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Free will

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Re: Free will « Reply #615 on: March 12, 2013, 04:51 PM »
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why the intuition that life has meaning is so deeply ingrained in us?
Because it helps you survive. A person that takes and receives greater meaning from life will be more likely to fight harder to survive than a person that takes little meaning from it.
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Clydey
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Re: Free will « Reply #616 on: March 12, 2013, 04:51 PM »
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So you are saying this idea of ‘logical consistency’ existed before the Big Bang and this idea or logic essentially caused the event of the Universe that we live in right now?

I haven't read the book, but Lawrence Krauss' "A Universe From Nothing" has been well-received.

On that point, here's something to torture yourselves over. Can you define nothing or visualise the concept of "nothing"?
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Re: Free will « Reply #617 on: March 12, 2013, 04:51 PM »
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So you are saying this idea of ‘logical consistency’ existed before the Big Bang and this idea or logic essentially caused the event of the Universe that we live in right now?
Pretty much, yes.
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Re: Free will « Reply #618 on: March 12, 2013, 05:02 PM »
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Because most people don't think about it. And those who do think about it, don't do so until they are older. By that time, we have been exposed to years of environmental pressure that reinforces the idea that we have free will.

When did I say that everything has a prior cause? Our actions certainly all have prior causes. However, the idea that everything has a prior cause is a pitfall in our thinking because we are pattern-seeking creatures. There is no reason not to think that the universe, even prior to the big bang, existed in some form.

Why should I know? I'm not a physicist. Go tweet Lawrence Krauss.

Determinism is essentially a pattern. As laundry described it as 'logical consistency'; in other words a definite pattern. We are a part of the same pattern and the Universe doesn't create contradictions or else it would have destroyed itself a long time ago. Us human beings create all the contradictions as we don't have full knowledge about the Universe or even fraction of it. Our knowledge of the Universe and how it truly works and beyond is probably that of an ant.

The reason why I asked what caused the Big Bang is because you've been demanding an event without cause for a while now. I already know you don't have an answer for it. You may have some theories but nothing concrete. This in fact defies your position on Determinism.
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Re: Free will « Reply #619 on: March 12, 2013, 05:05 PM »
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Because it helps you survive. A person that takes and receives greater meaning from life will be more likely to fight harder to survive than a person that takes little meaning from it.

But we don't need the 'illusion of free will' in order to survive. The animals aren't aware of their own existence and yet they don't have any problems surviving. So surviving is definitely not the ideal scenario there. It is the conscious awareness of our own existence that begs the question - that makes us think that way. So the next question is, why are we aware of our own existence?
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Re: Free will « Reply #620 on: March 12, 2013, 05:07 PM »
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Pretty much, yes.

How did then this idea of 'logical consistency' came into effect in the first place?
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Re: Free will « Reply #621 on: March 12, 2013, 05:08 PM »
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On that point, here's something to torture yourselves over. Can you define nothing or visualise the concept of "nothing"?
An extract from the brilliant book 'Everything Forever' by Gevin Giorbran. Which is one I definitely advise reading.

The Real Nothing

Imagine you are standing in a white world, like the commercials or movies portraying heaven. In this world there is nothing but white everywhere. The oneness of white extends away from you in every direction. You try to look out into the distance, but because there is just the one color you can’t tell if the space of this world extends out forever or if its edge remains just out of reach. As you reach out your hand, you realize that your physical body provides the only sense of distance here. Your body is all that exists in a giant field of nothingness. There is no length or width beyond your body. There is no distance to anywhere else, because there isn’t anything else to measure a distance to. So if your body happens also to turn white, then suddenly all sense of dimension is erased. The very meaning of place and distance is lost. Soon even the one color of white will disappear from your experience. You will soon become blind to white, because you don’t have any other color to judge the meaning of this one color against. Soon, for you, this endless white world becomes nothing at all.
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Re: Free will « Reply #622 on: March 12, 2013, 05:11 PM »
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We are a part of the same pattern and the Universe doesn't create contradictions or else it would have destroyed itself a long time ago.

You have just asserted something without providing anything approaching proof. I can't help but think that you view the universe as a conscious entity.

Quote
The reason why I asked what caused the Big Bang is because you've been demanding an event without cause for a while now. I already know you don't have an answer for it. You may have some theories but nothing concrete. This in fact defies your position on Determinism.

No, it doesn't. It has nothing to do with my question. We know, logically, that all of our actions have prior causes simply by virtue of the fact that we have ancestors. That cannot be applied to the universe.

Keep trying, though.
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Re: Free will « Reply #623 on: March 12, 2013, 05:14 PM »
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How did then this idea of 'logical consistency' came into effect in the first place?
It's logic, how could logic not exist? It doesn't come into existence, it always exists as a fundamental truth, it would be impossible for it not to exist.
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Re: Free will « Reply #624 on: March 12, 2013, 05:14 PM »
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Let's take a look at Determinism.

======================================================

Determinism is the philosophical idea that every event or state of affairs, including every human decision and action, is the inevitable and necessary consequence of antecedent states of affairs.

Since modern quantum physics shows that the universe is indeterministic, with profound effects on microscopic processes at the atomic scale, we will find it valuable to distinguish pre-determinism from the adequate determinism that we have in the real world. Adequate determinism is the basis for the classical physical laws that apply in the macrocosmos.

Determinism is a modern name (coined in the nineteenth-century) for Democritus' ancient idea that causal deterministic laws control the motion of atoms, and that everything - including human minds - consists merely of atoms in a void.

As Democritus' mentor and fellow materialist Leucippus put it, an absolute necessity leaves no room in the cosmos for chance.

"Nothing occurs at random, but everything for a reason and by necessity."

Determinism, especially the variation of "soft" determinism (cf. William James) or compatibilism, is supported as a theory of free will by a majority of philosophers, each with special vested interests in one or more of the many determinisms.

Compatibilists accept determinism but argue that man is free as long as his own will is one of the steps in the causal chain, even if his choices are completely predetermined for physical reasons or preordained by God.

The core idea of determinism is closely related to the idea of causality. But we can have causality without determinism, especially the "soft" causality that follows an "uncaused" event (a causa sui) that is not predictable from prior events.

The idea of indeterminism appears to threaten causality and the basic idea of causal law. But it does not.

Indeterminism for some is simply an occasional event without a cause. We can have an adequate causality without strict determinism. Strict determinism means complete predictability of events and only one possible future. Adequate determinism provides statistical predictability, which in normal situations for physical objects approaches statistical certainty.

An example of an event that is not strictly caused is one that depends on chance, like the flip of a coin. If the outcome is only probable, not certain, then the event can be said to have been caused by the coin flip, but the head or tails result itself was not predictable. So this causality, which recognizes prior events as causes, is undetermined and the result of chance alone.

We call this "soft" causality. Events are caused by prior (uncaused) events, but not determined by events earlier in the causal chain, which has been broken by the uncaused cause.


Determinism is critical for the question of free will. Strict determinism implies just one possible future. Chance means that the future is unpredictable. Chance allows alternative futures and the question becomes how the one actual present is realized from these alternative possibilities.

Belief in strict determinism, in the face of physical evidence for indeterminism, is only tenable today for dogmatic philosophy. We survey ten modern dogmas of determinism.

Phillipa Foot argued that because our actions are determined by our motives, our character and values, our feelings and desires, in no way leads to the conclusion that they are pre-determined from the beginning of the universe.

The presence of quantum uncertainty leads some philosophers to call the world indetermined. But indeterminism is somewhat misleading, with strong negative connotations, when most events are overwhelmingly "adequately determined." Nevertheless, speaking logically, if a single event is undetermined, then indeterminism is true, and determinism false.

The Emergence of Determinism

Since the physical world is irreducibly indeterministic at the base level of atoms and molecules, there is actually no strict determinism at any "level" of the physical world.

With random motions at the base level, what emerges at the higher level of the macroscopic physical world and the human mind is adequate determinism. Determinism is an abstract theoretical idea that simplifies physical systems enough to allow the use of logical and mathematical methods on idealized abstract "objects" and "events." The apparent "determinism" of classical physics is the consequence of averaging over extremely large numbers of microscopic particles.


Adequate determinism "emerges" when we have large enough objects to be averaging over vast numbers of atoms and molecules.

Determinism is an emergent property.

More here….
http://www.informationphilosopher.com/freedom/determinism.html
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Re: Free will « Reply #625 on: March 12, 2013, 05:15 PM »
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It's logic, how could logic not exist?

How could logic exist when essentially there was nothing?
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Re: Free will « Reply #626 on: March 12, 2013, 05:17 PM »
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How could logic exist when essentially there was nothing?
There wasn't ever nothing, logic has always existed and it can't not exist. I would argue further that everything that exists has always existed and will always continue to exist but that's another story.
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Clydey
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Re: Free will « Reply #627 on: March 12, 2013, 05:21 PM »
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How could logic exist when essentially there was nothing?
Let's take a look at Determinism.

======================================================

Determinism is the philosophical idea that every event or state of affairs, including every human decision and action, is the inevitable and necessary consequence of antecedent states of affairs.

Since modern quantum physics shows that the universe is indeterministic, with profound effects on microscopic processes at the atomic scale, we will find it valuable to distinguish pre-determinism from the adequate determinism that we have in the real world. Adequate determinism is the basis for the classical physical laws that apply in the macrocosmos.

Determinism is a modern name (coined in the nineteenth-century) for Democritus' ancient idea that causal deterministic laws control the motion of atoms, and that everything - including human minds - consists merely of atoms in a void.

As Democritus' mentor and fellow materialist Leucippus put it, an absolute necessity leaves no room in the cosmos for chance.

"Nothing occurs at random, but everything for a reason and by necessity."

Determinism, especially the variation of "soft" determinism (cf. William James) or compatibilism, is supported as a theory of free will by a majority of philosophers, each with special vested interests in one or more of the many determinisms.

Compatibilists accept determinism but argue that man is free as long as his own will is one of the steps in the causal chain, even if his choices are completely predetermined for physical reasons or preordained by God.

The core idea of determinism is closely related to the idea of causality. But we can have causality without determinism, especially the "soft" causality that follows an "uncaused" event (a causa sui) that is not predictable from prior events.

The idea of indeterminism appears to threaten causality and the basic idea of causal law. But it does not.

Indeterminism for some is simply an occasional event without a cause. We can have an adequate causality without strict determinism. Strict determinism means complete predictability of events and only one possible future. Adequate determinism provides statistical predictability, which in normal situations for physical objects approaches statistical certainty.

An example of an event that is not strictly caused is one that depends on chance, like the flip of a coin. If the outcome is only probable, not certain, then the event can be said to have been caused by the coin flip, but the head or tails result itself was not predictable. So this causality, which recognizes prior events as causes, is undetermined and the result of chance alone.

We call this "soft" causality. Events are caused by prior (uncaused) events, but not determined by events earlier in the causal chain, which has been broken by the uncaused cause.


Determinism is critical for the question of free will. Strict determinism implies just one possible future. Chance means that the future is unpredictable. Chance allows alternative futures and the question becomes how the one actual present is realized from these alternative possibilities.

Belief in strict determinism, in the face of physical evidence for indeterminism, is only tenable today for dogmatic philosophy. We survey ten modern dogmas of determinism.

Phillipa Foot argued that because our actions are determined by our motives, our character and values, our feelings and desires, in no way leads to the conclusion that they are pre-determined from the beginning of the universe.

The presence of quantum uncertainty leads some philosophers to call the world indetermined. But indeterminism is somewhat misleading, with strong negative connotations, when most events are overwhelmingly "adequately determined." Nevertheless, speaking logically, if a single event is undetermined, then indeterminism is true, and determinism false.

The Emergence of Determinism

Since the physical world is irreducibly indeterministic at the base level of atoms and molecules, there is actually no strict determinism at any "level" of the physical world.

With random motions at the base level, what emerges at the higher level of the macroscopic physical world and the human mind is adequate determinism. Determinism is an abstract theoretical idea that simplifies physical systems enough to allow the use of logical and mathematical methods on idealized abstract "objects" and "events." The apparent "determinism" of classical physics is the consequence of averaging over extremely large numbers of microscopic particles.


Adequate determinism "emerges" when we have large enough objects to be averaging over vast numbers of atoms and molecules.

Determinism is an emergent property.

More here….
http://www.informationphilosopher.com/freedom/determinism.html


There are different types of determinism.
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Re: Free will « Reply #628 on: March 12, 2013, 05:23 PM »
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How could logic exist when essentially there was nothing?
The cosmos is inherent in precious self-knowledge. The universe inspires existential acceptance.
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Re: Free will « Reply #629 on: March 12, 2013, 05:24 PM »
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The cosmos is inherent in precious self-knowledge. The universe inspires existential acceptance.

This Chopra is good.
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