Poll: Do you believe in free will?
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View poll results: Do you believe in free will?
yes
336 82%
no
73 18%
Voters: 410.
Page 1 of 6
#1
Do you believe that everyone has the choice to make any decision, or do you believe that everything we do is inevitable, and can't be avoided?
sup?
#3
some of both.

people can obviously decide if they want to do something, but certain things, like natural disasters just happen. not because someone made a choice for it to happen.
#4
You can have free will if you choose to accept it. (hehe)
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#5
I definitely believe in free will, but I also feel it's limited by previous events, social and psychological conditioning which we have no control over, and general biochemistry. While who we are is decided by our own free will, it's also equally defined by how we were raised and what our surroundings are.
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#7
I believe in free will, but I only because fate compells me to.
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#8
No I don't.
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#13
Free will is a myth like unicorns or the female orgasm.

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#15
I definitely want to believe that we make our own futures and our lives and the lives of others all depend on our actions, but sometimes I wonder whether what we do actually makes a difference, or do we all have a destiny?
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#16
yes
The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. We live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should voyage far.
#17
Fate is determined by our actions.
Free will is what drives our actions.
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#18
To a degree yes. However, what we do with the free will we have is heavily influenced by past and current events, so if we truely have free will is debatable.
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+1
#19
Our decisions are governed by chemical and neuriological reactions in our brains, there is no way we can go against the decision our brain makes. In that sense we are not free.
#20
Free will.

The idea of "fate" deciding everything we do is ridiculous, IMO.

Unfortunately, neither side of this argument has an concrete evidence to support it.
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#21
Yes because I don't believe in God.
If you believe in a loving God you cannot believe in Free will.

Vornik once made a very good post on the topic in the religion thread.
Quote by Vornik
Imagine God before creation and don't give me any bull**** about how there was no time or you can't imagine god or any of that apologetic bull**** because we both know damn ****ing well that you can conceive of god before creation.

Scenario A.
Imagine God before creation. This God is not omniscient. It can create the universe in any way it choses, there are presumably unlimited options. If it creates the universe in a certain way, the creatures will behave in a certain way, but the god might not necessarily know how they will behave. No conflict here.

Scenario B
Imagine God before creation. This God is not omniscient. It can create the universe in any way it choses, and so on. Unlike God A, God B cares very much about how its creatures should behave, but like God A, God B does not necessarily know how they will behave. If the creatures behave in a way that upsets God B, God B will punish them. Does this seem fair to the creatures? No. Does God B seem like a responsible, admirable being? Absolutely not. Is this scenario self-contradictory? Not at all.

Scenario C
Imagine God before creation. This God is omniscient. Like Gods A and B, God C can create the universe in any way it choses, but God C is unique in that not only does it have unlimited options, but because it has the property of being omniscient, it knows BEFORE TAKING ANY ACTION what EVERY result of whatever it does will be. This God will then know how every individual creature that comes about as a result of its creation will interact with the world in which it was created. Imagine that God C does not really care how its creatures act, and is merely an observer. Imagine a squirrel in God C's universe that drops an acorn off a tree, which falls and crushes a moth. Flash back to before creation. God C KNEW that if it chose that particular creation out of the limitless options, that moth would be crushed. How can one say that it was not God C's fault? What arguments could be made to alleviate God C of the blame? If one suggests that it is not the fault of God C, one could not possibly argue that it was the fault of the squirrel, for if God is not responsible for the actions of the squirrel that it created, why would the squirrel be responsible for the actions of the acorn?

Ah, but what if the squirrel purposefully dropped the acorn, knowing it would crush the moth? It would seem reasonable to place the blame on the squirrel, then.

But why not on God C? God C dropped the acorn when it created the universe, and God C dropped it with the intent to kill the moth because God C knew in advance that it would land on the moth.

The same applies to any other sin or any other action that any human being takes. If I hit someone with my car, God C hit someone with my car because God C created me, created the car, and knew that someone would be hit. Every time an acorn drops, God C dropped it - for better or for worse.

But of course the theist will then claim that the squirrel had a choice, it could have held on to the acorn. This is simply an illusion. Regardless of whether the squirrel or anyone else is aware, the future events have already been set in stone by God C when it foresaw creation before creating it and created it the way it did. I might think I have the choice of taking the elevator or the stairs, and I can sit and ponder my options for days, but no matter how much deliberation I exercise, the ultimate choice that I would make was known before God C created anything at all. Before I even had a mind with which to deliberate, the choice was known, and the choice was made, but not by me.

Is God C cruel? Is God C benevolent? Maybe, it's hard to say. One thing that is certain, however, is that the creatures created by God C could not possibly perform any action that God C was not directly responsible for. Is this self-contradictory? No. Is God C a responsible, caring creator? Maybe.

Scenario D
Imagine a God exactly similar to God C. The only difference is that God D will punish horrifically any creature acts in a way unsatisfactory to God D. Could there be more cruel a being? Could there be more evil a villain than such a God? No, there certainly could not be.

Can free will exist when the Creator chose what actions would be taken by every creature? Can there be spontaneity when the movements of every atom where known before atoms existed? Certainly not, and to think so is absurd. There are three possibilities:

Non-omniscient creator: not directly responsible for actions of its creations. Free will can exist, but the creator will always be indirectly responsible.

Omniscient creator: directly responsible for actions of its creations. Free will cannot exist.

Omniscient being, not the creator of all: not responsible for the actions of any creatures, free will can exist, but this being is not the creator of the universe.

Of the three options, the Christian God best suits the 2nd. However, the Christian God is like God D, and though it is directly responsible for its creature's actions, it punishes them for acting in certain ways. Not only is free will impossible, but this God is a sadistic, evil tyrant more treacherous than any villain ever imagined by the human mind.
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Last edited by Ur all $h1t at Apr 1, 2008,
#22
Quote by Craigo
Free will is an illusion. Fate is a lie.

Determinism is the way to go.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Determinism

Good philosophers > people with lives


+1

Determinism ftw.
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#23
Free will is an illusion.
Read the Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy.
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#24
You can choose a ready guide in some celestial voice.
If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice.
You can choose from phantom fears and kindness that can kill;
I will choose a path that's clear
I will choose freewill.

I seriously can't be the only person who thought of this song the second I read the thread title...can I?
#25
Quote by sam i am
I at least have the illusion of it, and that's good enough for me.

Disagreed; education is the best way to liberate the mind. Hitting hard with the fact that it is the illusion is as close as you're going to come to having free will.
#26
but...

God isn't real Ur all ****... so that doesn't really matter?

>.>
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#27
Quote by Meths
+1

Determinism ftw.



And yet you hold beliefs that directly contradict determinism, like when you often say 'it's their own fault...'

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#28
Quote by meh!
but...

God isn't real Ur all ****... so that doesn't really matter?

>.>

No it doesn't
hehe.
I forgot about that.
"Why should we subsidise intellectual curiosity?"
-Ronald Reagan

"Knowledge is in every country the surest basis of public happiness."
-George Washington
#29
That every action we carry out is determined by prior experience and how are brain interpreted them is ridiculous. Its just too far fetched. I know i have free will.
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#31
Quote by meh!
And yet you hold beliefs that directly contradict determinism, like when you often say 'it's their own fault...'



Shh.

Even if we don't, for society to function we must act as if we do.

Quote by bob farrell
That every action we carry out is determined by prior experience and how are brain interpreted them is ridiculous. Its just too far fetched. I know i have free will.


*Bzzt*

That's the "denial" alarm. It is not in the least bit far-fetched and is in fact entirely true. That you have no argument against it other than the fact that you lacking free will makes it uncomfortable is also a point in favour of it.
Is it still a God Complex if I really am God?

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#33
Quote by Craigo
Over elaborate to please me



God's not real,so the whole post doesn't matter. It's talking about problems between god and free will, not problems of free will its self.
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#34
Quote by meh!
but...

God isn't real Ur all ****... so that doesn't really matter?

>.>

It's a decent way of approaching why the hypothesis of an all loving God is a silly one, so it still holds some significance in the sense that, we shouldn't hold the idea of God at all.

EDIT in bold. Just a silly mistake.
Last edited by Craigo at Apr 1, 2008,
#35
Quote by Meths
Shh.

Even if we don't, for society to function we must act as if we do.



Lol, now you're taking my lines.
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#36
My psychology teacher was having a debate over this with my philosophy teacher today.I didn't stay and watch but it would've been interesting.
I don't see the point in arguing against free will, because if you don't believe we have the power to choose, then why bother arguing?
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#37
Quote by Craigo
It's a decent way of approaching why the hypothesis of an all loving God is a silly one, so it still holds some significance..



I've never got this kind of arugment.

There's no proof for god. None. None whatsoever.it's RIDICULOUS...


So why does the religion thread spend so much time arguing about the specifics of specific gods? cause they've got nothing better to do!
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#38
Free Will, it tastes good with steak.
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#39
Quote by meh!
I've never got this kind of arugment.

There's no proof for god. None. None whatsoever.it's RIDICULOUS...


So why does the religion thread spend so much time arguing about the specifics of specific gods? cause they've got nothing better to do!

There's no proof for God, there's no proof against God. The argument (God A, B, C and D) is a nice outline on why you can eliminate the majority of religion's all loving God.

EDIT: The notion at least.

I think this is a good idea... Christians should accept that, if there is a God, there is a chance he could be deceitful and evil.
#40
Quote by Craigo
There's no proof for God, there's no proof against God. The argument (God A, B, C and D) is a nice outline on why you can eliminate the majority of religion's all loving God.



Yes, but it's just a concession to the religious. It gives them room to breathe and argue.

There's no proof, therefore it need not ever be discussed except to say 'any proof?'.
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