#1 Posted by majestic99 (8637 posts) - - Show Bio

I've always thought about it.

Presentism vs Eternalism, past vs future,etc.

Time to have a philosophical discussion. What are your opinions on the subject and why?

P.S. I hope this thread gets ALOT of responses.

m99

#2 Posted by majestic99 (8637 posts) - - Show Bio

Can at least one person comment?Just one!

m99

#3 Posted by majestic99 (8637 posts) - - Show Bio

@lykopis said:

awww -- it's a deep topic. :)

What are you thoughts on it? What does each represent to you?

I'm going to play devil's advocate.

If we have free will, then why is it that human beings routinely choose to do evil? If everything is predetermined, then existence would be meaningless. Nature/Nuture debate is overrated-it's obviously both. But that begs the question-which part is responsible for creating criminals and which for good citizens?

m99

#4 Posted by majestic99 (8637 posts) - - Show Bio

I guess nobody else is going to comment? Great!

m99

#5 Posted by IfDCRuledTheWorld (645 posts) - - Show Bio

I do believe that we have free will. But we are inherently selfish in nature. We choose evil because of instant gratification. Patience, much like good choices are something we learn. Consequences, are the real teachers in life. I also agree about predestination. Life would be meaningless if everything was already determined. I also believe deep down that everyone wants to believe that whatever it is that we do means something in the end.

#6 Posted by The Stegman (23203 posts) - - Show Bio
@majestic99:  
 


@lykopis said:

awww -- it's a deep topic. :)

What are you thoughts on it? What does each represent to you?

I'm going to play devil's advocate.

If we have free will, then why is it that human beings routinely choose to do evil? If everything is predetermined, then existence would be meaningless. Nature/Nuture debate is overrated-it's obviously both. But that begs the question-which part is responsible for creating criminals and which for good citizens? 

First, you should have put "Batman" in the thread title..it would have gotten more hits. Second, to answer your question, this guy below pretty much sums up my beliefs. 
 

I do believe that we have free will. But we are inherently selfish in nature. We choose evil because of instant gratification. Patience, much like good choices are something we learn. Consequences, are the real teachers in life. I also agree about predestination. Life would be meaningless if everything was already determined. I also believe deep down that everyone wants to believe that whatever it is that we do means something in the end. 


 
Humans are indeed, to me, selfish, violent, and hostile in nature. We have free will, and can do what we want, and technically can be a perfect society, but we constantly stunt ourselves by letting greed and violence get in the way, time and time again man has witnessed war, famine, poverty, and bigotry, and still refuses to solve them. It's not determinism, it's apathetic selfishness 
#7 Edited by weaponx (1566 posts) - - Show Bio

@The Stegman: lol about batman

And I agree with everything you said, well put.

#8 Posted by TheWitchingHour (1340 posts) - - Show Bio

Life cannot be summed up in any particular "ism"

#9 Posted by majestic99 (8637 posts) - - Show Bio

@The Stegman said:



Humans are indeed, to me, selfish, violent, and hostile in nature. We have free will, and can do what we want, and technically can be a perfect society, but we constantly stunt ourselves by letting greed and violence get in the way, time and time again man has witnessed war, famine, poverty, and bigotry, and still refuses to solve them. It's not determinism, it's apathetic selfishness

Agreed.

@TheWitchingHour said:

Life cannot be summed up in any particular "ism"

There's no "ism" on the end of free will.

m99

#10 Posted by majestic99 (8637 posts) - - Show Bio

@lykopis said:

First off, what is "evil"? Each of us are instinctual and created to thrive and sometimes actions taken in pursuit of that could be construed as evil be people and/or groups who defined "good" and "evil" according to certain beliefs. Outside of people who mentally distressed, "evil" is subjective. So is "good."

Racism, bigotry, rape, genocide. Those who commit it may find it is "good," but in reality it brings about human suffering and is the result of ignorance and lack of an open mind to learn that what they are doing is wrong.

m99

#11 Posted by majestic99 (8637 posts) - - Show Bio

@lykopis said:

Education is key --- accepting the truth that all people are equal regardless of gender and physical appearance and age is what humanity is slowly working towards. We are not born "evil" or "good." We are just born. What we do while alive is all on our shoulders, individually. Either you decide to follow blindly, pave your own way, or a little of both but every action you take is your responsibility. Your own fault.

I agree. I'' address the other points later(some of which you have said I agree with as well, but not everything). Right now I have to go.

m99

#12 Posted by TheWitchingHour (1340 posts) - - Show Bio

@majestic99 said:

@TheWitchingHour said:

Life cannot be summed up in any particular "ism"

There's no "ism" on the end of free will.

m99

I realize you can spell and I'm very happy for you. But I think you're missing the point...

#13 Posted by TheWholeDamnShow (758 posts) - - Show Bio

How is it free will if you're basically raised to be everything that you are? Sure we as a species have the free will to make our own choices and decisions, but that doesn't mean we fully have control. Everything we believe to be right and wrong has slowly been programmed in our minds by our parents and peers throughout our entire life. Most people don't do evil things because they think it's evil, they usually have some sick twisted knowledge that what they are doing is either right or justified.

#14 Posted by PowerHerc (81700 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheWitchingHour said:

Life cannot be summed up in any particular "ism"

This.

#15 Posted by _Hawk_ (2053 posts) - - Show Bio

This is one of the biggest debates in "Christian" circles........ and I have a very set opinion on this BUT I'm not telling .

#16 Posted by The Devil Tiger (1263 posts) - - Show Bio

1) There is not evil but only ignorance in action, and ignorance on the perception of theses action. 2) Free will exist, as determinism, but none of them are absolute and the two coexist. Some things are simply under control, and some aren't. Universe is a vast uncaring thing, and because it's uncaring, we can find freedom in it, as well as death.

#17 Posted by Kal'smahboi (3491 posts) - - Show Bio

See, I never saw free will as a paradoxical with belief in an omniscient god. Saying that a god knows the future does not mean that it determined it. It is just aware of it, which does not contradict free will. You can do whatever you want, I just know which choice you will make.

#18 Posted by SC (12724 posts) - - Show Bio
@lykopis said:

@majestic99 said:

Racism, bigotry, rape, genocide. Those who commit it may find it is "good," but in reality it brings about human suffering and is the result of ignorance and lack of an open mind to learn that what they are doing is wrong.

m99

Too blanket a statement.

Racism? Well --- what to you is racist? To me, its the belief that there are "races" and a measurement of worth according to someone's opinion of what constitutes inferiority and superiority. Again -- more an environmental thing. Those fancy Europeans with their silk duds truly did believe the African tribesman and aboriginals of the Americas were animals. It's ignorance. Racism, sexism, ageism --- all routed in ignorance. Education can fix all that.

Bigotry? Again, what does that mean? To me it the purposeful intolerance of opinions and attitudes that don't follow yours. Outside of the obvious (those "isms" I mentioned above) I believe everyone has the right to be heard, to determine for themselves what certain things mean. If their opinions don't impede my freedom or others, then I would never discount and ignore them. Again, this is environmentally influenced. I was raised to believe in a whole slew of bigoted and racist ideologies but have been able to determine through my own free will to discount them. Most of us are able to -- just takes a little bit of effort to open yourself up. Bigots to me are just the result of laziness. Like lots of other fallacies like intolerance and wilful ignorance.

Rape. This is tricky. I can delve into prehistoric times and bring up that rape was effective in ensuring human survival (tribes being exclusive etc) but keeping this discussion contemporary, there are many reasons why rape is commonplace. First off --- sex feels really, really good. And - typically, its woman and young boys who are raped because they are smaller and weaker than full grown men. Expand that to include society and culture (from the idea that women are possessions) and sexual abuse being experienced while young -- rape continues to be a problem. Environment again. Plus in some cases, nature but those are handicaps, and the more strides we make in understanding and treating those physical/chemical imbalances. the better we as a species will be. Conscious choices to rape because you want to -- the selfish want to be sexually gratified and in control are choices, perpetrated usually by a belief than a real "man" takes what he wants, that woman and young children are weaker therefore acceptable prey.

Genocide can be covered by the above as well. Horrific, yes. Historically, genocide was committed due to a belief that eradication of a certain group of people if for the betterment of another. Christians (of all stripes) Muslims, Mayan, Native, Jewish and the Romas peoples have suffered, plus so many others like what is happening in Africa and what had happened in Bosnia. You can construe this as "evil" but this is all due to environment and a nurtured belief system poisoned by racism and ignorance.

Education is key --- accepting the truth that all people are equal regardless of gender and physical appearance and age is what humanity is slowly working towards. We are not born "evil" or "good." We are just born. What we do while alive is all on our shoulders, individually. Either you decide to follow blindly, pave your own way, or a little of both but every action you take is your responsibility. Your own fault.

 
Well said. I agree with this.  
 
Knowledge and education VS Ignorance >> Good vs evil. 
Moderator
#19 Posted by jeanlucpicard (1845 posts) - - Show Bio

This is a boring topic. also you wont get many hits on a boring thread, I've made a lot of boring threads and they got no where lol.

#20 Edited by RazzaTazz (9490 posts) - - Show Bio
@majestic99: I think I have gone through different periods in my life as to how I would address this.  As a scientist I have a tendency to think that everything in the universe can be quantified and valued.  After all, we are all comprised of atoms, and those atoms react in a somewhat predictable manner when they form molecules and when those molecules form amino acids which in turn form life.  Also as an environmental scientist, there is also the observation that humans have a tendency to over value their own existence in the greater scheme of things, as we can see from the Pale Blue Dot, we are really pretty meaningless in the greater scheme of the universe.  Does this mean that we do not have free will?  Or that religion is just a veil to keep us from facing our own pointlessness?  At one point in my life I would have said yes to both, but I have changed my attitude somewhat.  I personally do not think that there is anything more beautiful than the things found in nature, but after walking in the Saint Peter's Plaza at the Vatican, I saw a thing for the first time in my life which was as beautiful as nature and it was created by the hands of man.  What led this man to create such a thing?  Love?  Piety?  Those are hard to quantify but if one admits their existence, their should at least be the possibility that free will can exist and that events are not pre-ordained.  I think we as humans have the ability to examine the universe, and unlike the remainder of the animal species in the world, we are one of the few where the universe looks back.  Or as Einstein said:  "There are two ways to live life, one is as though nothing is a miracle, the other as if everything is."  When people who are much smarter than I am can have the touch of religion in their lives, it makes me ponder what they know that I don't, and where once I had shut that door, now I feel as though I should leave it open a little bit.   
 
Your discussion has sort of veered away from your original point though so allow me to address: 
@lykopis: I think you have made a lot of good points.  If I can be allowed to expand on this a little, humans are one of the few species which have been so radically defined by flight versus flight.  Species in general can be seen to be dominated by one or the other (though neither is ever absent.)  As a general rule lions hunt and impalas run away.  Human reaction to stimuli are far different though.  Take for instance the only two organisms which can live at the south pole, homo sapien and particular species of bacteria that has evolved to the cold.  How we got there is necessarily a matter of humans feeling the need to explore the physical confines of our planet (and beyond).  In general terms the explorers can be said to be of the "fight" variety, in that they see something new and are unafraid (or less afraid) to go explore it.  Those that stay behind satisfy their own role in the continuation of the species, in that if this intrepid explorer is attacked by a neighbouring tribe or falls in a pit, then at least they are maintaining their hereditary DNA (as in for the survival of the fittest, the fittest that day is the one who stayed home.)  Over time though these attitudes can be both reinforces genetically but more so culturally.  As humans we are still animals, just ones that have managed to adapt to live in cities, cultures and civilizations.  Is this for our best interest?  Or do we fit here?  That is an entirely other discussion, but I would say that we do at time struggle with our inner animal.  This is for instance why we create laws and repercussions for those that break laws.  As to how the flight versus fight attitude works in present day ... well as I see it the world is defined by them.  I am somewhat addicted to travel and discovering the world for myself.  I think it opens the brain and stimulates all the senses, but when I tell some people about it they look at me like I am crazy.  Like "why would I want to go to Rome, I will get attacked by a robber" or "why would I want to go camping, I will get attacked by a bear".  If you look at this in a different light, some people still like very much staying in the safety of their own homes.  Doing so means exactly that - safety.  But then safety also means to some having guns at home to defend yourself, or building more prisons, or building fences along your borders, or starting wars with people that don't look like you.  Some people say that we as a species can move beyond this ignorance which causes racism, bigotry and hate, but I am not convinced.  I think that only some of us can.  
Moderator
#21 Posted by SpidermanWins (3980 posts) - - Show Bio

Free Will.

Also it's absurd to say that evil is not present in the world. Yes, good is a point of view Anakin, but that doesn't mean that if we run around taking and ruining lives, that just because we wouldn't think it is evil doesn't mean it isn't. However it is important to state that people will always do evil things, but no one is "evil". Otherwise, that would contradict free will. Anyway, my point is that if you look at evil as how it is normally meant, it exists. I know what you are trying to say, and it's correct, but the reasons you gave for rape and genocide don't make it less of an evil action. I agree with magestic's and your last statements.

@lykopis said:

@majestic99 said:

Racism, bigotry, rape, genocide. Those who commit it may find it is "good," but in reality it brings about human suffering and is the result of ignorance and lack of an open mind to learn that what they are doing is wrong.

m99

Too blanket a statement.

Racism? Well --- what to you is racist? To me, its the belief that there are "races" and a measurement of worth according to someone's opinion of what constitutes inferiority and superiority. Again -- more an environmental thing. Those fancy Europeans with their silk duds truly did believe the African tribesman and aboriginals of the Americas were animals. It's ignorance. Racism, sexism, ageism --- all routed in ignorance. Education can fix all that.

Bigotry? Again, what does that mean? To me it the purposeful intolerance of opinions and attitudes that don't follow yours. Outside of the obvious (those "isms" I mentioned above) I believe everyone has the right to be heard, to determine for themselves what certain things mean. If their opinions don't impede my freedom or others, then I would never discount and ignore them. Again, this is environmentally influenced. I was raised to believe in a whole slew of bigoted and racist ideologies but have been able to determine through my own free will to discount them. Most of us are able to -- just takes a little bit of effort to open yourself up. Bigots to me are just the result of laziness. Like lots of other fallacies like intolerance and wilful ignorance.

Rape. This is tricky. I can delve into prehistoric times and bring up that rape was effective in ensuring human survival (tribes being exclusive etc) but keeping this discussion contemporary, there are many reasons why rape is commonplace. First off --- sex feels really, really good. And - typically, its woman and young boys who are raped because they are smaller and weaker than full grown men. Expand that to include society and culture (from the idea that women are possessions) and sexual abuse being experienced while young -- rape continues to be a problem. Environment again. Plus in some cases, nature but those are handicaps, and the more strides we make in understanding and treating those physical/chemical imbalances. the better we as a species will be. Conscious choices to rape because you want to -- the selfish want to be sexually gratified and in control are choices, perpetrated usually by a belief than a real "man" takes what he wants, that woman and young children are weaker therefore acceptable prey.

Genocide can be covered by the above as well. Horrific, yes. Historically, genocide was committed due to a belief that eradication of a certain group of people if for the betterment of another. Christians (of all stripes) Muslims, Mayan, Native, Jewish and the Romas peoples have suffered, plus so many others like what is happening in Africa and what had happened in Bosnia. You can construe this as "evil" but this is all due to environment and a nurtured belief system poisoned by racism and ignorance.

Education is key --- accepting the truth that all people are equal regardless of gender and physical appearance and age is what humanity is slowly working towards. We are not born "evil" or "good." We are just born. What we do while alive is all on our shoulders, individually. Either you decide to follow blindly, pave your own way, or a little of both but every action you take is your responsibility. Your own fault.

#22 Posted by majestic99 (8637 posts) - - Show Bio

@lykopis:

I don't believe people are born good or bad, they're born just... people.

m99

#23 Posted by _Black (2302 posts) - - Show Bio

Ah, life is meaningless.

#24 Posted by RazzaTazz (9490 posts) - - Show Bio
@lykopis: You are right, I may have cast too much of a negative light on those that can not change.  I think what has changed is a change in the baseline as to what is acceptable behaviour in society and that this baseline advances further forward with the increasing human rights.  While there are those luddites who hold on to the past, there are others that actively seek a return to it.  Ten years ago a statement like "women shouldn't be allowed to vote" would have gotten a person nearly ostracized in Western society, but with the rise of the "me-first" form of populism which has become prominent in western politics recently, such comments are now something which the majority reject, but which some find to have some traction.  The same can be said with "arguments" over scientific fact such as evolution or global warming.  There are those that now feel as though these topics are up for debate and in which ignorance can trump knowledge and experience.  There is in fact somewhat of a disconnect between man and nature (another topic though I guess) but I think mankind more so struggles with nature in society, not outside of it.  We are after all animals and we must struggle with that while being required to act as something more and as something less in society.  That having been said I am not really surprised at why people do the things they do sometimes, only sometimes in the way it is presented.  Generally speaking society and civilization is an unnatural environment and provides a medium for some to act in a manner not available to wild creatures.  
Moderator
#25 Posted by SpidermanWins (3980 posts) - - Show Bio

@lykopis said:

@RazzaTazz said:

@lykopis: I think you have made a lot of good points. If I can be allowed to expand on this a little, humans are one of the few species which have been so radically defined by flight versus flight. Species in general can be seen to be dominated by one or the other (though neither is ever absent.) As a general rule lions hunt and impalas run away. Human reaction to stimuli are far different though. Take for instance the only two organisms which can live at the south pole, homo sapien and particular species of bacteria that has evolved to the cold. How we got there is necessarily a matter of humans feeling the need to explore the physical confines of our planet (and beyond). In general terms the explorers can be said to be of the "fight" variety, in that they see something new and are unafraid (or less afraid) to go explore it. Those that stay behind satisfy their own role in the continuation of the species, in that if this intrepid explorer is attacked by a neighbouring tribe or falls in a pit, then at least they are maintaining their hereditary DNA (as in for the survival of the fittest, the fittest that day is the one who stayed home.) Over time though these attitudes can be both reinforces genetically but more so culturally. As humans we are still animals, just ones that have managed to adapt to live in cities, cultures and civilizations. Is this for our best interest? Or do we fit here? That is an entirely other discussion, but I would say that we do at time struggle with our inner animal. This is for instance why we create laws and repercussions for those that break laws. As to how the flight versus fight attitude works in present day ... well as I see it the world is defined by them. I am somewhat addicted to travel and discovering the world for myself. I think it opens the brain and stimulates all the senses, but when I tell some people about it they look at me like I am crazy. Like "why would I want to go to Rome, I will get attacked by a robber" or "why would I want to go camping, I will get attacked by a bear". If you look at this in a different light, some people still like very much staying in the safety of their own homes. Doing so means exactly that - safety. But then safety also means to some having guns at home to defend yourself, or building more prisons, or building fences along your borders, or starting wars with people that don't look like you. Some people say that we as a species can move beyond this ignorance which causes racism, bigotry and hate, but I am not convinced. I think that only some of us can.

Very good points -- thank you -- and yes, fight or flight has worked pretty well in our favour as a species and your example fits perfectly. Considering that the world has become arguably well explored, it would stand to reason that as a species - we would be better to interact and share our genetic make-up with each other to ensure survival. Of course this is an oversimplification (evolution would take care of this - pale skin in sunnier climates, weaker bone structure in colder etc). I've experienced the same reaction as you from people who cannot understand why I want to travel the world and determine for myself what I have only been able to through other's eyes. I can see why, their resistance to stepping outside of their comfort zones because of what they have seen of the world (or someone else's translation of it) but that's where education steps in -- the self guided kind. That's not to say that I won't get raped, shot and thrown into a back alley somewhere when I do get out there, I am aware precautions need to be taken to hopefully prevent that, but if more people felt like we do, then this fear/reluctance to experience the world can be overcome. One of people's biggest regrets on their death-bed is that they wished they travelled more - it is in all of us to have that bit of curiosity and wanderlust (granted in varying degrees). Those who stayed behind instead of exploring might have comforted themselves by thinking of the ones who never came home, but I imagine they were filled with envy listening to tales from those who did. And that's just it. The what could have beens, the if onlys.. it's what stays on our minds. To me, that's where free will steps in and can counteract with the fight/flight response.

Gah --- I would love to really get into this -- get into my take that the structures set in western society has skewed perception and plays havoc with our natural instincts. To me, because of civilization and its various constraints (and freedoms) certain aspects of our flight/fight instinct has been compromised. I mean --- what the hell was that man thinking when he approached a grizzly bear in Yellowstone Park a few years back? Clearly he was raised in an environment where he believed bears were cuddly things and he learned in the worst way possible (along with his hysterical wife who witnessed his death while in their car) that his flight/fight instinct was off just a tad. And yet --- bet you he would have avoided a dark lane at night, in some shady part of town from where he was from. Someone raised with wild animals would have avoided the bear but yet whistle happily down that same alleyway, even tipping his hat all friendly-like at the approaching, grinning guy with the super shiny skinning knife with the same unfortunate results as his city-slicker brethren.

What makes people want to stay home and "safe"? I know of friends who ran to and from school dodging gun-fire from where they grew up, and yet cut across dark parking lots here in Canada thinking they are safer (they aren't). I am over-simplifying again, I know --- but my point is --- this level of fear that people live in is actually perpetrated by the media (its sells, I don't think its a conspiracy, lol) and even the governments that lead their countries see the benefit in it. How do you control the populace? Some might say fear, but some say the answer is ignorance. The less ignorant a person becomes, the more open the world and everything in it becomes, and even more wonderfully --- so does the curiosity to want to know more. It's incredible. Take away the shackles of fear (whether is through racism, religion, sexism) and we are all capable of rising above ignorance. As a species, ignorance can be a chosen (and enforced state) but it certainly is not a natural one. We are becoming more and more knowledgeable, we are questioning things more and more, learning and expanding and yes --- stepping outside our comfort zones. This is an incredible time -- information is at our fingertips, both the right and wrong kind, but ultimately, truth and fact will rise to the top and be accepted (since that is the only way you can continue to grow and learn). Some will choose to remain stagnant, obstinately clinging to "tradition" and some will rely more on their baser, inner animal that tells them to hoard and watch out for their "kind" but its a fading and unsustainable approach to survival. No one can be so isolated, not any more. Those days are over.

Some of us will always explore -- some of us will always fight against our flight/fight instinct because of potential, spectacular rewards (discovery of new worlds, flying in the sky, space exploration). And the only way we have been able to achieve this so far, has been to battle and overcome ignorance. I am convinced - as an intelligent species - we will get past this and attain a society that is egalitarian and inter/intra supportive of each other. To me, it's an inevitability.

@SpidermanWins said:

Free Will.

Also it's absurd to say that evil is not present in the world. Yes, good is a point of view Anakin, but that doesn't mean that if we run around taking and ruining lives, that just because we wouldn't think it is evil doesn't mean it isn't. However it is important to state that people will always do evil things, but no one is "evil". Otherwise, that would contradict free will. Anyway, my point is that if you look at evil as how it is normally meant, it exists. I know what you are trying to say, and it's correct, but the reasons you gave for rape and genocide don't make it less of an evil action. I agree with magestic's and your last statements.

That's subjective (evil/good). My thoughts were more towards the thinking that people are "inherently" evil or good. I agree --- raping, killing - all "evil" actions in the accepted interpretation of the word. I just prefer to think more critically --- as the to why's and how's those actions were

a) conceived

b) perpetrated

and

c) the environment in which they were committed.

Why did Hitler feel that Jewish and Roma people were worthy of eradication? Why did Martha feel that little Joey was sexually attractive? And then go on from there ---- There is a reason/explanation -- whether its nature/nature. Clearly rape, murder, sexual assault and genocide is horrific. The victims I would also want to learn from, help since statistically (arguably) it has been suggested they will go on to commit the same crimes. But that's a whole other topic.

I never treat the symptom -- I look for cause? Just slapping the word "evil" - to me - is irresponsible, short-sighted, and yes - ignorant. Nature is simple enough to understand -- which is why I can't understand the belief someone can born to do "evil" or "good". But I am open to a differing opinion on that provided that its sound and not based on the gospel of a supposed deity.

I see, thank you for clarifying. good points.

#26 Posted by NerdsFTW (3732 posts) - - Show Bio

@SC: @RazzaTazz: You have good points.

#27 Posted by JediXMan (29672 posts) - - Show Bio

The actions of those with free will cause things to happen which forces us to react. It is our free will that decides what we do when we react.

#28 Posted by King Saturn (223834 posts) - - Show Bio
Free Will exists... but it's conditioned by our environment and experiences... so even though it's Free Will it has a Bias towards certain choices in Life... at least in certain situations...  
#29 Posted by utotheg38 (18883 posts) - - Show Bio

@majestic99 said:

Can at least one person comment?Just one!

m99

LMMFAO

#30 Posted by utotheg38 (18883 posts) - - Show Bio

@King Saturn said:

Free Will exists... but it's conditioned by our environment and experiences... so even though it's Free Will it has a Bias towards certain choices in Life... at least in certain situations...

#31 Posted by King Saturn (223834 posts) - - Show Bio
@utotheg38 said:

@King Saturn said:

Free Will exists... but it's conditioned by our environment and experiences... so even though it's Free Will it has a Bias towards certain choices in Life... at least in certain situations...

lmmfao
#32 Posted by Jezer (3096 posts) - - Show Bio

"Even if there is no such thing as free will, we have to treat each other as if there were free will in order to live together in society. Because otherwise, every time somebody does something terrible, you can’t punish him, because he can’t help it, because his genes or his environment or God made him do it, and every time somebody does something good, you can’t honor him, because he was a puppet, too. If you think that everybody around you is a puppet, why bother talking to them at all? Why even try to plan anything or create anything, since everything you plan or create or desire or dream of is just acting out the script your puppeteer built into you.

So we conceive of ourselves and everyone around us as volitional beings. We treat everyone as if they did things with a purpose in mind, instead of because they’re being pushed from behind. We punish criminals. We reward altruists. We plan things and build things together. We make promises and expect each other to keep them. It’s all a made-up story, but when everybody believes that everybody’s actions are the result of free choice, and takes and gives responsibility accordingly, the result is civilization."- Ender's Game