A Conversation for Free Will versus Determinism
A fresh take on free will
matmilne Started conversation Jan 30, 2005
An essay on conclusive determinism
Determinism, like all other philosophical theories is inconclusive, perfectly unprovable.
This philosopher begs the question: If God knows what I’m thinking and god has the power to stop me and doesn’t, can God judge me?
Chain logic is the process of deduction I will be using to answer this question.
Chain logic: The process in which an established fact is derived to give several other truths
Establishing the root fact
Collective definitions of life are vague at best.
The New Universal dictionary (1965)
(I chose this dictionary because it gives many definitions for life)
Defines life as:
1.a state in which the organs of an animal or vegetable continue to exercise their natural functions
2. a state of living
3. animate existence
5. union of body and soul
6. the period from birth to death
7. the period during which anything lasts
8. manner of living
9. the animal mating principle
10. collectively animals
11. the history of events or person
12. human affairs
13. position in society
I can take each one a step further by describing each one as a chain of events.
1. exercise = functions = processes = chain of events
2. a state of living = processes = a chain of events
3. animate = movement = processes = a chain of events
4. vitality = energy = processes = a chain of events
5. body = functions = processes = chain of events
6. period = time = processes = chain of events
7. same as above
8. living = processes = chain of events
9. mating = processes = chain of events
10. animals = behaviour = processes = chain of events
11. history = chained events through time = chain of events
12. human affairs = things we do = processes = a chain of events
13. position in society = processes = chain of events
14. preparing for heaven or hell = processes = chain of events
Even inanimate objects are involved in events (chemical reaction = chain of events)
Sufficed to say, anything you can describe as existing in time, is part of a chain of events.
A definition of life must include everything involved with it e.g. water, oxygen etc
Good, we have now established the fact: life is a chain of events.
Establishing the base definition
Because we are describing life, we need to prove or disprove the competing theories of what it actually is.
The subject I can best define most people’s beliefs by is free will.
Most people including the majority of philosophers believe a human being has free will.
So an investigation leading to deduction subsequently proving or disproving the notion, will give us the best definition of life.
Defining the base definition
Cambridge online advanced learner’s dictionary describes free will as:
Free will: The ability to decide what to do independently of any outside influence.
Independently highlighted as the key word.
Not influenced by other people, events or things.
Disproving the base definition by the root fact
Consider a decision
1. decisions are made by thinking
2. thoughts are made by the interaction of chemicals, cells and neurological impulses
3. interactions between chemicals, cells and neurological impulses can be described as a set of processes = a chain of events
4. Thought processes are a chain of events
5. Therefore the decision is the result of a chain of events
6. Since the chain of events influences the thought, it can’t be made independently
7. If the thought is not made independently it is not made freely
8. If it’s not made freely there is no free choice
9. If there’s no free choice there’s no free will.
Conclusions and further hypothesis
Conclusive determinism concludes:
1.a chain of physical events is responsible for everything in, and everything that happens in, the universe.
2. There is no free will as there is no free choice because decisions are part of and influenced by a chain of events.
3. Life is a chain of events, which all animate and inanimate objects participate in.
Note well: conclusive determinism and determinism are not the same philosophies.
Conclusive determinism is conclusively factual.
Determinism is the theory that there is no free will, that everything is divinely determined.
Divinely determined universes cannot be concluded factual if you haven’t met the divine.
Since life is a chain of events, is the meaning of life to carry out those events?
The new universal dictionary (1965)Psychology publishing co. LTD. Marple, Cheshire
Cambridge Advanced learner’s dictionary
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