Determinism, or something...

magilum
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Determinism, or something...

Just working out something I've been thinking about, but until now haven't been able to articulate. It's sloppy -- taken from my notes. According to a quick scan of search engines, I appear to be following a determinist course of reasoning. It assumes monism, which I don't know that we have any cause not to.

1. exist; can and will identical; follow 'the path of least resistance'

2. be conscious; can and may; at least superficially distinct from can and will; appears able to contradict can and will

3. consciousness is experienced as emergent property of non-conscious processes

4. assuming that the component processes of consciousness (like the state of a neuron, or the travel of a neurotransmitter) are unexperienced discreetly by consciousness itself (consciousness regarded the same way masses of individual photons are collectively called 'light' ), is there a point when consciousness diverges from the 'path of least resistance'-following non-conscious natural processes, or is it only experienced as such because those discreet component processes are unexperienced?

5. That is to say, would neurotransmitter A travel across synapse B ultimately because it physically has to, making our perception of consciousness, and choice, incidental (though no less real experientially) to these inevitable physical processes?

None of which I mean to say has any effect on our experience. 


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This is just an exerpt from

This is just an exerpt from an interview with V.S. Ramachandran I happened to be reading the other day that I thought might be pertinent, and contain some references to avenues further investigation, to your line of thinking here.


BINGHAM: I neglected to ask you one thing during the consciousness, when we were talking about consciousness. Which is, do you believe in, that is do you think we have free will? Do you think you have free will?

RAMACHANDRAN: Well, you know its funny you should ask that. Uh, I think, well you should ask Pat Churchland, who you’re going to be talking to soon. Um, the answer is that.

The question is- there is determinism- how do you know? Ok I saw that I did that. Now, I have this distinct sense of picking it up, and if you give me two, an apple and a banana, ok I’ll do that. And I knew I did it. So there are many components- I conjure up an internal vision of possibilities. That I can do this and I can do that- a sense of agency. And by the way, I think specific brain structures are involved. The inferior parietal lobule again, the supramarginal gyrus, is involved in enabling you to conjure up possibilities of movement. And that is undoubtedly a component of free will. I can do this, I can do that: possibilities. Right?

The anterior cingulate is involved; we know that. When it is damaged, people say they are fully conscious, but I don’t want to do anything! So they come out of this. They say, oh I knew what was going on, I just didn’t want to do anything about it. I could hear you talking, I just didn’t want to reply. They’re just completely spaced out, you know, like potheads; same sort of complete and total lack of initiative and ambition. Not to debunk.


What was I saying, oh, free will.

I do like an old argument, by the way, which is put forward by Don Mckye. Nobody else likes this argument, but I think it makes sense. It’s a sort of Gödelian argument which says that, lets assume that my brain, for the sake of argument, was not a deterministic machine, because you know, chaos theory and randomness and maybe you have quantum mechanical effects spreading into the brain, a la Penrose, even though I don’t believe that, but let’s assume its like a billiard ball table. I see this, comes in, light quanta, eyes, goes through the brain, my hand reaches out like that. And even if I’m thinking about it and making a choice, a superscientist looking from above, watching my brain, could have predicted that, even though I think it’s my will doing it, he could have predicted that.

Let’s assume that’s true, that’s the worst case for free will. So I say, ok, you’re the superscientist. I believe in free will. Look at my, what’s going on in my brain until the very last minute, last second in fact, write it down on a piece of paper. And then I’ll make my choice and see if your prediction is correct. The answer is, it’s always correct. Because you are a deterministic scientist, my brain is a deterministic system, and just before I make the choice, you’ve seen the cascade of chemicals and you say, I just predicted it before you made it. Therefore, you have no free will.

But, here’s the crux of the argument: that prediction is only valid for you. Because the minute you show it to me, I can change my mind-if I am a human being, and I understand the meaning of what you’ve said. Again, the meaning is critical. Then I can say, my mind, and perversely say I’ll do the opposite. It’s because the very act of listening to you is going to change the validity of the prediction. The prediction is no longer true. Now you can say ok, I’ll build that into the prediction. You can’t, because it gets into an endless regress. Because if you build it into the prediction, you have to gain a new prediction, and again if you tell me the new prediction, yet again it changes the prediction.

You could say, I could have an autocerebroscope, looking at my own brain events, right up to the last minute, and I’m watching it, and I say well I’m going to touch this. And I say, oh no, I’m going to change my mind, I’m going to touch this. In other words, if you are a conscious agent, capable of appreciating meaning, then if a determinist scientist gives you a complete prediction, valid up to the last minute, that prediction is valid, in some ontological sense, only to that external agent. The minute it is internalized, that prediction is no longer valid. Its not that I can’t, the point I’m making is, that I simply cannot make a prediction about my next future state. I can will it, but I cannot make a prediction.

This is McKye’s argument, it’s the only argument about free will in some real sense, that makes any sense to me, if you’re a conscious human being. Every other argument I’ve seen supports the deterministic view. What if you say this randomness, it doesn’t mean its free will, it just means quixotic, it means your behavior can be slightly flexible, it doesn’t mean its free will.

BINGHAM: What about the stories that emerge from Ben Libet’s experiments?

RAMACHANDRAN: Well I think as Churchland and others have pointed out, and Dan Dennett, it is, Dan Dennett and Churchland are eminent philosophers who have talked about this a great deal.

These temporal paradoxes, briefly the Libet experiment is, you record brainwaves from the skull, the activity of the brain, when you’re making movements. And it turns out, you ask a person, I’m going to measure these brainwaves, there’s a thing called the Retinus potential, a wave that occurs before you move your hand. So you ask this chap, in the next five minutes (I’m simplifying the experiment), but tell him, in the next five minutes, move your hand any time you want, a couple of times. And the chap just waits, and after 10 seconds or 30 seconds or one minute, he moves his hand.

The astonishing thing is, you pick up the Retinus potential almost half a second or more, prior to his moving his hand-prior to his internal sensation of having initiated the command. You know that because you can have a rapidly moving dial on the clock and you ask him when he initiated the command. And he says, yes and he remembers the time he initiated the command, and you find, that your brain activity has been recorded 30 seconds earlier.

So if his will came in 30 seconds later, how can the will, quote
unquote, have been responsible for the hand movement?

It must be an illusion because it’s a post hoc delusion or rationalization; because the brain event was picked up prior to your sensation of will, it’s not time-locked. But these temporal paradoxes of will can occur for all sorts of reasons, it’s not any more mysterious. It’s because the event timing of the brain and what you pick up versus your motor command, there’s no reason they should be precisely timelocked. There’s a smearing of space-time when you move, an event, there’s no reason that the subjective sensation should precisely coincide with your internal sensation. That’s where I think there is a flaw in his logic.

But it raises an interesting question, and we’ve tried to set this up, and we may indeed set it up in collaboration with people at the Salk. What we’re going to do, is to take this Retinus signal and in real time display it to the person. And we’ll tell him any time you feel like it, wiggle your finger. Now, the trouble is, you can display that signal to him .5 seconds before he wills it. Now what the hell is he going to say? He sees the thing on the screen and then his hand does that.

Now is he going to say, there are only 3 possibilities. The machine has ESP, its predicting what I’m going to do. I don’t have free will. My god, I’m locked to the machine. Or he is going to postdate the events; he’s going to say, what do you mean it happened before? It happened after I sent the will. So all the 3 possibilities can
happen; it will be very very interesting empirically to see what happens.

It’d be wonderful if I convinced people that they don’t have free will. The machine is controlling everything, you are just a puppet in a deterministic world. How would that affect your world view?

 

 

I just ran across this thread and thought some of the research he discusses might be of interest to you. The entire interview can be found here (pdf) but this is the part that pertains to determinism.

“Philosophers have argued for centuries about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, but materialists have always known it depends on whether they are jitterbugging or dancing cheek to cheek" -- Tom Robbins


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Quote: That is to say,

Quote:
That is to say, would neurotransmitter A travel across synapse B ultimately because it physically has to, making our perception of consciousness, and choice, incidental (though no less real experientially) to these inevitable physical processes?

That's the $64,000 Question.  I don't know enough about neuropsych to answer definitively.  An interesting twist comes to mind, though.  Suppose we were to discover that we are slaves to our neurons and that we only perceive the illusion of choice.  Theists would still be undeterred, and they'd still have an argument for Free Will.  They would simply latch onto the fallacy of composition and claim that free will exists on the only level that matters -- our perception.

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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If our perception of reality

If our perception of reality is what we make our decisions on then our perception of reality is making the choice not us ,but do we choice how to perceive reality or is our perception of reality chosen for us?


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I was involved in

I was involved in determinism/non-determinism discussion on other forum.

Like for me most philosophical arguing is pointless to much religious attitude. Determinism versus non-determinism is not solved problem but to be honest did philosophy solve any problem at all ?

Determinism versus non-determinism is one big information paradox, however if you ask for my opinion we have free will and I fully enjoy it.

I don't follow any philosophy however my behaviour fit in some of our “Great Teachers” ideas.

I live for myself and take life with open mind, I do not try to fit it in ANY DOGMA.

If you want to think that everything is predetermined, I would advice you to not move your ass from day you have born. I am sure will become USA president anyway.

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Determinism isn't

Determinism isn't necessarily the position that the future is predetermined because there is also probabilistic determinism. Probabilistic determinism is essentially the position that the universe operates deterministically according to inviolable physical laws but it produces probabilistic outcomes.

I am a determinist. Whether I am a hard determinist or probabilistic determinist I haven't yet decided. The idea of freewill makes no sense to me, mainly because it's vacuous to me.

They never tell you what the will is free from. Is it free from emotions? It can't be. Is it free from visual experience? Aural experience? Touch experience? Temperature experience? Taste experience? Smell experience? It can't be free from any of those. What is it free from then? Physical law? How could it be free from physical laws if it's not free from visual, aural, touch, temperature, taste, or smell experience? You don't control your own thoughts. You'd need prior thoughts to control later thoughts, and thoughts prior to the prior thoughts to control the prior thoughts, and so on ad infinitum. The only way to break the ad infinitum cycle is to say you had no control over your first thought, but that—in combination with physical experience—practically determines all later thoughts so how do you have control rather than nature? Do thoughts magic themselves into existence? If so, how do you have control? And how in the world can you control your thoughts when they are, at least, partly caused by physical law which appears to behave probabilistically? A "free probabilistic will" is a contradiction in terms. I mean, what in the world is the will free from?

Freewill is a vacuous notion, as far as I can tell. Refuting it is, in my opinion, a waste of time because there's really nothing there to be refuted. You may as well refute "uggablav tollyknockled."

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Visual_Paradox

Visual_Paradox wrote:
Determinism isn't necessarily the position that the future is predetermined because there is also probabilistic determinism. Probabilistic determinism is essentially the position that the universe operates deterministically according to inviolable physical laws but it produces probabilistic outcomes.


I am a determinist. Whether I am a hard determinist or probabilistic determinist I haven't yet decided. The idea of freewill makes no sense to me, mainly because it's vacuous to me.

They never tell you what the will is free from. Is it free from emotions? It can't be. Is it free from visual experience? Aural experience? Touch experience? Temperature experience? Taste experience? Smell experience? It can't be free from any of those. What is it free from then? Physical law? How could it be free from physical laws if it's not free from visual, aural, touch, temperature, taste, or smell experience? You don't control your own thoughts. You'd need prior thoughts to control later thoughts, and thoughts prior to the prior thoughts to control the prior thoughts, and so on ad infinitum. The only way to break the ad infinitum cycle is to say you had no control over your first thought, but that—in combination with physical experience—practically determines all later thoughts so how do you have control rather than nature? Do thoughts magic themselves into existence? If so, how do you have control? And how in the world can you control your thoughts when they are, at least, partly caused by physical law which appears to behave probabilistically? A "free probabilistic will" is a contradiction in terms. I mean, what in the world is the will free from?

Freewill is a vacuous notion, as far as I can tell. Refuting it is, in my opinion, a waste of time because there's really nothing there to be refuted. You may as well refute "uggablav tollyknockled."

I don't know enough about the finer details of determinism but the idea that there is 1 pre-set script out there and we have no control over our own actions I think is a bit of a hard pill for me to swallow.

I don't know if I believe we have the ability to affect the grand scheme of the universe, but I do think I have the ability to affect whether I clean my house or not.

I generally oppose pre-destination in the form of omniscience because it implies a grand script that details every action we take, and I don't know if determinism doesn't ultimately claim the same thing. 

The ethical implications of not having free will also removes any reason to 'blame' someone for their actions doesn't it? Perhaps I'm reading too much into it, anyone have something for me to read about Detemrinism and what exactly it is implying. 


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Does determinism remove

Does determinism remove blame from the picture? To a certain extent, yes. It doesn't remove justice from the picture though, it just requires that you look at justice differently. Judicial systems shouldn't be concerned with placing blame on people or condemning them. The only effect that will have is to make the blamed or condemned less willing to cooperate with society in pursuit of the common good. It could be argued that keeping blame and condemnation in the picture is actually detrimental to society. Judicial systems should instead concern themselves with correction—with influencing the individual in such a way that the individual could be a benefit to society instead of a detriment. When a car breaks down it's unnecessary to blame the car, or to kick the car, because you only need to stop, figure out the problem, then fix it. The same principle applies to judicial systems. The only sort of blame that it doesn't remove is that which you place on yourself, which is fairly unavoidable regardless of what view you hold on the matter.

A good work on determinism and morality is "The System of Nature" by Baron d'Holbach in 1770 (both volumes are free to download here). It's a two volume work that covers supernaturalism, determinism, life, death, physics, morality, justice, and many other things. It doesn't discuss probabilistic determinism (a rather recent view) but it's still very informative and well written.

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Visual_Paradox wrote: Does

Visual_Paradox wrote:
Does determinism remove blame from the picture? To a certain extent, yes. It doesn't remove justice from the picture though, it just requires that you look at justice differently. Judicial systems shouldn't be concerned with placing blame on people or condemning them. The only effect that will have is to make the blamed or condemned less willing to cooperate with society in pursuit of the common good. It could be argued that keeping blame and condemnation in the picture is actually detrimental to society. Judicial systems should instead concern themselves with correction—with influencing the individual in such a way that the individual could be a benefit to society instead of a detriment. When a car breaks down it's unnecessary to blame the car, or to kick the car, because you only need to stop, figure out the problem, then fix it. The same principle applies to judicial systems. The only sort of blame that it doesn't remove is that which you place on yourself, which is fairly unavoidable regardless of what view you hold on the matter.

A good work on determinism and morality is "The System of Nature" by Baron d'Holbach in 1770 (both volumes are free to download here). It's a two volume work that covers supernaturalism, determinism, life, death, physics, morality, justice, and many other things. It doesn't discuss probabilistic determinism (a rather recent view) but it's still very informative and well written.

Blame doesn't neccessarily need to be applied at such a grand level.  I could just have easily meant blamed for choosing the less efficient of 2 programming architectures, or blamed for choosing an apple instead of an orange.  I agree with correction over punishment.

 Thanks for the link, I'll give it a read.


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Visual_Paradox if you can

Visual_Paradox if you can provide me materials about probability determinism or explain it here I will be grateful and give them a shot.

For now I can't understand how you can agree two things like probability and determinism.

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Tarpan wrote:Blame doesn't

Tarpan wrote:
Blame doesn't neccessarily need to be applied at such a grand level. I could just have easily meant blamed for choosing the less efficient of 2 programming architectures, or blamed for choosing an apple instead of an orange. I agree with correction over punishment.

Thanks for the link, I'll give it a read.


It would remove the trivial blame too.

Blind_Chance wrote:
Visual_Paradox if you can provide me materials about probability determinism or explain it here I will be grateful and give them a shot.

For now I can't understand how you can agree two things like probability and determinism.


Probabilistic determinism is basically the view that the universe operates according to physical laws but those physical laws involve probabilities. At the atomic and subatomic scales, for example, a future event might have an 80% probability of occurring rather than being 100% certain to occur.

Those probabilities would not be the result of our ignorance of the system though. Think of playing Yahtzee from a classical mechanics point of view where things are 100% certain to occur. We might assign probabilities of getting three of a kind but we only do that because we're ignorant of all the things that contribute to its occurance. We do not know the exact geometry of our hand when clasping the dice, how much energy is exerted by all of the cells in our body to move our muscles to shake the dice—to separate our fingers from one another by a certain amount—to grasp the dice with a certain amount of looseness so the dice can jumble within our hand. Our probability calculations are based on our ignorance of the entire interplay of the parts of the universe.

Probabilistic determinism is different from that classical mechanics view though because the probabilities wouldn't be artifacts of our ignorance but would actually exist as part of physical law. The future isn't unknowable because of our ignorance, the future is unknowable because there are many conceivable futures that could physically come true but they all have a certain probability of occuring. At the atomic and subatomic scale, the universe would be recognized as behaving according to a pattern but the pattern would be ultimately chaotic and the future, the result of that pattern, is fundamentally unpredictable.

I hope that made sense—probabilistic determinism can be difficult to explain.

As I said earlier though, I don't necessarily agree with probabilistic determinism. I am undecided as to whether hard determinism (everything that is going to happen in the future had a 100% probability of happening) or probabilistic determinism (everything is going to happen in the future had a non-100% probability of happening) being true though. On the one hand I think hard determinism is probably true because it makes more sense conceptually than probabilistic determinism but on the other hand it's hard to see how hard determinism could account for what happens at the atomic and subatomic scale because at those scales the universe is seemingly chaotic and spooky.

I merely do not accept the idea that humans have a free will. Ultimately, it's a nonidea. There's nothing there thatcould be accepted. By what process does the will make decisions? Surely if there is no process then there would be no decision and just as surely the decisions do not control the process. If you say thoughts prior to the process control the process, by what process did your will have the prior thought? If you say it was controlled by a thought before that, by what process did that thought come into existence? I could continue pushing the reasoning until you get to the point where you had your first thought, which, by definition, occurred through a process that a prior thought had control over. If you had no control, where is the will in the first thought? If there is no will in the first thought, and the first thought controls the second, and the second the third, etc. etc. etc. then how did you have free will at all? In short, if there is a process that leads to the emergence of will in reality then the will ultimately cannot be free. If there is no process, the will could not emerge and thus will would not exist. How, then, does one have will that is free? It's seems impossible, practically by definition. From my perspective, the notion of freewill is a nonidea and accepting that there is a free will is similar to accepting that uggablav tollyknockled (the phrase is completely meaningless). It seems, to me, like a delusion whereby you mistake ignorance for knowledge.

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Tarpan wrote: I don't know

Tarpan wrote:

I don't know enough about the finer details of determinism but the idea that there is 1 pre-set script out there and we have no control over our own actions I think is a bit of a hard pill for me to swallow.

I don't know if I believe we have the ability to affect the grand scheme of the universe, but I do think I have the ability to affect whether I clean my house or not.

I generally oppose pre-destination in the form of omniscience because it implies a grand script that details every action we take, and I don't know if determinism doesn't ultimately claim the same thing.

The ethical implications of not having free will also removes any reason to 'blame' someone for their actions doesn't it? Perhaps I'm reading too much into it, anyone have something for me to read about Detemrinism and what exactly it is implying.

I really see the whole determinism vs. free will argument as a non-issue. The only way it becomes a problem is if we attempt to look at things from a perspective by which the terms loose meaning anyway.

The problem comes from people looking at determinism as saying "given a choice between X and Y, in a particular circumstance, I can only choose Y" and taking from that that they are somehow not able to make an actual choice. But this interpretation does not take into account that it is 'who they are' that is the reason for the choice they make. The only way determinism is a problem is if you desire to be able to choose what you wouldn't choose, to be someone other than who you are. It requires that someone sees themself as an entity confined within an entity. If you are locked in a cage that goes where you want to go, are you really confined?

The things that make you who you are as a 'person' or a 'conscious agent' are the things that make the choices you make. These things are formed by past events through causation. That you end up being the person you are and making the choices you make is to be expected as there is no reason to think you should be able to make a choice you would not make. 

Freewill can be said to exist prospectively from the conscious agents perspective in that what is doing the choosing, 'one's self', is actually making a choice. The choice made, though, is determined by who one is. In retrospect, it should be obvious that what we have chosen was what we chose because of who we are, which is what determism actually states.

If a super scientist can view from a removed perspective and based on the movement of the first particles of matter determine what it is I will do millions of years later, how does this make any difference as to my making choices by the only means by which a choice can be made, a choice made by me as who I am choosing what I would choose?

“Philosophers have argued for centuries about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, but materialists have always known it depends on whether they are jitterbugging or dancing cheek to cheek" -- Tom Robbins


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I think the brain wave study

I think the brain wave study is fascinating. I understand there are some more tests that need to be done to verify the results, but still.

 

I have always said that I hate the idea of determinism, but I see no other option... Smiling

Imagine the people who believe such things and who are not ashamed to ignore, totally, all the patient findings of thinking minds through all the centuries since the Bible was written. And it is these ignorant people, the most uneducated, the most unimaginative, the most unthinking among us, who would make themselves the guides and leaders of us all; who would force their feeble and childish beliefs on us; who would invade our schools and libraries and homes. I personally resent it bitterly.
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I'm at the opposite end of

I'm at the opposite end of the spectrum on this issue. I think determinism, is unsound. And what makes even less sense to me is compatibalism. To say that one has free will is to argue that one is responsible to the view that the causal laws and antecedent state of the world do not determine which of those alternative possibilities will then occur:

(a) S has alternative possible actions open to S then the causal laws and antecedent state of the world do not determine which of those alternative possibilities will then occur. 

(b) S is responsible for p only if S could have avoided its being the case that p by some way S knew or should have known about, that is S has other alternative possible actions open to S.

(c) suppose S is responsible for p.

(d) it follows, that S has other alternative possible actions open to S. (from b and c) 

(c) it follows, that the causal laws and antecedent state of the world do not determine which of those alternative possibilities will then occur. (from d and a)

 

Determinism is the view that all antecedent states of the world determine which of those alternative possibilities will then occur.  But determinism is incompatible with (a) and (b). Having a free will simply means that S has alternative possible courses of actions open to S at a given time T. One can argue that S has alternative possible actions to him simply by arguing that S is responsible for p. But if it is false that S has alternative possible courses of actions to S at time T, then it is also false that S is responsible for p if (b) is true. Thus the determinist has to deny either (a) or (b), since it is absurd to argue that (c) is false. But (a) and (b) are so plausible that i find them hard to deny.


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drummermonkey wrote:I'm at

drummermonkey wrote:

I'm at the opposite end of the spectrum on this issue. I think determinism, is unsound. And what makes even less sense to me is compatibalism. To say that one has free will is to argue that one is responsible to the view that the causal laws and antecedent state of the world do not determine which of those alternative possibilities will then occur:

(a) S has alternative possible actions open to S then the causal laws and antecedent state of the world do not determine which of those alternative possibilities will then occur. 

(b) S is responsible for p only if S could have avoided its being the case that p by some way S knew or should have known about, that is S has other alternative possible actions open to S.

(c) suppose S is responsible for p.

(d) it follows, that S has other alternative possible actions open to S. (from b and c) 

(c) it follows, that the causal laws and antecedent state of the world do not determine which of those alternative possibilities will then occur. (from d and a)

 

Determinism is the view that all antecedent states of the world determine which of those alternative possibilities will then occur.  But determinism is incompatible with (a) and (b). Having a free will simply means that S has alternative possible courses of actions open to S at a given time T. One can argue that S has alternative possible actions to him simply by arguing that S is responsible for p. But if it is false that S has alternative possible courses of actions to S at time T, then it is also false that S is responsible for p if (b) is true. Thus the determinist has to deny either (a) or (b), since it is absurd to argue that (c) is false. But (a) and (b) are so plausible that i find them hard to deny.

What's responsible for S?


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huh? I'm talking about moral

huh? I'm talking about moral responsibility here, so S is morally responsible for S in most cases.


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drummermonkey wrote:huh? I'm

drummermonkey wrote:

huh? I'm talking about moral responsibility here, so S is morally responsible for S in most cases.

Say what? That would be bound to deterministic factors as well, unless consciousness can somehow be outside of the causal chain. The experience of choice-making isn't removed from it, because who we are at a given moment is determined.


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I have to admit some

I have to admit some incredulity on this subject. I'm not incredulous about material monism or about mental events not being independent of physical causal chains. What I am incredulous about is the level of comfort that some people claim to have with their philosophical interpretation of material monism, in particular the supervenience of mass negating, and even, nigh, obliterating mental will.

It strikes me odd humans would be comfortable with being always everywhere victim to an unstoppable cascade of material dominoes. That's not to say they aren't genuine in the claim just because I find it difficult to believe, it just seems odd to me.

The general position on a strong emergentist philosophy would be, if it is then you can't change it so you do the next best thing and accept whatever is positive within it. Is that right?  I'm not seeing how to be comfortable with such defeatism.

To qualify all I've said here, emergentism is not my barrel of whiskey that's for sure, but that is not based on my lack of comfort with the idea. I am of the opinion that neither mass nor mechanics supervene on mental territory for reasons of other physical properties.

So in short this is not an argument against emergentism, it's only my opinion on certain beliefs that are held within that framework.

Theist badge qualifier : Gnostic/Philosophical Panentheist

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