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View Diary: A brief and hardly consequential diary about superstition. (39 comments)

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    •  Hmmm. You over-estimate the relevancy of (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Ralphdog

      determinism:

      According to materialism, consciousness is an “epiphenomenon” of all this neural activity.  It cannot be the independent author of any act – all is caused by the purely physical activity of our neurons. Consciousness is merely an accident, along for the ride.  Choice and free will are mere illusions.
      Or, at-least, materialism does.  A system can be completely deterministic and completely unpredictable.  The above statement is akin to saying 'a crystal ball negates the concept of free will because it shows the future is already set', except there are no crystal balls and there never will be.  Determinism has nothing to do with it.

      To any wingnut: If you pay my taxes I'll give you a job.

      by ban48 on Sat Jun 29, 2013 at 11:03:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  you appear to have misread (0+ / 0-)
        A system can be completely deterministic and completely unpredictable.
        Absolutely.  I never said behavior was predictable, I said it was deterministic.
        •  And you are using determinism as negation of (0+ / 0-)

          free-will.  After all, how can you have free will if the physics of your body is deterministic?  Deterministic versus non-deterministic doesn't mean any thing because the knowledge required to make use of determinism does not and cannot exist.  It is Not-Even-False.  It is un-knowable and therefore irrelevant.

          Determinism is as relevant to discussion of free will as crystal balls.

          To any wingnut: If you pay my taxes I'll give you a job.

          by ban48 on Sun Jun 30, 2013 at 06:22:15 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  what I am saying is exactly this (0+ / 0-)
            you are using determinism as negation of
            free-will.  After all, how can you have free will if the physics of your body is deterministic?
            Nothing more, nothing less. Does not need to be "knowable" in some intellectual fashion.  
            •  Ok, lets back up. What is determinism and how do (0+ / 0-)

              you/we know if it exists?  Describe the difference between an existence where free-will exists (and is therefore indeterminate?) and one that is deterministic and therefore free-will does not exist.

              To any wingnut: If you pay my taxes I'll give you a job.

              by ban48 on Sun Jun 30, 2013 at 08:53:58 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Here is the central conflict: (0+ / 0-)

              You seem to think (or are at-least echoing opinions) that free-will is an illusion because of the deterministic nature of the universe.

              I'm stating that 'determinism' is the illusion.

              Sidenote: physics has nothing to do with this discussion.  Calvinists have been saying since day-1 that free-will is an illusion because of god.  He sees all and knows all, including the future, which means the future is set and free-will does not exist.

              To any wingnut: If you pay my taxes I'll give you a job.

              by ban48 on Sun Jun 30, 2013 at 09:01:37 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  if "'determinism' is the illusion" (0+ / 0-)

                how do you square that with scientific materialism?

                •  Exactly as I've been saying: 'determinism' means (0+ / 0-)

                  nothing because it is indistinguishable from non-deterministic systems.  'Scientific Materialists' have an inadequately simplistic world-view.  What they describe does not exist.  Their inadequacy is exposed when I asked "What would a non-deterministic reality look like?"

                  When you are part of a system, when you effect it, it affects you back.  If you want to call the 'determinism' and state that there is no way to be part of a system and have 'free will', then your definition of 'free will' is meaningless: by virtue of being part of a system you cannot have free will, but if you are not part of a system and therefore have free will, what good is it?

                  It is almost like saying the only way to have free will is to not exist.

                  To any wingnut: If you pay my taxes I'll give you a job.

                  by ban48 on Sun Jun 30, 2013 at 07:56:55 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  I was never intending to defend (0+ / 0-)

                    Scientific Materialism.  I do not share your particular gripe with it, but as far as I can tell this is all tangential to the point I was making in my essay.  That said, I do not agree with

                    'determinism' means nothing because it is indistinguishable from non-deterministic systems
                    computers are deterministic; radioactive nuclei decay are non-deterministic, at least from our human point of view, So these are distinguishable.
                    'Scientific Materialists' have an inadequately simplistic world-view.
                    I agree but for different reasons.
                    If you want to call the 'determinism' and state that there is no way to be part of a system and have 'free will'
                    I never said that. i said this:
                    how can you have free will if the physics of your body is deterministic? Nothing more, nothing less.
                    I think that is all I have to say.  I wish you well in your endeavors.
                    •  Ok, well, "How can you have free will?" (0+ / 0-)

                      Implying 'free will' doesn't exist for any reason (god, the physics of your body is deterministic, whatever) doesn't mean anything if you cannot describe a condition in which free-will exists.

                      And simply saying free-will could exist if god did not exist and physics were not deterministic doesn't mean anything if you cannot describe how a non-deterministic system differs from a deterministic system.

                      And, if you need a loop-hole: the physics of the body is deterministic (as-if that means anything), but the physics of the mind is not.  I can act a-causally and perform a real action now based on perceived future events.  It is hardly a deterministic process.

                      To any wingnut: If you pay my taxes I'll give you a job.

                      by ban48 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 06:00:18 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  Or, a different angle: (0+ / 0-)

                      you say:

                      how can you have free will if the physics of your body is deterministic? Nothing more, nothing less.
                      without ever answering:
                      how can you have free will?
                      Saying we don't have free-will implies there is something else (god's will, 'determination', whatever) or the statement is meaningless.  If you cannot describe the difference between having 'free-will' and not (due to whatever), you might as well be saying we lack free-will because of peanut-butter.  The cause and the effect are meaningless.

                      To any wingnut: If you pay my taxes I'll give you a job.

                      by ban48 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 07:49:22 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

    •  Very interesting diary you linked to there. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wilderness voice

      It would have been more interesting to discuss that one if I hadn't missed it.

    •  Thanks for the links. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wilderness voice

      Will read and return later today.

      Cheers.

      Vote rape. Vote torture. Vote War Crimes. Vote with the American top 1%.

      by Yellow Canary on Sun Jun 30, 2013 at 07:48:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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