Free Will
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27-04-2010, 03:12 AM
 
RE: Free Will
i have a pretty much the same idea of free will as ceryle.

does anyone know the show numb3rs it captures my idea quite well. so heres my idea free will isnt the choice to pick anything you like. as ceryle said your choices are constrained by evolutionary and biological factors. but environmental factors also play a role such as a lousy abusive childhood or being raped or plain peer pressure. these events change what choices you are likely to make. so its more of a statistical probability. and past events also influence you for a long time. effectively defining who you are and what you think is right.

but what we end up choosing is higly dependent upon our attitude and happines about former choices. so this bit might still be free will or a very complicated equation that still governs our response. with a large range of variables to input to the point its hard to isolate them.

a favorite philosopher of mine put it this way man is made by contingent historic practices of power. which discipline a person to behave a certain way and think a certain way. we are not autonomic. we are heteronomic ( meaning we have little or no independent free will) the way we think is governed by the institutions of society and social sciences. we think of ourselves in the ways allowed to us by society. so we dont make society, society makes us.

and nice to add, it used to be the church, that was that institution now its been outsourced to other newly formed insitutions. though the function stays the same. the philosophers name is michel foucault by the way is someone wants to look him up.
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27-04-2010, 07:59 AM
 
RE: Free Will
"we think of ourselves in the ways allowed to us by society. so we dont make society, society makes us."

Which is why I broaden the constraints by universal standards. As what happens when a human is not born to a society; i.e. isolation? Now obviously I'm talking about a scenario in which the environment would be created in such a manner as to allow this to happen.
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27-04-2010, 08:34 AM
 
RE: Free Will
look up feral children

they are children not raised in civilization but in the wild hence feral. and they show animal like behaviour. they have extreme diffeculty returning to civillization.

quite a interesting read to see how much influence culture has on us. not just the differences between them but the very basics of them.

ps feral children also include those locked in a basement they had similar behavior atleast it think. might be usefull for your scenario
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27-04-2010, 08:37 AM
 
RE: Free Will
Oh, I'm well aware of what a feral child is. It was more of a postulated scenario than anything.
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27-04-2010, 09:45 AM
 
RE: Free Will
I'm curious as to how the concept of 'free will' relates to something less physical and more cerebral. I do a fair amount of lucid dreaming and for decades I've been mostly constrained to the same sort of limitations that my physical 'daytime' body was used to experiencing.
With the exception of the occasional flying dream or breathing under water dreams, etc., my limitations closely correlated to assumptions my psyche had been conditioned to making by my waking physical self. Gravity, pain, fear, visual and tactile perception and the like determined what kinds of things I was able to experience.

As I developed the ability to 'wake up' inside the dream and start manipulating the 'environment' I discovered that a whole new standard of what is possible created a whole new personal paradigm. I'm still largely taking cues from the conditioning of physical reality but I've broken through on other fronts that I hadn't considered in my earlier dream life that allows me to have more autonomy over the decision process of what I'm able to conceptualize. I learned how to float at will, move through walls, disappear my body, fly at supersonic speeds, return to a variety of dream 'places' at will and essentially challenge my conception as to what a human being actually is. The more these new experiences alter my previously conceived state of 'normal' my accessibility to unexplored mental states seems to expand almost exponentially.

Now I don't know how the concept of free will relates to imagination (if dreaming truly is imagination and nothing more) but by extending the findings of my internal perceptions to the waking world, it seems like a measure of free will must exist just by the example that the later stages of human evolution seems to indicate. Or maybe I'm making an argument against free will as each level of growth is contingent upon previous revelation and seems to have a preset parameter in which to operate (although the full extent hasn't been realized and given enough time could be limitless).

I'm not sure if I'm really making any sense here and I admittedly don't necessarily fully understand the concept of free will but I can't help but think there's more to this phenomenon that can readily be understood in a twelve second thought process. Also being human avails us to many illusory notions that may be unique to our particular animal and the concept of free will may well be just an organic outgrowth of this natural yearning we have to be something more than what we think is possible. It is sort of fun to try to think about though.
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27-04-2010, 09:52 AM
 
RE: Free Will
Yes; I need not say much more.
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27-04-2010, 10:11 AM
 
RE: Free Will
i agree with your view on what dreams is. i formulate it more as a big building site where our memory serves as buidling blocks, because we cant imagine what we have never truly seen. we can only tweak it to a extent. and that extent is how vivid ones imagination is. i can only try to piece together what i have not seen before. the reason why creative artist try to experience so much because else they cant tweak it. only put a shoddy unconvincing something together.

but yeah because it doesnt need input from outside. so it does put the complicated formula idea / causality under pressure. which makes one say i do have a free will.

the possibilty that the formula still holds true is possible if we a assume the outside veriables become given and constant.
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27-04-2010, 10:23 AM
 
RE: Free Will
Although we are merely imagining what it would be like to do these things, such as phasing through walls, it never-the-less stands as evidence for my argument that humanity has inadvertently evolved to the point wherein such an imagining becomes possible in the first place. I still don't think that humanity is intellectually removed from the principle of causality, but that it simply has a range of possibilities to choose from.
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27-04-2010, 11:41 AM
RE: Free Will
(26-04-2010 11:09 PM)Ceryle Wrote:  The domain extends as far as it is possible for you to conceptualize a scenario wherein you perform a plausible action. You are capable of thinking, about anything that you are capable of thinking about...there really isn't so much of a barrier here, which is why I pointed it out earlier, as a kind of evolutionary subversion of baser principles.

Okay, I get it now. My position, though, is that we are only capable of thinking of one thing. This domain contains only one thought, which is the one required by causality.

Quote:The action a human will take, is dependent upon a plethora of factors, beginning from the origin of the universe, all the way up until that action occurs. How does it happen? Connective logic and causality from here on out really.

Yes, that's it exactly. But you seem to take the same basis as me and expand your domain's size from one to n with no basis for doing so. Why do you think that this domain contains more than one thought?

Quote:...I'm doing short answers here and not really explaining in depth due to fatigue. It's one here. >_<

That's okay. It was 2:00 a.m. for me the last time I posted. I think I've gotten used to not having enough sleep, though.

(27-04-2010 03:12 AM)ulfark Wrote:  so its more of a statistical probability.

Okay, so you have a set of possible actions, each one with a probability of occurrence assigned. How is this free will? It's just probability. When we throw a die, does the die have free will to decide what side it will land on?

Quote:so this bit might still be free will or a very complicated equation that still governs our response.

Obviously, I support the latter conclusion, as no case has been made in favor of free will thus far.

(27-04-2010 09:45 AM)Grassharpper Wrote:  I'm curious as to how the concept of 'free will' relates to something less physical and more cerebral.

Cerebral things are physical. Thoughts are just the brain's way of interpreting the electrochemical reactions going on up there.

Quote:I learned how to float at will, move through walls, disappear my body, fly at supersonic speeds, return to a variety of dream 'places' at will and essentially challenge my conception as to what a human being actually is.

How does lucid dreaming change your conception of "human", and how does it prove free will?

Quote:Now I don't know how the concept of free will relates to imagination

It doesn't. Imagination is perfectly well-explained by causality, the same way every other thing in the universe is.

Quote:it seems like a measure of free will must exist just by the example that the later stages of human evolution seems to indicate.

What?

(27-04-2010 10:23 AM)Ceryle Wrote:  Although we are merely imagining what it would be like to do these things, such as phasing through walls, it never-the-less stands as evidence for my argument that humanity has inadvertently evolved to the point wherein such an imagining becomes possible in the first place.

Yeah, humans are capable of imagination. How does this prove free will?

Quote:I still don't think that humanity is intellectually removed from the principle of causality, but that it simply has a range of possibilities to choose from.

The two parts of this statement contradict each other. Like I said above, by causality there can only be one thought possible at any one time.

"Sometimes it is better to light a flamethrower than to curse the darkness."
- Terry Pratchett
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27-04-2010, 01:19 PM
 
RE: Free Will
Thanks Unbeliever--I think I'm getting a better grasp of this concept. As far as dreams changing my conception of what 'human' is, I guess I was referring to the ever-expanding variety of perspectives and perceptions that one can freely chose from when arriving in some of these intense and vivid awakenings. But that wouldn't prove free will as I'm now understanding this, but probably supports the opposite. I'll keep trying to wrap my head around this crap.
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