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Author Topic:   Free will but how free really?
Tangle
Member
Posts: 6389
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 166 of 182 (814252)
07-05-2017 11:59 AM
Reply to: Message 165 by New Cat's Eye
07-05-2017 10:34 AM


NCE writes:

I have a set of personal experiences and beliefs, just like everyone else. The word "religion" can be used to describe that set and that is how I have been using the word.

I don't have "a set of personal experiences and beliefs, just like everyone else" that could "describe a religion".

But anyway, you've had what you call a religious experience and you're also a member of a religious organisation. Fine, been there, done that.

So is it going to carry on or is it going to fade away?

It's going to do what it's been doing for decades which is fade away. That's both the organisation and with it the experience. Without the perpetuation of the myth, the need to worship it fades away. If you haven't been told the myth you can't have the religious experience relating to it.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 165 by New Cat's Eye, posted 07-05-2017 10:34 AM New Cat's Eye has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 169 by New Cat's Eye, posted 07-05-2017 1:53 PM Tangle has responded

  
ICANT
Member
Posts: 6133
From: SSC
Joined: 03-12-2007
Member Rating: 1.1


(1)
Message 167 of 182 (814260)
07-05-2017 12:49 PM
Reply to: Message 32 by Agobot
09-24-2008 12:52 PM


Re: Who orchestrated this?
Hi Agobot,

Agobot writes:

If Free Will is not ours then whose is it? Who/what could have a reason for orchestrating an Universe and life and play with our lives, in a pre-determined game?

You have raised many questions which raise several questions for me.

Where would free will come from in the evolution process?
You suggest the genes, then talk about DNA which has the blueprint for the human body in every cell in the body.

Since the information in the DNA is gained through the evolution process where does the free will come from?

The only free will I know of comes from God and it is built into every human.

You have the free will to believe in God or not to believe in God.

If you believe in God you have the free will to take Him at His Word and trust Him to take care of the future.

But free will if evolution is correct is an impossibility in my opinion as someone or something had to program it into humans.

God Bless,


"John 5:39 (KJS) Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me."

This message is a reply to:
 Message 32 by Agobot, posted 09-24-2008 12:52 PM Agobot has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 168 by Stile, posted 07-05-2017 1:46 PM ICANT has not yet responded

    
Stile
Member
Posts: 3282
From: Ontario, Canada
Joined: 12-02-2004
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 168 of 182 (814262)
07-05-2017 1:46 PM
Reply to: Message 167 by ICANT
07-05-2017 12:49 PM


Re: Who orchestrated this?
ICANT writes:

Since the information in the DNA is gained through the evolution process where does the free will come from?

What is it about the evolution process you think prevents free will from being created?

The only free will I know of comes from God and it is built into every human.

And the only free will I know of comes from the evolution process which is also built into every human.

At least there's some evidence for the evolution process to exist...
What now?

At one point, there were no eyes.
Through the evolution process of mutation and natural selection... there are now eyes.

At one point, there were no air breathing creatures.
Through the evolution process of mutation and natural selection... there are now air breathing creatures.

At one point, there were no brains.
Through the evolution process of mutation and natural selection... there are now brains.

At one point, there was no free will.
Through the evolution process of mutation and natural selection... there is now free will.

All that's required for free will is a brain developed past a certain point. One that can reflect, imagine and judge.
We know that mutation and natural selection develops brains.
We know that some brains can reflect, imagine and judge (like humans, whales, dolphins, elephants...)
We know that some brains cannot (creatures that are instinctually driven.. always doing X whenever Y happens...)

What is it about mutation and natural selection that you think prevents it from developing reflection, imagination and judgment?

But free will if evolution is correct is an impossibility in my opinion as someone or something had to program it into humans.

I'm pretty sure your opinion of things still has no effect on reality.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 167 by ICANT, posted 07-05-2017 12:49 PM ICANT has not yet responded

    
New Cat's Eye
Inactive Member


Message 169 of 182 (814263)
07-05-2017 1:53 PM
Reply to: Message 166 by Tangle
07-05-2017 11:59 AM


you're also a member of a religious organisation.

Technically I'm not.

That's both the organisation and with it the experience.

You wrongly assume that the experiences are tied to the organization.

Without the perpetuation of the myth, the need to worship it fades away.

And yet, weird stuff will still happen to people and they will still relate to each other about it - so there will be religion. There's no needed perpetuation of a myth to keep it alive, and what I'm talking about has nothing to do with a need to worship.

If you haven't been told the myth you can't have the religious experience relating to it.

But you can still have unrelated spiritual experiences upon which to base your personal religious beliefs. I don't see that going away.

And people will naturally congregate, commune, and organize, so, yeah...


This message is a reply to:
 Message 166 by Tangle, posted 07-05-2017 11:59 AM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 170 by Tangle, posted 07-05-2017 2:04 PM New Cat's Eye has responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 6389
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 170 of 182 (814265)
07-05-2017 2:04 PM
Reply to: Message 169 by New Cat's Eye
07-05-2017 1:53 PM


NCE writes:

Technically I'm not......You wrongly assume that the experiences are tied to the organization.

Technically??

I don't see much point in me playing pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey much longer, perhaps it's time you told us what this experience is, what brought it on, why it was so important to you and why it's nothing to do with organised religion.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 169 by New Cat's Eye, posted 07-05-2017 1:53 PM New Cat's Eye has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 171 by New Cat's Eye, posted 07-05-2017 2:15 PM Tangle has responded

  
New Cat's Eye
Inactive Member


Message 171 of 182 (814268)
07-05-2017 2:15 PM
Reply to: Message 170 by Tangle
07-05-2017 2:04 PM


Technically??

I'm not currently an active member of a parish.

Nothing is being dictated to me and I have no leaders.

I don't see much point in me playing pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey much longer, perhaps it's time you told us what this experience is, what brought it on, why it was so important to you and why it's nothing to do with organised religion.

I have been doing some of that in this thread, but here you go:

http://www.evcforum.net/dm.php?control=msg&t=19334


This message is a reply to:
 Message 170 by Tangle, posted 07-05-2017 2:04 PM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 173 by Tangle, posted 07-05-2017 3:27 PM New Cat's Eye has responded

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 15766
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 2.5


Message 172 of 182 (814274)
07-05-2017 3:15 PM
Reply to: Message 164 by Phat
07-05-2017 1:50 AM


Re: How Free Are We?
Phat writes:

What do you mean by "empty"?


I mean that your prediction - i.e. people will flock to religion in a crisis - has no basis.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 164 by Phat, posted 07-05-2017 1:50 AM Phat has not yet responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 6389
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 173 of 182 (814277)
07-05-2017 3:27 PM
Reply to: Message 171 by New Cat's Eye
07-05-2017 2:15 PM


NCE writes:

I'm not currently an active member of a parish.
Nothing is being dictated to me and I have no leaders.

Well I read your thread and it turns out you're a Catholic, born-againish, Christian with some history of addiction and mental illness, possibly bipolar. All the stuff I hinted at.

Look, it's not my intention to do you or your beliefs down, nor disparage the help you feel you've received from your new-found revelation but this is pretty classical stuff.

But it has nothing to do with the general point that religions and their myths are declining because fairer, more balanced, more rational secular societies are replacing them. No doubt individuals in crisis will always fall into the well of wishful thinking - our minds are complex things - but these people are the minority even in religious communities and they never find anything that is outside their previous religious knowledge. Most are more like you used to be - there but not really.

I wish you well with your recovery.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 171 by New Cat's Eye, posted 07-05-2017 2:15 PM New Cat's Eye has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 174 by New Cat's Eye, posted 07-05-2017 3:56 PM Tangle has responded

  
New Cat's Eye
Inactive Member


(1)
Message 174 of 182 (814281)
07-05-2017 3:56 PM
Reply to: Message 173 by Tangle
07-05-2017 3:27 PM


Well I read your thread and it turns out you're a Catholic, born-againish, Christian with some history of addiction and mental illness, possibly bipolar. All the stuff I hinted at.

Well it turns out that I'm not bipolar, so I got that going for me.

Look, it's not my intention to do you or your beliefs down, nor disparage the help you feel you've received from your new-found revelation but this is pretty classical stuff.

Yeah, classical stuff that continues to still happen to people despite participation in major religions declining.

But it has nothing to do with the general point that religions and their myths are declining because fairer, more balanced, more rational secular societies are replacing them.

And as I have been saying, that doesn't mean that people will stop being religious. They're just not claiming membership to the clubs anymore.

It's happening in secular societies too - people just aren't communing in person that much these days anymore. And it's to our own detriment - social media is just too shallow to replace good ol' fashioned community. People will start to figure it out and then they'll come together again. It may or may not have anything to do with religion, but religion is a good way to bring people together so I wouldn't be surprised.

But your whole dying out and going away mantra is misguided, imho.

No doubt individuals in crisis will always fall into the well of wishful thinking - our minds are complex things - but these people are the minority even in religious communities and they never find anything that is outside their previous religious knowledge.

That's two things that you do not know and I'm pretty sure you're just plain wrong about.

I wish you well with your recovery.

Thank you. My life has never been better.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 173 by Tangle, posted 07-05-2017 3:27 PM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 175 by Tangle, posted 07-05-2017 4:30 PM New Cat's Eye has responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 6389
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 175 of 182 (814285)
07-05-2017 4:30 PM
Reply to: Message 174 by New Cat's Eye
07-05-2017 3:56 PM


NCE writes:

Yeah, classical stuff that continues to still happen to people despite participation in major religions declining.

You say you have a science training and used to be rational. Has all that gone out of the window with this born-again stuff?

It will always happen as long as there's mental illness but it will always be a minority inside a minority. It's not a material effect compared to a general decline. A decline in organised religion coinciding with an increase in atheism should tell you all you need to know. Scandanavians are not just not attending churches, they're dropping religion, both public and private.

It's happening in secular societies too - people just aren't communing in person that much these days anymore.

This seems to be thing with you. I don't share it. People are using social media AND communing in person.

it's to our own detriment - social media is just too shallow to replace good ol' fashioned community. People will start to figure it out and then they'll come together again. It may or may not have anything to do with religion, but religion is a good way to bring people together so I wouldn't be surprised.

People still live in, and participate in communities, they haven't gone away. Religious communities disapear with religion - this isn't an assertion, it's what happens.

But your whole dying out and going away mantra is misguided, imho.

It's happening. Don't deny reality - it always ends badly.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 174 by New Cat's Eye, posted 07-05-2017 3:56 PM New Cat's Eye has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 176 by New Cat's Eye, posted 07-07-2017 8:52 AM Tangle has not yet responded

  
New Cat's Eye
Inactive Member


(1)
Message 176 of 182 (814340)
07-07-2017 8:52 AM
Reply to: Message 175 by Tangle
07-05-2017 4:30 PM


You say you have a science training and used to be rational. Has all that gone out of the window with this born-again stuff?

Nope.

I did stop taking an analytical/scientific approach to addressing my emotional needs, but only because it was failing me and I found a better way.

As long as it works, people will keep finding it.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 175 by Tangle, posted 07-05-2017 4:30 PM Tangle has not yet responded

  
1.61803
Member
Posts: 2804
From: Lone Star State USA
Joined: 02-19-2004
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 177 of 182 (842493)
11-01-2018 5:50 PM


I came across a interesting article concerning freewill vs determinism.

I realize this is a ancient thread. Of the many discussions we all have had on EvC concerning freewill vs determinism the consensus usually ended up as reality is both deterministic and probabilistic . I have no problem with this. Some proponents of the deterministic only camp was that the decisions to do things whilst the brain is being monitored was that decisions we are conscious of (like to move your hand) were actually decided prior. Well this article is interesting and I thought I'd share.

https://byrdnick.com/...298/unconscious-intentions-free-will

Edited by 1.61803, : removed word :we:

Edited by 1.61803, : No reason given.


"You were not there for the beginning. You will not be there for the end. Your knowledge of what is going on can only be superficial and relative" William S. Burroughs

Replies to this message:
 Message 178 by Stile, posted 11-02-2018 9:03 AM 1.61803 has responded

  
Stile
Member
Posts: 3282
From: Ontario, Canada
Joined: 12-02-2004
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 178 of 182 (842511)
11-02-2018 9:03 AM
Reply to: Message 177 by 1.61803
11-01-2018 5:50 PM


Two cents
1.61803 writes:

Well this article is interesting and I thought I'd share.

It is an interesting article.
I think it makes some pretty big assumptions and then runs with them though.
Although - I have no idea how to get around the assumptions they make (currently).
But in the end - I doubt this experiment really tells us much one way or the other because of the assumptions and lack of clarity.

I don't know if we have freewill or a deterministic brain or universe.
I don't really care either - it is what it is and labeling it one way or another won't change what it is.
I just don't see what additional, reliable information this article is adding.

That is - it's all about monitoring brain activity, then a person monitoring "their intention to move" and then actually moving.
Recording all these different times and identifying patterns.

But there's issues with all of these "identifications."

Yes - "brain activity" is being monitored.
But can it tell the difference between thinking of an idea to move vs. an intention to move?

That is - I can think of moving - then think I will definitely move - then revoke that idea - and move later... or not.

Can the "monitoring of brain activity" tell the difference, distinctively and reliably, between those flip-flops of "idea" vs "intention but later revoked" vs "intention that is eventually decided to act upon?"

I'm not even sure if I can identify the difference specifically in my own mind all the time...

Which leads into the next problem:

"Their intention to move."
How does the person identify their own intention to move? - and disregard any delay they might add in just because of the nature of the experiment?

For example - I can say to myself - I'm going to move now - and move now.
Or I can say - I'm going to move.... .... .... ....now.

In the second scenario... is the "intention to move" the part when I decide I will move? Or the "now" part when I'm actually starting to move my hand?

If it's the first part - this introduces a very huge error into the experiment. It is a willed (free-willed? ) delay. That is, the "idea" of "going to move" has been solidified - but the "intention to actually move" is delayed on purpose and done a bit later. So we cannot really consider taking the first part.

If it's the second part - then there's not much point in having the person attempt to identify "when they want to move" - It's move identifying reaction-time in a person. From "move now" to "hand is actually moving..." Measuring this part has it's own problems - you're not really measuring some delay that's helpful in predicting when someone will move... you're only really measuring the delay in brain activity and muscle response through the body - a measurement that should be irrelevant in monitoring whether or not we have free will.

On top of that... the delays inherent in the system will also cause issues.

That is... electrical monitoring of the brain is fast, but I'm sure it's not instant.

As well... someone "looking at a clock and identifying they're own intention to move" will have it's own delays (muscle and brain processing) involved.
Plus human error - Given many attempts, I can stop a stop-watch close to a 5 second mark. Maybe within a few hundredths of a second. But not much better than that. And that has nothing to do with identifying some "vague notion of intention" in my own mind.

I'm not sure if they attempted to accommodate for any of these issues - and I agree that the article is very interesting in the "why not start measuring what we can and see what it says?" sort of way.

It's just... there's way too many red-flags and possible-sources-of-error here for me to consider any of the results reliable or conclusive.

But yes - pretty interesting.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 177 by 1.61803, posted 11-01-2018 5:50 PM 1.61803 has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 179 by 1.61803, posted 11-06-2018 3:17 PM Stile has responded

    
1.61803
Member
Posts: 2804
From: Lone Star State USA
Joined: 02-19-2004
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 179 of 182 (842735)
11-06-2018 3:17 PM
Reply to: Message 178 by Stile
11-02-2018 9:03 AM


Re: Two cents
Hi Stile,

Stile writes:

It's just... there's way too many red-flags and possible-sources-of-error here for me to consider any of the results reliable or conclusive.

The science is fairly established and documented. It is a fact that scientist can tell up to 7 seconds in some instances you are going to make a choice and move before you are even aware of a conscious choice to do so. And thus some proponents of determinism use this as evidence that we do not have free will. The article is meant to illustrate that regardless of being aware of the choice or not does not negate free will.

From the article

quote:
5. Conclusion

We have arrived, then, at the following conclusion: whether or not a person is free is not a matter of their becoming aware of an intention as (or before) the intention (or its correlates) form. Indeed, it is not surprising, upon reflection, that we have to form an intention before we can become aware of it—regardless of whether we are “free”.


If your brain makes a decision to do something and there is a lag of time until you or that thing you call you says "hey I think Im gonna do this." Then you do it. Who made the decision?
Well your brain did and thats still you. clear as mud I know.

I believe there is a element of randomness in our reality as well as a deterministic element. We can choose a branch of probable out comes in some action that will result in (A) or (B). But once we knock that domino down we are at the mercy of determinism and what ever that entails. Some will say AH-Ha! given a powerful enough computer the out come and all possibilities could be predicted. To a extent I suppose so but since initial conditions can not be perfectly recreated would it be the same? Probably close enough to place a bet I suppose but hell anything can happen theoretically.


"You were not there for the beginning. You will not be there for the end. Your knowledge of what is going on can only be superficial and relative" William S. Burroughs

This message is a reply to:
 Message 178 by Stile, posted 11-02-2018 9:03 AM Stile has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 180 by Stile, posted 11-06-2018 3:39 PM 1.61803 has not yet responded
 Message 181 by caffeine, posted 11-08-2018 3:09 PM 1.61803 has responded

  
Stile
Member
Posts: 3282
From: Ontario, Canada
Joined: 12-02-2004
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 180 of 182 (842739)
11-06-2018 3:39 PM
Reply to: Message 179 by 1.61803
11-06-2018 3:17 PM


Re: Two cents
1.61803 writes:

The science is fairly established and documented.

I'm not saying the results aren't scientific.
I'm saying the implied results don't seem to follow from the experiment... which may be the media's reporting and not the fault of the science.

It is a fact that scientist can tell up to 7 seconds in some instances you are going to make a choice and move before you are even aware of a conscious choice to do so.

Is that so?

Again, how does the scientist identify the difference between "an idea to eventually move" and "the will to move exactly now?"

That is... I would be much more convinced if the experiment was altered slightly:

Change the experiment so that we have 10 buttons.
Now... if the scientist can tell up to 7 seconds in some instances that someone is going to choose the exact button before they are aware of their conscious decision to select that specific button...

THEN I would agree we are onto something showing the scientist is aware of the conscious choice before the person is.

However... if the scientist can only tell that the person "will select *A* button" 7 seconds ahead (in some instances) but the scientist is unable to predict *which* button the person will choose until an-amount-of-time-undifferentiated-from-error-margins-inherent-in-the-system (like a few hundred milliseconds)... then I would say that back in this one-button experiment... the scientist is NOT identifying "the will to move"... but only "the idea to move.... eventually."

Which is not the same thing.

Why does the test not have 10 buttons?
-perhaps equipment is not sophisticated enough to identify the brainwaves for button 1 to 10 selection...
-if the equipment is not this sophisticated... how do we know it's sophisticated enough to tell the difference between "the will to move now" and "the idea to move.... eventually?"

If your brain makes a decision to do something and there is a lag of time until you or that thing you call you says "hey I think Im gonna do this." Then you do it. Who made the decision?

What if that's not how it works?

What if the brain provides ideas to the conscious mind.... and then the conscious mind filters those ideas (chooses one) and then acts upon the decision...
If that's how it works... then obviously the "conscious mind" makes the decision.

With a 10 button experiment... you can filter out the difference between "idea entering brain from who-knows-where" and "idea inside the brain has been filtered and decided upon..."

But with a 1 button experiment... with only 1 option to choose... you can't tell the difference between "idea entering the brain" and "conscious decision to act upon that idea."

That's the problem with any conclusion this is implying about free will.
It's not even identifying a decision that is made or not.

Maybe what I described isn't how it works... maybe what you described is how it works... but a one button experiment doesn't allow us to tell that difference.
...hence the red flags.

I believe there is a element of randomness in our reality as well as a deterministic element.

I'm not sure what I believe.
I'm just also not sure if this experiment tells us anything useful about the issue or not


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