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Author Topic:   Free will vs Omniscience
jar
Member
Posts: 34118
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.2


Message 136 of 1444 (763152)
07-21-2015 1:11 PM
Reply to: Message 135 by ringo
07-21-2015 1:08 PM


Re: ** FOREknowledge**
Well, since we do not seem to be able to create a moral system all humans of any given era will agree with and adopt I'm not sure how God could even have a "Moral system" that we would recognize.

Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 135 by ringo, posted 07-21-2015 1:08 PM ringo has seen this message but not replied

  
PaulK
Member
Posts: 17848
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 3.5


(1)
Message 137 of 1444 (763153)
07-21-2015 1:49 PM
Reply to: Message 114 by Stile
07-21-2015 9:01 AM


Re: ** FOREknowledge**
quote:
We are here in 2015.
Assume that God exists, but the world is exactly as it is now (God doesn't seem to interfere, no objective evidence, no one can "prove" God...)
Let's say that in 2025, I'm going to have a choice.
The choice in front of me is to go left or right down a hiking path I'm taking a leisurely walk on.
Let's say that the fork in the road joins up again later so my final destination will be the same.
God looks ahead in time ('cause He can do that) and sees that my free-will choice will be to go left.
God never tells me about it.
God never tells anyone about it.
I don't see how that removes my free-will choice.
My view is probably not quite the same as the one you are arguing against, but this is how I see it.
For your decision to knowable it must be fixed, inevitable before you even exist.
It would seem that it is fixed by the creation of the universe, and therefore an inevitable consequence of the creation of that universe.
If that it is true then God must know that IF he creates THAT universe then you will necessarily choose the left path.
Therefore God has knowingly dictated that you will choose the left path.
I'm personally not interested in what that means for free will (because I don't think that it means anything for that) but it does mean that God has responsibility for your decisions - and everyone's. Adam's (if there was such a person) Herod's, Hitler's...

This message is a reply to:
 Message 114 by Stile, posted 07-21-2015 9:01 AM Stile has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 138 by NoNukes, posted 07-21-2015 4:44 PM PaulK has replied
 Message 157 by Stile, posted 07-22-2015 8:58 AM PaulK has replied

  
NoNukes
Inactive Member


(1)
Message 138 of 1444 (763160)
07-21-2015 4:44 PM
Reply to: Message 137 by PaulK
07-21-2015 1:49 PM


Re: ** FOREknowledge**
My view is probably not quite the same as the one you are arguing against, but this is how I see it.
For your decision to knowable it must be fixed, inevitable before you even exist.
Why must it be inevitable before you exist? Why must the decision be inevitable prior to the time when the future prediction is made? And what if the prediction is made only by examining the person in question and the rest of the universe at some time after you exist?
I am suggesting that your logic assumes some particulars that are not necessarily true.
Edited by NoNukes, : No reason given.

Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)
History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people. Martin Luther King
If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions? Scott Adams

This message is a reply to:
 Message 137 by PaulK, posted 07-21-2015 1:49 PM PaulK has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 139 by PaulK, posted 07-21-2015 4:59 PM NoNukes has replied

  
PaulK
Member
Posts: 17848
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 139 of 1444 (763161)
07-21-2015 4:59 PM
Reply to: Message 138 by NoNukes
07-21-2015 4:44 PM


Re: ** FOREknowledge**
quote:
Why must it be inevitable before you exist?
To be knowable it must be inevitable. And unless you are proposing limits to God's foreknowledge, it must be inevitable before you exist.
quote:
Why must the decision be inevitable prior to the time when the future prediction is made?
Unless the prediction MAKES it inevitable, how could it be otherwise ? And how could the prediction make it inevitable ?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 138 by NoNukes, posted 07-21-2015 4:44 PM NoNukes has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 140 by Phat, posted 07-21-2015 5:28 PM PaulK has replied
 Message 142 by NoNukes, posted 07-21-2015 5:49 PM PaulK has replied

  
Phat
Member
Posts: 18417
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003


Message 140 of 1444 (763164)
07-21-2015 5:28 PM
Reply to: Message 139 by PaulK
07-21-2015 4:59 PM


Re: ** FOREknowledge**
PaulK writes:
To be knowable it must be inevitable. And unless you are proposing limits to God's foreknowledge, it must be inevitable before you exist.
All I see is that God is inevitable. God is past. God is present..(today...right now.) God is future(in that He always will be...at each present moment that I live.)
If God knows something, He knows it whenever He so chooses to know it. We cannot say that God must by necessity always know BEFORE we choose. We can but say that what we choose is known. Why? Because God knows us.
Personally I believe that God chooses to know only as we choose. It is His gift to us and it is our responsibility. He allows us to freely create our own destiny...in communion with Him. With God, there is no before nor after. There only is communion. Look again at my verses from Revelation. God was. God Is. God will forever be. The Beast(a symbol of rebellion) Once was.(as Lucifer the angel, perhaps.) Now is not. And yet is for those whose names are not in the book of life. They chose their destiny. Their destiny may be said to be Gods responsibility since He initially created evil...but I believe God only created the possibility of evil....
Fallen angels actualized the possibility and humans choose the eventuality...or not.
Edited by Phat, : No reason given.

Chance as a real force is a myth. It has no basis in reality and no place in scientific inquiry. For science and philosophy to continue to advance in knowledge, chance must be demythologized once and for all. —RC Sproul
"A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes." —Mark Twain

This message is a reply to:
 Message 139 by PaulK, posted 07-21-2015 4:59 PM PaulK has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 141 by PaulK, posted 07-21-2015 5:39 PM Phat has replied

  
PaulK
Member
Posts: 17848
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 141 of 1444 (763165)
07-21-2015 5:39 PM
Reply to: Message 140 by Phat
07-21-2015 5:28 PM


Re: ** FOREknowledge**
quote:
If God knows something, He knows it whenever He so chooses to know it
It's the ability to know, not the fact of knowledge which is the issue.
What we will do is only knowable if it is inevitable. So if God could choose to know at any point in time, what we will do must be inevitable at every point in time.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 140 by Phat, posted 07-21-2015 5:28 PM Phat has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 143 by Phat, posted 07-21-2015 6:01 PM PaulK has replied
 Message 706 by Phat, posted 01-20-2019 9:17 AM PaulK has replied
 Message 709 by Phat, posted 01-21-2019 11:06 AM PaulK has not replied

  
NoNukes
Inactive Member


(1)
Message 142 of 1444 (763166)
07-21-2015 5:49 PM
Reply to: Message 139 by PaulK
07-21-2015 4:59 PM


Re: ** FOREknowledge**
To be knowable it must be inevitable. And unless you are proposing limits to God's foreknowledge, it must be inevitable before you exist.
Limits of God's foreknowledge is one possibility. It is also possible that God's foreknowledge of an event is obtained by God's direct intervention to remove other possibilities. Or maybe God has the ability to invoke foreknowledge or to not bother with it at his whim. Or maybe God only cares about large overall patterns and does not sweat the small stuff unless it becomes of interest. Or maybe God works like a giant calculator and calculates the outcome of events based on looking at their current states.
Some of those possibilities do not require that God have foreknowledge of all events at every instant. There might not be any ways for human's to distinguish or recognize how God does what he does.
You have one model and your model requires that God know everything at all instants. But perhaps God abstains from operating in exactly that way because the result is that free will can never exist.
ABE:
Since you and I have had this discussion before, I thought I would add a thought experiment for your consideration.
Let's add God to the Schrodinger's Cat experiment. You put the cat, the poison, radioactive sample, the Geiger counter, etc. in the trunk. Before you open the trunk, God tells you that the cat is dead. Does that mean that there actually is some mechanism for making a particular atom decay? Does the prediction require that some particular atom did decay? Not necessarily. I maintain that it is still possible that atomic decay is non deterministic despite God's ability to know what happened.
Now how did God manage accomplish his feet? He might have done it by triggering an atomic decay, or by looking one hour into the future, or by simply by releasing the poison in the vial. God might have examined all of the atoms and been able to tell from inspection that one would decay. One could argue that one or the other of the methods require that atomic decay is determinisitic, but even in that case there is no reason that atomic decay of any group of atoms in general must be deterministic until or unless God examines it. God may be changing the nature of the universe at the time he uses his foreknowledge.
Edited by NoNukes, : No reason given.

Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)
History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people. Martin Luther King
If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions? Scott Adams

This message is a reply to:
 Message 139 by PaulK, posted 07-21-2015 4:59 PM PaulK has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 144 by PaulK, posted 07-21-2015 6:07 PM NoNukes has replied
 Message 150 by PaulK, posted 07-21-2015 6:52 PM NoNukes has replied

  
Phat
Member
Posts: 18417
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003


Message 143 of 1444 (763167)
07-21-2015 6:01 PM
Reply to: Message 141 by PaulK
07-21-2015 5:39 PM


God allows us to choose our destiny
OK I see your point. One question, though. If God knows AFTER we make our decisions, does this not mean that He would also know BEFORE? The only inevitability is God Himself.

Chance as a real force is a myth. It has no basis in reality and no place in scientific inquiry. For science and philosophy to continue to advance in knowledge, chance must be demythologized once and for all. —RC Sproul
"A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes." —Mark Twain

This message is a reply to:
 Message 141 by PaulK, posted 07-21-2015 5:39 PM PaulK has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 149 by PaulK, posted 07-21-2015 6:46 PM Phat has seen this message but not replied

  
PaulK
Member
Posts: 17848
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 144 of 1444 (763168)
07-21-2015 6:07 PM
Reply to: Message 142 by NoNukes
07-21-2015 5:49 PM


Re: ** FOREknowledge**
quote:
Limits of God's foreknowledge is one possibility
It seems to be the only one that works for you.
quote:
It is also possible that God's foreknowledge of an event is obtained by God's direct intervention to remove other possibilities
That would be limited foreknowledge AND dictating the outcome in a way that more obviously interferes with free will.
quote:
Or maybe God has the ability to invoke foreknowledge or to not bother with it at his whim
But even potential foreknowledge is a problem so this doesn't help much
quote:
Or maybe God only cares about large overall patterns and does not sweat the small stuff unless it becomes of interest
Again, inevitability is a prerequisite for foreknowledge.
quote:
Or maybe God works like a giant calculator and calculates the outcome of events based on looking at their current states.
Which doesn't help if you assume determinism, and limits foreknowledge if you assume (relevant) indeterminism.
quote:
You have one model and your model requires that God know everything at all instants
Not at all. I don't for instance, make ANY assumptions about how foreknowledge is possible or bother with any particular view of free will.
Now I grant that I assume that God does know the consequences of the act of creation, but refusing to consider the consequences of your actions is not sufficient to absolve anyone of responsibility. So even that assumption is dispensible.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 142 by NoNukes, posted 07-21-2015 5:49 PM NoNukes has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 145 by NoNukes, posted 07-21-2015 6:21 PM PaulK has replied
 Message 146 by NoNukes, posted 07-21-2015 6:26 PM PaulK has replied

  
NoNukes
Inactive Member


Message 145 of 1444 (763169)
07-21-2015 6:21 PM
Reply to: Message 144 by PaulK
07-21-2015 6:07 PM


Re: ** FOREknowledge**
Now I grant that I assume that God does know the consequences of the act of creation, but refusing to consider the consequences of your actions is not sufficient to absolve anyone of responsibility.
I am going to describe one possible viewpoint. I submit that it is a view under which your suppositions are incorrect.
The creation of a universe that includes the possibility of free will inevitably involves good and bad events. And with respect to the tiny part of the creation that is earth, very often man himself is the author of his own misfortune, other times accident and misfortune befall us. But overall, creation is a positive thing. The only alternative is non creation.
Do such limitations mean that the creator is not really omnipotent? Well, given that none of us can conceive of a way to create any kind of universe with living beings in it at all, I think that's a rather silly question. If some of us starve on a world that can feed everyone, is that somehow God's fault? Is it God's fault that our sun is only going to last a few billion years? I don't see any of those things as something with which to find fault with God.
I understand that such an understanding is incompatible with some expectations of omniscience and omnipotence. But quite frankly I think the understanding lots of people have about those things are kind of comic booky. What's more, I'm pretty sure that you yourself don't actually possess those beliefs. Instead you are extending what you believe must be the conclusions of people who do believe in an omnipotent God who cares about them in particular.

Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)
History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people. Martin Luther King
If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions? Scott Adams

This message is a reply to:
 Message 144 by PaulK, posted 07-21-2015 6:07 PM PaulK has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 147 by PaulK, posted 07-21-2015 6:39 PM NoNukes has not replied
 Message 215 by Phat, posted 07-26-2015 7:39 PM NoNukes has not replied
 Message 708 by Phat, posted 01-21-2019 10:58 AM NoNukes has not replied

  
NoNukes
Inactive Member


Message 146 of 1444 (763170)
07-21-2015 6:26 PM
Reply to: Message 144 by PaulK
07-21-2015 6:07 PM


Re: ** FOREknowledge**
Again, inevitability is a prerequisite for foreknowledge.
You are not making an argument for this statement. You are instead simply asserting it and then using as a response my arguments.
It is, imo, at least possible that God's process of predicting forces determination. Since you responded to my post I added by edit a thought experiment. Could I get your comments on that experiment?

Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)
History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people. Martin Luther King
If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions? Scott Adams

This message is a reply to:
 Message 144 by PaulK, posted 07-21-2015 6:07 PM PaulK has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 148 by PaulK, posted 07-21-2015 6:43 PM NoNukes has not replied

  
PaulK
Member
Posts: 17848
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 147 of 1444 (763171)
07-21-2015 6:39 PM
Reply to: Message 145 by NoNukes
07-21-2015 6:21 PM


Re: ** FOREknowledge**
quote:
I am going to describe one possible viewpoint. I submit that it is a view under which your suppositions are incorrect.
quote:
The creation of a universe that includes the possibility of free will inevitably involves good and bad events. And with respect to the tiny part of the creation that is earth, very often man himself is the author of his own misfortune, other times accident and misfortune befall us. But overall, creation is a positive thing. The only alternative is non creation.
I would say that that is only a practical certainty, not a logical certainty. And omnipotence is only limited by logical certainty.
Worse, you have not established that the only choice God has is to create this universe or create nothing. That would be quite a big restriction - but you need to rule out the possibility that God could make anything better tan our universe for your argument to work at all.
And even then you will not have adequately answered my argument because the alternatives open to God at creation are not a part of it.
quote:
Do such limitations mean that the creator is not really omnipotent? Well, given that none of us can conceive of a way to create any kind of universe with living beings in it at all, I think that's a rather silly question. If some of us starve on a world that can feed everyone, is that somehow God's fault? Is it God's fault that our sun is only going to last a few billion years? I don't see any of those things as something with which to find fault with God.
Omnipotence doesn't mean only "really, really powerful". Omnipotence is power limited only by the absolute impossibilities of logic. So, if you are alleging that God has limitations beyond that you are indeed suggesting that God is less than omnipotent.
So, skip the waffle and just admit that you are proposing a God that is less than omnipotent.
quote:
I understand that such an understanding is incompatible with some expectations of omniscience and omnipotence. But quite frankly I think the understanding lots of people have about those things are kind of comic booky. What's more, I'm pretty sure that you yourself don't actually possess those beliefs. Instead you are extending what you believe must be the conclusions of people who do believe in an omnipotent God who cares about them in particular.
And you are wrong again. I am pointing out what I believe are the consequences of certain beliefs. I am taking a serious philosophical view, not a "comic-booky" one. I don't assume that the average believer has worked out the consequences of their beliefs or even really thought about the issues.
Finally I'll point out that I haven't invoked omnipotence. Granted it makes my position much stronger but I only rely on God being able to have perfect knowledge of the future (and that only within our universe) and God creating our universe.
So we come back to your initial assertion:
I am going to describe one possible viewpoint. I submit that it is a view under which your suppositions are incorrect.
And we have seen that that is false since you have failed to address my suppositions at all.
Edited by PaulK, : No reason given.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 145 by NoNukes, posted 07-21-2015 6:21 PM NoNukes has not replied

  
PaulK
Member
Posts: 17848
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 148 of 1444 (763172)
07-21-2015 6:43 PM
Reply to: Message 146 by NoNukes
07-21-2015 6:26 PM


Re: ** FOREknowledge**
quote:
You are not making an argument for this statement
I don't need to since it is necessarily true. You cannot have certain knowledge of a thing that is inherently uncertain.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 146 by NoNukes, posted 07-21-2015 6:26 PM NoNukes has not replied

  
PaulK
Member
Posts: 17848
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 149 of 1444 (763173)
07-21-2015 6:46 PM
Reply to: Message 143 by Phat
07-21-2015 6:01 PM


Re: God allows us to choose our destiny
quote:
OK I see your point. One question, though. If God knows AFTER we make our decisions, does this not mean that He would also know BEFORE? The only inevitability is God Himself.
Only if you make assumptions about God which erase the difference between knowledge before the fact and after it.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 143 by Phat, posted 07-21-2015 6:01 PM Phat has seen this message but not replied

  
PaulK
Member
Posts: 17848
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 150 of 1444 (763174)
07-21-2015 6:52 PM
Reply to: Message 142 by NoNukes
07-21-2015 5:49 PM


Re: ** FOREknowledge**
quote:
Let's add God to the Schrodinger's Cat experiment. You put the cat, the poison, radioactive sample, the Geiger counter, etc. in the trunk. Before you open the trunk, God tells you that the cat is dead. Does that mean that there actually is some mechanism for making a particular atom decay? Does the prediction require that some particular atom did decay? Not necessarily. I maintain that it is still possible that atomic decay is non deterministic despite God's ability to know what happened.
Since God has stated that the cat *is* dead this is not an example of foreknowledge. God could have worked that out simply be observing that the cat was dead.
Even if you turn it into a prediction it doesn't matter. All your methods either assume that the cat will inevitably die (agreeing with my argument) or that God deliberately arranges it (which is even worse for you). Even the suggestions that God is unable to tell which atom will decay is irrelevant.
So no, nothing there of any value to the discussion.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 142 by NoNukes, posted 07-21-2015 5:49 PM NoNukes has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 151 by NoNukes, posted 07-21-2015 11:54 PM PaulK has replied

  
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