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Gerald O'brian


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Free will and the illusory open-ness of the future.

The controversy seems to be making a comeback through quantum mysticism and such attempts to put consciousness at the core of reality.
I've seen comments about this on several discussions. I'd love to see how far these arguments go in favour or not of the reality of free will.


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    Oct 7 2012: The principle of free will has religious, ethical, and scientific implications. For example, in the religious realm, free will implies that individual will and choices can coexist with an omnipotent divinity. In ethics, it may hold implications for whether individuals can be held morally accountable for their actions. In science, neuroscientific findings regarding free will may suggest different ways of predicting human behavior.

    Free will is the ability to make choices free from certain kinds of constraints. The existence of free will and its exact nature and definition have long been debated in philosophy. Historically, the constraint of dominant concern has been the metaphysical constraint of determinism, which stated most simply is the notion that the present dictates the future entirely, that every occurrence results from prior events. The two main positions within that debate are metaphysical libertarianism, the claim that determinism is false, so free will exists is at least possible—and hard determinism, the claim that determinism is true, so free will does not exist.

    Since this has been debated for centuries Las Vegas odds are 1000 to 1 that it will not be decided during this conversation. And even odds that I am determined to have free will ..... Aw come on that was funny.

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      Oct 7 2012: The odds look bad, but only if people don't discuss their position. For instance, take the religious concept of free-will. God believed Eve had free-will when she went for the forbidden fruit, so he punished the crap out of her. He should've known better : He had only warned her that she'd die if she took a bite, and then a cunning snake convinced her otherwise. If anything, Eve was being a puppet. An ignorant child, and an innocent one.
      And then all the Jesus stuff about bad people being ignorants, really, who deserved love and education the most. If there is a religious concept of free-will, I don't see it. I only see a big moral mess because it's not carried by consistent philosophy. Someone should fix this.
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        Oct 7 2012: Can you help me understand?
        Does being ignorant of doing something make you innocent of it? If it did then if someone killed a person without the knowledge of it being wrong would they then be innocent due to their ignorance?

        Was Eve even ignorant, because God did warn her? Was she innocent, because she did take a bite?
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          Oct 8 2012: Children don't go to jail, right?
          And adults don't go to jail for something they did as a child.
          That's what i meant
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          Oct 8 2012: Sterling, God didn't warn Eve. He warned Adam. Eve didn't come along until later. The problem was not with Adam who violated instructions. It was with Eve who didn't know that those instructions existed and was punished for her ignorance.
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        Oct 8 2012: @ Gerald O'brian

        Children don't go to jail but they would still undergo some form of punishment, right?

        @ TED Lover

        But Eve did know, didn't she? She told the serpent what would happen upon eating the fruit and the serpent replied saying that she would not die. Should someone ever be punished for just being ignorant of something? Shouldn't they only be punished for wrongful action?
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          Oct 8 2012: Right, but in proportion to the amount of responsability they had in the crime.
          God taught its creatures to do as they are told, and this is how our children are brought up. A father won't punish a kid for doing what Mommy asked.

          Oh, about Eve : "The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, 3 but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’”"

          Come on, you have no excuse! The book of genesis, which explains the creation of the entire universe, life on earth and the drama of losing immortality takes about 45 seconds to read!
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        Oct 8 2012: What if the mother asked the kid to murder and the kid new it was wrong? The kid's punishment wouldn't be as harsh as the mother's should be but the kid would still need to be punished right?
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      Oct 7 2012: Metaphysical libertarianism... I have never heard that phrase before, but I like it.
    • Oct 7 2012: wiki cut paste

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