Free Will

on fundamental matters such as existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind and ethics.

Moderators: Calilasseia, ADParker

Re: Free Will

#9601  Postby archibald » Sep 19, 2017 5:38 pm

You have a definition of free will? Why didn't you say so before?
"It seems rather obvious that plants have free will. Don't know why that would be controversial."
(John Platko)
archibald
 
Posts: 9010
Male

Country: Northern Ireland
Print view this post

Ads by Google


Re: Free Will

#9602  Postby GrahamH » Sep 19, 2017 5:39 pm

DavidMcC wrote:
I did indeed qualify "best", because it depends how you define "best".


The point is really simple. Try again. People don't always do what they think is best. It doesn't matter what best is. People will sometimes do things they don't think are best. People are not slavish option optimisers. They will do things they think are poor options.
Why do you think that?
GrahamH
 
Posts: 17220

Print view this post

Re: Free Will

#9603  Postby DavidMcC » Sep 19, 2017 5:47 pm

archibald wrote:You have a definition of free will? Why didn't you say so before?

Sorry. It was on this thread, but a long time ago. In a nutshell, it limited itself to circumstances in which neither strong emotions, nor habits (= no emotion at all), nor coercion was involved.
May The Voice be with you!
DavidMcC
 
Name: David McCulloch
Posts: 14290
Age: 64
Male

Country: United Kigdom
United Kingdom (uk)
Print view this post

Re: Free Will

#9604  Postby John Platko » Sep 19, 2017 6:06 pm

Cito di Pense wrote:
John Platko wrote:Sin is just a class of mistakes.


Is it, really?
:nod:

Just?
Nothing more and nothing less.


Flesh out your position. Why call it 'sin'?


The same reason we use any class. Efficient sorting and such. It's handy to mind how you dress your bits.

While one could call any mistake a sin because it's essentially just pointing out you're a bad spear thrower ...:

from
The word derives from "Old English syn(n), for original *sunjō... The stem may be related to that of Latin sons, sont-is guilty. In Old English there are examples of the original general sense, ‘offence, wrong-doing, misdeed'".[3] The English Biblical terms translated as "sin" or "syn" from the Biblical Greek and Jewish terms sometimes originate from words in the latter languages denoting the act or state of missing the mark; the original sense of New Testament Greek ἁμαρτία hamartia "sin", is failure, being in error, missing the mark, especially in spear throwing;[4] Hebrew hata "sin" originates in archery and literally refers to missing the "gold" at the centre of a target, but hitting the target, i.e. error.[


I think here the context was meant to be religious, which points out what bucket of mistakes we're pointing to. Those mistakes that are, what people imagine, the God they imagine, finds to be unacceptable. Need I say more?




Even if you don't think there's a purpose, you can still make decisions.

Wasn't classical free will constructed in the context of purpose?


:dunno: But I'm not so keen on notions of the purpose, as I usually find multiple use for the bits I find hanging around.
I like to imagine ...
User avatar
John Platko
 
Name: John Platko
Posts: 8628
Male

Country: US
United States (us)
Print view this post

Re: Free Will

#9605  Postby John Platko » Sep 19, 2017 6:09 pm

DavidMcC wrote:
archibald wrote:You have a definition of free will? Why didn't you say so before?

Sorry. It was on this thread, but a long time ago. In a nutshell, it limited itself to circumstances in which neither strong emotions, nor habits (= no emotion at all), nor coercion was involved.


Why take emotion out of free will? :nono: I don't think that will do. :nono:
I like to imagine ...
User avatar
John Platko
 
Name: John Platko
Posts: 8628
Male

Country: US
United States (us)
Print view this post

Re: Free Will

#9606  Postby romansh » Sep 19, 2017 6:46 pm

John Platko wrote:
But just to be clear? Are you agreeing with me that there is no down side to incorrectly believing free will is real? :scratch:

No on at least two levels.

John Platko wrote:Sin is just a class of mistakes. Are you suggesting there's no such thing as mistakes too?


Ahh certain arrangements and movements of atoms, etc are sins and mistakes? Interesting?

Now I get what you mean by mistake in terms of a concept. Pragmatically in everyday use of the word, yes ... but I would have to been able to do otherwise to make mistakes in a slightly more philosophical mind set.
"That's right!" shouted Vroomfondel, "we demand rigidly defined areas of doubt and uncertainty!"
User avatar
romansh
 
Posts: 2083

Country: BC Can (in the woods)
Print view this post

Re: Free Will

#9607  Postby John Platko » Sep 19, 2017 7:14 pm

romansh wrote:
John Platko wrote:
But just to be clear? Are you agreeing with me that there is no down side to incorrectly believing free will is real? :scratch:

No on at least two levels.


:scratch: So exactly what is the down side then?


John Platko wrote:Sin is just a class of mistakes. Are you suggesting there's no such thing as mistakes too?


Ahh certain arrangements and movements of atoms, etc are sins and mistakes? Interesting?


What do you think a mistake is? Do you think there is such a thing as a mistake?


Now I get what you mean by mistake in terms of a concept. Pragmatically in everyday use of the word, yes ...


:scratch: What other use of the word mistake is there?


but I would have to been able to do otherwise to make mistakes in a slightly more philosophical mind set.
I like to imagine ...
User avatar
John Platko
 
Name: John Platko
Posts: 8628
Male

Country: US
United States (us)
Print view this post

Ads by Google


Re: Free Will

#9608  Postby romansh » Sep 19, 2017 7:31 pm

John Platko wrote: :scratch: So exactly what is the down side then?

As an example certain religions hold homosexuality as a sin and believe the individual has freely chosen that lifestyle.
This can lead to imposing guilt trips, suicide and even murder.

Surely you recognize the benefits of having a more accurate understanding of the how the universe ticks?

John Platko wrote: :scratch: What other use of the word mistake is there?

Related to the above - you yourself claimed sin is a mistake.
It could be an inaccurate description.

So when a meandering river on a plain forms an oxbow lake is it a mistake? Should the river have taken the more direct path right off the bat?

A mistake (like colour ;)) is an illusion in the philosophical sense.
Last edited by romansh on Sep 19, 2017 8:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"That's right!" shouted Vroomfondel, "we demand rigidly defined areas of doubt and uncertainty!"
User avatar
romansh
 
Posts: 2083

Country: BC Can (in the woods)
Print view this post

Re: Free Will

#9609  Postby Cito di Pense » Sep 19, 2017 7:39 pm

John Platko wrote:
I think here the context was meant to be religious, which points out what bucket of mistakes we're pointing to. Those mistakes that are, what people imagine, the God they imagine, finds to be unacceptable. Need I say more?


Only if you want to let us inspect the significance you're making for God finding it unacceptable. I'd guess that it covers a multitude of sins that no one else would ever have a possibility of knowing about, or at least that nobody else would find unacceptable. Or nobody else outside the congregation. I don't know. You tell me. Give examples, such as decisions that would differ depending on whether a person imagined such a God or didn't. If it's just stuff that's strictly between you and your imagined God, stuff you didn't have to do, but turned out to be mistakes anyway, welcome back to NP-ville.

If it's just flatly "sin is what God finds unacceptable", that helps to define neither God, nor sin, nor unacceptable, except in terms of each other. Circular as you wanna get. The 'imaginary' bit adds nothing, and may even detract, making such a definition look a little nutty. Keep in mind your notions of God are still opaque to me.

If your point is just to show that you know how to rationalize nutty ideas so that they don't seem nutty to you, you can stop here.

John Platko wrote:Need I say more?


I think you'll need to consult God about this one, and get back to us, the upshot being that you don't need to say anything more, and that will look like a decision you've made. Am I understanding a little better how your God-thing works?
Хлопнут без некролога. -- Серге́й Па́влович Королёв

Translation by Elbert Hubbard: Do not take life too seriously. You're not going to get out of it alive.
User avatar
Cito di Pense
 
Name: Ivar Poäng
Posts: 24320
Age: 6
Male

Country: The Heartland
Mongolia (mn)
Print view this post

Re: Free Will

#9610  Postby John Platko » Sep 20, 2017 1:01 am

romansh wrote:
John Platko wrote: :scratch: So exactly what is the down side then?

As an example certain religions hold homosexuality as a sin and believe the individual has freely chosen that lifestyle.
This can lead to imposing guilt trips, suicide and even murder.

Surely you recognize the benefits of having a more accurate understanding of the how the universe ticks?


Well yes, I have encountered some :crazy: people in my travels that have some bat shit :crazy: religious ideas about all sorts of things and that leads them to make a whole lot of bad choices that end up causing harm to a lot of people - sometimes making them feel so bad about themselves that they want to die. This sort of thing has not escaped my attention. :no:

:scratch: And if I'm following you, you're thinking something like: I got it, I'll just teach them how physical states are evolving deterministically and that will set these pretty :crazy: people who believe in virgin births, and fish and bread popping out of thin air, water walking, etc. on a sane deterministic path. :scratch: How's that working out for you? I myself find it rather difficult to convince them of far more basic things like - nobody can really make fish pop out of nothing.


John Platko wrote: :scratch: What other use of the word mistake is there?

Related to the above - you yourself claimed sin is a mistake.
It could be an inaccurate description.


I'm far more likely to be wrong about my ideas of free will.


So when a meandering river on a plain forms an oxbow lake is it a mistake? Should the river have taken the more direct path right off the bat?


:scratch: I'm thinking a river that defies gravity is making a mistake - it just shouldn't do that. :no:



A mistake (like colour ;)) is an illusion in the philosophical sense.


:nono: I make plenty of mistakes, just ask GrahmH, and they are not illusions - they are real mistakes.
I like to imagine ...
User avatar
John Platko
 
Name: John Platko
Posts: 8628
Male

Country: US
United States (us)
Print view this post

Re: Free Will

#9611  Postby DavidMcC » Sep 20, 2017 8:31 am

John Platko wrote:
DavidMcC wrote:
archibald wrote:You have a definition of free will? Why didn't you say so before?

Sorry. It was on this thread, but a long time ago. In a nutshell, it limited itself to circumstances in which neither strong emotions, nor habits (= no emotion at all), nor coercion was involved.


Why take emotion out of free will? :nono: I don't think that will do. :nono:

If you read my posts carefully, you would find that I didn't "take emotion out of free will". I only tok it out of UNfree-willed behaviours. :nono:
May The Voice be with you!
DavidMcC
 
Name: David McCulloch
Posts: 14290
Age: 64
Male

Country: United Kigdom
United Kingdom (uk)
Print view this post

Re: Free Will

#9612  Postby archibald » Sep 20, 2017 9:01 am

DavidMcC wrote:
archibald wrote:You have a definition of free will? Why didn't you say so before?

Sorry. It was on this thread, but a long time ago. In a nutshell, it limited itself to circumstances in which neither strong emotions, nor habits (= no emotion at all), nor coercion was involved.


Sure, but the problem with that is it can't be explained. Taking out strong emotions, habit and coercion still leaves a multitude of other determinants. Explaining how just taking out those three gets us to free will suffers from this shortcoming:

Image
"It seems rather obvious that plants have free will. Don't know why that would be controversial."
(John Platko)
archibald
 
Posts: 9010
Male

Country: Northern Ireland
Print view this post

Re: Free Will

#9613  Postby DavidMcC » Sep 20, 2017 9:18 am

archibald wrote:
DavidMcC wrote:
archibald wrote:You have a definition of free will? Why didn't you say so before?

Sorry. It was on this thread, but a long time ago. In a nutshell, it limited itself to circumstances in which neither strong emotions, nor habits (= no emotion at all), nor coercion was involved.


Sure, but the problem with that is it can't be explained. Taking out strong emotions, habit and coercion still leaves a multitude of other determinants. Explaining how just taking out those three gets us to free will suffers from this shortcoming:

Image

If you can list even a few of your "multitude", I will show you that either they are part of one or other of these three, or are incorrectly listed.
May The Voice be with you!
DavidMcC
 
Name: David McCulloch
Posts: 14290
Age: 64
Male

Country: United Kigdom
United Kingdom (uk)
Print view this post

Re: Free Will

#9614  Postby GrahamH » Sep 20, 2017 9:19 am

DavidMcC wrote:
If you can list even a few of your "multitude", I will show you that either they are part of one or other of these three, or are incorrectly listed.


Which three do you mean? So far you have only offered things that are NOT free will
Why do you think that?
GrahamH
 
Posts: 17220

Print view this post

Re: Free Will

#9615  Postby DavidMcC » Sep 20, 2017 9:25 am

GrahamH wrote:
DavidMcC wrote:
If you can list even a few of your "multitude", I will show you that either they are part of one or other of these three, or are incorrectly listed.


Which three do you mean? So far you have only offered things that are NOT free will

I never said the list was other than non-free willed situations. In addition, I have said many times before that free will comes from thinking rationally, and that would cover the gap that you are imaginintg.
May The Voice be with you!
DavidMcC
 
Name: David McCulloch
Posts: 14290
Age: 64
Male

Country: United Kigdom
United Kingdom (uk)
Print view this post

Ads by Google


Re: Free Will

#9616  Postby GrahamH » Sep 20, 2017 9:38 am

DavidMcC wrote:
GrahamH wrote:
DavidMcC wrote:
If you can list even a few of your "multitude", I will show you that either they are part of one or other of these three, or are incorrectly listed.


Which three do you mean? So far you have only offered things that are NOT free will

I never said the list was other than non-free willed situations. In addition, I have said many times before that free will comes from thinking rationally, and that would cover the gap that you are imaginintg.


So you are not defining what free will IS, only what it isn't.
Or are you equating rational thinking with free will?

You also hint at some necessary role for weak emotion. Can you define that?
Why do you think that?
GrahamH
 
Posts: 17220

Print view this post

Re: Free Will

#9617  Postby GrahamH » Sep 20, 2017 9:50 am

How about speaking, is that a free will act, in your opinion? It seems to me that we do not deliberate, do not think rationally about our speech before we voice it. Isn't it also one of the stronger candidates for an experience of free will?

Thinking about my experience of speaking I would say there is a strong sense of agency and intentionality to it. It seems that these are my words that I intended to say, but I can't separate the saying from the intention. I can't give myself a good account of how the words are chosen. They just flow. It doesn't seem possibly that I could tell the difference if any external influence that I was not aware of was subtly seeding the words. It seems quite possible I would still think they were my freely willed words unless I could see very clear evidence they were not.

An example of that could be inadvertent pagarism.

I don't see a need for emotion there and I don't see that strong emotion would make my words less mine or less intentional or less free-willed.

:scratch:
Why do you think that?
GrahamH
 
Posts: 17220

Print view this post

Re: Free Will

#9618  Postby Cito di Pense » Sep 20, 2017 11:01 am

DavidMcC wrote:I have said many times before that free will comes from thinking rationally, and that would cover the gap that you are imagining.


Why don't you call it 'thinking rationally' instead of referring it to 'free will'? Do you love the latter term so much? So, no, free will does not come from thinking rationally, because you obviously count some situations when thinking rationally has nothing to do with free will.
Last edited by Cito di Pense on Sep 20, 2017 11:02 am, edited 1 time in total.
Хлопнут без некролога. -- Серге́й Па́влович Королёв

Translation by Elbert Hubbard: Do not take life too seriously. You're not going to get out of it alive.
User avatar
Cito di Pense
 
Name: Ivar Poäng
Posts: 24320
Age: 6
Male

Country: The Heartland
Mongolia (mn)
Print view this post

Re: Free Will

#9619  Postby DavidMcC » Sep 20, 2017 11:02 am

GrahamH wrote:How about speaking, is that a free will act, in your opinion? It seems to me that we do not deliberate, do not think rationally about our speech before we voice it. Isn't it also one of the stronger candidates for an experience of free will?

Thinking about my experience of speaking I would say there is a strong sense of agency and intentionality to it. It seems that these are my words that I intended to say, but I can't separate the saying from the intention. I can't give myself a good account of how the words are chosen. They just flow. It doesn't seem possibly that I could tell the difference if any external influence that I was not aware of was subtly seeding the words. It seems quite possible I would still think they were my freely willed words unless I could see very clear evidence they were not.

An example of that could be inadvertent pagarism.

I don't see a need for emotion there and I don't see that strong emotion would make my words less mine or less intentional or less free-willed.

:scratch:

Speaking per se is surely a free will act, but the words we speak as adults are so thorougly learned that they are habitual, not requiring significant forethought - they just flow, as you say. Thus, some emotion (not usually strong) drives us to speak in the first place, but there is usually no emotion involved in choosing the words, IMO.
May The Voice be with you!
DavidMcC
 
Name: David McCulloch
Posts: 14290
Age: 64
Male

Country: United Kigdom
United Kingdom (uk)
Print view this post

Re: Free Will

#9620  Postby Cito di Pense » Sep 20, 2017 11:06 am

DavidMcC wrote:Thus, some emotion (not usually strong) drives us to speak in the first place, but there is usually no emotion involved in choosing the words, IMO.


Yeah, that would be (in some cases) the desire to communicate). Desires don't always indicate something that's rational, let alone necessary.
Хлопнут без некролога. -- Серге́й Па́влович Королёв

Translation by Elbert Hubbard: Do not take life too seriously. You're not going to get out of it alive.
User avatar
Cito di Pense
 
Name: Ivar Poäng
Posts: 24320
Age: 6
Male

Country: The Heartland
Mongolia (mn)
Print view this post

PreviousNext

Return to Philosophy

Who is online

Users viewing this topic: No registered users and 5 guests