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View Poll Results: Do we have Free Will? Or is Everything Determined?

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  • Yes, we have free will.

    6 54.55%
  • No, everything is determined.

    3 27.27%
  • Everything is determined by free will.

    1 9.09%
  • Everything is random and beyond control.

    1 9.09%
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Results 41 to 50 of 50

  1. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    I also think all of these factors existed outside the range of human perception, so we can easily carry on thinking we have free will. The question is also devoid of practical value. If you don't have free will, then it doesn't matter if you learn you don't have free will, does it?
    Of course it matters.

    I consider there to be relative determinism, there is also a difference between free will and freedom, you can at least possess free will and experience cognitive or psychological freedom even if this constitutes the limits or boundary of your freedom.

    Learning the difference between free will and freedom is one of the major developmental tasks of any human being, at all the major milestones of human maturation individuals test the boundaries of their freedom, against parental authority, against other sorts of authority which can place limits upon freedom and autonomy.

    In a certain sense we only experience absolute freedom when we are sleeping, when we are dreaming, and its not for nothing that Freud et al have suggested that this is the royal road to the unconscious, correspondence from the unconscious self etc. because the unconscious is that which is not perceived, outside the realm of human perception. Although expanding the sphere of freedom individually and collectively involves as a prerequisite making the unconsicous conscious if this is the case.

    There is a practical value I think in human consciousness and expanding the spheres of personal and social freedom. Perhaps this is a different question to what you are discussing because I think that perhaps you are suggesting that if we are subject to determinism is beyond perception and cant ever be perceived.

  2. #42

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    Quote Originally Posted by Qlip View Post
    The question is the ultimate intellectual jerk-off. People say they don't, but they go on living their lives making choices as if they matter. Not saying there is freewill, just saying it doesn't really matter.
    I think its a worthy question, although I agree that its something of an abstract thought experiment, practical reason continues, as you say, to be applied and not all choices are given equal weight, even someone who is subject to compulsions, habituation and conditioning have some margin for choice.

    It interests me because the vanguards of atheism have moved beyond attacking metaphysical ideas of God or afterlife, particularly as sources of meaning, to denying ideas associated with humanity, Darren Brown has done this in a number of his TV shows, Dennet has attacked the idea of free will, choice and consciousness in an even more vociferous, intellectual and academic fashion. The psychologists who reacted against behaviourism would be amazed at these sorts of turns and trends in thinking.

    Personally, it interests and concerns me because most of this information is provided to populations of kids who're maturing later and later in life and probably dont have the intellectual tools to critically evaluate it, a lot of it is dense, convoluted and difficult reading material. Its often provided in academic contexts which reward recall and regurgitation of information alone. When its not its within the climate of dispute and conflict which has been created by moronic, dogmatic and alienating traditionalists and just as moronic, adversarial and in some ways symbiotic responses. Which only reinforces the tendencies to assimilate as material to be recalled and regurgitated in some sort of competition passing for dispute, passing for debate, passing for discussion.

    Those trends bother me, not just because I, personally, cant be easily satisfied with the simplistic and reductive thinking which appears to be at the heart of theories like Dennett's and Brown's but because the whole thing seems like a sort of race to the bottom in thinking. Fables like the Emperors New Clothes were written at a time to try and guard against this kind of thing and representing a kind practical wisdom now they're all but forgotten and definitely not practically applied.

  3. #43
    Theta Male Julius_Van_Der_Beak's Avatar
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    ^

    I knew you were going to say that. And I didn't come to this conclusion based on something I read. I more or less always believed this. Later in life, I developed the tools to better articulate, and yes, I did learn about free will vs. determinism in college, but I already knew which camp I fell into as soon as I learned about them.

    I liked your first post, so I don't know what's with your second one.

    I think freedom is still important on the human level, even if it does not exist in the larger view of things. I just think free will does not make sense as an explanation for the way things work.

    I do think people use free will as a way of ignoring the responsibility people have to one another.
    [Trump's] rhetoric is not an abuse of power. In the same way that it's also not against the law to do a backflip off of the roof of your house onto your concrete driveway. It's just mind-numbingly stupid and, to say the least, counterproductive. - Bush did 9-11


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  4. #44
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Maybe I can convey my point by coming at it from the opposite end.

    If you think you have free will and you do, then you're right. If you think you have free will and you don't, there are no consequences anyhow. So it makes no difference.

    Believing in ones own free will seems to be intuitive, and since whether or not you believe in it has no practical consequences, you might as well take the path of least resistance and just go one acting like you have free will, even if you technically know you don't.
    Go to sleep, iguana.


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  5. #45
    Theta Male Julius_Van_Der_Beak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    Maybe I can convey my point by coming at it from the opposite end.

    If you think you have free will and you do, then you're right. If you think you have free will and you don't, there are no consequences anyhow. So it makes no difference.

    Believing in ones own free will seems to be intuitive, and since whether or not you believe in it has no practical consequences, you might as well take the path of least resistance and just go one acting like you have free will, even if you technically know you don't.
    It probably couldn't hurt. For making your own decisions, and creating and accomplishing goals of your own, it would be incredibly useful.

    In the realm of interpersonal and societal situations, though, it too often seems to be related to a willingness to refuse to acknowledge cause and effect relationships. And I'm very utilitarian in my moral philosophy, so I think if something has a bad effect, than that thing is bad... the intentions are of relatively low importance to me. Thus, on an interpersonal level, free will is a moral and intellectual (in the sense of explaining things) failure.

    It seems to me to not be the aid to greater moral accountability that it's proponents often claim it is.

    Everyone makes their own choices. I suppose there's nothing wrong with that part. But when you put human psychology on top of that..... well, it turns out everyone wants to think they made the right choice, even if they didn't. And if people oppose them, well, it's simply because people aren't making the right choice. There's no need to look into it any deeper. They're just dipshits who weren't smart enough/upstanding enough to make the right choice.

    No need to bother trying to understanding them, or listen to them, or question yourself. Because we make choices, and we always make the right ones. It's only the other guys who are making the wrong ones.

    I think free will might be useful and worthwhile intrapersonally (maybe it would help me get a less annoying job), but very destructive interpersonally.
    [Trump's] rhetoric is not an abuse of power. In the same way that it's also not against the law to do a backflip off of the roof of your house onto your concrete driveway. It's just mind-numbingly stupid and, to say the least, counterproductive. - Bush did 9-11


    This is not going to go the way you think....

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  6. #46
    Senior Member AzulEyes's Avatar
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    This poll is skewed as the answer is: a combination of both. Though pre-determined destiny is part of the big picture schematic, free-will is part of the granular schema in life to determine our character and how we decided to pursue God's gift of this life. It's our intentions that actually make a difference in the grand scheme of things- not our actions per se.
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  7. #47
    Senior Member danseen's Avatar
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    I believe we do, however cause and effect severly impacts it.

  8. #48
    Senior Member Little_Sticks's Avatar
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    We are a part of the world, yet we also change that world according to how we come to understand and make decisions about it.

    It's strange then to me that someone could think our actions could not change the nature of the world, that there must be some basic or rudimentary constant to preface everything for anything to even exist at all, that everything can only be predetermined. But determinism is not necessary for us to exist or to find what appears to be laws of physics.
    To me, it then feels not only like lazy thinking, but a restricted way of coming to terms with the nature of reality because it's one that reduces the complexity of reality from its many questions and interpretations and different ways of understanding to a definite answer that pretends reality should be so simple for one reason or another.

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by AzulEyes View Post
    This poll is skewed as the answer is: a combination of both. Though pre-determined destiny is part of the big picture schematic, free-will is part of the granular schema in life to determine our character and how we decided to pursue God's gift of this life. It's our intentions that actually make a difference in the grand scheme of things- not our actions per se.
    "Everything is determined by free will." was an option, which is a binder between the 2.

  10. #50
    Ginkgo
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    I believe in choice.

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