Free Will and Pascal's Wager

Potential proof of free will and sense of Pascal's Wager

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Does the Wager make sense now?

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Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#1  Postby realNutjob » Feb 26, 2017 9:06 am

I cannot prove Hell is potential future reality and neither can anyone else in this reality. Assuming it is and there is no evidence NOT to either, I DO think I can just in a few lines show that free will is NOT an illusion in our current reality and in many more why Pascal's Wager makes sense.

From the little I've read, free will always seems to be associated with physical behavior. But what about the concept of desire? I think we can all agree that desires are the cause of suffering and desires can be both conscious and unconscious(no known cause is there but it is being experienced). However, in this reality, we always have the free will to veto desires. Either disregard it or accept that it will not be satisified since we can see no way to satisfy. When we veto, the desire ends and thus the suffering ends.

Now assume you enter a reality where you have knowledge of veto but not free will of veto. This can be a Hell. A Devil can put unconscious desire for an apple in an unbreakable glass box in front and you will be unable to veto the desire while at the same time knowing you will never be able to satisfy it. You will be suffering as long as you will be being. The greater the desire, the greater the suffering.

I think in this case Pascal's Wager makes sense since it makes you want to believe in a loving god if you are not sure about god. Any loving god. A loving god would give you the CHOICE not to suffer. To veto desires. Arguments can be raised about which loving god but chances increase upon believing in one rather than none. Ofcourse you if you know, have proof, of no gods by all means disbelieve. But I dont think anyone has that yet.

ADDITION:
I'll put it this way. do I desire NOT to suffer? Only a dumb f--k ever desires suffering. if you can answer yes to the previous question see if you can answer yes to the question, Will I always have the freedom to choose my attachemnt to desire? Since suffering is caused by attachement to desire, can i freely choose not to be attached to desire? that is all i will say. you are intellectuals. Work out the rest. I did. Though it was self realization that made me understand
Last edited by realNutjob on Feb 26, 2017 4:40 pm, edited 5 times in total.
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#2  Postby realNutjob » Feb 26, 2017 2:31 pm

To be honest this is only a support for the wager if the god is a loving god of "conditional love". You know, I show love to you if you show love to me. If god is one of unconditional love then no one goes to a hell. Ofcourse the organized religions of our current reality DO posit a god of conditional love.
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#3  Postby Animavore » Feb 26, 2017 2:35 pm

I have a desire for God to be real, but I know that it cannot be satisfied, so I veto belief, thus ends my suffering.
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#4  Postby Thommo » Feb 26, 2017 2:38 pm

It's very hard to reply, because almost every particular inference in the opening post is invalid.

One important thing to notice is that if you assume from the outset that Hell is a real place, then any reference to Pascal's wager is entirely redundant, you don't need to make a probabilistic gamble on the truth of something you've already stated to be true. The whole point of the wager is how to hedge your bets if you can't make your mind up (and it's a faulty piece of reasoning, for reasons which aren't even touched on in the OP).
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#5  Postby DavidMcC » Feb 26, 2017 2:44 pm

This linking of free will to hell, etc, is a problem. It just doesn't make sense unless you use the term in some bizarre, religious sense.
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#6  Postby realNutjob » Feb 26, 2017 3:06 pm

Animavore wrote:I have a desire for God to be real, but I know that it cannot be satisfied, so I veto belief, thus ends my suffering.


And pray tell how you know it cannot be satisfied? And let us not get into religious debate here. If god exists, he has only created evidence not proof of that existence. Neither believers nor unbelievers have proof. Only evidence. Also please note I am talking about the potential for nature of free will changing in a future reality. You have it in this reality. You dont know what your next will be like.
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#7  Postby Animavore » Feb 26, 2017 3:11 pm

realNutjob wrote:
Animavore wrote:I have a desire for God to be real, but I know that it cannot be satisfied, so I veto belief, thus ends my suffering.


And pray tell how you know it cannot be satisfied? And let us not get into religious debate here. If god exists, he has only created evidence not proof of that existence. Neither believers nor unbelievers have proof. Only evidence. Also please note I am talking about the potential for nature of free will changing in a future reality. You have it in this reality. You dont know what your next will be like.

Actually neither believers nor unbelievers have evidence. This isn't a problem for the unbeliever.
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#8  Postby LucidFlight » Feb 26, 2017 3:22 pm

Could said (possibly Devil-implanted) desires be vetoed not by free will but by knowledge and fear of consequences, or would these desires override the understanding and fear of consequences? What governs the relative strengths of fear and desire? How do these emotions compete in our decisions?
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#9  Postby Thommo » Feb 26, 2017 3:31 pm

realNutjob wrote:
Animavore wrote:I have a desire for God to be real, but I know that it cannot be satisfied, so I veto belief, thus ends my suffering.


And pray tell how you know it cannot be satisfied? And let us not get into religious debate here. If god exists, he has only created evidence not proof of that existence. Neither believers nor unbelievers have proof. Only evidence. Also please note I am talking about the potential for nature of free will changing in a future reality. You have it in this reality. You dont know what your next will be like.


The assumption that we have free will (in whatever sense) isn't the same as an argument showing that we have free will (in whatever sense).

If, following the OP, we assume that free will is the ability to veto desires (by "veto" we mean the ability to either ignore them, or "accept" that we cannot act on them) and that it is possible that a place called "Hell" exists, and one of the features of "Hell" is that in this place beings called "Devils" exist that possess the ability to prevent humans from either ignoring their desires, or from accepting that they cannot act on their desires then we are provided no motivation to think free will any more likely than we previously did.

Nothing follows from such supposition. The OP simply assumes both that humans have free will and that there is some physically realisable possible world where humans do not have free will, which while acceptable in terms of structure does not inform about whether the conditions are met. Given such assumptions the OP does not even connect those assumptions to a motivation for believing or disbelieving in a god or devils.

The purpose of Pascal's wager is to suggest that if you have an immortal soul (something you don't know for sure) then you are betting it on your belief or non belief in God and that you cannot avoid such a bet. The wager then goes on to argue that it is strictly better to bet on the existence of God because if you're wrong you lose nothing and if you're right you gain everything. The wager is of course wrong, because it assumes certain properties about God and ignores other properties which could also hold (e.g. God sends all believers to hell and all non believers to heaven).

The OP has nothing in common with this structure - even if the assumptions were granted and some questionable inferences ironed out (the existence of devils does not actually imply the existence of god, for example) it provides no motivation to believe in either religious free will as defined, or in the existence of god.
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#10  Postby Thommo » Feb 26, 2017 3:39 pm

realNutjob wrote:But what about the concept of desire? I think we can all agree that desires are the cause of suffering and desires can be both conscious and unconscious(no known cause is there but it is being experienced). However, in this reality, we always have the free will to veto desires. Either disregard it or accept that it will not be satisified since we can see no way to satisfy. When we veto, the desire ends and thus the suffering ends.


Numbering three central claims in this paragraph:
1. Desires are the cause of suffering.
2. In this reality we always have the free will to veto desires.
3. When we veto a desire the suffering ends.

From 2. and 3. it follows that:
4. In this reality we always have the free will to end suffering.

Strictly this would only be suffering that comes from desires, but 1. informs us that all suffering comes from desires, and hence the consequence of this paragraph is that all humans can always end all suffering by application of their free will.

I would suggest this is refuted clearly by the real world, in which much suffering is the product of chance that cannot be avoided by simple application of free will. Sometimes, for example, people get serious diseases, or injured in accidents. They suffer, not because of an application of free will, but unavoidably. They cannot choose to be disease free by thought alone, they cannot choose not to be in pain by thought alone.
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#11  Postby realNutjob » Feb 26, 2017 4:07 pm

Thommo wrote:
I would suggest this is refuted clearly by the real world, in which much suffering is the product of chance that cannot be avoided by simple application of free will. Sometimes, for example, people get serious diseases, or injured in accidents. They suffer, not because of an application of free will, but unavoidably. They cannot choose to be disease free by thought alone, they cannot choose not to be in pain by thought alone.



If you have control over mental suffering, physical suffering becomes irrelevant. Many technqiues for chronic pain sufferers today use mindfulness techniques.
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#12  Postby LucidFlight » Feb 26, 2017 4:15 pm

I am enjoying this thread :popcorn:
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#13  Postby Thommo » Feb 26, 2017 4:18 pm

realNutjob wrote:If you have control over mental suffering, physical suffering becomes irrelevant. Many technqiues for chronic pain sufferers today use mindfulness techniques.


You have quite the task to show that mindfulness techniques are so effective as to make all mental and physical suffering irrelevant.

The gap between this and what perhaps is more accurate - that some people claim limited alleviation of certain types of pain can be achieved by a variety of talking therapies and meditative techniques - is far too large for this to underpin the sweeping claims in the OP and the implications they do hold (which, again include none for the existence of free will, nor any for the existence of god(s)).
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#14  Postby Thommo » Feb 26, 2017 4:18 pm

LucidFlight wrote:I am enjoying this thread :popcorn:


Is that why your avatar looks slightly less cross than she used to? :ask:
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#15  Postby realNutjob » Feb 26, 2017 4:27 pm

Thommo wrote:
You have quite the task to show that mindfulness techniques are so effective as to make all mental and physical suffering irrelevant.

The gap between this and what perhaps is more accurate - that some people claim limited alleviation of certain types of pain can be achieved by a variety of talking therapies and meditative techniques - is far too large for this to underpin the sweeping claims in the OP and the implications they do hold (which, again include none for the existence of free will, nor any for the existence of god(s)).


Instead of being deviated by those questions simply ask yourself these 2:
- Do I desire NOT to suffer? If the answer is yes, ask yourself:
- Am I sure I will always have the free will not to be attached to that desire ? And by always I mean potential existence after physical death in this reality.
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#16  Postby Thommo » Feb 26, 2017 4:44 pm

realNutjob wrote:
Thommo wrote:
You have quite the task to show that mindfulness techniques are so effective as to make all mental and physical suffering irrelevant.

The gap between this and what perhaps is more accurate - that some people claim limited alleviation of certain types of pain can be achieved by a variety of talking therapies and meditative techniques - is far too large for this to underpin the sweeping claims in the OP and the implications they do hold (which, again include none for the existence of free will, nor any for the existence of god(s)).


Instead of being deviated by those questions simply ask yourself these 2:
- Do I desire NOT to suffer? If the answer is yes, ask yourself:
- Am I sure I will always have the free will to make that choice? And by always I mean potential existence after physical death in this reality.


They aren't deviations in my book, if you introduce a particular to support your principle, it seems reasonable to point out the disconnect that exists between the two things.

Anyway, the answers to your questions:-

Do I desire not to suffer? Of course, I don't want to suffer.

Am I sure I will always have the free will to make that choice? I am in fact sure of the opposite - I often suffer without being able to choose not to, whether because a beloved pet dies, because I read about the tragedies going on in the world every day or simply because I stub my toe. In no case can I simply choose not to experience negative psychological states as consequences.

Am I sure I will always have the free will to choose not to suffer in a life after death? Since I can't do it in this life, in the highly implausible circumstance of life after death there's no reason to suppose anything would change, but conversely there's no reason to suppose it would stay the same.

I have no idea how those answers are supposed to be helpful, but I gladly provide them. I hope you'll reciprocate and answer some of the challenges regarding your claims. :cheers:
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#17  Postby LucidFlight » Feb 26, 2017 4:51 pm

realNutjob wrote:Instead of being deviated by those questions simply ask yourself these 2:
- Do I desire NOT to suffer? If the answer is yes, ask yourself:
- Am I sure I will always have the free will not to be attached to that desire ? And by always I mean potential existence after physical death in this reality.

What would lack of free will in some sort of afterlife be like? I imagine that in Hell, you would be presented with a hot poker. Somehow, beyond your control, you find yourself stabbing your hand with it, over and over, for eternity, whilst listening to a Justin Bieber song on repeat. Meanwhile, in Heaven, we have a selection of Champagne for breakfast. Breakfast is usually something nice, like eggs Benedict with salmon — however, in a whim, you can chose the muesli with fresh fruit and yoghurt! But no! You go for the triple-stack of pancakes with bacon, with no fear of heart disease or diabetes.
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#18  Postby crank » Feb 26, 2017 6:00 pm

realNutjob wrote:
Thommo wrote:
I would suggest this is refuted clearly by the real world, in which much suffering is the product of chance that cannot be avoided by simple application of free will. Sometimes, for example, people get serious diseases, or injured in accidents. They suffer, not because of an application of free will, but unavoidably. They cannot choose to be disease free by thought alone, they cannot choose not to be in pain by thought alone.



If you have control over mental suffering, physical suffering becomes irrelevant. Many technqiues for chronic pain sufferers today use mindfulness techniques.

There actually is no difference between these two. There isn't any 'physical suffering' that isn't 'mental suffering' and there is no 'mental suffering' that isn't 'physical suffering'. The real problem is your phrase "potential existence after physical death in this reality." There is none, any wild speculations about what happens in such a thing require so many assumptions that can't be understood in themselves, the whole thing is utterly pointless.
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#19  Postby archibald » Feb 26, 2017 11:03 pm

How is a having veto evidence of free will?
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Re: Free Will and Pascal's Wager

#20  Postby Thommo » Feb 26, 2017 11:32 pm

archibald wrote:How is a having veto evidence of free will?


It looks more like a definition than evidence. The OP appears to take it as read that the ability to choose (or not to choose) to experience suffering is the definition of free will, and furthermore that it is obvious that in this life all people always get to choose whether or not they suffer.
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