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Free Will (Merged)
Posted: 19 September 2010 11:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2881 ]
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GdB - 19 September 2010 11:11 PM
StephenLawrence - 19 September 2010 04:35 AM

1)The cause necessitates the effect.

2) the effect depends upon the cause

Depends means contingent.

Necessitates means not contingent.

GdB

Given the cause the effect must follow.

the effect is dependent/contingent upon the cause.

There are two parts to it.

Stephen

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Posted: 20 September 2010 03:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2882 ]
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GdB - 18 September 2010 09:14 AM
Gnostikosis - 17 September 2010 08:34 AM

I don’t agree with that concept either. It’s obvious that a person can make a decision that alters future events. However seems a arbitrary line drawn between epiphenomenon and non- I suppose depending on the argument one is trying to support.

Yes, of course a person’s decision can alter future events. Did I deny that? But when it does, how can it be ‘just an epiphenomenon?’

GdB

It can’t.  Sorry if it seemed I was saying otherwise.

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Posted: 20 September 2010 04:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2883 ]
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StephenLawrence - 19 September 2010 02:05 AM
GdB - 18 September 2010 09:23 AM

It all boils away if one doesn’t use the not exact phrase ‘alter the future’. Better would be: ‘our will plays a causal role in the course of events’.

GdB

Yes but I think playing a causal role presupposes alternative possibilities, it presupposes we make things one way rather than any of the other possible ways things could turn out.

I think you use the term “depends upon me” buddhists call causality “dependent origination”. It doesn’t look like counterfactual statements turn out to be the regularist approach. what they do is convey the idea of dependent origination. Dependent can be used inter changeably with contingent

We have arguments for god based on the universe being contingent. the evidence for contingency is really that we believe in causality.

Causal determinism has two parts

1)The cause necessitates the effect.

2) the effect depends upon the cause

I don’t think we can drop 2)

Believing in cause and effect presuppose we have alternative possible futures, presents and pasts.

Stephen

We do, not existent but as mental constructs. it’s the way our mind works, which helps to create a belief in alternate futures.

Also there are multiple causes and multiple effects. It is impossible to isolate it to a one to one relationship and remain accurate.

I don’t presuppose alternate existent futures even though the language might. Perhaps it requires a mathematical equation to accurately describe.

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Posted: 20 September 2010 04:13 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2884 ]
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kkwan - 18 September 2010 07:33 AM
Gnostikosis - 17 September 2010 11:30 AM

It is IMO really too simplistic view of reality. A is followed by B unless X interrupts and alters, adds to, negates A’s causality.

So instead of A causing B, you have cause A plus X which results in D

In reality, analyzing and determining causality is not so clear-cut and it is very easy to commit the fallacies of questionable cause and/or confusing cause and effect.

From the wiki on causality

A breakdown of causality logic is known as questionable cause. This fallacy is committed when a person assumes that one event must cause another just because the events occur together. This fallacy involves drawing the conclusion that A is the cause of B simply because A and B are in regular conjunction (and there is not a common cause that is actually the cause of A and B). The mistake being made is that the causal conclusion is being drawn without adequate justification. One factor that makes causal reasoning complicated is that it is not always evident what is the cause and what is the effect. This is particularly true when A and B cause each other by way of system feedback, where cycles tend to reinforce each other. Individual perception of causality can be clouded by emotions and ideologies. Errors of causality logic can be avoided by a careful study of the temporal sequence of events.

Confusing Cause and Effect is a fallacy that has the following general form:

  1. A and B regularly occur together.
  2. It then follows that A is the cause of B.

Other reasons that A and B may regularly occur together, which tend to prove the fallacy, are B causes A, and some other event, C, causes both A, and B. It could also be the case that A and B are not really related by causality but only appear so in a limited study.

There is no real feedback. It’s more like (X1…....Xinfinity) everything that happened prior to the next moment in time creates that moment. However that moment in time adds itself to the past to affect the next moment.

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Posted: 27 September 2010 12:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2885 ]
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After 7 days of having the last word on the freewill debate…

Can I declare myself the winner?

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Posted: 27 September 2010 07:54 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2886 ]
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Gnostikosis - 27 September 2010 12:24 PM

After 7 days of having the last word on the freewill debate…

Can I declare myself the winner?

Take note of your number (2884), before the room is locked down. Why is it that I rarely even see spammers posting in this thread??

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Church; where sheep congregate to worship a zombie on a stick that turns into a cracker on Sundays…

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Posted: 27 September 2010 08:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2887 ]
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asanta - 27 September 2010 07:54 PM
Gnostikosis - 27 September 2010 12:24 PM

After 7 days of having the last word on the freewill debate…

Can I declare myself the winner?

Take note of your number (2884), before the room is locked down. Why is it that I rarely even see spammers posting in this thread??

Perhaps in this thread some causes do not produce results? smirk

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Art is the creation of that which evokes an emotional response, leading to thoughts of the noblest kind.
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Posted: 27 September 2010 09:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2888 ]
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Right.  Just because all effects must have causes, it doesn’t mean that a cause must be followed by an effect.

(Damn, I swore to myself that I’d no longer post to this thread after the first few pages.)

Occam

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Posted: 27 September 2010 11:19 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2889 ]
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Occam. - 27 September 2010 09:46 PM

Right.  Just because all effects must have causes, it doesn’t mean that a cause must be followed by an effect.

(Damn, I swore to myself that I’d no longer post to this thread after the first few pages.)

Occam

You are not free, Occam.

GdB

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

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Posted: 27 September 2010 11:31 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2890 ]
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GdB - 27 September 2010 11:19 PM
Occam. - 27 September 2010 09:46 PM

Right.  Just because all effects must have causes, it doesn’t mean that a cause must be followed by an effect.
(Damn, I swore to myself that I’d no longer post to this thread after the first few pages.)
Occam

You are not free, Occam.
GdB

Now I’m really convinced that ‘free will’ is truly an illusion!! LOL

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Church; where sheep congregate to worship a zombie on a stick that turns into a cracker on Sundays…

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Posted: 30 September 2010 08:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2891 ]
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Gnostikosis - 20 September 2010 04:13 PM

There is no real feedback. It’s more like (X1…....Xinfinity) everything that happened prior to the next moment in time creates that moment. However that moment in time adds itself to the past to affect the next moment.

Temporal flow is a human experienced concept of time and as such, is anthropomorphic. Time might not be how humans experience it. There is feedback in the evolution of the universe and of life.

Stephen Hawking proposed the concept of the
top down universe

Hawking and Hertog say that the universe did not take just one path through time to arrive in its present state, but took a multitude of paths, or histories.

And imaginary time

Stephen W. Hawking suggested that what scientists now call imaginary time might be the true reality, while what everyone calls real time might be only an invention to simplify describing the universe.

Hawking and Hartle proposed that instead of thinking about singularities in ordinary time, they should be considered in terms of imaginary time, which has no beginning or end.

Hence, the ancient human notion of cause and effect (which is related to temporal flow) is also flawed wrt the evolution of the universe and of life.

In the debate on free will, it is meaningless to ascribe a cause or causes for its existence given the nature of the universe and life. Just as the universe exist, free will exist.

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Posted: 30 September 2010 09:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2892 ]
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I still intuitively feel that time is an secondary effect. It is the effect of conversion from cause to an effect. This conversion requires time, even at quantum, and time is a secondary but inevitable result of the process. Without an effect, a causal timeframe does not exist. This secondary effect can be demonstrated by speed. The faster we go, the slower time passes. Thus time is related to and governed by the cause/effect process.

[ Edited: 30 September 2010 09:23 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 22 November 2010 04:38 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2893 ]
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Mr. Deity on free will and God.

See it here: Mr. Deity and the Goodie-Two-Shoes

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Posted: 28 November 2010 01:12 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2894 ]
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Here is what I have argued before with a Christian:

If God grants us free will as opposed to a deterministic reality, then He has a domain for which he has no control over. Namely, our freedom of beliefs and actions. So I ask if God is all powerful and ever present according to their own beliefs. Then, is he all-knowing? The Christian assures me that these are obviously true.

But if these are true, I say, God would know your every move and actions before they occur for which means that your behavior is fated or destined to be. This is determinism.
Also, if God answers your prayers, is He not demeaning the idea of “free will”?

And, if God did give “free will”, because it is beyond his control, could it be possible that his intentions may be to extend reality beyond which He himself could contain? In other words, would He not favor will that goes beyond merely favoring Him but rather beyond Him?

The argument is really affective on believers.

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I eat without fear of certain Death from The Tree of Knowledge because with wisdom, we may one day break free from its mortal curse.

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Posted: 28 November 2010 03:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2895 ]
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Scott Mayers - 28 November 2010 01:12 AM

[First Objection:]
(1) If God grants us free will . . . then He has a domain for which he has no control over. (2) [And,] if God is all powerful and ever present according to their own beliefs, then, he is all-knowing. (3) But [then], God would know your every move and actions before they occur; (4) which means that your behavior is fated or destined to be. This is determinism.

[Second Objection:]
If God answers your prayers, is He not demeaning the idea of “free will”?

[A Question:]
And, if God did give “free will”, because it is beyond his control, could it be possible that his intentions may be to extend reality beyond which He himself could contain? In other words, would He not favor will that goes beyond merely favoring Him but rather beyond Him?

[Conclusion]
The argument is really affective on believers.

One Christian’s Replies:

To the first objection:
Statement (1) is ambiguous, for God may put our freedom to believe or act beyond His control *by His own choice*, and still have the power to negate it. Nothing that can be done is beyond His Will, is the posit, and it seems obvious that He can make our freedoms cease. Statement (3) does not follow from (2), under at least three different interpretations:
For first, statement (2) as it stands says nothing whatever about what God knows in the future - only the present. I at least am quite comfortable with God not seeing into the future, for I am one of those who believe the future has no existence - only the present exists. Thus there may well be *nothing whatever* that God, or anyone else, can know ‘observationally’ about the future. No-one, not even God, can observe what does not exist.
But suppose a more common view, that God somehow knows the future ‘observationally’, it still would be false that this knowledge entails that our wills are not free. That God knows *what* we shall choose is distinct from the fact *that* we choose freely. For say His knowledge of past, present and future is like a man on a hill-top, who can see all at once a large stretch of train-track. The conductors make their choices, and suppose those choices mean that there will be a smash-up. The man on the hill knows all this because of his vantage-point, but his knowledge makes the conductors’ decisions no less free as decisions.
Then there is the opinion that God knows the future like a very intelligent man knows the future: he knows observationally only the past and present, but can infallibly extrapolate into the future. But this scenario is even weaker than the previous one, for now there is not even future events ‘out there’ - there is just a certain kind of knowledge, which of itself has no causal effectiveness over another’s actions.

To the Second objection:
I assume the objection refers not to prayers for understanding or insight, but prayers that God perform some miracle, or intervene in some such way. To this can be replied that the Christian is not to suppose that prayer is a mechanical process - it is not putting quarters into a candy-machine. God’s will to reply is as free as is mine to ask; humility and mercy in the face of bad consequences do not seem demeaning. Moreover, it is doubtful that asking for deliverance from the bad consequences of one’s actions is demeaning to someone with free will, to say nothing of being demeaning to free will itself (whatever that might mean).

To the Conclusion: I reply that effectiveness can be effective toward particular individuals, and still be incorrect.

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