Do humans actually have free will?

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Reply Mon 16 Apr, 2007 03:19 am
Determinism seems to breach the so called free will because all things you do have been theologically determined by the supreme being. If determinism have all humans programmed like a computer operator does with computers, what happens to free will?

The is no doubt in all aspects, some people even think that all man's action is determined by his environment.

What is free will?
 
Mr Fight the Power
 
Reply Mon 16 Apr, 2007 03:59 am
@PeterDamian,
I like copying and pasting my posts from other forums, so here you go:


Value can only be built upon values, for we only accept values after we have judged them favorably, and that process of judging is not possible without a set of values to operate as a yardstick. By extension of this logic, we must conclude that some values are innate, as without this core set of values, no other values would have been possible.

Now these values are the will, as will is our motivation to act, and we do not act for any other reason than value fulfillment.

Also, if we are to consider the concept of freedom, we will certainly establish it as a state of sovereignty, of self-control.

So, for there to exist a free will, it must be a motivation entirely controlled by the individual who possesses them, and as such must be a product of values over which the individual is sovereign.

With it being stated that there exists an innate set of values that are the root for all of our motivations, and that only those who control their motivations possess free will, we can define two possibilities, those who are self-creators and those who do not possess free will.

Since it is plain that no person is a self-creator, we can say that no person exists that possesses a free will.
 
mike9989
 
Reply Mon 16 Apr, 2007 10:21 am
@PeterDamian,
Determinism is the logical conclusion of many scientists that believe in the cause and effect concept as it does support this.

The basic concept of determinism, in it's most primitive form is thus:
Every action or thought is the result of an action of thought previously applied, in other words, an action, like a butterfly fluttering it's wings can disturb the atmosphere and over a period of time this action completes a chain of events that cause a tornado (not actually proven but some atmospheric experts think that the slightest disturbance can unde correct circumstances cause a tornado!).

This is logically sound in that one action can lead to another etc, however, the suggestion that there is no free will on the part of humans, I believe to be a false presumption on our part, we choose freely what we eat for breakfast for instance, there can be parameters to our free choice, for example, there aren't any cornflakes! But one cannot deny that a choice between two breakfast cereals, say, cornflakes and Shredded wheat is completely free within the set parameters. So, I conclude that we are slaves of circumstance, but that our free choice within those circumstances is not restricted in any way.
 
shindig284
 
Reply Mon 16 Apr, 2007 03:57 pm
@mike9989,
i really like where mike went on his post, but i must disagree. although in order to preserve our existance, there are certain parameters that we must follow, namely laws. however that does not mean that i cannot commit acts that would break the law if i chose to. if it was it was in my will to kill someone, i could do so. if it was in my will to steal, i could do so. there may be consequences to my actions if i were caught doing such things, but that doesn't mean that it in not within my free will to do so.

similarly, if i decided i wanted a type of breakfast cereal that i didn't have, then i could go to the store and buy some, or even steal some if i decided i wanted it bad enough and i had no money. or if i wanted a cereal that was not made, i could make such a cereal myself. or i could chose not to eat cereal at all, and could have pancakes or waffles for breakfast.

the possibilities for free will are infinate, not limited by anything, save maybe our conciousness.
 
redzeppelin
 
Reply Fri 20 Apr, 2007 08:13 pm
@shindig284,
If we don't have free will, then we aren't responsible for anything we do - we can blame all manner of other things for our behavior.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 11 Jun, 2007 04:09 pm
@PeterDamian,
PeterDamian wrote:
Determinism seems to breach the so called free will because all things you do have been theologically determined by the supreme being. If determinism have all humans programmed like a computer operator does with computers, what happens to free will?

The is no doubt in all aspects, some people even think that all man's action is determined by his environment.

What is free will?


I always thought that doing something of one's own free will is doing something which you are not forced to do. When I had to eat oatmeal when I was a child because my mother made me do it, I was not eating oatmeal of my own free will. But now, when I eat oatmeal because I know it is good for me, and I want to eat oatmeal, then I am eating oatmeal of my own free will. Isn't that how you, yourself, talk when you are not thinking about philosophy?
 
amid
 
Reply Mon 20 Aug, 2007 01:49 am
@PeterDamian,
In fact, free will is nothing more than an illusion. People think that they posses free will. Why? Because they think free wil is a matter of choosing between two things.While we should remember that our present is determined by our past. In other words man is the slave of his genes and environment. he is not the master of his will. If free will is an agent independent of both environmental an genetic factors, you can do many things which are beyond you natural capability; you can even fly.
 
Fido
 
Reply Sat 25 Aug, 2007 10:08 am
@PeterDamian,
PeterDamian wrote:
Determinism seems to breach the so called free will because all things you do have been theologically determined by the supreme being. If determinism have all humans programmed like a computer operator does with computers, what happens to free will?

The is no doubt in all aspects, some people even think that all man's action is determined by his environment.

What is free will?



Free will is no different from will unqualified. All life represents will. Do we have life, and do we have will; then we will against fate, against determinism, against the tyranny of time. All will is free.
 
Aristoddler
 
Reply Sat 25 Aug, 2007 10:12 am
@PeterDamian,
So then what is the difference between "free will" and "choice"?
 
Fido
 
Reply Sun 26 Aug, 2007 08:36 pm
@Aristoddler,
Aristoddler wrote:
So then what is the difference between "free will" and "choice"?



Will is love, or life force. Choice is like animation. If we can make a choice it proves their is a choice, and that our minds can discern between them so our minds are working which proves we still live. The only actual choice that tends to prove freedom of will is to escape from will, to deny ourselves, to deny our lives, to deny the value of our lives, and deny meaning to existence. For will must exist if it must often be denied, or defeated in other beings to have our lives. But proof aside, our existence supports will, Universal, undifferenciated will, and all will is free after the tremendous energy demanded by life is paid.
 
Teena phil
 
Reply Mon 22 Oct, 2007 07:16 pm
@amid,
amid wrote:
In fact, free will is nothing more than an illusion. People think that they posses free will. Why? Because they think free wil is a matter of choosing between two things.While we should remember that our present is determined by our past. In other words man is the slave of his genes and environment. he is not the master of his will. If free will is an agent independent of both environmental an genetic factors, you can do many things which are beyond you natural capability; you can even fly.


I agree here. Meaning that its basically an illusion. I'll post my response from another forum (similar topic)

Quote:

View of this obviously majorly depends on personal religious views. If the person assumes there's something "spiritual" in us, (something that nature/science will never be able to touch or explain) then the idea of free will still works.

I do agree with most of what you have said though. I believe in theory, its completely possible to predict person's actions. I think its basically a very complex process, and its definetely affected by our past. Meaning a certain thing that has happened to us leaves a trace (or memory of it) in the brain, and THAT affects our future actions. This I belive builds up our actions, reactions etc in this very complex system. I guess a simple form of it is like with response to a burn...

I remember a few years back while in high school I worked at this company signing people up for charity donations. A major part of what they taught us is what to say/do to get the person to do what you want them to do (donate). I believe this is definetely a lower/more simple part of it. We work like machines, and there are some "general" buttons that work on majority of people that you can "press" to get them to act a certain way. Which is what they taught us. So again, at least in theory I believe its possible to take it much further & on a much more precise and complex level. You would have to STUDY the person, their influences, their past etc etc
 
Fido
 
Reply Mon 22 Oct, 2007 09:06 pm
@Teena phil,
Meaning relies on the perception that one thing we perceive has more value than another, or a different value, as in this being more or less dangerous, rewarding, sweeter, louder than another. There is no meaning without judgement, no judgement without meaning; and only when we judge without evidence as in faith, or out of biggotry does meaning equal illusion.
 
molok69
 
Reply Mon 29 Oct, 2007 09:40 pm
@Fido,
Sorry, but everytime I find a thread in a philosophy forum that questions free will, I seem to post a reply, pre-determined as it was I had no way of preventing this.
 
PoPpAScience
 
Reply Tue 30 Oct, 2007 01:43 am
@molok69,
Humans have an inherent "Will". After all, the singularity, through an act of "Will", exploded into a Big Bang. Did it not?
And we are of this Big Bang, are we Not? So, we must have the same "Will".
Having free "Will", that is influenced by out side forces, seems appealing to me.
 
Baloo72
 
Reply Wed 7 Nov, 2007 04:29 pm
@PeterDamian,
What exactly is the difference in will and free will? I see will as a desire to do something. My will can be to run a marathon. I may or may not actually run a marathon, but I can still have that will. This is where it gets hazy; what exactly is the definition of free will? Is it a desire that is free of something, and if so, free of what?
 
PoPpAScience
 
Reply Wed 7 Nov, 2007 05:04 pm
@Baloo72,
My opinion is that there is a great deal of difference from basic everyday Will, and that of True Free Will. People can us millions of examples, of one using their will to do something. But to use examples of Free will, one will have to use examples that go above and beyond the norm. Using your example of a marathon: You use your Will to enter the marathon, this is a desire of yours to do so. While nearing the end of the marathon you become exhausted, and every thought and muscle in your body says quit. But you us Free Will to ignore all that your being is telling you, and you go on to finish the marathon. This is True Free Will when something inside you reaches through all you are and makes you more. To me Will is the nature of the Universe, and Free Will is going above and beyond, "Nature".
 
Fido
 
Reply Wed 7 Nov, 2007 05:43 pm
@Baloo72,
Baloo72 wrote:
What exactly is the difference in will and free will? I see will as a desire to do something. My will can be to run a marathon. I may or may not actually run a marathon, but I can still have that will. This is where it gets hazy; what exactly is the definition of free will? Is it a desire that is free of something, and if so, free of what?



You are not telling me what will is, or how it is different fro free will. You are giving me example of will. Fine. We have no better evidence of justice than so many examples. Are all the examples of free will and will in general sufficient to prove will? The great proof of will results in non existence. Life is all we know of existence and the fact that people can deliberatly neutralize themselves is proof that life itself as universal will is not determined. So who needs to prove a power they know they possess?
 
Baloo72
 
Reply Thu 8 Nov, 2007 07:34 pm
@Fido,
Fido wrote:
You are not telling me what will is, or how it is different fro free will. You are giving me example of will. Fine. We have no better evidence of justice than so many examples. Are all the examples of free will and will in general sufficient to prove will? The great proof of will results in non existence. Life is all we know of existence and the fact that people can deliberatly neutralize themselves is proof that life itself as universal will is not determined. So who needs to prove a power they know they possess?


I understand your first four sentences. I did tell you what I thought will was "I see will as a desire to do something". I did not know the difference in will and free will, so I did not tell how it was different. I asked for the opinion of other people. I honestly do not understand the rest of your response :confused: (after the first four sentences). I will restate what I think that you said, and if I am not right please let me know:

Fairness is shown by the number of examples of will.:confused: Are all the examples of will and/or free will (which have not been defined yet in this post) enough to prove that will exists?:confused: When will is proved, we cease to exist.:confused: Our life is our existence, and the fact that we can leave this life ourselves (suicide?) is proof that life itself is not the universal will :confused: (which has not been defined in this post). So why would we need to prove that we have the power to leave this life (suicide?) when we know we have that power?

Honestly, this doesn't make much sense to me, so please clarify yourself, and tell me what you meant because I probably got it wrong.
 
shindig284
 
Reply Mon 12 Nov, 2007 12:01 am
@Fido,
I could not help but notice the absence of one very important point in all of the postings I read (and if I missed it I apologize to whom posted it before me).

There are two possibilities in this argument. Either we have free will and are able to do what ever we wish, or we do not have free will and there is some being governing our actions for us that does posess free will. If we are to say that there is such a being, this being would have to be of great power and knowledge. I will forgo any proofs of this being's existance and detailed nature for this particular discussion, but let us assume for now that this being is God (which is the being I am hinting at).

If we remove free will from human control, the only other possibility is that God is governing our every action. If we were to say that, then evil can be attributed to God's will.

If anyone holds that God does not exist, or that God is not all-good, then this argument does not work. However God's existence is for another discussion. But for those who beleive in the traditional notion of God, they must also beleieve in free will.
 
Seeker phil
 
Reply Wed 14 Nov, 2007 12:17 pm
@PeterDamian,
America works as well as it does to the extent that we are free. It does not matter if you think you are a Divine being or a worm of the dust. We are free to think and do what ever we want. We are also personally responsibly for our thoughts and actions.

America fails when it does not hold us responsible for our actions and tell us it is someone else's fault.

Freedom and Personal Responsible are one and the same one can not be separated from the other. This is the essence of cause and effect.

You are free to believe me our not believe me and you will experience the results accordingly. Work with the Spiritual Laws, which are the same as the Laws of Physics and you will lead a life of Bliss. Try and think and work against the laws and you will experience something less. It is just that simple.


Namaste!
 
 

 
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