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Free will vs. determinism

 
 
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Aug, 2010 08:48 am
@peacegirl,
peacegirl wrote:
What many people do is find ways to get around the penal system in order to get what they want. In fact, some get great satisfaction in just seeing if they can beat the system and not get caught.

That's true. But then that undermines your position.

peacegirl wrote:
But you would have a conscience.

Only after the new system came into place. But if there are enough people without consciences, then the new system wouldn't come into place at all.

peacegirl wrote:
The author writes:

Do you have some sort of problem with identifying Lessans by name? Are you ashamed of him?

peacegirl wrote:
No Joe. That's not what he is saying. If you had just read the book you wouldn't have this question.

I don't plan on reading the book unless you can provide a compelling enough summary that would make me want to read it.

peacegirl wrote:
The hurt to the one who is hungry is a first blow, so this action on his part would be justified and his conscience would permit the theft. Only when something is a first blow; something that is done to gain at someone else's expense, will conscience be affected and not permit the action because it would be unjustifiable.

That doesn't make any sense. He would be justified in striking the first blow but then he wouldn't be justified? Which is it?

peacegirl wrote:
Of course sociopaths exist, but you can't even begin to project the power of this law of our nature.

Hunh?

peacegirl wrote:
Also, when the causes that led to a person to become a psychopath or a sociopath will no longer be. Even those children who may be born with a predisposition to lash out when hurt, will be prevented. Just like someone may have a predisposition to a certain illness, doesn't mean it will automatically manifest itself. It takes a combination of environmental and hereditary factors for it to become a full blown disease.

Are you suggesting that sociopathy is due solely to environmental factors?

peacegirl wrote:
Inductive reasoning because it is a psychological law that applies to everyone, just like one plus one equals two can be counted on no matter what two items you are being added together.

There's no such thing as an inductive "law," at least in the sense that it admits of no possible exceptions. That's especially true of psychology. But then, as I mentioned before, if Lessans is wrong about his assumptions regarding human nature, then his entire philosophical system is wrong.
Arjuna
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Aug, 2010 09:05 am
@peacegirl,
peacegirl wrote:

peacegirl: I happen to agree with you. I don't know what you've read of this book, but the author never said we don't have a will, which is part of our personal experience. He is just demonstrating that it is not a free will. This is where he separates himself from the conventional definition that says we are driven by outside forces with no say in the matter.
So we agree. That means we have some common ground.

I also agree that the image of the unbound Will is an image of meaninglessness (see the ending of Richard III.)

Maybe we'll find in our minds a kind of spectrum... on one end is the unbound Will. On the other side looms the spectre of a Universe where the experience of being is a lie. How could any intelligent statement arise from either of these points? Intelligent statements must arise from the vantage point of the pendulum that swings... always somewhere in between... partaking of both sides.

With anything you see, feel, or think... part of the truth hides in the shadows. Little mysticism for ya....


Very Happy
peacegirl
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Aug, 2010 09:37 am
@joefromchicago,
peacegirl wrote:
What many people do is find ways to get around the penal system in order to get what they want. In fact, some get great satisfaction in just seeing if they can beat the system and not get caught.

joe: That's true. But then that undermines your position.

peacegirl: Where does it undermine my position? I am talking about a world without blame and punishment where people will not be able to beat the system, because there will be no system to beat.

peacegirl wrote:
But you would have a conscience.

joe: Only after the new system came into place. But if there are enough people without consciences, then the new system wouldn't come into place at all.

peacegirl: We are all born with a conscience, but our environment can weaken it. When the new conditions of the environment are put into place, there is no way one's conscience can manipulate or take advantage of a good thing.

joe: Do you have some sort of problem with identifying Lessans by name? Are you ashamed of him?

peacegirl: No, I just don't like the spiders in the search engines to pick up everything I write.

peacegirl wrote: No Joe. That's not what he is saying. If you had just read the book you wouldn't have this question.

joe: I don't plan on reading the book unless you can provide a compelling enough summary that would make me want to read it.

peacegirl: I am trying to pique your interest, but if I can't, what can I say? You win some and you lose some. It would be your loss, not mine, because this knowledge not only talks about a new world; it helps people in this world as well.

peacegirl wrote: The hurt to the one who is hungry is a first blow, so this action on his part would be justified and his conscience would permit the theft. Only when something is a first blow; something that is done to gain at someone else's expense, will conscience be affected and not permit the action because it would be unjustifiable.

joe: That doesn't make any sense. He would be justified in striking the first blow but then he wouldn't be justified? Which is it?

peacegirl: He would be justified to steal if he could find no food any other way. This would be a justifiable hurt to someone else. Does that make sense?

peacegirl wrote:
Of course sociopaths exist, but you can't even begin to project the power of this law of our nature.

joe: Hunh?

peacegirl: This natural law is not selective. It has the power to prevent people from desiring to hurt others. Therefore, in the new world there will be no psychopaths or sociopaths. I know this is hard to believe, but it's true, except for those rare instances where someone is so sick that this law has no effect. They would then have to be taken off the streets, just as they are today. But mental illness will be virtually non-existent in the new world.

peacegirl wrote: Also, when the causes that led to a person to become a psychopath or a sociopath will no longer be. Even those children who may be born with a predisposition to lash out when hurt, will be prevented. Just like someone may have a predisposition to a certain illness, doesn't mean it will automatically manifest itself. It takes a combination of environmental and hereditary factors for it to become a full blown disease.

joe: Are you suggesting that sociopathy is due solely to environmental factors?

peacegirl: Yes, the propensity to become a sociopath could be present but it will never be triggered in an environment such as the one described.

peacegirl wrote:
Inductive reasoning because it is a psychological law that applies to everyone, just like one plus one equals two can be counted on no matter what two items you are being added together.

joe: There's no such thing as an inductive "law," at least in the sense that it admits of no possible exceptions. That's especially true of psychology. But then, as I mentioned before, if Lessans is wrong about his assumptions regarding human nature, then his entire philosophical system is wrong.

peacegirl: I didn't say an 'inductive law.' I said a psychological law that is based on inductive reasoning and astute observation.
0 Replies
 
peacegirl
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Aug, 2010 09:51 am
@Arjuna,
peacegirl: I happen to agree with you. I don't know what you've read of this book, but the author never said we don't have a will, which is part of our personal experience. He is just demonstrating that it is not a free will. This is where he separates himself from the conventional definition that says we are driven by outside forces with no say in the matter.

Arjuna: So we agree. That means we have some common ground.

I also agree that the image of the unbound Will is an image of meaninglessness (see the ending of Richard III.)

Maybe we'll find in our minds a kind of spectrum... on one end is the unbound Will. On the other side looms the spectre of a Universe where the experience of being is a lie. How could any intelligent statement arise from either of these points? Intelligent statements must arise from the vantage point of the pendulum that swings... always somewhere in between... partaking of both sides.

peacegirl: There is no unbound will, according to this author, so the spectrum theory really doesn't apply. Many things do fall in the middle of the pendulum though. Balance is the key. Smile

Arjuna: With anything you see, feel, or think... part of the truth hides in the shadows. Little mysticism for ya....

peacegirl: I agree with you. A lot of what we think is real is based on illusion.
Arjuna
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Aug, 2010 12:14 pm
@peacegirl,
Maybe we're not on the same page, but we're somewhere in the same book.

The unbound Will is an image of meaninglessness. Or... the unbound Will does not exist. The two statements don't mean exactly the same thing, but it's close. Close only counts in horseshoes, hand-grenades, and philosophy threads that are prone to spiralling off into baloney.

That leaves us with the ancient topic of morality. If I've understood you, your point is that immoral action is self-destructive. Villiany originates in a lack of understanding of this. True?



peacegirl
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Aug, 2010 12:53 pm
@Arjuna,
Maybe we're not on the same page, but we're somewhere in the same book.

The unbound Will is an image of meaninglessness. Or... the unbound Will does not exist. The two statements don't mean exactly the same thing, but it's close. Close only counts in horseshoes, hand-grenades, and philosophy threads that are prone to spiralling off into baloney.

That leaves us with the ancient topic of morality. If I've understood you, your point is that immoral action is self-destructive. Villiany originates in a lack of understanding of this. True?

peacegirl: Not exactly. There is no villian, only people who choose to hurt others, for one reason or another. But with a greater understanding of our nature, we are able, for the very first time, to eliminate this hurt; something that we have not been able to accomplish until now.

0 Replies
 
InfraBlue
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Aug, 2010 01:48 pm
@peacegirl,
Quote:
He did not say that free will was not true

Oh, I think he's pretty convinced of that. In page 22, Lessans states that man's will is not free. Then in page 28 he states that free will must always remain a theory. He's making a logical leap from asserting that free will must always remain a theory to asserting that man's will is not free.
peacegirl
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Aug, 2010 02:08 pm
@InfraBlue,
Infrablue wrote:
He did not say that free will was not true
Oh, I think he's pretty convinced of that. In page 22, Lessans states that man's will is not free. Then in page 28 he states that free will must always remain a theory. He's making a logical leap from asserting that free will must always remain a theory to asserting that man's will is not free.


Wrong. He doesn't say we don't have free will and then jump from that to asserting that man's will is not free. He gave a separate proof for why man's will is not free. You must not have read that part yet. Why do you make such leaps?
InfraBlue
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Aug, 2010 03:39 pm
@peacegirl,
So then, he does claim that man's will is not free. Where in the book is the proof you say he provides?
peacegirl
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Aug, 2010 08:58 pm
@InfraBlue,
page 41 on
0 Replies
 
chicalleje
 
  1  
Reply Sat 4 Sep, 2010 02:18 am
Determinism has nothing to do with free will. They are two different forms of discourse.

Doesn't matter if the natural world is determined (it is not) or if there is some sort of quantum ramdomness, that doesn't have anything to do with social discourse.

If there is free will at all, is in the social world that free will exist. In the way we people explain what we experience, in the culture. Even if all behaviour in the universe is determine (why sould it be?) we can have free will becouse is a social construct.

We can't mix different discourses, we can't talk about ethics in the natural world, ethics don't exist there, ethics exist in our experience of the world, in culture.

Sorry for my english.

0 Replies
 
shanemcd3
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Jul, 2011 01:23 pm
while it is true that the action or inaction is preceded by the thought process, the thought process is in turn preceded by neurons firing in the brain, which is preceded by the influence of external forces, through the senses, and the state of ones body. the issue of determinism is a different matter, and depends on whether the quantum world is truly goverened by probabilities, in which case the future is unwritten, or if there are hidden variables, in which case the future is fixed. another interesting idea is the "many worlds" interpretation of quantum mechanics, where all probabilities are realised. when the wave function collapses, the world splits. as an analogy, in one world you decide to take a walk, and in another you choose not too. however in reality it happens on a much smaller scale, on the sub atomic scale, so there is an almost infinite number of worlds in existence.
0 Replies
 
 

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