Defense of Freewill Against Determinism

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ughaibu
 
Reply Thu 22 Jul, 2010 09:55 am
@fast,
fast wrote:
I don't need a source to agree with me.
Then you haven't offered any example of the discovery of a law of science.
fast wrote:
Assuming that there are 1a) statements about laws of nature and 1B) laws of nature, (inventions and discoveries respectively), and assuming that there are 2a) laws of science (which are purportedly statements/inventions), then what I yearn to know is what 2b is. Any idea?
Jesus fucking christ, what the fuck is wrong with you?
 
ACB
 
Reply Thu 22 Jul, 2010 02:55 pm
@fast,
fast wrote:
Assuming that there are 1a) statements about laws of nature and 1B) laws of nature, (inventions and discoveries respectively), and assuming that there are 2a) laws of science (which are purportedly statements/inventions), then what I yearn to know is what 2b is. Any idea?

I think 2b would be "observed regularities in nature".

Statements about laws of nature:
(a) assert or imply that the universe is strictly deterministic, i.e. that the state of the universe at any time is (in principle) mathematically deducible from its state at any past or future time;
(b) assert or imply that this is because it is governed by compulsive metaphysical laws, the nature of which is not known.

Laws of science:
(a) are pragmatic statements about the universe, based on hitherto observed regularities;
(b) assume for practical purposes that these regularities will continue for the foreseeable future, but do not claim that they must (in any sense) do so;
(c) are not committed to any particular general view about the universe, i.e. whether the regularities are (i) accidental, (ii) causal (whatever that may mean), or (iii) deterministic.
 
north
 
Reply Thu 22 Jul, 2010 06:29 pm

I look at free-will this way ;

the subconsciousness gathers in an enormous amount of information > conscience

the conscience is the filter of the subconscious , the place in the Brain of the ability to " question " or to , " ask a question " about any topic

hence , free-will , is found in the frontal lobe of the brain
 
north
 
Reply Thu 22 Jul, 2010 06:37 pm

further to my last post ;

inotherwords , the conscience , ( the place of awareness , thinking , is mallable ), not determined
 
wayne
 
Reply Fri 23 Jul, 2010 12:13 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy wrote:

fast wrote:

wayne wrote:
By that same logic, there remains a span of time, however infinitisimly small, that even aliens could not have beamed the plane up without reversing time.

Are you saying it is logical to reverse time?

No, I'm saying that we're dealing with two very distinctly different creatures: logic and physics. When we look at the words "logical possibility" and "physical possibility," we notice the word they share: "possibility," but that they share the word, however, isn't to imply what we might think it does.

A statement that is self-contradictory is logically impossible, and any statement that is not self-contradictory is logically possible, so any statement that describes a physically impossible event remains logically possible so long as it’s not self-contradictory.

My contention is that some physically impossible events are logically possible--and that hasn't much to do with reversing time.



What is physically possible is logically possible, but not conversely. So, although it is logically possible for water to freeze at 212 F, it is not physically possible. To ask whether we could have done otherwise than we did is to ask whether it is physically possible to do otherwise. But now the issue is just how to understand what it means for it to be physically possible to do otherwise. It it means, is it possible for someone in identical conditions to do otherwise, then the answer is no, if determinism is true. But do we ever mean that when we assert that we could have done otherwise? And why would we mean that? What we ordinarily mean is that we could have done otherwise if we had chosen to do otherwise. And that is quite compatible with determinism since the choice changes the original conditions.


Ok, here's where I skipped class to get high.
I'm lost on this function of logic.
I have always used logic from the basis of what has gone before.
The logic of water freezing at 212 F escapes me .
I understand that it is conceivable for water to freeze at 212 F
Logic then supercedes all rule?
 
wayne
 
Reply Fri 23 Jul, 2010 02:46 am
@fast,
fast wrote:

wayne wrote:
By that same logic, there remains a span of time, however infinitisimly small, that even aliens could not have beamed the plane up without reversing time.

Are you saying it is logical to reverse time?

No, I'm saying that we're dealing with two very distinctly different creatures: logic and physics. When we look at the words "logical possibility" and "physical possibility," we notice the word they share: "possibility," but that they share the word, however, isn't to imply what we might think it does.

A statement that is self-contradictory is logically impossible, and any statement that is not self-contradictory is logically possible, so any statement that describes a physically impossible event remains logically possible so long as it’s not self-contradictory.

My contention is that some physically impossible events are logically possible--and that hasn't much to do with reversing time.



Ok, I had to go spend 2 hours to make up for the day I skipped to get high.
Yes, I must agree with the logical possibility as it stands.

Prior to the point of no return, all possible events remain undetermined.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Fri 23 Jul, 2010 02:54 am
@wayne,
wayne wrote:

kennethamy wrote:

fast wrote:

wayne wrote:
By that same logic, there remains a span of time, however infinitisimly small, that even aliens could not have beamed the plane up without reversing time.

Are you saying it is logical to reverse time?

No, I'm saying that we're dealing with two very distinctly different creatures: logic and physics. When we look at the words "logical possibility" and "physical possibility," we notice the word they share: "possibility," but that they share the word, however, isn't to imply what we might think it does.

A statement that is self-contradictory is logically impossible, and any statement that is not self-contradictory is logically possible, so any statement that describes a physically impossible event remains logically possible so long as it’s not self-contradictory.

My contention is that some physically impossible events are logically possible--and that hasn't much to do with reversing time.



What is physically possible is logically possible, but not conversely. So, although it is logically possible for water to freeze at 212 F, it is not physically possible. To ask whether we could have done otherwise than we did is to ask whether it is physically possible to do otherwise. But now the issue is just how to understand what it means for it to be physically possible to do otherwise. It it means, is it possible for someone in identical conditions to do otherwise, then the answer is no, if determinism is true. But do we ever mean that when we assert that we could have done otherwise? And why would we mean that? What we ordinarily mean is that we could have done otherwise if we had chosen to do otherwise. And that is quite compatible with determinism since the choice changes the original conditions.


Ok, here's where I skipped class to get high.
I'm lost on this function of logic.
I have always used logic from the basis of what has gone before.
The logic of water freezing at 212 F escapes me .
I understand that it is conceivable for water to freeze at 212 F
Logic then supercedes all rule?


As I explained, to say that a proposition is logically possible is to say that it does not imply a contradiction. For example the proposition that some bachelors are married implies a contradiction since it implies that some unmarried males are married (a contradiction) . But that water freezes at 212 (although false) does not imply a contradiction. So it is not logically impossible. I am not sure what your question ("Logic then supersedes all rule?) means but I would just say that logic sets the limits of making sense, since self-contradiction really (in a way) makes no sense. And, within the limits of making sense, propositions (like water freezes at 212) are either true or false. All contradictions are false (necessarily false, since it is impossible for them to be true). But that water freezes at 212 is false, of course, but not necessarily false, since it is possible (logically possible) for it to be true. For, it does not imply a contradiction. That water freezes at 212 is physically impossible since it contradicts the laws of physics, but not logically impossible, since it is not self-contradictory (as is the proposition, some bachelors are married).
 
wayne
 
Reply Fri 23 Jul, 2010 04:03 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy wrote:

wayne wrote:

kennethamy wrote:

fast wrote:

wayne wrote:
By that same logic, there remains a span of time, however infinitisimly small, that even aliens could not have beamed the plane up without reversing time.

Are you saying it is logical to reverse time?

No, I'm saying that we're dealing with two very distinctly different creatures: logic and physics. When we look at the words "logical possibility" and "physical possibility," we notice the word they share: "possibility," but that they share the word, however, isn't to imply what we might think it does.

A statement that is self-contradictory is logically impossible, and any statement that is not self-contradictory is logically possible, so any statement that describes a physically impossible event remains logically possible so long as it’s not self-contradictory.

My contention is that some physically impossible events are logically possible--and that hasn't much to do with reversing time.



What is physically possible is logically possible, but not conversely. So, although it is logically possible for water to freeze at 212 F, it is not physically possible. To ask whether we could have done otherwise than we did is to ask whether it is physically possible to do otherwise. But now the issue is just how to understand what it means for it to be physically possible to do otherwise. It it means, is it possible for someone in identical conditions to do otherwise, then the answer is no, if determinism is true. But do we ever mean that when we assert that we could have done otherwise? And why would we mean that? What we ordinarily mean is that we could have done otherwise if we had chosen to do otherwise. And that is quite compatible with determinism since the choice changes the original conditions.


Ok, here's where I skipped class to get high.
I'm lost on this function of logic.
I have always used logic from the basis of what has gone before.
The logic of water freezing at 212 F escapes me .
I understand that it is conceivable for water to freeze at 212 F
Logic then supercedes all rule?


As I explained, to say that a proposition is logically possible is to say that it does not imply a contradiction. For example the proposition that some bachelors are married implies a contradiction since it implies that some unmarried males are married (a contradiction) . But that water freezes at 212 (although false) does not imply a contradiction. So it is not logically impossible. I am not sure what your question ("Logic then supersedes all rule?) means but I would just say that logic sets the limits of making sense, since self-contradiction really (in a way) makes no sense. And, within the limits of making sense, propositions (like water freezes at 212) are either true or false. All contradictions are false (necessarily false, since it is impossible for them to be true). But that water freezes at 212 is false, of course, but not necessarily false, since it is possible (logically possible) for it to be true. For, it does not imply a contradiction. That water freezes at 212 is physically impossible since it contradicts the laws of physics, but not logically impossible, since it is not self-contradictory (as is the proposition, some bachelors are married).


I see said the blind man.
My understanding of logic has been flawed, in the sense that it is not complete. I will be in the process of rectifying that.
Thank you sir for providing an opportunity to think a little deeper.

You are correct, also, philosophers put in some work.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Fri 23 Jul, 2010 06:49 am
@wayne,
wayne wrote:






Ok, here's where I skipped class to get high.
I'm lost on this function of logic.
I have always used logic from the basis of what has gone before.
The logic of water freezing at 212 F escapes me .
I understand that it is conceivable for water to freeze at 212 F
Logic then supercedes all rule?


Actually, I am not a knight, so I am not a "sir". My correct title, however, is, "Your Excellency".

As I explained, to say that a proposition is logically possible is to say that it does not imply a contradiction. For example the proposition that some bachelors are married implies a contradiction since it implies that some unmarried males are married (a contradiction) . But that water freezes at 212 (although false) does not imply a contradiction. So it is not logically impossible. I am not sure what your question ("Logic then supersedes all rule?) means but I would just say that logic sets the limits of making sense, since self-contradiction really (in a way) makes no sense. And, within the limits of making sense, propositions (like water freezes at 212) are either true or false. All contradictions are false (necessarily false, since it is impossible for them to be true). But that water freezes at 212 is false, of course, but not necessarily false, since it is possible (logically possible) for it to be true. For, it does not imply a contradiction. That water freezes at 212 is physically impossible since it contradicts the laws of physics, but not logically impossible, since it is not self-contradictory (as is the proposition, some bachelors are married).
[/quote]

I see said the blind man.
My understanding of logic has been flawed, in the sense that it is not complete. I will be in the process of rectifying that.
Thank you sir for providing an opportunity to think a little deeper.

You are correct, also, philosophers put in some work.
[/quote]
 
fast
 
Reply Fri 23 Jul, 2010 07:30 am
@wayne,
Wayne,

Here's another example. My friend can jump four (4) feet off the ground from a standing position. I told him that I can jump forty (40) feet off the ground from a standing position. He told me that was impossible. I said, "No it's not." He said prove it then. I said, "I haven't said anything that is self-contradictory, so what I said isn't false." "But it's physically impossible to jump forty (40) feet off the ground from a standing position," he exclaimed! I told him that he is correct and that it most certainly is PHYSICALLY IMPOSSIBLE. He said, then why are you telling me that it's possible? "Because it is", I replied. "How," he inquired? I said that I used the word "possible," and because that word is ambiguous, that doesn't mean that I meant it was physically possible and that I actually meant it's LOGICALLY POSSIBLE. Curiously he wondered and asked, "what kind of logic are you talking about that allows the inclusion of physically impossible events among that which is logically possible?" I didn't have an answer for that one, but I assured him that so long as it wasn't contradictory, it's logically possible.
 
ACB
 
Reply Fri 23 Jul, 2010 07:54 am
@fast,
fast wrote:
Curiously he wondered and asked, "what kind of logic are you talking about that allows the inclusion of physically impossible events among that which is logically possible?" I didn't have an answer for that one, but I assured him that so long as it wasn't contradictory, it's logically possible.

One can have mental images of logically possible but physically impossible events, but not of logically impossible events.
 
fast
 
Reply Fri 23 Jul, 2010 08:26 am
@ACB,
ACB wrote:

fast wrote:
Assuming that there are 1a) statements about laws of nature and 1B) laws of nature, (inventions and discoveries respectively), and assuming that there are 2a) laws of science (which are purportedly statements/inventions), then what I yearn to know is what 2b is. Any idea?

I think 2b would be "observed regularities in nature".

Statements about laws of nature:
(a) assert or imply that the universe is strictly deterministic, i.e. that the state of the universe at any time is (in principle) mathematically deducible from its state at any past or future time;
(b) assert or imply that this is because it is governed by compulsive metaphysical laws, the nature of which is not known.

Laws of science:
(a) are pragmatic statements about the universe, based on hitherto observed regularities;
(b) assume for practical purposes that these regularities will continue for the foreseeable future, but do not claim that they must (in any sense) do so;
(c) are not committed to any particular general view about the universe, i.e. whether the regularities are (i) accidental, (ii) causal (whatever that may mean), or (iii) deterministic.
Thanks
 
fast
 
Reply Fri 23 Jul, 2010 11:39 am
@ughaibu,
ughaibu,

I'm sorry Ughaibu. I was trying to reconcile what I perceived to be odd implications, but I now think that I was horribly mistaken on something that led me astray.
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Fri 23 Jul, 2010 10:20 pm
@ACB,
ACB wrote:

I think 2b would be "observed regularities in nature".

Statements about laws of nature:
(a) assert or imply that the universe is strictly deterministic, i.e. that the state of the universe at any time is (in principle) mathematically deducible from its state at any past or future time;
(b) assert or imply that this is because it is governed by compulsive metaphysical laws, the nature of which is not known.

Laws of science:
(a) are pragmatic statements about the universe, based on hitherto observed regularities;
(b) assume for practical purposes that these regularities will continue for the foreseeable future, but do not claim that they must (in any sense) do so;
(c) are not committed to any particular general view about the universe, i.e. whether the regularities are (i) accidental, (ii) causal (whatever that may mean), or (iii) deterministic.

According to that article that was posted earlier, there are two views (or more) regarding laws of nature. The regularists, whom were spoken about earlier, are those who 'insist that laws of nature do no more or less than correctly describe the world'. They do not believe that laws of nature are necessary (no matter the sort - logical, physical, etc.).

Here you seem to make the case that those who believe there are laws of nature believe in this "governing" metaphysical nature, and also believe that the laws are necessary in some sense. But that doesn't seem true. In fact, there seems to be a following of people who don't make much of a distinction between laws of nature and laws of science at all, and don't consider laws of nature necessary in any sense.

ughaibu wrote:
Jesus fucking christ, what the fuck is wrong with you?

Fuck you.

Figured I'd chime in too.

 
wayne
 
Reply Sat 24 Jul, 2010 05:07 am
@fast,
fast wrote:

Wayne,

Here's another example. My friend can jump four (4) feet off the ground from a standing position. I told him that I can jump forty (40) feet off the ground from a standing position. He told me that was impossible. I said, "No it's not." He said prove it then. I said, "I haven't said anything that is self-contradictory, so what I said isn't false." "But it's physically impossible to jump forty (40) feet off the ground from a standing position," he exclaimed! I told him that he is correct and that it most certainly is PHYSICALLY IMPOSSIBLE. He said, then why are you telling me that it's possible? "Because it is", I replied. "How," he inquired? I said that I used the word "possible," and because that word is ambiguous, that doesn't mean that I meant it was physically possible and that I actually meant it's LOGICALLY POSSIBLE. Curiously he wondered and asked, "what kind of logic are you talking about that allows the inclusion of physically impossible events among that which is logically possible?" I didn't have an answer for that one, but I assured him that so long as it wasn't contradictory, it's logically possible.



I've a new understanding of logic today. And a new direction of learning.
 
wayne
 
Reply Sat 24 Jul, 2010 05:14 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy wrote:
Actually, I am not a knight, so I am not a "sir". My correct title, however, is, "Your Excellency".


I don't think I can go that far just yet.
However, I may be able to suffer a "Captain my Captain" every now and again.
 
ACB
 
Reply Sat 24 Jul, 2010 03:14 pm
@Zetherin,
I would be interested to know your latest view about the problems associated with causality, arising from our discussion on page 94. One point of contention was the difficulty of ascribing a single cause - or even a limited number of causes - to a particular event. I agreed to use the term "negative conditions" (rather than my earlier term "negative causes") to refer to relevant non-occurrences.

Do you believe that, for any event, a single cause (or a small number of causes) can be distinguished in a non-arbitrary way from all the other positive and negative conditions relevant to that event?
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Sat 24 Jul, 2010 03:50 pm
@ACB,
ACB wrote:

I would be interested to know your latest view about the problems associated with causality, arising from our discussion on page 94. One point of contention was the difficulty of ascribing a single cause - or even a limited number of causes - to a particular event. I agreed to use the term "negative conditions" (rather than my earlier term "negative causes") to refer to relevant non-occurrences.

Do you believe that, for any event, a single cause (or a small number of causes) can be distinguished in a non-arbitrary way from all the other positive and negative conditions relevant to that event?


I think that when we talk about the cause of an event, we usually have a certain interest in mind. If we say, for instance, that the cause of X's death was that he was shot, that is because we are interested in X's death from a certain angle, perhaps the policeman's. A physician may talk instead of how X's heart stopped, as the cause of his death. To say that the cause was C is not to exclude contributory causes the absence of which would prevent the event from occurring. X would not have died unless his heart stopped, but that does not mean that when we say that what caused X's death was that he was shot. we are not right to say that.
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Sat 24 Jul, 2010 09:38 pm
@ACB,
ACB wrote:

I would be interested to know your latest view about the problems associated with causality, arising from our discussion on page 94. One point of contention was the difficulty of ascribing a single cause - or even a limited number of causes - to a particular event. I agreed to use the term "negative conditions" (rather than my earlier term "negative causes") to refer to relevant non-occurrences.

We have no problem ascribing single causes to particular events. If Bob shoots Phil in the head and kills him, we have no problem ascribing Phil's pulling the trigger to Bob's death.

But let us, to address your contention, consider that there are an infinite, or, at the least, an unquantifiable number of causes and conditions for any event. How does this create a problem for the theory of causality? We can surely know, and prove, some things cause other things, even if "that's not the whole story". If anything, this is an epistemological problem; that is, how much can we know about any event's occurrence? And from a philosophical standpoint we really have to consider how much of that whole story is even relevant to what we mean, in a particular instance, when we say that X caused Y.

But to say that just because there may be an unquantifiable number of causes and conditions for any event, that we cannot know any causes, I think is silly. That is pretty much saying that we cannot understand the relationships between occurrences. And that's, at least to me, clearly false.

ACB wrote:
Do you believe that, for any event, a single cause (or a small number of causes) can be distinguished in a non-arbitrary way from all the other positive and negative conditions relevant to that event?


Sure, they can be distinguished in the manner that kennethamy noted.
 
ughaibu
 
Reply Sat 24 Jul, 2010 09:52 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin wrote:
How does this create a problem for the theory of causality?
It's been explained how. Intuitively we want a model of causation to say something like if C occurs, then E follows, and if E occurs, then C precedes it. But this notion of cause seems to have at least two intractable difficulties. First, as pointed out above, there is the problem of interference, which trivialises the model to C causes E, if C causes E, second, take the possible case that there is, for example, an active volcano on some planet in a distant galaxy, and every time that volcano emits a puff of smoke, then I submit a post to this board, and if that volcano doesn't emit a puff of smoke, then I dont post. Under a naive intuitive model of cause, that volcano causes me to post, so we need to introduce a relation of relevance between C and E, but that just relocates the problem of cause to a problem of relevance.
Zetherin wrote:
from a philosophical standpoint we really have to consider how much of that whole story is even relevant to what we actually mean when we say that X caused Y.
None need be relevant, if you a) accept that cause is a vague notion, b) accept that cause concerns distinct local events, and c) avoid confusing cause with determinism.
 
 

 
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