queen annie
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 11:40 am
neologist wrote:
Would you folks agree that the traditional concept of an almighty God applies to him the attribute of free will?

Yes, but not at all in the way Luther seemed to need to purport.

Ultimately, my bottom-line deepest feeling about 'free-will' is basically the ability to create, at will, living things. I feel that truly only the Father and then Christ, have so far had what I truly consider free will. Of course, Christ's free will was bestowed by the Father, but was given in full. It would surely have been necessary for the success of His earthly work--without free will what good is the sacrifice? Of what redemption the obedience?

Quote:
This fine fellow believed such:
Martin Luther wrote:
God foresees, foreordains, and accomplishes all things by an unchanging, eternal, and effacious will. By this thunderbolt free will sinks shattered in the dust.


Truly, if this were so, I would revile such a god with my dying breath.

Ole' Martin was often a bit, er, eccentric in his approach. Although on a few things he was right on, IMO. But no more than anyone else, most likely--his mark was made possible, to a large extent, by timing. At least I think so. And I don't mean the Halloween postings on the door. Rolling Eyes
I mean as far as it being the 5th day going on the 6th day in the grand scheme of this age--the time was up on the dark ages, no matter what. He was just there with the mind and heart receptive to do his part.

God gives us the opportunity to choose, and we call it free will--and it does seem to make us happy, whether we truly consider it such or not. It is the lateral allowances that are manifested in the daily decisions we must make that are our tutors, no doubt.
But in that allowance God is much more beneficient than the one Luther seems to conceive of, as far as willpower and tyranny are concerned.
0 Replies
 
echi
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 01:29 pm
neologist wrote:
Would you folks agree that the traditional concept of an almighty God applies to him the attribute of free will?quote]

I am not exactly sure what the traditional concept is, but I guess it would be something like a "Santa Claus God". In that case, yes..."He" has free will, no doubt.
My concept of God does not possess free will (at least not "real" free will). God is unbounded but is not free to be what It isn't.
0 Replies
 
timberlandko
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 01:43 pm
echi wrote:
My concept of God does not possess free will (at least not "real" free will). God is unbounded but is not free to be what It isn't.

Interesting ... I submit that observation appears to combine the concepts of oxymoron and tautology ... great work, there.

Sorta brings to mind another catchy tune:

Row, row, row your boat,
Gently down the stream.
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily,
Life is but a dream ...
0 Replies
 
echi
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 02:59 pm
timberlandko wrote:
echi wrote:
My concept of God does not possess free will (at least not "real" free will). God is unbounded but is not free to be what It isn't.

Interesting ... I submit that observation appears to combine the concepts of oxymoron and tautology ... great work, there.

Sorta brings to mind another catchy tune:

Row, row, row your boat,
Gently down the stream.
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily,
Life is but a dream ...


Well, maybe I can fix it up for you, then. Let's see...
What we usually think of as free will, is not really "free" will, as "choice" is determined. I still use the name "free will" because that's its name. (I would prefer to call it something else, but nothing I can think of does a better job of describing what I mean. Maybe someone else can.)
Does that help any?
0 Replies
 
Doktor S
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 03:08 pm
Maybe my own personal interpretation will *-resonate with some...
Although 'freewill' can't exist in a deterministic universe, it really doesn't make a whit of difference. Th ILLUSION of freewill is completely convincing. This is partially due to the linear and forward moving nature of time, and partially due to our complete inability to predict the future given current technology. (I read somewhere that you would have to monitor the activities of every atom within a 15 mile radius for one hour to acurately predict the future of one atom 5 seconds into the future; I don't know how acurate this information is but it serves to illuminate my point)
So sure, what happens next 'could' be predicted, and thus is predetermined, but not predicted by US. The illusion of freewill can only be dispersed by acurate prediction, and we are nowhere near that technology yet.
0 Replies
 
echi
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 03:10 pm
Correction:
"Free will" does a poor job describing but a good job indicating.
0 Replies
 
echi
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 03:19 pm
I get the impression that a lot of people believe that if everything is deterministic then we should be able to predict the future with absolute certainty. But this idea neglects the fact that we are part of the whole...we are not, and cannot be, outside looking in, taking measurements. We cannot completely separate ourselves from our subject.
0 Replies
 
Doktor S
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 03:23 pm
echi wrote:
I get the impression that a lot of people believe that if everything is deterministic then we should be able to predict the future with absolute certainty. But this idea neglects the fact that we are part of the whole...we are not, and cannot be, outside looking in, taking measurements. We cannot completely separate ourselves from our subject.

No, we are still part of the equation, not outside of it. But that doesn't really eliminate the possibility of prediction, it just complicates it.
0 Replies
 
queen annie
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 03:24 pm
echi wrote:
God is unbounded but is not free to be what It isn't.


But if unbounded, what is there that 'isn't?'
0 Replies
 
echi
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 03:30 pm
Doktor S wrote:
echi wrote:
I get the impression that a lot of people believe that if everything is deterministic then we should be able to predict the future with absolute certainty. But this idea neglects the fact that we are part of the whole...we are not, and cannot be, outside looking in, taking measurements. We cannot completely separate ourselves from our subject.

No, we are still part of the equation, not outside of it. But that doesn't really eliminate the possibility of prediction, it just complicates it.


I don't know, Dok. When you measure something, you also change it. Could you predict the ways in which you've changed the thing you've just measured?
I don't know. I need to do more thinkin' on that one.
0 Replies
 
Doktor S
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 03:30 pm
the idea that there would be a distinction between what IS and what ISN'T does in and of itself create 'bounds' now doesn't it?
0 Replies
 
echi
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 03:41 pm
queen annie wrote:
echi wrote:
God is unbounded but is not free to be what It isn't.


But if unbounded, what is there that 'isn't?'




My concept of God is similar to my concept of anything else. Everything is free to do what it wants to do, and that's what it always does.
0 Replies
 
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 03:42 pm
My concept of a unicorn is that of a horned horse who can fly whereever he wishes. Gee that's spiritually profound!

The only way I can refute "free will" is to dismiss it as untenable. Indeed, I consider all of our classic debates to be founded on untenable dichotomies--free will vs. determinism, virtue vs. evil, nature vs nurture, truth vs. delusion, absolute vs. relative, illness vs. health, mind (experience) vs. matter (brain functions), etc. etc. When we look at these debates we find sophisticated arguments for each side. That seems possible because there is evidence for both sides of each coin. But to me the reality is more a matter of situationally concrete interchanges of "forces" conceptualized in terms of polar oppositions, a reality consisting of degrees and grey combinations rather than discrete absolutes.
0 Replies
 
Doktor S
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 03:49 pm
Quote:

That seems possible because there is evidence for both sides of each coin.

Really?
Where is the evidence for the 'freewill' side of THIS debate?
0 Replies
 
echi
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 03:51 pm
JLN--

I think that's pretty much where this is all headed, like you said. And it's the "situationally concrete interchanges of 'forces'" and "grey combinations" that I am more interested in understanding (or at least understanding why I cannot understand).
0 Replies
 
echi
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 03:59 pm
Damn, Dok... That's a mighty fine question. What is free will, then? Or, why do we feel as though we have a real choice in anything, even though we really don't?
0 Replies
 
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 04:02 pm
Echi, I have the same problem. It is VERY difficult to understand the world non-dualistically. Our cultural orientations and language structures demand linear and dualistic approaches. BUT we EXPERIENCE (if not understand) the world non-dualistically--I believe that's what meditation is about; it's not a pursuit of knowledge; it's a familiarization with nameless reality, with what is happening right now.
0 Replies
 
Doktor S
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 04:09 pm
echi wrote:
Damn, Dok... That's a mighty fine question. What is free will, then? Or, why do we feel as though we have a real choice in anything, even though we really don't?

Because the illusion is very convincing.
that is until you scrutinize it, which most never do.
0 Replies
 
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 04:11 pm
When I look BACK "in time", I feel like a determinist. Things could not possibly have happened any other way (although M Theorists might disagree), because they didn't.
When I look FORWARD "in time", I feel like a free-willist because I MUST (existentially) make choices, i.e., choose between identifiable options. I do believe, however, that these are just feelings, delusional but necessary ones at that.
We do not seem to be able to function without the "as if" assumptions of linear time, causation and ego-selves, but that is not evidence for their ontological reality.
0 Replies
 
echi
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Dec, 2005 04:15 pm
Dok--

Yeah, I know. I can get that far. But I can't think of a reason why we perceive it that way. Why has it been easier for us to accept "free will" over determinism? Why would fiction seem more obvious than reality?
0 Replies
 
 

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