Free Will

Equel (@equel) 9 years, 3 months ago

Free will is not free will atall.
it exists within the belief that your will is yours.

which is to say that-
you are bound to knowledge.
consider that now i present you with a ledge.
this ledge is now your knowledge.
how will you choose to jump off of no ledge?
the truth is that you cant,
because your knowledge is limited, and therefore so are you.
it is not your choice to jump off of knowledge.
gravity already decided whether or not you will fall-
it was here time before you to have made the choice for you
time ago-
this is not to say that you are hopelessly bound to your knowledge.
though you will be if you believe it,
just as you will be free in your will to be- if you believe it.

February 25, 2013 at 9:23 am
Anonymous (47) (@) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

@equel, Free will most certainly exists. You don’t have free will over anything you can’t control such as gravity of any other law of physics or nature for that matter (which makes sense, otherwise everyone would just go around changing laws, thereby defeating them as laws), but their are aspects of your life that you do control. Do you want to want to go to college after high school? Do you want to even stay in high school? Do you practice a faith or no? Do you want a significant other and if so are you willing to work to have and maintain one? These are all questions that relate to everyone on a general level and an individual level. At the individual level is where you make your choice. You can’t love anything truly if you’re forced to love it. That defeats the purpose of love. Love is a choice. You don’t just automatically love stuff. Even the stuff you find yourself drawn to isn’t automatic. You may (or may) not be the one who originally determines what type of music you like but if you hear music that you would like that you’ve never heard before, you’ll be drawn to it but you don’t HAVE to listen to the music that you like. Free will is what makes life worth living. Its that surprisingly objective quality everyone uses to justify their own personal relativism in relation to the rest of the world. You could say free will doesn’t exist but what does that say about you saying it? Did you choose say that? Yeah, you did. You didn’t have to. But you did. You could also have be coerced in saying it but I don’t think you made this thread because you were coerced.

Taylor (152) (@taysand) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

@equel, was it not your own will to write this post?

Equel (11) (@equel) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

@taysand, no,
but the way was there
and i followed it
and yes, i am lead- by it- and believe in the moment that it is free will

Equel (11) (@equel) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

your description of choice is still bound by the knowledge of the choice-
even if you knew everything or nothing you would still be bound to it.

you see my point in not being able to change the laws that are there-
you mentioned gravity.
id argue that knowledge is gravity.
you can not make a choice outside your knowledge.
as you said your knowledge is intoduced-
just as you discover what music you truely like,
you discover the choices that are “yours”
but you only have the ones that you have discovered.
they were never yours. and you will aquire new will as you “make” choices.
your will is not your own- you have not convinced me

Alex (551) (@hollowinfinity) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

I believe that free-will is more of a checks and balances idea- like how the Macro and the Micro keep each other in check. You have free-will, but its limited. You can’t do anything, but you can choose which probability to manifest based on what is shown to you. It’s like opening doors. If you open the door on the left, there will be 4 more on the other side, and if you open the door on the right, there will be 3 more doors. Every time you go into a door, the door locks behind you- you have to choose from the new ones.

Obviously I cannot fly right now, but I have the ability- at any time- to go left or go right. To say yes, or to say no- etc. I’m completely fine with that though. I don’t want free will without limitations. Doing things, and being put into situations I don’t want- is what makes me grow.

James (121) (@alljuicedup) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

@bearacleitus, “free will most certainly exists”

Why must it exist? The appearence of free will certainly exists, no one will deny that. But that does not necessitate the existence of free will itself.

Science has yet to confirm nor deny the existence of free will, but there is a lot of research out there that is beginning to lean towards the idea that free will is an illusion. That the appearence of free will is just the “story” we tell ourselves as something is happening outside our control.

Is there an answer one way or the other? No, not yet. And there probably wont be for a long long time (not to mention, there would be a tremendous amount of resistence to the idea that we lack free will if it ever came down to that, since the entire foundation of our civilization is built on this idea). But to say for a certainty one way or another is foolish.

For my own part, I find the evidence against free will very compelling. But it is not complete by any means, and I am willing (pun intended) to keep an open mind.

Taylor (152) (@taysand) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

@equel, you used your free will to make the choice to believe that there is no free will.

You’ll see a set path in front of you if that’s what you’re looking for.
You’ll follow said path as a result of choosing to believe that is in fact existent.

As a kid it is YOUR will to not eat vegetables because you don’t like vegetables because it is your will to believe they are gross. But then you get older and realize, hey wait a minute vegetables ARE good to eat! I DO like them!

Beliefs change because free will allows it to.
Beliefs make your life what it is, but that’s because beliefs are relative.

Equel (11) (@equel) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

well put,
but only as you will.
i was never to say it does or does not exist-
it does and it does.
free will is, but in illusion that it is.
in truth it is not-
but in beleif there is certainly truth lying in the facts.

James (121) (@alljuicedup) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

@taysand, “you used your free will to make the choice to believe that there is no free will”

That same “logic” can easily be used for the opposite argument as well… you have no choice but to believe you have free will. It is merely the result of a long string of events goverened by all the laws of the universe (physics, biochemistry, quantum mechanics, etc), of which you have no control.

Equel (11) (@equel) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

i choose to believe free will exists.
i understand that it doesnt.

said path is relative to your belief yes-
to say my belief determines while yours frees is still bound to your knowledge.
and is also quite the double standard-

ill keep feeding you vegetables until you realize they are good for you

whether or not you eat them is clearly not your choice-
victum to your mind controlling your tounge

Taylor (152) (@taysand) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

@alljuicedup, exactly. That’s why I also said at the end that beliefs are relative. If the absence of free will is an absolute truth of the universe then why do these outcomes force one person to believe that which is a lie? Why would the universe (me) question it’s own absolute truth? It is said that the universe progresses from simplicity to complexity, so wouldn’t it make sense that a single set will is what started the universe only to eventually divide and complicate a variety of wills to the point of it separating into each individual?

Taylor (152) (@taysand) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

@equel, if you are basing free will off of knowledge then wouldn’t it also be safe to say that you can’t really know that don’t have free will because you don’t have the knowledge of the universe?

Taylor (152) (@taysand) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

@equel, I’m not trying to convince you that there is free will. I’m just trying to challenge your set belief. What I’m really trying to say is whether you believe in free will or not, you’ll never know which one is true.

Dan (890) (@danfontaine) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

@equel, Granting that knowledge is the seat of the human soul or what? Dude..

Okay I believe in free will but I’ve gathered that it’s more like free “won’t”. You can’t do anything which you haven’t first imagined – as far as I’m concerned your imagination operates separate from the thinker. The THINKER, however, seems to have the decision of embrace or cowardice. Still I don’t know if this even borderlines free will.
We need to ask, what is cowardice? Is it a permission to refuse or is it autonomous reactivity?
We need to ask, why does fear control our lives?
Are we slave to fear – saved only by happenstancial growth? Or do we own fear? Defined by it – growth being a matter of stepping over it. And can you even really call that a choice or is it reducible to inevitability?

Equel (11) (@equel) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

but that is to say that if you had the knowledge of the universe you would still be bound to it.

but, you can know that you know nothing.

to know in certainty is ingorance.
while to know you are ignorant is wisdom-

wise man only acts a fool.

it is only fool-ish to be a wise man.

Dan (890) (@danfontaine) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

@equel, Wise man stops learning
Replaces learning with subjecting people to his ego.

Taylor (152) (@taysand) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

@equel, that’s exactly what I’m saying.

You seem so certain that will is not free because of the knowledge you have.

You said earlier you have an open mind but you’re not exactly being open minded by not considering the existence of free will.

Ignorance is to assume one idea is absolute truth. It’s not our business to know, only to question.

James (121) (@alljuicedup) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

@taysand, “If the absence of free will is an absolute truth of the universe then why do these outcomes force one person to believe that which is a lie?”

Again, for the record, I’m not saying one way or the other what the “truth is”.

1) My belief one way or another would not make it so. Neither my belief nor anyone elses has any effect on what the ultimate truth is.

2) We do not currently have enough information to make such bold statements one way or the other. I can say I lean towards a more deterministic mindset and find the scientific findings tilting more in that direction, but my thoughts are far from set in stone.

All that said, in order to answer your question I will make the assumption for a moment that we don’t have free will. If this is the case, then why are some people forced to believe that which is a lie? Simply because…

That is the way in which the laws of the universe play out. It is not good or bad, it just is. That is the only logic answer in a deterministic world. There is no answer to “why” except “because”.

Heck, you yourself ask, “Why would the universe (me) question it’s own absolute truth?” and two posts later you say, ” I’m not trying to convince you that there is free will. I’m just trying to challenge your set belief.”

Surely that is an answer to your own question… why would the universe question its own truth, to challenge its set beliefs, thats why!

Alex (551) (@hollowinfinity) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

I think if free will really is an illusion, then you just learned the power and importance of illusions. It’s amazing either way.

James (121) (@alljuicedup) 9 years, 3 months ago ago


without a doubt!

The fact that even those who don’t believe in free will can’t help the fact that they still FEEL like they have it is quite amazing. Personally, very little actually changes one way or another because the “illusion” remains.

Even if you don’t believe in free will, you still “make choices” (well technically you feel like you do at least) every day. you can’t escape it. So you keep living your life pretty much the same as always. You don’t suddenly go into a shell and stop living and deciding things.

In fact, at times it can actually be MORE empowering. If I don’t believe in free will, then simply knowing something will happen beyond a shadow of a doubt, makes it true. I may not choose to lift my hand up in 3 seconds, but I know it will happen, and because I know, it happens. My thoughts do not necessarily “create” reality, they simply reveal it. So if they are intent on something strong enough, then to the determinist, it already is and we are just on the path to discovering that which is.

When you combine that with the fact that I still can’t help but FEEL like I have free will, it gives me the perception that I am in more control than I ever could be in a world with actual free will. Even though determinism says I have no control, it actually opens the door to the feeling of total control

And while a determinist knows the appearence/feeling of control does not make it so, it doesn’t make the experience/feelings any less real. That’s the beauty of the free will/no free will debate. Either way, the feeling remains strong as ever!

Equel (11) (@equel) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

sir my free will exists within my knowledge,
and i dont mean MY knowledge-

and i dont mean to mean,
i have already won in provoking this discussion-

i only wish to understand truth.

it is,
though it just is-
is not enough for me

Taylor (152) (@taysand) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

@alljuicedup, ahhh excellent! I like those answers!

Also, good catch about me answering my own question.. I didn’t even see it haha
With your response, I have no more questions to challenge any views. My will to question is now at rest :p

On a different note, I personally like to believe I have free will, but the universe is constantly presenting “suggested” paths/options to me and it’s up to me to be aware and recognize them. Whether that’s logical or not I couldn’t care less because we humans love meaning in things. Makes life a little more interesting

Equel (11) (@equel) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

there is no ledge of knowledge!

@alljuicedup, it has all been about the awareness of illusion-

and the making of awareness of the limitless power in surrender to the illusion-
the same power that would hold you to do no-thing.

@ @danfontaine, thank you for bringing up fear-
you cannot fear your knowledge, you limit your will.
preserve yourself- but dont hinder experience.

the knowledge of the illusion is to make or break as you will-
what you will do,
as you will-
whenever you will.
but only while will presents itself to you.

Taylor (152) (@taysand) 9 years, 3 months ago ago

@equel, haha I didn’t know we were competing! I’m just enjoying an engaging discussion with my fellow heathens :)

I get where you’re coming from. Really, I understand. I also wish to understand. But for me, after realizing that what is, just is, it turns into an endless cycle and I become content when the decision that I just don’t know shit! Haha

Really though, I enjoyed our discussion. Thank you for provoking it!

James (121) (@alljuicedup) 9 years, 3 months ago ago


I like to think the universe is far grander and more awesome than we could ever possibly fathom. To believe that we could understand all the intricacies and complexities with our limited minds is the epitome of arrogance. It’s simply not possible to be able to comprehend the entirety of the whole (the universe) from a part (the mind). You can see that from a sheer logical perspective.

That’s not to say we shouldn’t ask the big questions, we just shouldn’t expect all the answers (nor should we consider it a failure when we don’t get them). Some things are simply out of our capacity to understand, and that is ok!

It is good to be awestruck, to be curious, and to marvel at the magnificant mystery of it all. And to question, even when no answer may be possible.

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