep people out of the picture for a mo. The weather doesn’t know that whether the river bursts it’s banks or not depends upon if it continues to rain or not. It’s true that if it had not stopped raining there would have been a flood (imagine it did stop raining). So the weather has no knowledge of the power over the rivers fate that it has. Also it doesn’t have any preference for which way things turn out.

We do know the power we have over the river’s fate and we do have a preference for which way things turn out and that can cause us to take steps to prevent the flood.

Stephen

Profile
 
 
Posted: 07 March 2013 11:19 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 426 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  6171
Joined  2006-12-20
Lois - 07 March 2013 06:20 PM

Yeah, OK, it’s pretty clear you aren’t understanding what’s going on in this thread, dougsmith.  All I can suggest is that you reread what’s gone before. Perhaps something will click eventually.

Lois

Doug is trying to be helpful Lois.

Your intuitions are so strong that free will means libertarian free will that you argue against it to argue against compatibilism. Compatibilism is something different, which takes quite a bit of getting used to.

Stephen

Profile
 
 
Posted: 08 March 2013 05:11 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 427 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  4545
Joined  2007-08-31

Lois,

This is the definition of free will you gave:

my definition of free will is the ability of a person to overcome his determining factors, most of which he is unaware of. Such factors as genes, experience and environment and probably countless other ones we can’t possibly know about.

Now compatibilism proposes another definition:

Free will means that persons are able to act according to their wishes and beliefs.

Now at the moment you say “yes, but your wishes and beliefs are determined” you are again applying your definition. So what you are saying is that your definition is the only correct one. Now on basis of which criteria can we decide which is the correct definition? You say on one side that your definition is the correct one, but at the other side say that it does not exist. Is that then a correct definition? What is the correct definition of a circle with the form of a square? It is obvious immediately from the beginning that a free will as you describe it does not exist.

But in daily life we are very well able to distinguish between actions that are voluntary or coerced. So the question is then, if we can make this distinction, on what it is based. And compatibilism offers its own definition of free will. And this definition needs determinism (at least to a certain level) to be true. If determinism would not be true, there would be no connection between our actions and our wishes and beliefs, and our wishes and beliefs would be unrelated to our biological and biographical past. So to accentuate once more:

Compatibilist free will presupposes determinism to be true.

Compatibilism is not looking for some magical hole in the causal fabric of the universe, nor is it looking for some middle ground where libertarian free will and determinism can coexist, no, it needs determinism. So any argument saying “But we are determined, so we are not free” completely misses the point of the compatibilist definition of free will, and you are applying your own definition again.

So the whole quarreling is not about if we are free or not, but what the correct definition of free will is, and all the time you only consistently argue from your own definition. And I say your definition is wrong because it is incoherent, is not consistent with the fact that determinism is true (at least for the relevant processes), and is not able to account for the distinction we can make between free and coerced actions (both are determined).

[ Edited: 08 March 2013 05:44 AM by GdB ]
 Signature 

GdB

“The light is on, but there is nobody at home”

Profile
 
 
Posted: 08 March 2013 08:32 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 428 ]
Jr. Member
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  97
Joined  2012-12-01

reason`s reasons are for knowledge of the universe

faith`s faithful are for understanding the cosmos

philosophy accepts these concepts as values for study in life today

psychology has become the study of function

theology has become the study of beliefs

publish or die

[ Edited: 08 March 2013 08:57 AM by arnoldg ]
Profile
 
 
Posted: 08 March 2013 12:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 429 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  6171
Joined  2006-12-20
GdB - 08 March 2013 05:11 AM

So the whole quarreling is not about if we are free or not, but what the correct definition of free will is, and all the time you only consistently argue from your own definition. And I say your definition is wrong because it is incoherent, is not consistent with the fact that determinism is true (at least for the relevant processes), and is not able to account for the distinction we can make between free and coerced actions (both are determined).

I accept there is more than one meaning of free will. But I don’t accept one is right and one is wrong.

Clearly we need a term for the version of free will commonly believed in, what else are we supposed to call it?

Stephen

Profile
 
 
Posted: 08 March 2013 02:38 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 430 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  9301
Joined  2006-08-29
StephenLawrence - 08 March 2013 12:33 PM

Clearly we need a term for the version of free will commonly believed in, what else are we supposed to call it?

We already have one: it’s called free will. You need a new term for that compatibilistic thing.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 08 March 2013 02:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 431 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  9301
Joined  2006-08-29

It’s as if I said that God is the laws of physics and that the theists should come up with a new term for their personal God.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 08 March 2013 11:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 432 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  4545
Joined  2007-08-31
StephenLawrence - 08 March 2013 12:33 PM

I accept there is more than one meaning of free will. But I don’t accept one is right and one is wrong.

Well, you may put much work into defining what a unicorn is, but if you at the end say that such an animal does not exist, it is hardly worth the effort, is it?

StephenLawrence - 08 March 2013 12:33 PM

Clearly we need a term for the version of free will commonly believed in, what else are we supposed to call it?

In these discussions we have clear definitions: libertarian free will for the non-existing stuff, compatibilist free will for a concept of free will that makes sense.

 Signature 

GdB

“The light is on, but there is nobody at home”

Profile
 
 
Posted: 09 March 2013 12:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 433 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  6171
Joined  2006-12-20
GdB - 08 March 2013 11:46 PM

In these discussions we have clear definitions: libertarian free will for the non-existing stuff, compatibilist free will for a concept of free will that makes sense.

Yep.

What I’m saying is it is wrong to say free will is one or the other because the term free will is used for both. It’s clear that free will means contra causal free will to Lois and she needs to be able to say that doesn’t exist.

And this matters because that is the “disasterous mean social myth” as William Provine put it.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 09 March 2013 12:13 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 434 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  4545
Joined  2007-08-31
George - 08 March 2013 02:38 PM
StephenLawrence - 08 March 2013 12:33 PM

Clearly we need a term for the version of free will commonly believed in, what else are we supposed to call it?

We already have one: it’s called free will. You need a new term for that compatibilistic thing.

I think Doug makes a good point here:

dougsmith - 06 March 2013 08:26 PM

It’s actually more like saying that defining the earth as that thing that sits at the center of the universe is not a good definition.

But of course it’s always up to you to say you think the earth doesn’t exist.

Let’s say we define earth by means of a two attributes: it sits at the center of the universe and is the ground we are standing on. Now we discover the earth does not reside at some center of the universe. Should we stop calling it earth? Or do we keep the term, as in its most important aspect, namely the place where we live, is still valid. It was only a wrong metaphysical notion that had to go, which was taken over and supported by all religions.

With ‘free will’ it is similar. free will is supposed to be the faculty of acting without being caused; on the other side it has a clear function in distinguishing free actions from coerced actions. Now simple analysis shows that this faculty of acting without being caused is incoherent. This faculty simply does not exist, as the center of the universe. Do we need a new concept of free will now, just because a wrong metaphysical notion that had to go? It was only a wrong metaphysical notion that had to go, which was taken over and supported by some religions.

Which defense makes more sense:
1. “But Sir, he forced me to do it, I did not want to do this”.
2. “But Sir, as all my actions I was caused to this”

2. just makes no sense. There is no change in practical use of ‘free will’ when we know we are determined, as there is also no change in our living on earth because we now know it is not in the center of the universe.

In looking at free will we should just get rid of a meaningless metaphysical aspect attributed to it. The fact that we are determined does not change our daily use of ‘free will’ one tiny bit. And that is a good reason to stick to the concept of ‘free will’.

 Signature 

GdB

“The light is on, but there is nobody at home”

Profile
 
 
Posted: 09 March 2013 12:16 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 435 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  6171
Joined  2006-12-20
George - 08 March 2013 02:41 PM

It’s as if I said that God is the laws of physics and that the theists should come up with a new term for their personal God.

I think this is probably different George. Or perhaps I’ve just spent too long listening to compatibilists.

Free will = Free choice.

The thing is when we work out where to assign praise and blame etc, which we have to do, we are interested in the options people had and whether they had an appropriate way of selecting alternatives.

This is very like the libertarian version. I think we were right all along to think like this but we slip and imagine CHDO means CHDO in the actual situation. This slip leads us to “single out the agent” As if all that was needed was for them to make a different choice and it was totally up to them.

So on this view libertarian free will is free will with mistakes and compatibilism just removes the mistakes.

I’m sure you’ll disagree but it would be good to know why.

Stephen

Profile
 
 
   
29 of 73
29
 
‹‹ Destiny..?      Babies are bigots ››