What is Free Will?

Get Email Updates Email this Topic Print this Page

kennethamy
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 11:29 am
@scian,
áscian;111803 wrote:
. If I know I have free will, whether or not is exists is immaterial.


How could that be if you could not know that you have free will unless free will does exist? What would you know if there were no free will? Certainly not that there was free will.
 
fast
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 12:10 pm
@fast,
I need to get a better grasp on the word, "agent."

All agents are people, but not all people are agents.

Is that true?
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 12:12 pm
@fast,
Agents are people who charge other people 15% to take their free will away from them.
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 12:16 pm
@fast,
kennethamy wrote:
I am not sure what, "I had no choice" means. Often, it just means that I had to choose between two evils, and that I chose the lesser evil. But, of course, then I did have a choice. Just not a good choice. It is not, then, literally true I had no choice. If you mean that quite literally, I could not have done otherwise than I did do, then I don't understand why you think it would not matter as long as I believed I had a choice. What would not matter?


I meant that as long as we thought free will existed, even if it did not, that is all that matters.

---------- Post added 12-16-2009 at 01:25 PM ----------

fast;111809 wrote:
I need to get a better grasp on the word, "agent."

All agents are people, but not all people are agents.

Is that true?


Yes, because a person could be unconscious.
 
memester
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 12:25 pm
@Zetherin,
I think part of the problem in understanding the concept of "Free Will" is the addition of "Free" to "Will". Same problem created unneccesarily by adding "Ultimate" before "Truth".
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 12:35 pm
@memester,
memester;111813 wrote:
I think part of the problem in understanding the concept of "Free Will" is the addition of "Free" to "Will". Same problem created unneccesarily by adding "Ultimate" before "Truth".


I don't think it's an issue of the concept not being clear enough. The concept is clear: If one has free will to do something, they have a choice to do said thing (that is, they could have chosen otherwise).

Is this unclear to you?
 
fast
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 01:01 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;111814 wrote:
I don't think it's an issue of the concept not being clear enough. The concept is clear: If one has free will to do something, they have a choice to do said thing (that is, they could have chosen otherwise).

Is this unclear to you?


She had a choice not to comply with the gunman that was compelling her to get in the car, but her choice to comply was not of her own free will. What's important is whether or not our choice is compelled.
 
memester
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 01:01 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;111814 wrote:
I don't think it's an issue of the concept not being clear enough. The concept is clear: If one has free will to do something, they have a choice to do said thing (that is, they could have chosen otherwise).

Is this unclear to you?
Yes. It's not clear how having a choice available is demonstrating "Free Will".

Must it be possible for me to do a particular thing, in order for me to have "Will" ?

What is the difference between "Free Will" and "Will"?

---------- Post added 12-16-2009 at 02:06 PM ----------

fast;111818 wrote:
She had a choice not to comply with the gunman that was compelling her to get in the car, but her choice to comply was not of her own free will. What's important is whether or not our choice is compelled.
The gunman did not push her into the car. She got in because she feared something. She got in of her own will, under her own power.

She wants to survive the incident, and she is choosing what she thinks will increase her likelihood of survival. There were innumerable choices available. She could run, she could kick punch or scratch, she could scream, she could feign a faint, whatever. She could stall for one more second...
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 01:18 pm
@fast,
fast wrote:

She had a choice not to comply with the gunman that was compelling her to get in the car, but her choice to comply was not of her own free will. What's important is whether or not our choice is compelled.


You're right, I'm wrong. It's not about just having another choice, it's about whether you're compelled to choose. If you're compelled to choose, you aren't exercising free will.

memester wrote:

What is the difference between "Free Will" and "Will"?


I think people could use the words in the same way. But this does not mean that it is the same as your "Ultimate Truth" example. "Ultimate" before "Truth" definitely convolutes "Truth". However, I don't see how placing "Free" before "Will" convolutes the matter. As I said, they probably mean the same thing to people.

Quote:

Must it be possible for me to do a particular thing, in order for me to have "Will" ?


Yes, will means to choose, and you cannot choose something which is not possible to be chosen, can you?

Quote:

Yes. It's not clear how having a choice available is demonstrating "Free Will".


Refer to fast's post. I made a mistake.

Quote:

She wants to survive the incident, and she is choosing what she thinks will increase her likelihood of survival. There were innumerable choices available. She could run, she could kick punch or scratch, she could scream, she could feign a faint, whatever. She could stall for one more second...


Yes, she had other choices. But she was compelled to choose something. And while she was compelled, she did not have free will.
 
fast
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 01:20 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;111811 wrote:
Yes, because a person could be unconscious.

True. Leave it to me to ask a dumb question.

I guess I want to use "person", but I'm open to use "agent" if I have a good reason to.

It may be that no unconscious person is an agent with the ability to make a choice, but then again, no unconscious person is a person with the ability to make a choice either.
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 01:27 pm
@fast,
fast wrote:

It may be that no unconscious person is an agent with the ability to make a choice, but then again, no unconscious person is a person with the ability to make a choice either.


Yes, this true. But I think it better to use agent, because it refers to only those people who can make a choice.
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 01:33 pm
@memester,
memester;111813 wrote:
I think part of the problem in understanding the concept of "Free Will" is the addition of "Free" to "Will". Same problem created unneccesarily by adding "Ultimate" before "Truth".


I completely agree with you. The issue is not that of choice but that of placing an absolute modifier in front of that choice. One is chided for making generalizations, which are functional absolutes, yet in some cases, this one especially the generalization of absolute is celebrated, when in almost all other cases of the unsubstantiable is eschewed.
 
memester
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 01:34 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;111822 wrote:
You're right, I'm wrong. It's not about just having another choice, it's about whether you're compelled to choose. If you're compelled to choose, you aren't exercising free will.



I think people could use the words in the same way. But this does not mean that it is the same as your "Ultimate Truth" example. "Ultimate" before "Truth" definitely convolutes "Truth". However, I don't see how placing "Free" before "Will" convolutes the matter. As I said, they probably mean the same thing to people.
I think they do not mean the same thing to people, or there would not be the ongoing attemt to differentiate "Free Will" from "Will" in that manner.

Quote:


Yes, will means to choose, and you cannot choose something which is not possible to be chosen, can you?
I think you synonymize them unjustifiably.

Quote:




Refer to fast's post. I made a mistake.



Yes, she had other choices. But she was compelled to choose something. And while she was compelled, she did not have free will.
How was she compelled ? She was not put in the car; she got in.
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 01:43 pm
@fast,
memester wrote:

I think they do not mean the same thing to people, or there would not be the ongoing attemt to differentiate "Free Will" from "Will" in that manner


I have never witnessed anyone differentiating "Free Will" from "Will" to make a point on this matter. I have just seen people use "Free Will" and ignore "Will" altogether (that's usually what I see). I have also seen people use "Will" synonymously with "choice" - "If you will it", I thought meant, "If you choose it". But, it's obviously very possible you have seen things I have not seen, and that I do not understand the matter. So, I think it's very possible you are correct and I am incorrect.

Quote:

How was she compeelled ? She was not put in the car; she got in.


One can be compelled psychologically to do something, can they not? The gun to her head won't physically place her in the car, but it seems as though there would be overwhelming psychological pressure for her to get in the car.
 
fast
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 01:54 pm
@memester,
[QUOTE=memester;111819]She got in of her own will, under her own power.[/QUOTE]She didn't want to get in the car! She just arrived at the grocery store. What she wanted was to go inside and buy Roger Wood sausages. Yum yum.

Yes, she made the choice to get in the car, and she made the decision to get in the car and not run, and although she did want to save her life, it's not true that she wanted to get in the car.

That she did what she did of her own power, as opposed to being manhandled into the car is beside the point. Being compelled to do something doesn't imply that we must do something. Being able to resist a compelling force isn't to say there was no compelling force.

If you want to speed up and down the highway, you can do so, but the law is still a compelling force for you to refrain from doing what you want to do. That you can resist that force is beside the point.
 
scian
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 01:55 pm
@GoshisDead,
memester;111813 wrote:
I think part of the problem in understanding the concept of "Free Will" is the addition of "Free" to "Will". Same problem created unneccesarily by adding "Ultimate" before "Truth".


GoshisDead;111828 wrote:
I completely agree with you. The issue is not that of choice but that of placing an absolute modifier in front of that choice. One is chided for making generalizations, which are functional absolutes, yet in some cases, this one especially the generalization of absolute is celebrated, when in almost all other cases of the unsubstantiable is eschewed.


I think I have to agree as well. It seems that we often become hung up on the modifier. I don't necessarily see a difference between free will and will. Both terms represent a divergence from not having a choice. You really can't have a sort of fact and an absolute fact, there are only facts. Just like you can't have free will and enslaved will, there is only will.
 
memester
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 02:16 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;111831 wrote:


One can be compelled psychologically to do something, can they not? The gun to her head won't physically place her in the car, but it seems as though there would be overwhelming psychological pressure for her to get in the car.
What force made her body move, to be inside the car ?
 
fast
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 02:20 pm
@Zetherin,

[QUOTE=Zetherin;111826]Yes, this true. But I think it better to use agent, because it refers to only those people who can make a choice.[/QUOTE]I wonder if this has any implications in the eyes of the hard determinist.

If I must do X, then I have no choices. For instance, if I must do X, I can't do Y. Also, if I must do X, then I can't refrain from doing X. I must do X.

So, if I must do everything I do, then I'm not making the only choice available to me, as it's not even a choice, if a choice is between alternatives.

No alternatives implies no choice. If the hard determinist believes that all actions are necessary actions, then does this mean hard determinists would hold that there are no agents since agents are people who can make a choice?

When I choose the better word, I will need to consider a wide audience, and if I choose a word that by implication of their view has no referent, then I may doing the definition an injustice. I'm not dead set on that view. It's just thoughts on the matter.
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 03:15 pm
@fast,
memester wrote:
What force made her body move, to be inside the car ?


Once again, her being compelled does not necessarily mean she had no other choice; no one has said that her body was physically placed in the car by some force. It just means, in this case, there was overwhelming pressure for her to make that choice.

What about this do you not understand?
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 03:32 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;111848 wrote:
Once again, her being compelled does not necessarily mean she had no other choice; no one has said that her body was physically placed in the car by some force. It just means, in this case, there was overwhelming pressure for her to make that choice.

What about this do you not understand?

1 : upset, overthrow
2 a : to cover over completely : submerge b : to overcome by superior force or numbers c : to overpower in thought or feeling.

To overcome/overpower, that seems as if there was no other choice she could make, being overwhelmed effectivly limits the choice, not by making other possibilities nonextant but by making them unattainable.
 
 

 
Copyright © 2024 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.03 seconds on 06/20/2024 at 09:53:17