You say that believeing we are free to choose is why we judge each other inappropriately because we really aren’t free to choose in the sense that we could have done something differently up to the moment we decided to act, but you also say our sense of being free is n ot false. Do you see why this sounds self-contradictory to me?
No. I understand the confusion but believe that is all it is.
When I make a choice, it feels like I select the one and only option I possibly could do, given my thoughts and feelings about the choice, were as they were. Not only does it feel like this but it is like this! I gave an example of someone posting a letter today, to prove it.
I haven’t the slightest idea whether strict determinism is true or false, I’m curious and am probing the subject with my posts. If something else could happen at the moment what is happening, is happening, who knows? who cares? it does not figure in any kind of selection process I experience, or can imagine.
But what I’m sure of, is there is a fourth option, other than the three you gave me.
Strict determinism is true and I freely choose.
Why not? The mother who posted a letter, explained how she chose and she could not do otherwise. she could not select the other option because it was too dangerous. But she freely chose, didn’t she?
That is what freely choosing is like.
Now when you talk about being able to do otherwise up to the moment we do what we do, we could in epistemological terms, if we really could I don’t know. Is there even such a thing as really could?
But what is a matter of fact, is that if we make a choice, then it means that, when we do what we do, we couldn’t do otherwise, given the preceding selection process was as it was.
If we could do otherwise, given the preceding selection process was as it was, we wouldn’t feel free, it would be scary as hell, can’t you see? and it would not be a choice at all.
When we blame someone, we don’t blame them because they could have done otherwise, up to the moment they did what they did, we blame them because we think they could have done otherwise, at the moment they did what they did!
So if you find yourself with a knife in somebody elses chest, unless you could do otherwise at that moment ,you could not help it. If you could do, up to that moment, if it might not have been going to happen, is interesting but irrelevant.
If a butterfly could do otherwise up to the moment it does what it does, who knows?
We wouldn’t dream up the idea that if it could, that would make it responsible for selecting that option.
This free will business is only something we dreamt up, that’s what I’m trying to say and there are no contradictions, I’m sure.