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Thread: Free Will

  1. #1

    Default Free Will

    The other day, I was lost in thought when I had this random notion about free will. Not about controlling somebody, but the philosophical question of whether we are really free to make decisions in life or if our lives are written.

    I am really not too good explaining complicated ideas that i have, but here goes...

    Every decision that we make is influenced by a very large number of external factors such as whether or not you are hungry, tired, happy, warm, peer-pressured, etc. If someone asks you if you want to get Domino's for dinner, then depending on various factors such as whether you have already prepared food, or if you are too tired to cook yourself will lead to your decision.

    So these external pressures drive decision making and, if you were able to determine all of these factors and their individual influence on a person then you could extrapolate and determine their future decisions for the rest of their life.

    Okay so it's clearly a much more complicated idea in my head than what I can describe in two poorly written paragraphs but I'm just gonna put this out there and see what happens.

  2. #2

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    Bell's Theorem

    TL;DR: The "best answer" is a good summary: stackexchange.com

    At the very least, we're not fully predictable even in theory. ^.^

  3. #3

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    I believe I have a power to do anything if I truly want it and believe I can do it. Strongmided!

  4. #4

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    We had a fairly involved discussion on this topic recently. My thoughts on it remain the same as posted: https://www.adisc.org/forum/showthre...efore-posting)

  5. #5

    Default

    The nice thing about the free will debate is that you are free to believe whatever you want about it.

    ... or are you?

    Well, anyway, you are free to express your opinion on it.

    ... or are you?

  6. #6

    Default

    I've always enjoyed discussion on the topic of free will. My understanding of it branches more from existential philosophy as I believe we are created meaningless or without purpose and the pursuit of meaning is what gives life meaning. to achieve a sense of free will one must stop looking for a purpose and except they don't need to exist with a purpose or a meaning beyond what they chose for themselves. At that point life becomes more about enjoying it as it is, and achieving what you see desirable in the world rather than pursuing meaning.

    Essentially, we achieve free will when we realize we can chose our purpose or decide our own meaning.

    Some great philosophers to check out would be Nietzsche and Sartre if you're interested in existentialism. You should also check out Plato's cave theory, and Aristotle's poetics. Good reads on the subject of free will.

    Otherwise, I don't think you can genuinely predict what people are going to do, but there are small factors that can be used to make relatively accurate predictions about what people might choose to do. However, life impacting decisions are less predictable and less frequent. So measuring free will becomes a challenge.

  7. #7

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    In order for there to be free will, there has to be a self. Prove a self exists. You'll either hit infinite regress or circular reasoning.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by FinnTheSnuggly View Post
    Prove a self exists.
    Who wants proof?

    - - - Updated - - -



    Quote Originally Posted by AesopLionstale View Post
    Essentially, we achieve free will when we realize we can chose our purpose or decide our own meaning.
    It sounds like you're saying we achieve free will when we realize we already have it.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Drifter View Post
    Who wants proof?
    "According to the teaching of the Buddha, the idea of a self is an imaginary, false belief which has no corresponding reality, and it produces harmful thoughts of 'me' and 'mine', selfish desire, craving, attachment, hatred, ill-will, conceit, pride, egoism, and other defilements, impurities and problems."

  10. #10

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by FinnTheSnuggly View Post
    "According to the teaching of the Buddha, the idea of a self is an imaginary, false belief which has no corresponding reality, and it produces harmful thoughts of 'me' and 'mine', selfish desire, craving, attachment, hatred, ill-will, conceit, pride, egoism, and other defilements, impurities and problems."
    Excellent deflection! You should apply for a cabinet post in Trump's WH.

    Is it the idea or the self that is "imaginary"?
    (and aren't you supposed to kill the Buddha if you run into him?)

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