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  1. #1
    Alexander the Terrible yenom's Avatar
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    Post Fear vs free will

    Does fear take away our free will? Or does it inhibit it?

    If not, what do we have to fear?
    The fear of poverty turns people into slaves of money.

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    Senior Member Munchies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yenom View Post
    Does fear take away our free will? Or does it inhibit it?

    If not, what do we have to fear?
    I think it does. our lives follow a sort of default, predetermined path, but if we are strong and willing to put in the work, we can decide our own fate. this is what it means to truly be alive
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    no such thing as free will
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by yakimadude View Post
    no such thing as free will
    You've got a lot to learn about life, kid.

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    Senior Member Survive & Stay Free's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yenom View Post
    Does fear take away our free will? Or does it inhibit it?

    If not, what do we have to fear?
    Erich Fromm wrote an entire book on this topic, humans are social animals and dread isolation, they WILL and DO forfeit their freedom to avoid isolation. Often those who pride themselves on being the most freedom loving least conformist are the opposite.

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    Member dadapolka's Avatar
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    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Determinism
    Anyone looked into this? It's quite interesting. Although Lewis Carroll did provide a very good argument against it ( that it is by definition unprovable)

    Basically it's the idea that every thought is a product of our neurological chemistry, our environment and conditioning. A thought is just a product of the brain- we had no choice in making them.

    Maybe if there's no free will in the first place, then fear makes it appear to us that we have less 'free will' by stunting our decision making processes (in prefrontal cortex?) and our conscious thought. But really it is just an illusion, as our 'rational', un-fearful thoughts were never an aspect of free will either. Who knows!

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    Senior Member King sns's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dadapolka View Post
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Determinism
    Anyone looked into this? It's quite interesting. Although Lewis Carroll did provide a very good argument against it ( that it is by definition unprovable)

    Basically it's the idea that every thought is a product of our neurological chemistry, our environment and conditioning. A thought is just a product of the brain- we had no choice in making them.

    Maybe if there's no free will in the first place, then fear makes it appear to us that we have less 'free will' by stunting our decision making processes (in prefrontal cortex?) and our conscious thought. But really it is just an illusion, as our 'rational', un-fearful thoughts were never an aspect of free will either. Who knows!
    I'm actually reading a book like that, Incognito. It's like all our thoughts start in the back of the mind long before we realize that we're thinking them or say things long after the process of saying it started. Really interesting if this is true considering some super fast reaction times in emergency situations and stuff. The annoying thing is everything you do and say for a few minutes after thinking about that is strange. Like, "I'm not going to say this because free will determined so, but wait, did free will determine that I wouldn't say it because I don't have free will? Wait!!! Is this entire mind conversation predestined too? (Says the thing I was going to say to begin with and tries to forget about it.)

    Regarding OP. Yeah, I imagine that fear runs through the thicker neurons for survival. So it would be very hard to break out of whatever thought patterns and connections that are a result of the fear.
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  9. #9
    Senior Member Survive & Stay Free's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dadapolka View Post
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Determinism
    Anyone looked into this? It's quite interesting. Although Lewis Carroll did provide a very good argument against it ( that it is by definition unprovable)

    Basically it's the idea that every thought is a product of our neurological chemistry, our environment and conditioning. A thought is just a product of the brain- we had no choice in making them.

    Maybe if there's no free will in the first place, then fear makes it appear to us that we have less 'free will' by stunting our decision making processes (in prefrontal cortex?) and our conscious thought. But really it is just an illusion, as our 'rational', un-fearful thoughts were never an aspect of free will either. Who knows!
    Kant addressed this question from all angles without the evidence and concluded that while we're likely to be automatons it was a categorical imperative to believe in free will and act as though self-determinism existed. Perhaps in order to make it a reality one day. I know a lot of enlightenment philosophy worked out like that.

    Anyway, I do believe in soft determinism, or partial determinist, all those things are significant and influence things but they are not completely deterministic. To use a social constructionist analogy if you build a house our of concrete it will still be concrete, and a house presumably, but you can decide what shape to make it, how many rooms etc.

    I would also say that some people are more subjects of their brain chemistry, environment, conditioning than others, either those things have had such an impact as to void or seriously impinge upon their individual sovereignty, like sociopaths or psychopaths or someone with a brain injury, or they simply havent ever developed many of their critical or analytical faculties at all.

    To be honest the hard determinism, humans are automatons or pin balls, argument is not that different from the extremes of constructionism which suppose that no self or individual identity exists outside or besides what are constructed as stories by others or between others about an individual. If you take anything too far it seems to become absurd.

  10. #10
    Senior Member reason's Avatar
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    Does the taste of chocolate take away free will or just inhibit it?
    A criticism that can be brought against everything ought not to be brought against anything.

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