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Free will
Posted 5/13/12

DomFortress wrote:
Except I'm not a cosmopolitan


No, you're not. In fact, repeatedly, in every single thread to which you post, you come across as a high-functioning schizophrenic. You rarely actually interact with people, choosing instead to make one assumption, then immediately build upon that initial assumption or set of assumptions ad infinitum. Within one or two posts, you are spending what appears to be several hours of writing, researching, and cut & paste work all as a response to your own delusions and intricate mental constructs.

I'm sure at this very moment, your psychic jujitsu is working overtime to protect your latest mental construct. This is why it's utterly pointless to respond to you. I would suppose that you assume that, in this forum's discussions, people stop responding to you because you believe that you are a brilliant thinker, and that you have shot down their pathetic arguments... but in reality, just about everyone, even people with very average intelligence, education, and/or experience, eventually recognizes that you are not actually interacting with them.

It is simply a matter of time before people see that you are completely interacting with yourself.

So, folks give up, let you finish out your latest delusional construct, and meanwhile you can wander off, patting yourself on the back. It is apparent that you don't even recognize that your mental issues accomplish nothing short of the utter destruction of an exchange of information...and that you don't realize that everyone here is made worse because of you, at least until they comprehend, internally, the pointlessness of your 'discussions.'

Oh, sure, once in a while, people read something you write, see that it's well-researched, and because it agrees with them, they might give you a bit of praise. This happens because said people have not yet really understood that talking with you is not really like talking with a human being. There might also be a few generous souls who might think there's some way to break through. Said people do not yet understand the pointlessness of such actions.

Now, I realize that you are about to write something that will return you to your schizophrenic 'center,' that will sooth the disturbance. Everything you write is extremely predictable -- not the content, because that's always evolving. I simply mean that the nature of your posts fit a pattern of obsessive delusion.

No, I'm not going to point out those delusions. As I've said, such things either are immediately apparent to anyone with the proper experience, or will eventually become apparent. Nobody here needs me to point out the obvious. Besides, I'm not your therapist, so frankly I have no desire to have any discussion with you, at any time. Similarly, I have no desire to participate in the mental porn that this forum has become with you. This is why I didn't really interact with you in the past, and will not do so in the future. I merely wanted to point out, for the edification of all, that I'm perfectly aware of what you're doing, even if you aren't.

Perhaps the moderators can put up a sticky in this forum letting people know about your issues?
Posted 5/13/12 , edited 5/13/12

BlaculaKuchuki wrote:


DomFortress wrote:
Except I'm not a cosmopolitan


No, you're not. In fact, repeatedly, in every single thread to which you post, you come across as a high-functioning schizophrenic. You rarely actually interact with people, choosing instead to make one assumption, then immediately build upon that initial assumption or set of assumptions ad infinitum. Within one or two posts, you are spending what appears to be several hours of writing, researching, and cut & paste work all as a response to your own delusions and intricate mental constructs.

I'm sure at this very moment, your psychic jujitsu is working overtime to protect your latest mental construct. This is why it's utterly pointless to respond to you. I would suppose that you assume that, in this forum's discussions, people stop responding to you because you believe that you are a brilliant thinker, and that you have shot down their pathetic arguments... but in reality, just about everyone, even people with very average intelligence, education, and/or experience, eventually recognizes that you are not actually interacting with them.

It is simply a matter of time before people see that you are completely interacting with yourself.

So, folks give up, let you finish out your latest delusional construct, and meanwhile you can wander off, patting yourself on the back. It is apparent that you don't even recognize that your mental issues accomplish nothing short of the utter destruction of an exchange of information...and that you don't realize that everyone here is made worse because of you, at least until they comprehend, internally, the pointlessness of your 'discussions.'

Oh, sure, once in a while, people read something you write, see that it's well-researched, and because it agrees with them, they might give you a bit of praise. This happens because said people have not yet really understood that talking with you is not really like talking with a human being. There might also be a few generous souls who might think there's some way to break through. Said people do not yet understand the pointlessness of such actions.

Now, I realize that you are about to write something that will return you to your schizophrenic 'center,' that will sooth the disturbance. Everything you write is extremely predictable -- not the content, because that's always evolving. I simply mean that the nature of your posts fit a pattern of obsessive delusion.

No, I'm not going to point out those delusions. As I've said, such things either are immediately apparent to anyone with the proper experience, or will eventually become apparent. Nobody here needs me to point out the obvious. Besides, I'm not your therapist, so frankly I have no desire to have any discussion with you, at any time. Similarly, I have no desire to participate in the mental porn that this forum has become with you. This is why I didn't really interact with you in the past, and will not do so in the future. I merely wanted to point out, for the edification of all, that I'm perfectly aware of what you're doing, even if you aren't.

Perhaps the moderators can put up a sticky in this forum letting people know about your issues?
And there lies within your arrogant and self-righteous claim with no categorical clarity, just some straw man fallacy to reduce both my person as well as the importance of evidence to your assumed audiences, who'll just agree with you at face value. Heck, I've read and understood The Emperor's New Clothes, and how you're applying the same marketing tactic of those fake tailors, while you're exploiting the human condition known as "conformity" when we encounter with uncertainty and ambiguity. In other words, you're intentionally creating a situation of ambiguity within your own claim, while you're pretending to trust your own audiences first, in order for yourself to gain their trustworthiness.

Paul Zak: Trust, morality -- and oxytocin
What drives our desire to behave morally? Neuroeconomist Paul Zak shows why he believes oxytocin (he calls it "the moral molecule") is responsible for trust, empathy and other feelings that help build a stable society.

You see it. I was conned. So this is a classic con called the pigeon drop, and I was the pigeon. So the way many cons work is not that the conman gets the victim to trust him, it's that he shows he trusts the victim. Now we know what happens. The victim's brain releases oxytocin, and you're opening up your wallet or purse, giving away the money.

So who are these people who manipulate our oxytocin systems? We found, testing thousands of individuals, that five percent of the population don't release oxytocin on stimulus. So if you trust them, their brains don't release oxytocin. If there's money on the table, they keep it all. So there's a technical word for these people in my lab. We call them bastards. These are not people you want to have a beer with. They have many of the attributes of psychopaths.

Finally, I don't know you in person, nor could I observe your nonverbal communication for myself to actually empathize with your own emotional self. Thus the fear that you're feeling is none other than your owns, while the apathy you're confronting is the very social technology that's managing you, none of them are mine or caused by my person. I can't do nor say anything that would truly heal your wounded ego, when your ego is merely an internalized cultural delusion that you're emotionally attached with, a collective identity based on an unrealistic and symbolic cultural meme/ideal in the first place. You're better off finding real connection off the Internet, with real people who're still capable of genuine empathy, and form authentic emotional attachment with a local community that you could belong. Until then, you might as well be technically connected with the rest of us, yet forever alone.

Sherry Turkle: Connected, but alone?
As we expect more from technology, do we expect less from each other? Sherry Turkle studies how our devices and online personas are redefining human connection and communication -- and asks us to think deeply about the new kinds of connection we want to have.

We're developing robots, they call them sociable robots, that are specifically designed to be companions -- to the elderly, to our children, to us. Have we so lost confidence that we will be there for each other? During my research I worked in nursing homes, and I brought in these sociable robots that were designed to give the elderly the feeling that they were understood. And one day I came in and a woman who had lost a child was talking to a robot in the shape of a baby seal. It seemed to be looking in her eyes. It seemed to be following the conversation. It comforted her. And many people found this amazing.

But that woman was trying to make sense of her life with a machine that had no experience of the arc of a human life. That robot put on a great show. And we're vulnerable. People experience pretend empathy as though it were the real thing. So during that moment when that woman was experiencing that pretend empathy, I was thinking, "That robot can't empathize. It doesn't face death. It doesn't know life."

And as that woman took comfort in her robot companion, I didn't find it amazing; I found it one of the most wrenching, complicated moments in my 15 years of work. But when I stepped back, I felt myself at the cold, hard center of a perfect storm. We expect more from technology and less from each other. And I ask myself, "Why have things come to this?"

And I believe it's because technology appeals to us most where we are most vulnerable. And we are vulnerable. We're lonely, but we're afraid of intimacy. And so from social networks to sociable robots, we're designing technologies that will give us the illusion of companionship without the demands of friendship. We turn to technology to help us feel connected in ways we can comfortably control. But we're not so comfortable. We are not so much in control.
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Posted 5/14/12

DomFortress wrote:


BlaculaKuchuki wrote:


DomFortress wrote:
Except I'm not a cosmopolitan


No, you're not. In fact, repeatedly, in every single thread to which you post, you come across as a high-functioning schizophrenic. You rarely actually interact with people, choosing instead to make one assumption, then immediately build upon that initial assumption or set of assumptions ad infinitum. Within one or two posts, you are spending what appears to be several hours of writing, researching, and cut & paste work all as a response to your own delusions and intricate mental constructs.

I'm sure at this very moment, your psychic jujitsu is working overtime to protect your latest mental construct. This is why it's utterly pointless to respond to you. I would suppose that you assume that, in this forum's discussions, people stop responding to you because you believe that you are a brilliant thinker, and that you have shot down their pathetic arguments... but in reality, just about everyone, even people with very average intelligence, education, and/or experience, eventually recognizes that you are not actually interacting with them.

It is simply a matter of time before people see that you are completely interacting with yourself.

So, folks give up, let you finish out your latest delusional construct, and meanwhile you can wander off, patting yourself on the back. It is apparent that you don't even recognize that your mental issues accomplish nothing short of the utter destruction of an exchange of information...and that you don't realize that everyone here is made worse because of you, at least until they comprehend, internally, the pointlessness of your 'discussions.'

Oh, sure, once in a while, people read something you write, see that it's well-researched, and because it agrees with them, they might give you a bit of praise. This happens because said people have not yet really understood that talking with you is not really like talking with a human being. There might also be a few generous souls who might think there's some way to break through. Said people do not yet understand the pointlessness of such actions.

Now, I realize that you are about to write something that will return you to your schizophrenic 'center,' that will sooth the disturbance. Everything you write is extremely predictable -- not the content, because that's always evolving. I simply mean that the nature of your posts fit a pattern of obsessive delusion.

No, I'm not going to point out those delusions. As I've said, such things either are immediately apparent to anyone with the proper experience, or will eventually become apparent. Nobody here needs me to point out the obvious. Besides, I'm not your therapist, so frankly I have no desire to have any discussion with you, at any time. Similarly, I have no desire to participate in the mental porn that this forum has become with you. This is why I didn't really interact with you in the past, and will not do so in the future. I merely wanted to point out, for the edification of all, that I'm perfectly aware of what you're doing, even if you aren't.

Perhaps the moderators can put up a sticky in this forum letting people know about your issues?
And there lies within your arrogant and self-righteous claim with no categorical clarity, just some straw man fallacy to reduce both my person as well as the importance of evidence to your assumed audiences, who'll just agree with you at face value. Heck, I've read and understood The Emperor's New Clothes, and how you're applying the same marketing tactic of those fake tailors, while you're exploiting the human condition known as "conformity" when we encounter with uncertainty and ambiguity. In other words, you're intentionally creating a situation of ambiguity within your own claim, while you're pretending to trust your own audiences first, in order for yourself to gain their trustworthiness.

Paul Zak: Trust, morality -- and oxytocin
What drives our desire to behave morally? Neuroeconomist Paul Zak shows why he believes oxytocin (he calls it "the moral molecule") is responsible for trust, empathy and other feelings that help build a stable society.

You see it. I was conned. So this is a classic con called the pigeon drop, and I was the pigeon. So the way many cons work is not that the conman gets the victim to trust him, it's that he shows he trusts the victim. Now we know what happens. The victim's brain releases oxytocin, and you're opening up your wallet or purse, giving away the money.

So who are these people who manipulate our oxytocin systems? We found, testing thousands of individuals, that five percent of the population don't release oxytocin on stimulus. So if you trust them, their brains don't release oxytocin. If there's money on the table, they keep it all. So there's a technical word for these people in my lab. We call them bastards. These are not people you want to have a beer with. They have many of the attributes of psychopaths.

Finally, I don't know you in person, nor could I observe your nonverbal communication for myself to actually empathize with your own emotional self. Thus the fear that you're feeling is none other than your owns, while the apathy you're confronting is the very social technology that's managing you, none of them are mine or caused by my person. I can't do nor say anything that would truly heal your wounded ego, when your ego is merely an internalized cultural delusion that you're emotionally attached with, a collective identity based on an unrealistic and symbolic cultural meme/ideal in the first place. You're better off finding real connection off the Internet, with real people who're still capable of genuine empathy, and form authentic emotional attachment with a local community that you could belong. Until then, you might as well be technically connected with the rest of us, yet forever alone.

Sherry Turkle: Connected, but alone?
As we expect more from technology, do we expect less from each other? Sherry Turkle studies how our devices and online personas are redefining human connection and communication -- and asks us to think deeply about the new kinds of connection we want to have.

We're developing robots, they call them sociable robots, that are specifically designed to be companions -- to the elderly, to our children, to us. Have we so lost confidence that we will be there for each other? During my research I worked in nursing homes, and I brought in these sociable robots that were designed to give the elderly the feeling that they were understood. And one day I came in and a woman who had lost a child was talking to a robot in the shape of a baby seal. It seemed to be looking in her eyes. It seemed to be following the conversation. It comforted her. And many people found this amazing.

But that woman was trying to make sense of her life with a machine that had no experience of the arc of a human life. That robot put on a great show. And we're vulnerable. People experience pretend empathy as though it were the real thing. So during that moment when that woman was experiencing that pretend empathy, I was thinking, "That robot can't empathize. It doesn't face death. It doesn't know life."

And as that woman took comfort in her robot companion, I didn't find it amazing; I found it one of the most wrenching, complicated moments in my 15 years of work. But when I stepped back, I felt myself at the cold, hard center of a perfect storm. We expect more from technology and less from each other. And I ask myself, "Why have things come to this?"

And I believe it's because technology appeals to us most where we are most vulnerable. And we are vulnerable. We're lonely, but we're afraid of intimacy. And so from social networks to sociable robots, we're designing technologies that will give us the illusion of companionship without the demands of friendship. We turn to technology to help us feel connected in ways we can comfortably control. But we're not so comfortable. We are not so much in control.


Dude, I think you're over-analyzing. The guy just wants you to offer a simple response.
Posted 5/15/12

Morbidhanson wrote:


DomFortress wrote:

And there lies within your arrogant and self-righteous claim with no categorical clarity, just some straw man fallacy to reduce both my person as well as the importance of evidence to your assumed audiences, who'll just agree with you at face value. Heck, I've read and understood The Emperor's New Clothes, and how you're applying the same marketing tactic of those fake tailors, while you're exploiting the human condition known as "conformity" when we encounter with uncertainty and ambiguity. In other words, you're intentionally creating a situation of ambiguity within your own claim, while you're pretending to trust your own audiences first, in order for yourself to gain their trustworthiness.

Paul Zak: Trust, morality -- and oxytocin
What drives our desire to behave morally? Neuroeconomist Paul Zak shows why he believes oxytocin (he calls it "the moral molecule") is responsible for trust, empathy and other feelings that help build a stable society.

You see it. I was conned. So this is a classic con called the pigeon drop, and I was the pigeon. So the way many cons work is not that the conman gets the victim to trust him, it's that he shows he trusts the victim. Now we know what happens. The victim's brain releases oxytocin, and you're opening up your wallet or purse, giving away the money.

So who are these people who manipulate our oxytocin systems? We found, testing thousands of individuals, that five percent of the population don't release oxytocin on stimulus. So if you trust them, their brains don't release oxytocin. If there's money on the table, they keep it all. So there's a technical word for these people in my lab. We call them bastards. These are not people you want to have a beer with. They have many of the attributes of psychopaths.

Finally, I don't know you in person, nor could I observe your nonverbal communication for myself to actually empathize with your own emotional self. Thus the fear that you're feeling is none other than your owns, while the apathy you're confronting is the very social technology that's managing you, none of them are mine or caused by my person. I can't do nor say anything that would truly heal your wounded ego, when your ego is merely an internalized cultural delusion that you're emotionally attached with, a collective identity based on an unrealistic and symbolic cultural meme/ideal in the first place. You're better off finding real connection off the Internet, with real people who're still capable of genuine empathy, and form authentic emotional attachment with a local community that you could belong. Until then, you might as well be technically connected with the rest of us, yet forever alone.

Sherry Turkle: Connected, but alone?
As we expect more from technology, do we expect less from each other? Sherry Turkle studies how our devices and online personas are redefining human connection and communication -- and asks us to think deeply about the new kinds of connection we want to have.

We're developing robots, they call them sociable robots, that are specifically designed to be companions -- to the elderly, to our children, to us. Have we so lost confidence that we will be there for each other? During my research I worked in nursing homes, and I brought in these sociable robots that were designed to give the elderly the feeling that they were understood. And one day I came in and a woman who had lost a child was talking to a robot in the shape of a baby seal. It seemed to be looking in her eyes. It seemed to be following the conversation. It comforted her. And many people found this amazing.

But that woman was trying to make sense of her life with a machine that had no experience of the arc of a human life. That robot put on a great show. And we're vulnerable. People experience pretend empathy as though it were the real thing. So during that moment when that woman was experiencing that pretend empathy, I was thinking, "That robot can't empathize. It doesn't face death. It doesn't know life."

And as that woman took comfort in her robot companion, I didn't find it amazing; I found it one of the most wrenching, complicated moments in my 15 years of work. But when I stepped back, I felt myself at the cold, hard center of a perfect storm. We expect more from technology and less from each other. And I ask myself, "Why have things come to this?"

And I believe it's because technology appeals to us most where we are most vulnerable. And we are vulnerable. We're lonely, but we're afraid of intimacy. And so from social networks to sociable robots, we're designing technologies that will give us the illusion of companionship without the demands of friendship. We turn to technology to help us feel connected in ways we can comfortably control. But we're not so comfortable. We are not so much in control.


Dude, I think you're over-analyzing. The guy just wants you to offer a simple response.
And why should I comply a "simple respond"? When that's not even what he wanted. What exactly had I "over-analyzed"? And what exactly comprised as "simple" towards what he wanted?
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Posted 5/15/12 , edited 5/15/12

DomFortress wrote:


Morbidhanson wrote:


DomFortress wrote:

And there lies within your arrogant and self-righteous claim with no categorical clarity, just some straw man fallacy to reduce both my person as well as the importance of evidence to your assumed audiences, who'll just agree with you at face value. Heck, I've read and understood The Emperor's New Clothes, and how you're applying the same marketing tactic of those fake tailors, while you're exploiting the human condition known as "conformity" when we encounter with uncertainty and ambiguity. In other words, you're intentionally creating a situation of ambiguity within your own claim, while you're pretending to trust your own audiences first, in order for yourself to gain their trustworthiness.

Paul Zak: Trust, morality -- and oxytocin
What drives our desire to behave morally? Neuroeconomist Paul Zak shows why he believes oxytocin (he calls it "the moral molecule") is responsible for trust, empathy and other feelings that help build a stable society.

You see it. I was conned. So this is a classic con called the pigeon drop, and I was the pigeon. So the way many cons work is not that the conman gets the victim to trust him, it's that he shows he trusts the victim. Now we know what happens. The victim's brain releases oxytocin, and you're opening up your wallet or purse, giving away the money.

So who are these people who manipulate our oxytocin systems? We found, testing thousands of individuals, that five percent of the population don't release oxytocin on stimulus. So if you trust them, their brains don't release oxytocin. If there's money on the table, they keep it all. So there's a technical word for these people in my lab. We call them bastards. These are not people you want to have a beer with. They have many of the attributes of psychopaths.

Finally, I don't know you in person, nor could I observe your nonverbal communication for myself to actually empathize with your own emotional self. Thus the fear that you're feeling is none other than your owns, while the apathy you're confronting is the very social technology that's managing you, none of them are mine or caused by my person. I can't do nor say anything that would truly heal your wounded ego, when your ego is merely an internalized cultural delusion that you're emotionally attached with, a collective identity based on an unrealistic and symbolic cultural meme/ideal in the first place. You're better off finding real connection off the Internet, with real people who're still capable of genuine empathy, and form authentic emotional attachment with a local community that you could belong. Until then, you might as well be technically connected with the rest of us, yet forever alone.

Sherry Turkle: Connected, but alone?
As we expect more from technology, do we expect less from each other? Sherry Turkle studies how our devices and online personas are redefining human connection and communication -- and asks us to think deeply about the new kinds of connection we want to have.

We're developing robots, they call them sociable robots, that are specifically designed to be companions -- to the elderly, to our children, to us. Have we so lost confidence that we will be there for each other? During my research I worked in nursing homes, and I brought in these sociable robots that were designed to give the elderly the feeling that they were understood. And one day I came in and a woman who had lost a child was talking to a robot in the shape of a baby seal. It seemed to be looking in her eyes. It seemed to be following the conversation. It comforted her. And many people found this amazing.

But that woman was trying to make sense of her life with a machine that had no experience of the arc of a human life. That robot put on a great show. And we're vulnerable. People experience pretend empathy as though it were the real thing. So during that moment when that woman was experiencing that pretend empathy, I was thinking, "That robot can't empathize. It doesn't face death. It doesn't know life."

And as that woman took comfort in her robot companion, I didn't find it amazing; I found it one of the most wrenching, complicated moments in my 15 years of work. But when I stepped back, I felt myself at the cold, hard center of a perfect storm. We expect more from technology and less from each other. And I ask myself, "Why have things come to this?"

And I believe it's because technology appeals to us most where we are most vulnerable. And we are vulnerable. We're lonely, but we're afraid of intimacy. And so from social networks to sociable robots, we're designing technologies that will give us the illusion of companionship without the demands of friendship. We turn to technology to help us feel connected in ways we can comfortably control. But we're not so comfortable. We are not so much in control.


Dude, I think you're over-analyzing. The guy just wants you to offer a simple response.
And why should I comply a "simple respond"? When that's not even what he wanted. What exactly had I "over-analyzed"? And what exactly comprised as "simple" towards what he wanted?




Q.1. When is it permissible for DomFortress to stray off topic?

A. When he finds an oppurtunity to:

1. To rail at Capitalism or Religion

2. To rubbish his opponets.

3. To faunt his so-called intellectual superiority.

Q.2. How is this long and meaningless drivel related to the topic of Free Will?

A. It isn't.

Q.3. Why does DomFortress write so convolutedly and so meaninglessly?

A. Without the aid of his prolix style, light will shine upon his senselessness and meaninglessness. His method of writing is such that all things are obscured so that no man may figure out what he says, and so the weakness of his argument is hidden.


Q.4. What should be the cheif aim of all men?

A. To ignore DomFortress, as any conversation with him will invariably lead the topic astray to one of his three hobbyhorses, the evil of Capitalism/Religion, to hurl insults at his opponent, and to pretend intellectual superiority.



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Posted 5/15/12 , edited 5/15/12
My brain hurts from reading all that...

@DomFortress: Please, simple, concise phrasing beats out flowery prose any day in debate. You should pick words carefully and use them properly if you want to use them at all, you know what I mean?


DomFortress wrote:
And why should I comply a "simple respond"? When that's not even what he wanted. What exactly had I "over-analyzed"? And what exactly comprised as "simple" towards what he wanted?


From what I can ascertain, responding to the topic at hand and not straying from it would allow others to better understand what you are trying to say. It will only benefit you to respond in an easily comprehensible way, as to further the debate and allow others to digest the information you choose to lay out. If you don't communicate your ideas effectively during a debate, you are pretty much just talking to yourself.

Indeed, he didn't specifically ASK for a simple response, but, since he is complaining about your responses being off-topic and/or hard to read, it wouldn't be too far off to assume that a simple response is desirable.

'Simple' is subjective, true. However, toning down your language and constructing working sentences, for starters, would do wonders. People are less likely to read what you post if you draw it out and bleed words all over the page. I think most people here will agree that your posts are hard to read. I intend no offense if this is how you like to write, but if you don't know this by now, it's bothersome for most people to attempt to comprehend what you are saying (because of your style of presenting information).

I am a poet myself, and I have been taught that it is my own fault if people read what I am writing, but do not understand. You must be perfectly clear, because your audience is made up wholly of people who aren't you. They don't understand what you are thinking. I, too, have mistakenly blamed my audience for not understanding what I am saying. In the end, I realized my professor was right.
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Posted 5/15/12 , edited 5/15/12
My position, which is a religious and philosophical position.

God created man with free-will. See: Gen 2:15-17.
Man however has knowledge of sin and evil and is subject to death because of the exercise of freedom.

The fact that man is created is not free. The fact that man is given a choice is not free. The fact that man can chose, in the proper context, to do either the good or the bad is free.

Man does this based on an informed conscience. Conscience is a conjunction: Con-science, meaning "with knowledge."

What one understands to be a good act, based upon a level of knowledge, is part of the ability to make a morally good choice. What one understands to be an evil act is part of ones ability to make morally evil choices.

What one understands to be good is based upon many factors, there are innate and inescapable ones that are grounded in existence however. These are fundamental facts of reality: e.g. the fact that I live is a good. Therefore, I should avoid harm. The fact that I have knowledge is good. Therefore, I should learn.

We have the freedom to form the judgments about right and wrong, because we are given the context in which to do so. We possess the tools to make logically good moral choices. However, we are limited by outside factors as well. Our ignorance is a major obstacle for one.
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Posted 5/15/12

Holofernes wrote:

My position, which is a religious and philosophical position.

God created man with free-will. See: Gen 2:15-17.
Man however has knowledge of sin and evil and is subject to death because of the exercise of freedom.

The fact that man is created is not free. The fact that man is given a choice is not free. The fact that man can chose, in the proper context, to do either the good or the bad is free.

Man does this based on an informed conscience. Conscience is a conjunction: Con-science, meaning "with knowledge."

What one understands to be a good act, based upon a level of knowledge, is part of the ability to make a morally good choice. What one understands to be an evil act is part of ones ability to make morally evil choices.

What one understands to be good is based upon many factors, there are innate and inescapable ones that are grounded in existence however. These are fundamental facts of reality: e.g. the fact that I live is a good. Therefore, I should avoid harm. The fact that I have knowledge is good. Therefore, I should learn.

We have the freedom to form the judgments about right and wrong, because we are given the context in which to do so. We possess the tools to make logically good moral choices. However, we are limited by outside factors as well. Our ignorance is a major obstacle for one.


If you accept the liberty of the will, do you accept the compatiblist position, that free will exist within the framework of determinism, or do you, rather, accept the libertarian perspective of freewill, that is, that free will exist entirely free and our choices are, therefore, not a product of what comes prior, or our enviorment, but that it is of itself free?

The former position cannot be held as reasonable, both intuitively, for we know that if something is predetermined by various factors to happen, it cannot be free, for there is no possibility of making another choice.

The latter position is also absurd, in that, given what we know of science, every input will, under the exact same condition, undergo the exact same motions, and invariably these motion, with various variation not due to the thing of itself, but the nature of things around it that affects it. Our will, then, can be thought of as the same, as things go into our mind, it must undergo a determined course, and produce the determined result. If, however, you claim that God, in his way, somehow frees the mind from this process, then, it must account for God's omniscience, for should God, indeed, know everything, past, present, and future, he knows all action, and, indeed, he may have power to change an action, and we therefore walk a determined path, that, while seemingly free, is already deteremined.

Thus, there seems, in my opinion, no choice but to accept that there is no liberty of the will, in either case, for liberty of the will is unfounded, indeed, impossible to hold, both as a religious position and as a philosophical one.
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You suggest that
a) If I am consequentialist, than therefore I hold an absurd position because Science says so.
b) If I believe as a libertarian believes, than I am plain wrong based upon intuition.
c) If I hold the position that God somehow frees man, than how to account for God's omniscience?

We'll It looks like I don't hold either a or b because both of those are, according to you, false.

You do raise an interesting point about God's omniscience, but that is not actually a problem.

God knows everything that I do. My choices are not contingent upon his knowledge of them. That is to say, even though God knows I would choose the hypothetical option "d)," his knowledge does not entail my having made the choice for option d).

For example, if I was a cop, and I wanted to record the events happening in a drug deal, (because I just know what is going to happen) my knowledge of said drug deal does not entail the non-freedom of the participants.

I should add that it gets far more complicated then that, because God is both a) outside of time, and b) does not need to know discursively. He does not know the way a human brain knows things. God does not know in propositions, he does not have to.


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Holofernes wrote:

You suggest that
a) If I am consequentialist, than therefore I hold an absurd position because Science says so.
b) If I believe as a libertarian believes, than I am plain wrong based upon intuition.
c) If I hold the position that God somehow frees man, than how to account for God's omniscience?

We'll It looks like I don't hold either a or b because both of those are, according to you, false.

You do raise an interesting point about God's omniscience, but that is not actually a problem.

God knows everything that I do. My choices are not contingent upon his knowledge of them. That is to say, even though God knows I would choose the hypothetical option "d)," his knowledge does not entail my having made the choice for option d).

For example, if I was a cop, and I wanted to record the events happening in a drug deal, (because I just know what is going to happen) my knowledge of said drug deal does not entail the non-freedom of the participants.

I should add that it gets far more complicated then that, because God is both a) outside of time, and b) does not need to know discursively. He does not know the way a human brain knows things. God does not know in propositions, he does not have to.




You misrepresent my point, that is that the Compatibilist position is absurd because, even on the basis of commonsense, it makes absolutely no sense. Intuitively, we know that it is not true, upon further investigation, there is no possibility of its being true, for if we say that freewill is such that it freely acts on its own, without any pressure from outside, yet, if it is predetermined, then it is already determined by the circumstances surrounding it, and it is therefore not within your power to do anything else. As the Philosopher Peter Van Inwagen says: "If determinism is true, then our acts are the consequences of the laws of nature and events in the remote past. But it is not up to us what went on before we were born, and neither is it up to us what the laws of nature are. Therefore, the consequences of those things (including our present acts) are not up to us." Secondly, I said that by both science and religion, there is no possibility for the absolute freedom of the will. You are, obviously, not interested in the scientific aspect of this discussion, you assert that God omniscience does not contradict the liberty of the human will, by asserting that God would know what I would do without interfering with my action of choosing to do it. This, however, is a form of compatibilism, which, as I already said, is absurd, for, while God may not interfere in my acting upon the hypothetical choice, he has shaped the world such that I have only the power to make that single choice, and my choice is already predetermined. We fall, then, into the question of how something can be free and yet predetermined- if you accept that God doesn't interfere, then the will still isn't free, for if he knows that I will make that single choice, with no other possibility of making any other choice, it means that I am not completely at liberty to make the other choice, in having the freewill, we must be able to make the other choices, else it is not free. Let us consider another thing, God made the world with a firm idea of how things will go and how things will end, being outside of time and all that, therefore, it follows from this proposition that God made the world in such a way that such, and only such, will occur, and, if you accept the Molinist position that he also has foreknowledge of possibilities, then he created a world which all possibilities are predetermined. Thus, we fall into the same position, that there is no possibility for free will to exist. A Cop may record the happening of the drug deal, but he has no idea of where it will end, God, however, does, nor does he have any power to create, in its entirety, the condition by which the drug deal will occur. If, as you say, God exist outside of human knowledge, and therefore, we must have blind faith in him, then all things are permissible, all misfortune, blight, and illness can be attributed to an unknown divine will for some greater good, and we, then, enter into another topic, theodicy, the vindication of God's way to man. He may work in ways beyond human reason, and therefore it is not us to question him- this is unacceptable, as it is simply faith without reason, philosophically called fideism, which, in the words of Pope John Paul II:

Fides, ratione carens, animi sensum et experientiam extulit, atque sic in periculo versatur ne amplius sit universalis oblatio. Fallax est cogitare fidem, coram infirma ratione, plus posse; ipsa, contra, in grave periculum incidit ne in fabulam ac superstitionem evadat. Eodem modo ratio, quae fidei firmatae non obversatur, ad novitatem et radicalitatem ipsius « esse » contuendas non lacessitur.
Deprived of reason, faith has stressed feeling and experience, and so run the risk of no longer being a universal proposition. It is an illusion to think that faith, tied to weak reasoning, might be more penetrating; on the contrary, faith then runs the grave risk of withering into myth or superstition. By the same token, reason which is unrelated to an adult faith is not prompted to turn its gaze to the newness and radicality of being.

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longfenglim wrote:


Holofernes wrote:

You suggest that
a) If I am consequentialist, than therefore I hold an absurd position because Science says so.
b) If I believe as a libertarian believes, than I am plain wrong based upon intuition.
c) If I hold the position that God somehow frees man, than how to account for God's omniscience?

We'll It looks like I don't hold either a or b because both of those are, according to you, false.

You do raise an interesting point about God's omniscience, but that is not actually a problem.

God knows everything that I do. My choices are not contingent upon his knowledge of them. That is to say, even though God knows I would choose the hypothetical option "d)," his knowledge does not entail my having made the choice for option d).

For example, if I was a cop, and I wanted to record the events happening in a drug deal, (because I just know what is going to happen) my knowledge of said drug deal does not entail the non-freedom of the participants.

I should add that it gets far more complicated then that, because God is both a) outside of time, and b) does not need to know discursively. He does not know the way a human brain knows things. God does not know in propositions, he does not have to.




You misrepresent my point, that is that the Compatibilist position is absurd because, even on the basis of commonsense, it makes absolutely no sense. Intuitively, we know that it is not true, upon further investigation, there is no possibility of its being true, for if we say that freewill is such that it freely acts on its own, without any pressure from outside, yet, if it is predetermined, then it is already determined by the circumstances surrounding it, and it is therefore not within your power to do anything else. As the Philosopher Peter Van Inwagen says: "If determinism is true, then our acts are the consequences of the laws of nature and events in the remote past. But it is not up to us what went on before we were born, and neither is it up to us what the laws of nature are. Therefore, the consequences of those things (including our present acts) are not up to us." Secondly, I said that by both science and religion, there is no possibility for the absolute freedom of the will. You are, obviously, not interested in the scientific aspect of this discussion, you assert that God omniscience does not contradict the liberty of the human will, by asserting that God would know what I would do without interfering with my action of choosing to do it. This, however, is a form of compatibilism, which, as I already said, is absurd, for, while God may not interfere in my acting upon the hypothetical choice, he has shaped the world such that I have only the power to make that single choice, and my choice is already predetermined. We fall, then, into the question of how something can be free and yet predetermined- if you accept that God doesn't interfere, then the will still isn't free, for if he knows that I will make that single choice, with no other possibility of making any other choice, it means that I am not completely at liberty to make the other choice, in having the freewill, we must be able to make the other choices, else it is not free. Let us consider another thing, God made the world with a firm idea of how things will go and how things will end, being outside of time and all that, therefore, it follows from this proposition that God made the world in such a way that such, and only such, will occur, and, if you accept the Molinist position that he also has foreknowledge of possibilities, then he created a world which all possibilities are predetermined. Thus, we fall into the same position, that there is no possibility for free will to exist. A Cop may record the happening of the drug deal, but he has no idea of where it will end, God, however, does, nor does he have any power to create, in its entirety, the condition by which the drug deal will occur. If, as you say, God exist outside of human knowledge, and therefore, we must have blind faith in him, then all things are permissible, all misfortune, blight, and illness can be attributed to an unknown divine will for some greater good, and we, then, enter into another topic, theodicy, the vindication of God's way to man. He may work in ways beyond human reason, and therefore it is not us to question him- this is unacceptable, as it is simply faith without reason, philosophically called fideism, which, in the words of Pope John Paul II:

Fides, ratione carens, animi sensum et experientiam extulit, atque sic in periculo versatur ne amplius sit universalis oblatio. Fallax est cogitare fidem, coram infirma ratione, plus posse; ipsa, contra, in grave periculum incidit ne in fabulam ac superstitionem evadat. Eodem modo ratio, quae fidei firmatae non obversatur, ad novitatem et radicalitatem ipsius « esse » contuendas non lacessitur.
Deprived of reason, faith has stressed feeling and experience, and so run the risk of no longer being a universal proposition. It is an illusion to think that faith, tied to weak reasoning, might be more penetrating; on the contrary, faith then runs the grave risk of withering into myth or superstition. By the same token, reason which is unrelated to an adult faith is not prompted to turn its gaze to the newness and radicality of being.



You need to use paragraphs, or find separations. One can better understand the points you make if you use paragraphs.

I did not state that God is beyond mans knowledge. I stated essentially that the powers of intellect of an omniscient and omnipotent being are above in capacity to that of the capacity of the mind of a man.

The two statements are not the same. You have to get past the problem that features of the way we think are in terms of propositions. God would know all things in a far more direct way than we could in an epistemoligical sense.

Therefore the proposition that God knows "x" action that I am about to take is problematic, because it is only analogous to what God actually knows.

I did not state that rational thought and faith are incompatible. It is pointless to cite JPII on this, because I have not disputed the connection between faith and reason. I have rather exercised a connection between the two. The Psalm rightly says "who is like the Lord our God."(Ps 86:6) No one in the Catholic faith would suggest that God thinks as men think. cf. Matt 16:23.

You state that my argument is a form of compatabilism, however, I have not claimed that my argument is a form of compatibalism.

I know that the label does mean something, but the relevance it has to my point is not important.

There are other points in which you are misunderstanding. When you respond to my argument about God's knowledge you state for me this position.

"While God may not interfere in my acting upon the hypothetical choice, he has shaped the world such that I have only the power to make that single choice, and my choice is already predetermined."

First, although God predetermines the range for choices to occur, such a range does not entail that the outcome of the exercise of a persons freedom is predetermined. The subject of what is predetermined is not the individual, but the context that allows there to be an individual and possible actions.

Second, freedom in any created thing entails certain necessities. A subject cannot be free without being a subject in which to be free. By analogy, a three sided triangle cannot be three sided unless realities like dimension and plurality and quality exist. Similarly, the color of paint cannot be the color of paint if light does not behave like waves. Bodies that remain upon earth cannot remain upon earth unless gravity exists.

Again as I said earlier, my position is that we did not have the freedom to exist or not to exist, nor do we have the freedom to be presented with choices. After I post this response to you, you will only have two options regarding it, either to respond to it or not to respond to it.

This is because freedom by its nature cannot exist in a vacuum. By its nature to have freedom you have to both exist and have options that have actual impact. It does not follow however, that because context is provided for those options, that that context necessitated one and only one outcome.

If one were to look at the foundations of the earth, it is not a structure that God put there which has exact directions. It contains millions, if not an infinite number of possibilities to beings who can freely choose to perform any given task which originate in the will of the individual.

Does God know what we will do? Of course he does! But to describe what he actually knows that we will do is only to give an analogy to what he actually knows. Again, God is outside of time, and because of that all of the events of history and the future would be present to him in a vision that is incomprehensible for a human being who's knowledge is bound to temporal ways of thinking.

Does this entail that we cannot know God? No it does not.

It can also be said that God knows you, entirely. Down to the very tiniest piece, and in every possible perspective, God knows who you are. Does that knowledge include all of your choices? Yes.

Does that knowledge entail that you are forced to make said choices?
No it does not. How could it?

If God creates beings with freedom, he must also give them the power to act in freedom, or he does not actually create them to be free.



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Holofernes wrote:


longfenglim wrote:


Holofernes wrote:

You suggest that
a) If I am consequentialist, than therefore I hold an absurd position because Science says so.
b) If I believe as a libertarian believes, than I am plain wrong based upon intuition.
c) If I hold the position that God somehow frees man, than how to account for God's omniscience?

We'll It looks like I don't hold either a or b because both of those are, according to you, false.

You do raise an interesting point about God's omniscience, but that is not actually a problem.

God knows everything that I do. My choices are not contingent upon his knowledge of them. That is to say, even though God knows I would choose the hypothetical option "d)," his knowledge does not entail my having made the choice for option d).

For example, if I was a cop, and I wanted to record the events happening in a drug deal, (because I just know what is going to happen) my knowledge of said drug deal does not entail the non-freedom of the participants.

I should add that it gets far more complicated then that, because God is both a) outside of time, and b) does not need to know discursively. He does not know the way a human brain knows things. God does not know in propositions, he does not have to.




You misrepresent my point, that is that the Compatibilist position is absurd because, even on the basis of commonsense, it makes absolutely no sense. Intuitively, we know that it is not true, upon further investigation, there is no possibility of its being true, for if we say that freewill is such that it freely acts on its own, without any pressure from outside, yet, if it is predetermined, then it is already determined by the circumstances surrounding it, and it is therefore not within your power to do anything else. As the Philosopher Peter Van Inwagen says: "If determinism is true, then our acts are the consequences of the laws of nature and events in the remote past. But it is not up to us what went on before we were born, and neither is it up to us what the laws of nature are. Therefore, the consequences of those things (including our present acts) are not up to us." Secondly, I said that by both science and religion, there is no possibility for the absolute freedom of the will. You are, obviously, not interested in the scientific aspect of this discussion, you assert that God omniscience does not contradict the liberty of the human will, by asserting that God would know what I would do without interfering with my action of choosing to do it. This, however, is a form of compatibilism, which, as I already said, is absurd, for, while God may not interfere in my acting upon the hypothetical choice, he has shaped the world such that I have only the power to make that single choice, and my choice is already predetermined. We fall, then, into the question of how something can be free and yet predetermined- if you accept that God doesn't interfere, then the will still isn't free, for if he knows that I will make that single choice, with no other possibility of making any other choice, it means that I am not completely at liberty to make the other choice, in having the freewill, we must be able to make the other choices, else it is not free. Let us consider another thing, God made the world with a firm idea of how things will go and how things will end, being outside of time and all that, therefore, it follows from this proposition that God made the world in such a way that such, and only such, will occur, and, if you accept the Molinist position that he also has foreknowledge of possibilities, then he created a world which all possibilities are predetermined. Thus, we fall into the same position, that there is no possibility for free will to exist. A Cop may record the happening of the drug deal, but he has no idea of where it will end, God, however, does, nor does he have any power to create, in its entirety, the condition by which the drug deal will occur. If, as you say, God exist outside of human knowledge, and therefore, we must have blind faith in him, then all things are permissible, all misfortune, blight, and illness can be attributed to an unknown divine will for some greater good, and we, then, enter into another topic, theodicy, the vindication of God's way to man. He may work in ways beyond human reason, and therefore it is not us to question him- this is unacceptable, as it is simply faith without reason, philosophically called fideism, which, in the words of Pope John Paul II:

Fides, ratione carens, animi sensum et experientiam extulit, atque sic in periculo versatur ne amplius sit universalis oblatio. Fallax est cogitare fidem, coram infirma ratione, plus posse; ipsa, contra, in grave periculum incidit ne in fabulam ac superstitionem evadat. Eodem modo ratio, quae fidei firmatae non obversatur, ad novitatem et radicalitatem ipsius « esse » contuendas non lacessitur.
Deprived of reason, faith has stressed feeling and experience, and so run the risk of no longer being a universal proposition. It is an illusion to think that faith, tied to weak reasoning, might be more penetrating; on the contrary, faith then runs the grave risk of withering into myth or superstition. By the same token, reason which is unrelated to an adult faith is not prompted to turn its gaze to the newness and radicality of being.



You need to use paragraphs, or find separations. One can better understand the points you make if you use paragraphs.

I did not state that God is beyond mans knowledge. I stated essentially that the powers of intellect of an omniscient and omnipotent being are above in capacity to that of the capacity of the mind of a man.

The two statements are not the same. You have to get past the problem that features of the way we think are in terms of propositions. God would know all things in a far more direct way than we could in an epistemoligical sense.

Therefore the proposition that God knows "x" action that I am about to take is problematic, because it is only analogous to what God actually knows.


I did not state that rational thought and faith are incompatible. It is pointless to cite JPII on this, because I have not disputed the connection between faith and reason. I have rather exercised a connection between the two. The Psalm rightly says "who is like the Lord our God."(Ps 86:6) No one in the Catholic faith would suggest that God thinks as men think. cf. Matt 16:23.

You state that my argument is a form of compatabilism, however, I have not claimed that my argument is a form of compatibalism.

I know that the label does mean something, but the relevance it has to my point is not important.

There are other points in which you are misunderstanding. When you respond to my argument about God's knowledge you state for me this position.

"While God may not interfere in my acting upon the hypothetical choice, he has shaped the world such that I have only the power to make that single choice, and my choice is already predetermined."

First, although God predetermines the range for choices to occur, such a range does not entail that the outcome of the exercise of a persons freedom is predetermined. The subject of what is predetermined is not the individual, but the context that allows there to be an individual and possible actions.

Second, freedom in any created thing entails certain necessities. A subject cannot be free without being a subject in which to be free. By analogy, a three sided triangle cannot be three sided unless realities like dimension and plurality and quality exist. Similarly, the color of paint cannot be the color of paint if light does not behave like waves. Bodies that remain upon earth cannot remain upon earth unless gravity exists.

Again as I said earlier, my position is that we did not have the freedom to exist or not to exist, nor do we have the freedom to be presented with choices. After I post this response to you, you will only have two options regarding it, either to respond to it or not to respond to it.

This is because freedom by its nature cannot exist in a vacuum. By its nature to have freedom you have to both exist and have options that have actual impact. It does not follow however, that because context is provided for those options, that that context necessitated one and only one outcome.

If one were to look at the foundations of the earth, it is not a structure that God put there which has exact directions. It contains millions, if not an infinite number of possibilities to beings who can freely choose to perform any given task which originate in the will of the individual.

Does God know what we will do? Of course he does! But to describe what he actually knows that we will do is only to give an analogy to what he actually knows. Again, God is outside of time, and because of that all of the events of history and the future would be present to him in a vision that is incomprehensible for a human being who's knowledge is bound to temporal ways of thinking.

Does this entail that we cannot know God? No it does not.

It can also be said that God knows you, entirely. Down to the very tiniest piece, and in every possible perspective, God knows who you are. Does that knowledge include all of your choices? Yes.

Does that knowledge entail that you are forced to make said choices?
No it does not. How could it?

If God creates beings with freedom, he must also give them the power to act in freedom, or he does not actually create them to be free.





You, on the other hand, have a way of seperating your sentences in such a way that it still does not clarify your position. In your first few sentences, you say that we are wrong in calling your position fideistic in that you do not claim that God is beyond the mind of man, then following that with the same assertion, that the Ways of the infinite God are beyond finite man. If God does not think as man do, you certainly don't either, for we cannot possibly see how these two position, fideistic as they are, are not equivilent to one another. A fideistic position, if we were to defind it, is one wherein we are to believe in God and in his way based solely upon faith, as the ways of God are entirely unknown to us, and this is equivilent to what you are saying, that the way God thinks is beyond us mere mortals.

You say that you do not state that your argument is a form of combatibilism, and we have never said you stated it, but that your argument is it. God, you have acknowledge, knows our action, and our predetermined choice, but we am free to perform that action, that is, essentially, the compatibilist position, that people are, by various circumstances, predetermined to an action, but that they do so freely. We have already shown why this position is infeasible, and we need not rewrite the basic argument here. To your credit, you have added something more to your elaborate vision on how Freewill is to work, that is that while God creates the circumstances by which a man can choose a variety of choice freely, we are still solely responsible for choosing that choice. This, of course, is neglecting the last part of our the statement, viz. that we can only make one choice. You would agree, would you not, that if a person is such that his nature is to love life, and he were forced to choose between his life and another consequence, in choosing to preserve his life, his choice is not free, because his nature and his circumstances are such that he can only choose to that choice. It would follow that, if we should respond to this post, we are such that, through a combination of our own nature and our circumstances, we can only make that single choice and respond to you, and we do so, not freely, but because that course is determined by the varying contexts that has shaped us.

You, additionally, have provided no clear answer to the first question that we have posed, if God has knowledge of our action, and he does not interfere in making it, how is this act free, and still fated? While we may say that he is out of time, it still does not make our future actions (within our limited human context, of course) not fated. Take, for example, a movie which we have already seen- we do not interfere with the movie, and yet, we know that they will make up with each other and kiss and all that at the end, but our knowledge implies that it is all completely predestined that this should occur- Liz and Alebard do not have any freedom in this case, they are not able, and cannot act in any other way. This analogy is a bit rough, we shall grant, but it suffice to show our point, that if we are fated to do something, we do not have freedom, for freedom entails that we are able to make other choices, and that we can make other choices, thus like a movie characters, assuming that God doesn't interfere, we have only one course, and we move through that single course with no possibility of acting otherwise; no matter what, our Lizs and our Alebards will make up and kiss each other at the end.


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Ok well, when most people question whether they have free will, they refer to whether their choices are their own or if they are being influenced by someone or something else. And that thing may or may not be tangible to us.

What you are basing your opinions on, Ikki, fall along the lines of fatalism. However, fatalism does not exclusively state that people lack free will. The idea of fatalism is that no matter what you do, significant events will fall into place, regardless of your actions. So the idea there is that you would have free will, but even if you knew ahead of time of a predetermined event, and it was significant, you would not be able to alter it.

And that sort of gives people the illusion of being puppets, controlled by a benign, or perhaps malevolent puppeteer.

I think something you might want to look into is determinism, which is quite similar to fatalism but it has a few different provisos. The main one being that you don't really have free will, but an illusion of it. A popular example being between choosing Pepsi or Coca Cola, and you chose Pepsi. Now you might think you chose the Pepsi because it was your choice, but determinism says that you chose Pepsi because you were meant to choose Pepsi, that it was never really a choice to begin with.

This all really boils down to the question of " what is the self?" And theorists and philosophers have been trying to figure that out for centuries upon centuries, and still, no one has nailed it down.

And based on personal experience, Ikki, I have some advice for you. Whether you choose to take it or not is up to you: But my advice is this, back off from this. Let me tell you, nothing fills you more with absolute dread and despair quite like an existential crisis does. I have never been a manic depressive, but when I had my existential crisis, I was having suicidal thoughts regularly, and just felt genuinely helpless. As the saying goes " If you stare too long into the abyss, the abyss eventually looks back into you"

That's all I can say, back away from this
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MarshallDTeach wrote:

Ok well, when most people question whether they have free will, they refer to whether their choices are their own or if they are being influenced by someone or something else. And that thing may or may not be tangible to us.

What you are basing your opinions on, Ikki, fall along the lines of fatalism. However, fatalism does not exclusively state that people lack free will. The idea of fatalism is that no matter what you do, significant events will fall into place, regardless of your actions. So the idea there is that you would have free will, but even if you knew ahead of time of a predetermined event, and it was significant, you would not be able to alter it.

And that sort of gives people the illusion of being puppets, controlled by a benign, or perhaps malevolent puppeteer.

I think something you might want to look into is determinism, which is quite similar to fatalism but it has a few different provisos. The main one being that you don't really have free will, but an illusion of it. A popular example being between choosing Pepsi or Coca Cola, and you chose Pepsi. Now you might think you chose the Pepsi because it was your choice, but determinism says that you chose Pepsi because you were meant to choose Pepsi, that it was never really a choice to begin with.

This all really boils down to the question of " what is the self?" And theorists and philosophers have been trying to figure that out for centuries upon centuries, and still, no one has nailed it down.

And based on personal experience, Ikki, I have some advice for you. Whether you choose to take it or not is up to you: But my advice is this, back off from this. Let me tell you, nothing fills you more with absolute dread and despair quite like an existential crisis does. I have never been a manic depressive, but when I had my existential crisis, I was having suicidal thoughts regularly, and just felt genuinely helpless. As the saying goes " If you stare too long into the abyss, the abyss eventually looks back into you"

That's all I can say, back away from this


Wrong there, m'lad. Fatalism means that one is lead to a preordained outcome because of fate. Determinism means that our choices are already determined by the various conditions of the world and of yourself, and so you cannot choose but that. Determinism does not particularly deny that there is no freewill, for my will still chooses to do this action, the only question is the degree of Freedom. A compatibilist would say that it is free in so far as I can do another action, even if I am not able to do it, just as I can get an A in so and so class, even if I am unable to actually get an A. I do not subscribe to this belief myself, as I find is incomprehensible, for if I am not able to do something, then I am no longer free to do that, and even if I can do something, unless it can be made into reality, then my will is not free.If this action is not 'up to me', than it is not an action under free will.
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Posted 5/18/12 , edited 5/18/12

longfenglim wrote:

You, on the other hand, have a way of seperating your sentences in such a way that it still does not clarify your position. In your first few sentences, you say that we are wrong in calling your position fideistic in that you do not claim that God is beyond the mind of man, then following that with the same assertion, that the Ways of the infinite God are beyond finite man. If God does not think as man do, you certainly don't either, for we cannot possibly see how these two position, fideistic as they are, are not equivilent to one another. A fideistic position, if we were to defind it, is one wherein we are to believe in God and in his way based solely upon faith, as the ways of God are entirely unknown to us, and this is equivilent to what you are saying, that the way God thinks is beyond us mere mortals.

You say that you do not state that your argument is a form of combatibilism, and we have never said you stated it, but that your argument is it. God, you have acknowledge, knows our action, and our predetermined choice, but we am free to perform that action, that is, essentially, the compatibilist position, that people are, by various circumstances, predetermined to an action, but that they do so freely. We have already shown why this position is infeasible, and we need not rewrite the basic argument here. To your credit, you have added something more to your elaborate vision on how Freewill is to work, that is that while God creates the circumstances by which a man can choose a variety of choice freely, we are still solely responsible for choosing that choice. This, of course, is neglecting the last part of our the statement, viz. that we can only make one choice. You would agree, would you not, that if a person is such that his nature is to love life, and he were forced to choose between his life and another consequence, in choosing to preserve his life, his choice is not free, because his nature and his circumstances are such that he can only choose to that choice. It would follow that, if we should respond to this post, we are such that, through a combination of our own nature and our circumstances, we can only make that single choice and respond to you, and we do so, not freely, but because that course is determined by the varying contexts that has shaped us.

You, additionally, have provided no clear answer to the first question that we have posed, if God has knowledge of our action, and he does not interfere in making it, how is this act free, and still fated? While we may say that he is out of time, it still does not make our future actions (within our limited human context, of course) not fated. Take, for example, a movie which we have already seen- we do not interfere with the movie, and yet, we know that they will make up with each other and kiss and all that at the end, but our knowledge implies that it is all completely predestined that this should occur- Liz and Alebard do not have any freedom in this case, they are not able, and cannot act in any other way. This analogy is a bit rough, we shall grant, but it suffice to show our point, that if we are fated to do something, we do not have freedom, for freedom entails that we are able to make other choices, and that we can make other choices, thus like a movie characters, assuming that God doesn't interfere, we have only one course, and we move through that single course with no possibility of acting otherwise; no matter what, our Lizs and our Alebards will make up and kiss each other at the end.





Longfanglim,

The way you define fideism is to suggest that God's ways are beyond the mind of man, this is only Fideism if it suggests that faith and reason in God are incompatible. Your application is incorrect.

My position is that the attributes of God, which you bring into question by the way you insist that God's existence entails non-freedom, is far more complicated because of their nature than you think they are. This does not put them beyond understanding. It does put them in a separate category, because the properties of eternal, omniscient, and omnipotence cannot be improperly used. They exist on different planes, and thus relate to the wold in a different manner because that world does not contain those properties. St Augusintine made this point, in his confessions. I don't see this one being put on the Catholic index.

I have not said that all this cannot be understood, indeed I am just parroting other theologians that understand enough of it not to get caught in some illogical assumptions about God. What you have done however is misrepresent God in the questions you have asked.

You state that the existence of God does not allow for freedom. Why is that? Because freedom cannot exist if God predetermines my actions? This is where you get everything goofed up. God does not predetermine your actions. If you have read my posts you would have caught this factor.

What is actually predetermined? My actions, or the creation in which my actions take place. If one, than we have determinism. If the other, than we do not. This is neither compatibalist, nor is it deterministic, nor is it fatalistic. The reality that is predetermined is not the individual but something much broader. While the world runs in a linear timeline, it cannot relate the the same way that it does within itself to God who does not run on a linear timeline. God exists as an eternal reality, and thus action and consequences do not relate in the same way.

The premise you give in a movie theater does not work, because the actions of Alebard and Liz are not determined by God, they are determined by Alebard and Liz. Certainly, they had to take place somewhere. They had to exist in a world in which both of them could encounter each other, but the event they caused was guided by their own hands.

If an outside perspective of the universe were to gaze within, and see all of the actions people made, is it right to assume that all actions are predetermined? Just because an action happened that way does not mean it was predetermined to happen that way. It is an assumption, not a fact of reality.

Take this example. If I created a statue and then zapped it to life and freewill with a life and freewill zapping ray. I then provided a test to see if the subject has any freedom at all. My motives are simple, without freedom true love is impossible. My desire is an agent capable of true love.

So now I have empowered my statue with a freedom zapper ray-gun. This statue has two choices, either to leave the laboratory in which I created it, or to remain alone in the lab never to enjoy its freedom. Does it have its own freedom to choose what to do? Of course it does. Does the fact that I created it in a lab, and then gave it a choice to leave said lab entail that I have taken away its freedom? Not in the least, because how else would you say that it was free other than by its getting up of its own free will and walking with me out the door. If I did not create it in a lab, I certainly would have had to use a some kind of space. If I did not, where was the context for its exercise of choice? It is possible to create a robot who would follow me out of the room, but such robots would never question the possibility of their own freedom. There would be no reason to endow any reason in a living creation. They would not rebel against God and state that he cannot exist.

You state that it is fate. I'm telling you that you have the whole example wrong. We are given a reality of choices. We are not fated with our outcomes predetermined for us.

You still have not proved to me that there is a connection between these thoughts.
    God knows our future actions
    Our actions are predetermined.


One idea has to necessitate the other, and simply stating that "because God knows our actions they are predetermined" is a goofed up position. God's knowledge of our actions does not imply that they are predetermined, because from God's perspective, everything is one act. From our perspective, all the world has yet to be decided upon, because realities like "yet" only exist in this universe.
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