Free will versus determinism

karrie
#61
It wouldn't work s_lone... the pedophile would be MORE likely to abuse a child. With no blame for his responsibility in the action, what would stop him from doing it? The answer is nothing.
 
In Between Man
#62
Quote: Originally Posted by Dexter SinisterView Post

T. This guy (external - login to view) does it better, much more briefly, and intelligently.

Quote:

Free will is probably located in the pre-frontal cortex, and we may even be able to narrow it down to the ventromedial pre-frontal cortex. --Stephen Pinker

What a laughable quote! Let's reduce life and liberty to chemicals because it fits our philosophy better!

Free will is absolute, just like the truth and morals. All absolute standards. If free will was merely a chemical reaction in our brain we wouldn't value it so much.
 
Dexter Sinister
#63
Quote: Originally Posted by alleywayzalwayzView Post

What a laughable quote! Let's reduce life and liberty to chemicals because it fits our philosophy better!

Free will is absolute, just like the truth and morals. All absolute standards. If free will was merely a chemical reaction in our brain we wouldn't value it so much.

I think you're not understanding what he said, and I seriously doubt you can prove your claims about the absoluteness of free will, truth, and morals, those are claims rooted in your religious beliefs and you can't prove them either. You also need to understand that free will and determinism are not mutually exclusive, there must be some degree of determinism or you couldn't predict the consequences of your possible choices and would thus have no basis on which to make a choice. Even a completely deterministic system can produce unpredictable results; free will versus determinism is a false dichotomy.
 
In Between Man
#64
Quote: Originally Posted by Dexter SinisterView Post

I think you're not understanding what he said, and I seriously doubt you can prove your claims about the absoluteness of free will, truth, and morals, those are claims rooted in your religious beliefs and you can't prove them either. You also need to understand that free will and determinism are not mutually exclusive, there must be some degree of determinism or you couldn't predict the consequences of your possible choices and would thus have no basis on which to make a choice. Even a completely deterministic system can produce unpredictable results; free will versus determinism is a false dichotomy.

I'm not disagreeing with you on that free will and determinism are mutually exclusive. I disagree with the notion that free will isn't real past my own imagination. Since I believe free will is God-given it would be something much bigger than chemicals in the brain.

It may be difficult to prove something like morals and free will are absolute, although the argument is there. But I don't have to prove that truth is absolute that's a natural revelation, a priori knowledge.
 
peacegirl
#65
Quote: Originally Posted by talloolaView Post

if that is what you believe, not fact at all, not proven at all.

What's not proven? This quote was just to explain what he is referring to by the word 'God' in his own book.

Quote: Originally Posted by GooberView Post

So tell me about no 10 - posterity?

Chapter Ten (Our Posterity) was his favorite discovery because it takes away the fear of death, but only if you understand his reasoning. I'm not getting into this chapter until the others are understood.

Quote: Originally Posted by karrieView Post

I read chapter two. And no, I really don't see anything clear about it.

Then you didn't read it very carefully. I will post the part where he explains the two-sided equation. This entire chapter repeats the two-sided equation three times, so how could you miss it?

"Now that we have a basic understanding as to why man’s will is not free because it is his nature that he must always move in the direction of greater satisfaction, as well as the undeniable fact that nothing can make man do to another what he makes up his mind not to do — for over this he has absolute control — let us observe what miracle happens when these two laws are brought together to reveal a third law. Pay close attention because I am about to slay the fiery dragon with my trusty sword which will reveal my discovery, reconcile the two opposite principles ‘an eye for an eye’ and ‘turn the other cheek,’ and open the door to this new world."

At the present moment of time you are standing on this spot called here, and are constantly in the process of moving to there. You know as a matter of positive knowledge that you would never move to there if you were not dissatisfied with here. You also know as a matter of undeniable knowledge that nothing has the power, that no one can cause or compel you to do anything against your will — unless you want to, because over this you have mathematical control. And I, who am standing on this spot called there to where you plan to move for satisfaction from here also know positively that you cannot be blamed anymore for your motion from here to there because the will of man is not free. This is a very unique two-sided equation which reveals that while you know you are completely responsible for everything you do since nothing has the power to make you do anything you don’t want to; and while it is mathematically impossible to shift your responsibility to some extraneous cause when no one holds you responsible; everybody else knows that you are not to blame for anything because you are compelled, by your very nature, to move in the direction of greater satisfaction during every moment of your existence.

Now if you know beyond a shadow of doubt that not only I, who am the one to be hurt, but everyone on earth will never blame or punish you for hurting me in some way, never criticize or question your action, never desire to hurt you in return for doing what must now be considered a compulsion beyond your control since the will of man is not free, is it humanly possible (think very carefully about this because it is the most crucial point thus far — the scientific discovery referred to) for you to derive any satisfaction whatever from the contemplation of this hurt? Remember now, you haven’t hurt me yet, and you know as a matter of undeniable knowledge that nothing, no one can compel you to hurt me unless you want to, for over this you have mathematical control; consequently, your motion from here to there, your decision as to what is better for yourself, is still a choice between two alternatives — to hurt me or not to hurt me. But the moment it fully dawns on you that this hurt to me, should you go ahead with it, will not be blamed in any way because no one wants to hurt you for doing what must now be considered a compulsion beyond your control, ALTHOUGH YOU KNOW IT IS NOT BEYOND YOUR CONTROL AT THIS POINT SINCE NOTHING CAN FORCE YOU TO HURT ME AGAINST YOUR WILL — UNLESS YOU WANT TO — you are compelled, completely of your own free will, so to speak, to relinquish this desire to hurt me because it can never satisfy you to do so under these changed conditions. In order to hurt another, man must be able to derive some satisfaction from this, which means that he was previously hurt and is justified to retaliate, or else he knows, absolutely and positively, that he would be blamed by the person he hurt and others if they knew. Furthermore, if he knows as a matter of positive knowledge that no one in the entire world is going to blame him or question his conduct, is it possible for him to extenuate the circumstances, to lie, or to try and shift his responsibility in any way?

As was just demonstrated, it is not possible, just as the same answer must apply to the question, is it possible to make two plus two equal five. This proves conclusively that the only time he can say, "I couldn’t help myself because my will is not free," or offer any kind of excuse, is when he knows he is being blamed for this allows him to make this effort to shift his responsibility. Let me explain this in still another way.

When you know you are not going to be blamed for what you do it also means that you must assume complete responsibility for what you do because you cannot shift it away from yourself under the changed conditions We have become so confused by words in logical relation that while we preach this freedom of the will we say in the same breath that we could not help ourselves, and demonstrate our confusion still more by believing that the corollary, Thou Shall Not Blame, would lessen our responsibility when it does the exact opposite. Did you ever see anything more ironically humorous? The only time we can use the excuse that our will is not free is when the world believes it is free. The world of free will (the world of blame) has allowed people to lie and cheat in order to get what they want and then shift responsibility away from themselves when questioned. Many philosophers have gotten confused over this one point because it was assumed that a world without blame would only make matters worse, decreasing responsibility to an even greater extent and giving man the perfect opportunity to take advantage of others without having to worry about consequences. But this can only occur when man knows he will be blamed, which allows him to come up with reasonable excuses. When he knows in advance that no matter what he does to hurt others the response will be one of no blame because the world knows his will is not free — he cannot find justification for what he is about to do. In other words, the knowledge that the world must excuse what he can no longer justify prevents the desire to take even the slightest chance of hurting another. Under these conditions, responsibility reaches a level never seen before in all of history. This will become clearer as we continue.

"I understand the principle of no blame but society does what it must do to protect itself. A person with scarlet fever is not blamed but is nevertheless quarantined."

"If a person had something that was contagious, he would welcome this precautionary measure. The knowledge that he would not be blamed under any circumstances, even if he was responsible for spreading his illness to the entire region, would prevent him from desiring to take any chances that might cause further spread of the disease. This is similar to the question that was asked earlier, "If it is mathematically impossible for man to do something, what would you do if it was done?" How is it possible for B (society) to protect itself when it is impossible for B to be hurt? Once again, there is an assumption that deliberate and careless hurt will continue. Just bear in mind that when man knows there will be no blame or punishment no matter what he does, he can only go in one direction for satisfaction and that is not to hurt others with a first blow. He can if he wants to, but he won’t want to. It is important to understand that if someone is being hurt first his reaction is no longer a first blow, but a retaliatory blow. Under these conditions he would have justification to strike back."

In order to hurt another, either deliberately or carelessly, man must be able to derive greater, not less, satisfaction which means that self-preservation demands and justifies this; that he was previously hurt in some way and finds it preferable to strike back ‘an eye for an eye,’ which he can also justify, or else he knows absolutely and positively that he would be blamed by the person he hurt and others if they knew. Blame itself which is a condition of free will and a part of the present environment permits the consideration of hurt for it is the price man is willing to pay for the satisfaction of certain desires; but when blame is removed so that the advance knowledge that it no longer exists becomes a new condition of the environment, then the price he must consider to strike the first blow of hurt is completely out of reach because he cannot find satisfaction in hurting those who will refuse to blame him or retaliate in any way. To hurt someone under these conditions he would have to move in the direction of conscious dissatisfaction, which is mathematically impossible.

If will was free we could not accomplish this because we would be able to choose what is worse for ourselves when something better is available. From a superficial standpoint it might still appear that man would take advantage of not being blamed and punished and risk hurting others as a solution to his problems, but this is a mathematical impossibility when he knows that blame and punishment are required for advance justification. In other words, the challenge of the law absolves his conscience with threats of ‘an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth,’ which is payment in full for the risks he takes. He may risk going to prison or be willing to pay the ultimate price with his life for the satisfaction of certain desires. An individual would not mind taking all kinds of chances involving others because he could always come up with a reasonable excuse to get off the hook, or he could pay a price, if caught. If he borrowed a thousand dollars and was unable to pay all of it back, he could easily say, "Sue me for the rest." If he tries to hold up a bank, however, and fails, the legal system does not allow him to excuse himself and he is sent to prison. Without the knowledge that he would be blamed and punished should he fail; without this advance justification which allowed him to risk hurting others, the price of this hurt is beyond his purchasing power. How could anyone be satisfied planning a crime knowing that the entire world would be compelled to forgive him — even though they knew what he was about to do? Have you already forgotten that we are compelled, by our very nature, to choose the alternative that gives us greater satisfaction which is the reason our will is not free?

Consequently, it is only necessary to demonstrate that when all blame and punishment are removed from the environment — and when the conditions are also removed that make it necessary for a person to hurt others as the lesser of two evils — the desire to hurt another with a first blow will be the worst possible choice. This knowledge becomes an impenetrable deterrent because under these conditions no person alive is able to move in this direction for satisfaction, even if he wanted to. This natural law raises man’s conscience to such a high degree because there is no price he can pay when all humanity, including the one to be hurt, must excuse him.

"I am still having a difficult time with the two-sided equation. Can you repeat what the two sides of the equation are?"

Quote: Originally Posted by gopherView Post

Free will? That would mean that abortion or holocaust victims could readily walk away from jeopardy at will. Don't think those victims had too much success with that.

I'm not sure what you mean. Could you elaborate?

Quote: Originally Posted by s_loneView Post

Determinism? That would mean that blind mechanical laws are to be held responsible for painting the Mona Lisa and composing Beethoven's Ninth.

I'm being sarcastic. My point is that notions of free will and determinism don't have to be mutually exclusive.

Don't you think we are free, but also determined? I can't walk through a mountain. But I can decide to climb it, surround it, or dig through it.

s_lone, I suggest you read Chapters One and Two to clarify why man's will is not free. When you say mechanical laws, we are not robots responding to some computer program because we do have the ability to choose. What makes our will not free is that there is only one choice that can be made at each moment in time, and that is the choice that gives us the greatest satisfaction. We cannot choose that which gives us the least amount of satisfaction when a more satisfying choice is available. If we could, our will would be free but we are compelled to choose that alternative which gives every indication of being the best possible choice under our particular circumstances. If you want you can give me some examples of where you think that this law does not apply, and I will show you that it does. It's an invariable law of our nature, over which we have no control.

Quote: Originally Posted by taxslaveView Post

Thanks. Now perhaps I can figure out what peacegirl is talking about. Obviously one needs some kind of mind enhancer to follow all this theory. Somehow her idea of free will and mine are not the same.
Save me some time and tell me where the practical application to all this is.
When I rush into a burning building when normal people are running out am I compelled or is it my free will? Or is it just because I am an adrenaline junkie?

It's not that difficult to follow the author if you put your own theories aside temporarily. You need to clear your mind to allow a different point of view to be absorbed and fully comprehended.

Quote: Originally Posted by Bar SinisterView Post

Belief in a single all-powerful deity eventually runs up against the problem of predestination. An all-powerful god controls the past, present, and future; and a result there can be no free will. Setting up a system where free will is allowed runs into the same problem as once again the all powerful god already knows the result of his free will system. The only way around the problem has always been to reject the idea of a single all-powerful god. Theologians have wrestled with this problem for centuries without coming up with a satisfactory answer.

For the purposes of this discussion, we are not touching upon whether God is a reality or not. We're focusing on the physical laws of nature, including the mankind system, that's all.

Quote: Originally Posted by s_loneView Post

Ok PeaceGirl, I just finished chapter 2.
What I simply don't get is how one would necessarily avoid giving the first strike, even in the utopian scenario of a blameless world. I feel the author is on to something but from my own understanding this is clearly the weakest aspect of what I've read so far. He just repeats his point on and on but fails to make it. At least that is how I perceive it for the time being.
I'll try to make a summary of it all as briefly as possible. And you can tell me if I'm on the right track.
1. We do not have free will. We don't have it because in the end we always necessarily choose what we consider best for ourselves or at least what is the lesser evil. The fact that we necessarily choose what seems to be the best option over all others negates the concept of free will. In that sense we are all determined.
2. However, nothing or nobody in the world can force us to do something against our will. For example, if I am held at gun point and asked to give away my money, I will do it. From a superficial point of view, I am forced to so against my will. But from a more profound point of view, my desire to live is stronger than my desire to keep my money so because of what I stated in point number 1, I will necessarily give away my money. I actually want to give my money in that situation because I get more satisfaction from doing so than from getting a bullet shot at...

Quote has been trimmed, See full post: View Post
It's a two-sided equation because on the one hand, we know that we are going to be excused because the world knows our will is not free, but on the other hand, we know before we strike a first blow of hurt, that nothing in this world can force us to do something against our will if we don't want to do it, for over this we have absolute control, and when this understanding becomes a permanent condition of the environment, there is no way that a person could prefer to hurt someone under these new conditions. His conscience would not permit it, for he would get less satisfaction, not more.

3. Here is where things get tricky. The author then starts talking about a utopian world where nobody would blame anybody for anything. The reason for not blaming anybody for anything is that everybody would know that we all necessarily are compelled to act according to what seems best for ourselves. By truly understanding that it is in our nature to do so, then we can't blame one for acting according to his nature.

4. Here is where I really don't follow the author. He says that in the perfect blameless world where ''Thou Shall Not Blame'' is the ultimate guideline which everyone necessarily follows, nobody would ever end up hurting anybody else because... well... I don't know. I just don't get his point. I'll quote him directly and perhaps you can help me.

''Up until the present time there was nothing powerful enough to prevent man from risking his life to satisfy a desire regardless of who got hurt because the satisfaction of possible success outweighed the dissatisfaction of possible failure, but when he becomes conscious that a particular reaction of no blame will be the only response to his actions by the entire world regardless of what he is contemplating, he will be compelled, completely beyond his control but of his own free will (or desire), to refrain from what he now foresees can give him absolutely no satisfaction. How can he possibly find satisfaction in doing something that the world must excuse, but he can no longer justify? This natural law of man’s nature gives him no alternative but to obey it in order to derive greater satisfaction, and will prevent the first blow from ever being struck. As we extend the corollary, Thou Shall Not Blame, we will be able to unravel the causes of war, crime, and hatred — which are deep-rooted and interwoven — and envision how life will be when all hurt in human relations comes to a peaceful end.''

How does this work? Let's say we live in the blameless world. What would stop a pedophile from abusing a child? How would the pedophile's certainty that nobody would blame him stop him from abusing a child?[/QUOTE]

First of all, the causes that led to someone becoming a pedophile won't exist. So you must think in terms of a new generation, even though even the generation that now exists would also be prevented from continuing with these acts once the basic principle is put into effect. He mentioned later in the book that if someone was severely mentally ill, just as a mad dog would have to be controlled, so would this person, but as time goes on mental illness will be virtually wiped out. I do think you have a basic grasp of the two-sided equation. I suggest that you just keep reading because it might help you understand how these principles work in a real life situation. The next chapter captures how this can easily prevent all carelessness.

Where is my edit button? I wanted to fix something and I can't.

s_lone, I also suggest you read the last part of Chapter Two. He shows how the Great Transition can take place by preventing the perpetrator from ever desiring to pertetrate another crime again... under the changed conditions. This is very important because we are still living in a free will environment and it's difficult for people to see how this law can begin changing our world for the better, when so much hatred already exists.
 
Curiosity
#66
PeaceGirl

Have to give you credit for holding fast to your personal belief system, however to adjudge others (including me) wrong, or to argue their personal belief systems demonstrates to me flawed logic on your part about the very issue you are trying to elicit response.

Get some living experience and allow others their freedoms - you are extremely limited in your desire to
make others believe - you are no way near what you insist we all agree to. Because someone's prose gives you pause to think is excellent - the next step is to realize ALL do not follow the same thought process as
do you and to learn to relax the benefit to all of us is that we do not.

Variation and questioning and challenge are the basis of response, not complicit agreement. If you are
afraid of challenge, keep learning.
 
JLM
#67
Quote: Originally Posted by CuriosityView Post

PeaceGirl

I continue to see the inevitable "lesson" in your choices for us - one which you finally let loose a few posts up in your description on Mankind's Free Will.

One thing seems remiss to me personally in your drive to make us see your view,
while requesting discussion pro or con.

Honest Freedom of Will has elements of responsibility attached to it or it can never be Free Will. True freedom is emancipation of man himself and others in his environment, in mind, lifestyle, treatment of others, respect for all, and honesty to conduct his/her life in honor of all.

Mankind indeed has all the attributes of being able to exercise his/her Free Will
regardless of the consequences.

I think the only people who have total freedom are those with no conscience. I'm a little confused about this "determinism"- does it mean everything is pre ordained? That is a little tough to swallow. Without getting overly verbose or technical I kind of subscribe to the theory (not sure who is famous for it) that SH*T HAPPENS.
 
Curiosity
#68
JLM

Eager new graduates have stars in their eyes and in their heads - they are trying their wings.

Years of living in the real world - not academia - brings the rough edge to reason and defines real character within - until that occurs, the mind is fixated on the new - which may (or may not) be the believer's reality at all.

Total freedom as you write is baseless in a society of rules and laws and the mindless impact of a person's belief system being pounded into group-think brings us chaos - we have witnessed it in historical characters for example: Hitler - the list is long and bloody.

There must be freedom for expression, but never insistence on belief by others.
 
s_lone
#69
Peacegirl, the edit button is at the top right part of the post you did. But it disappears after a while.

Quote: Originally Posted by peacegirlView Post

First of all, the causes that led to someone becoming a pedophile won't exist.

Why not? That would mean you have a perfectly good understanding of why one becomes a pedophile. Do you? It seems to me that there is something unrealistic about the claim that all causes that lead someone to do evil acts would disappear... Because of what? The absence of any kind of blame?

Quote: Originally Posted by peacegirlView Post

So you must think in terms of a new generation, even though even the generation that now exists would also be prevented from continuing with these acts once the basic principle is put into effect. He mentioned later in the book that if someone was severely mentally ill, just as a mad dog would have to be controlled, so would this person, but as time goes on mental illness will be virtually wiped out.

This all sounds beautiful and great. I'd love to live in that world he speaks of. But he doesn't explain how this world can realistically come to be. Let's say you magically managed to brainwash every single human into not blaming everybody, I still don't see how this stops pedophiles to lust after children, or rapists to want to rape.

Quote: Originally Posted by peacegirlView Post

I do think you have a basic grasp of the two-sided equation. I suggest that you just keep reading because it might help you understand how these principles work in a real life situation. The next chapter captures how this can easily prevent all carelessness.

s_lone, I also suggest you read the last part of Chapter Two. He shows how the Great Transition can take place by preventing the perpetrator from ever desiring to pertetrate another crime again... under the changed conditions. This is very important because we are still living in a free will environment and it's difficult for people to see how this law can begin changing our world for the better, when so much hatred already exists.

I did read the last part of chapter 2. He elaborates on what would go on in the mind of someone who wants to hurt someone else and concludes he would not end up hurting the person because of the ''no blame'' principles that are universally applied.

Don't get me wrong, I am all for making this world a better place, and I am for any kind of moral/ethical/philosophical system that can get us there. The author seems to think that his system can get us there and I'm willing to go along the ride. But I will bring along my criticism with it. And if the author happens to be right, then hopefully criticism can help improve the theory because so far, I don't see it as being very convincing, and believe me, I am open minded.

What fails to convince the most is how the causes that lead one to evil would disappear in a blameless environment.
 
Goober
#70
Quote: Originally Posted by peacegirlView Post

What's not proven? This quote was just to explain what he is referring to by the word 'God' in his own book.



Chapter Ten (Our Posterity) was his favorite discovery because it takes away the fear of death, but only if you understand his reasoning. I'm not getting into this chapter until the others are understood.



Then you didn't read it very carefully. I will post the part where he explains the two-sided equation. This entire chapter repeats the two-sided equation three times, so how could you miss it?

"Now that we have a basic understanding as to why man’s will is not free because it is his nature that he must always move in the direction of greater satisfaction, as well as the undeniable fact that nothing can make man do to another what he makes up his mind not to do — for over this he has absolute control — let us observe what miracle happens when these two laws are brought together to reveal a third law. Pay close attention because I am about to slay the fiery dragon with my trusty sword which will reveal my discovery, reconcile the two opposite principles ‘an eye for an eye’ and ‘turn the other cheek,’ and open the door to this new world."

At the present moment of time you are standing on this spot called here, and are constantly in the process of moving to there. You know as a matter of positive knowledge that you would never move to there if you were not dissatisfied with here. You also know as a matter of undeniable knowledge that nothing has the power, that no one can cause or compel you to do anything against your will — unless you want to, because over this you have mathematical control. And I, who am standing on this spot called there to where you plan to move for satisfaction from here also know positively that you cannot be blamed anymore for your motion from here to there because the will of man is not free. This is a very unique two-sided equation which reveals that while you know you are completely responsible for everything you do since nothing has the power to make you do anything you don’t want to; and while it is mathematically impossible to shift your responsibility to some extraneous cause when no one holds you responsible; everybody else knows that you are not to blame for anything because you are compelled, by your very nature, to move in the direction of greater satisfaction during every moment of your existence.

Now if you know beyond a shadow of doubt that not only I, who am the one to be hurt, but everyone on earth will never blame or punish you for hurting me in some way, never criticize or question your action, never desire to hurt you in return for doing what must now be considered a compulsion beyond your control since the will of man is not free, is it humanly possible (think very carefully about this because it is the most crucial point thus far — the scientific discovery referred to) for you to derive any satisfaction whatever from the contemplation of this hurt? Remember now, you haven’t hurt me yet, and you know as a matter of undeniable knowledge that nothing, no one can compel you to hurt me unless you want to, for over this you have mathematical control; consequently, your motion from here to there, your decision as to what is better for yourself, is still a choice between two alternatives — to hurt me or not to hurt me. But the moment it fully dawns on you that this hurt to me, should you go ahead with it, will not be blamed in any way because no one wants to hurt you for doing what must now be considered a compulsion beyond your control, ALTHOUGH YOU KNOW IT IS NOT BEYOND YOUR CONTROL AT THIS POINT SINCE NOTHING CAN FORCE YOU TO HURT ME AGAINST YOUR WILL — UNLESS YOU WANT TO — you are compelled, completely of your own free will, so to speak, to relinquish this desire to hurt me because it can never satisfy you to do so under these changed conditions. In order to hurt another, man must be able to derive some satisfaction from this, which means that he was previously hurt and is justified to retaliate, or else he knows, absolutely and positively, that he would be blamed by the person he hurt and others if they knew. Furthermore, if he knows as a matter of positive knowledge that no one in the entire world is going to blame him or question his conduct, is it possible for him to extenuate the circumstances, to lie, or to try and shift his responsibility in any way?

As was just demonstrated, it is not possible, just as the same answer must apply to the question, is it possible to make two plus two equal five. This proves conclusively that the only time he can say, "I couldn’t help myself because my will is not free," or offer any kind of excuse, is when he knows he is being blamed for this allows him to make this effort to shift his responsibility. Let me explain this in still another way.

When you know you are not going to be blamed for what you do it also means that you must assume complete responsibility for what you do because you cannot shift it away from yourself under the changed conditions We have become so confused by words in logical relation that while we preach this freedom of the will we say in the same breath that we could not help ourselves, and demonstrate our confusion still more by believing that the corollary, Thou Shall Not Blame, would lessen our responsibility when it does the exact opposite. Did you ever see anything more ironically humorous? The only time we can use the excuse that our will is not free is when the world believes it is free. The world of free will (the world of blame) has allowed people to lie and cheat in order to get what they want and then shift responsibility away from themselves when questioned. Many philosophers have gotten confused over this one point because it was assumed that a world without blame would only make matters worse, decreasing responsibility to an even greater extent and giving man the perfect opportunity to take advantage of others without having to worry about consequences. But this can only occur when man knows he will be blamed, which allows him to come up with reasonable excuses. When he knows in advance that no matter what he does to hurt others the response will be one of no blame because the world knows his will is not free — he cannot find justification for what he is about to do. In other words, the knowledge that the world must excuse what he can no longer justify prevents the desire to take even the slightest chance of hurting another. Under these conditions, responsibility reaches a level never seen before in all of history. This will become clearer as we continue.

"I understand the principle of no blame but society does what it must do to protect itself. A person with scarlet fever is not blamed but is nevertheless quarantined."

"If a person had something that was contagious, he would welcome this precautionary measure. The knowledge that he would not be blamed under any circumstances, even if he was responsible for spreading his illness to the entire region, would prevent him from desiring to take any chances that might cause further spread of the disease. This is similar to the question that was asked earlier, "If it is mathematically impossible for man to do something, what would you do if it was done?" How is it possible for B (society) to protect itself when it is impossible for B to be hurt? Once again, there is an assumption that deliberate and careless hurt will continue. Just bear in mind that when man knows there will be no blame or punishment no matter what he does, he can only go in one direction for satisfaction and that is not to hurt others with a first blow. He can if he wants to, but he won’t want to. It is important to understand that if someone is being hurt first his reaction is no longer a first blow, but a retaliatory blow. Under these conditions he would have justification to strike back."

In order to hurt another, either deliberately or carelessly, man must be able to derive greater, not less, satisfaction which means that self-preservation demands and justifies this; that he was previously hurt in some way and finds it preferable to strike back ‘an eye for an eye,’ which he can also justify, or else he knows absolutely and positively that he would be blamed by the person he hurt and others if they knew. Blame itself which is a condition of free will and a part of the present environment permits the consideration of hurt for it is the price man is willing to pay for the satisfaction of certain desires; but when blame is removed so that the advance knowledge that it no longer exists becomes a new condition of the environment, then the price he must consider to strike the first blow of hurt is completely out of reach because he cannot find satisfaction in hurting those who will refuse to blame him or retaliate in any way. To hurt someone under these conditions he would have to move in the direction of conscious dissatisfaction, which is mathematically impossible.

If will was free we could not accomplish this because we would be able to choose what is worse for ourselves when something better is available. From a superficial standpoint it might still appear that man would take advantage of not being blamed and punished and risk hurting others as a solution to his problems, but this is a mathematical impossibility when he knows that blame and punishment are required for advance justification. In other words, the challenge of the law absolves his conscience with threats of ‘an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth,’ which is payment in full for the risks he takes. He may risk going to prison or be willing to pay the ultimate price with his life for the satisfaction of certain desires. An individual would not mind taking all kinds of chances involving others because he could always come up with a reasonable excuse to get off the hook, or he could pay a price, if caught. If he borrowed a thousand dollars and was unable to pay all of it back, he could easily say, "Sue me for the rest." If he tries to hold up a bank, however, and fails, the legal system does not allow him to excuse himself and he is sent to prison. Without the knowledge that he would be blamed and punished should he fail; without this advance justification which allowed him to risk hurting others, the price of this hurt is beyond his purchasing power. How could anyone be satisfied planning a crime knowing that the entire world would be compelled to forgive him — even though they knew what he was about to do? Have you already forgotten that we are compelled, by our very nature, to choose the alternative that gives us greater satisfaction which is the reason our will is not free?

Consequently, it is only necessary to demonstrate that when all blame and punishment are removed from the environment — and when the conditions are also removed that make it necessary for a person to hurt others as the lesser of two evils — the desire to hurt another with a first blow will be the worst possible choice. This knowledge becomes an impenetrable deterrent because under these conditions no person alive is able to move in this direction for satisfaction, even if he wanted to. This natural law raises man’s conscience to such a high degree because there is no price he can pay when all humanity, including the one to be hurt, must excuse him.

"I am still having a difficult time with the two-sided equation. Can you repeat what the two sides of the equation are?"



I'm not sure what you mean. Could you elaborate?



s_lone, I suggest you read Chapters One and Two to clarify why man's will is not free. When you say mechanical laws, we are not robots responding to some computer program because we do have the ability to choose. What makes our will not free is that there is only one choice that can be made at each moment in time, and that is the choice that gives us the greatest satisfaction. We cannot choose that which gives us the least amount of satisfaction when a more satisfying choice is available. If we could, our will would be free but we are compelled to choose that alternative which gives every indication of being the best possible choice under our particular circumstances. If you want you can give me some examples of where you think that this law does not apply, and I will show you that it does. It's an invariable law of our nature, over which we have no control.



It's not that difficult to follow the author if you put your own theories aside temporarily. You need to clear your mind to allow a different point of view to be absorbed and fully comprehended.



For the purposes of this discussion, we are not touching upon whether God is a reality or not. We're focusing on the physical laws of nature, including the mankind system, that's all.



It's a two-sided equation because on the one hand, we know that we are going to be excused because the world knows our will is not free, but on the other hand, we know before we strike a first blow of hurt, that nothing in this world can force us to do something against our will if we don't want to do it, for over this we have absolute control, and when this understanding becomes a permanent condition of the environment, there is no way that a person could prefer to hurt someone under these new conditions. His conscience would not permit it, for he would get less satisfaction, not more.

3. Here is where things get tricky. The author then starts talking about a utopian world where nobody would blame anybody for anything. The reason for not blaming anybody for anything is that everybody would know that we all necessarily are compelled to act according to what seems best for ourselves. By truly understanding that it is in our nature to do so, then we can't blame one for acting according to his nature.

4. Here is where I really don't follow the author. He says that in the perfect blameless world where ''Thou Shall Not Blame'' is the ultimate guideline which everyone necessarily follows, nobody would ever end up hurting anybody else because... well... I don't know. I just don't get his point. I'll quote him directly and perhaps you can help me.

''Up until the present time there was nothing powerful enough to prevent man from risking his life to satisfy a desire regardless of who got hurt because the satisfaction of possible success outweighed the dissatisfaction of possible failure, but when he becomes conscious that a particular reaction of no blame will be the only response to his actions by the entire world regardless of what he is contemplating, he will be compelled, completely beyond his control but of his own free will (or desire), to refrain from what he now foresees can give him absolutely no satisfaction. How can he possibly find satisfaction in doing something that the world must excuse, but he can no longer justify? This natural law of man’s nature gives him no alternative but to obey it in order to derive greater satisfaction, and will prevent the first blow from ever being struck. As we extend the corollary, Thou Shall Not Blame, we will be able to unravel the causes of war, crime, and hatred — which are deep-rooted and interwoven — and envision how life will be when all hurt in human relations comes to a peaceful end.''

How does this work? Let's say we live in the blameless world. What would stop a pedophile from abusing a child? How would the pedophile's certainty that nobody would blame him stop him from abusing a child?

First of all, the causes that led to someone becoming a pedophile won't exist. So you must think in terms of a new generation, even though even the generation that now exists would also be prevented from continuing with these acts once the basic principle is put into effect. He mentioned later in the book that if someone was severely mentally ill, just as a mad dog would have to be controlled, so would this person, but as time goes on mental illness will be virtually wiped out. I do think you have a basic grasp of the two-sided equation. I suggest that you just keep reading because it might help you understand how these principles work in a real life situation. The next chapter captures how this can easily prevent all carelessness.

Where is my edit button? I wanted to fix something and I can't.

s_lone, I also suggest you read the last part of Chapter Two. He shows how the Great Transition can take place by preventing the perpetrator from ever desiring to pertetrate another crime again... under the changed conditions. This is very important because we are still living in a free will environment and it's difficult for people to see how this law can begin changing our world for the better, when so much hatred already exists.[/QUOTE]
Quote: Originally Posted by Goober
So tell me about no 10 - posterity?
Chapter Ten (Our Posterity) was his favorite discovery because it takes away the fear of death, but only if you understand his reasoning. I'm not getting into this chapter until the others are understood.

Well hate to tell you this but I made peace with my maker over a decade ago.
Been to many places, done to mnay things that I made my peace a long time ago.

Do I want to die young, of course not - I have Grandchildren and hope to be around to see them married and of course then Great Grand Children.
 
Curiosity
#71
S_Lone

Nicely put! I appreciate those who can get their heads running so smoothly so early in the day!

Ditto to Goober!!

The place is thriving and I only have one eye open!
 
taxslave
#72
I want to know what kind of drugs the author is on. So far not much of this is making any sense. It sounds like something from some one with far too much idle time and a long distance from reality.
 
Curiosity
#73
PeaceGirl

Seriously you seem to be on some kind of obsessive-compulsive journey - although sincere, but any journey with which you have spent hours and months and longer in your promotion of what you feel are valid points, must be examined more closely if you value your personal mindset and future reasoning.

Amazon.com: Decline and fall of all evil: Seymour Lessans: Books (external - login to view)

The response from the lone responder to your desperation wrote it much more succinctly than I could. No singular individual has been blessed with ALL the
answers to mankind and its fate - we can only determine our own personal travels
but take care to consult with the potential harm of total immersion in belief of one
mind only.

Your brain is huge - treat it well and feed it often with challenge offered by others. It is not a criticism only a suggestion - it is there for you to expand your own horizons.
 
peacegirl
#74
Quote: Originally Posted by CuriosityView Post

PeaceGirl

Have to give you credit for holding fast to your personal belief system, however to adjudge others (including me) wrong, or to argue their personal belief systems demonstrates to me flawed logic on your part about the very issue you are trying to elicit response.

Get some living experience and allow others their freedoms - you are extremely limited in your desire to
make others believe - you are no way near what you insist we all agree to. Because someone's prose gives you pause to think is excellent - the next step is to realize ALL do not follow the same thought process as
do you and to learn to relax the benefit to all of us is that we do not.

Variation and questioning and challenge are the basis of response, not complicit agreement. If you are
afraid of challenge, keep learning.

I'm sorry if I offended you. It was not my intention.

Quote: Originally Posted by CuriosityView Post

PeaceGirl

Seriously you seem to be on some kind of obsessive-compulsive journey - although sincere, but any journey with which you have spent hours and months and longer in your promotion of what you feel are valid points, must be examined more closely if you value your personal mindset and future reasoning.

Amazon.com: Decline and fall of all evil: Seymour Lessans: Books (external - login to view)

The response from the lone responder to your desperation wrote it much more succinctly than I could. No singular individual has been blessed with ALL the
answers to mankind and its fate - we can only determine our own personal travels
but take care to consult with the potential harm of total immersion in belief of one
mind only.

Your brain is huge - treat it well and feed it often with challenge offered by others. It is not a criticism only a suggestion - it is there for you to expand your own horizons.

It is true that no singular individual is blessed with all the answers. I never claimed to have all the answers. But there are genuine discoveries out there, and I believe this is one of them.

Quote: Originally Posted by GooberView Post

First of all, the causes that led to someone becoming a pedophile won't exist. So you must think in terms of a new generation, even though even the generation that now exists would also be prevented from continuing with these acts once the basic principle is put into effect. He mentioned later in the book that if someone was severely mentally ill, just as a mad dog would have to be controlled, so would this person, but as time goes on mental illness will be virtually wiped out. I do think you have a basic grasp of the two-sided equation. I suggest that you just keep reading because it might help you understand how these principles work in a real life situation. The next chapter captures how this can easily prevent all carelessness.

Where is my edit button? I wanted to fix something and I can't.

s_lone, I also suggest you read the last part of Chapter Two. He shows how the Great Transition can take place by preventing the perpetrator from ever desiring to pertetrate another crime again... under the changed conditions. This is very important because we are still living in a free will environment and it's difficult for people to see how this law can begin changing our world for the better, when so much hatred already exists.

Quote: Originally Posted by Goober
So tell me about no 10 - posterity?
Chapter Ten (Our Posterity) was his favorite discovery because it takes away the fear of death, but only if you understand his reasoning. I'm not getting into this chapter until the others are understood.

Well hate to tell you this but I made peace with my maker over a decade ago.
Been to many places, done to mnay things that I made my peace a long time ago.

Do I want to die young, of course not - I have Grandchildren and hope to be around to see them married and of course then Great Grand Children.[/QUOTE]

I second that. I just was blessed with my third grandchild and I hope to see them all grow up. I'm also glad you have found peace with your maker, as we all must.
 
karrie
#75
To boil down to its most simple everything I've read... the idea is that peace for humanity, peace with one's own death, every positive outcome one wishes to see, could be achieved if we all just THINK the same, and think hard enough.

Most utopian theory has been based on 'discoveries' like that haven't they? But instituting those theories tends to be less 'simple' and more terrifyingly oppressive.
 
peacegirl
#76
Quote: Originally Posted by JLMView Post

I think the only people who have total freedom are those with no conscience. I'm a little confused about this "determinism"- does it mean everything is pre ordained? That is a little tough to swallow. Without getting overly verbose or technical I kind of subscribe to the theory (not sure who is famous for it) that SH*T HAPPENS.

No, it doesn't mean that everything is preordained where someone can say, "I couldn't help myself for killing that person because it was already preordained that I do this." This was clarified in Chapter Two. SH*T does happen, and once it happens, it could not have been otherwise. But this discovery demonstrates that when the conditions of the environment change where one knows in advance that he will no longer be blamed for anything at all --- because the world knows his will is not free --- he is prevented from doing those very things that previously gave him greater satisfaction. In other words, we must have justification to hurt another, and if we can't find any, our conscience won't allow us us to move in this direction.
 
s_lone
#77
Peacegirl, I just finished chapter 3.

I have this simple question for you. How is all this different than the Golden Rule?

The Golden Rule - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (external - login to view)
 
peacegirl
#78
Quote: Originally Posted by s_loneView Post

Peacegirl, I just finished chapter 3.

I have this simple question for you. How is all this different than the Golden Rule?

The Golden Rule - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (external - login to view)

The Golden Rule is a standard of ethics that tells someone how they should act. This law of nature doesn't tell anyone what to do, and in so doing, prevents the very thing that these moral codes of behavior could not accomplish. In the introduction, the author writes:

While the moral code, the Ten Commandments, our standards of right and wrong will be completely extirpated, all premarital relations, adultery and divorce will be a thing of the past, changing the entire landscape of family relationships. Where did you ever hear anything so fantastic or paradoxical? And aren’t you jumping to a conclusion that this is against all human nature? If all the people in the world who get displaced because their services are no longer needed were to know as a matter of undeniable knowledge that the income necessary to sustain their standard of living, whatever the cost, would never be stopped as long as they live, would they have any reason to complain about someone showing them a better way — the only way to accomplish that for which they are getting paid? Although they and others will be dissatisfied to learn the truth when it deprives them of personal fulfillment, they are compelled to be silent because to utter any words of protest would only reveal their ignorance, which will give them no satisfaction. I shall now set sail on a voyage which will perform this virtual miracle by igniting a chain reaction of thought that will explode across the planet and destroy with its fallout every conceivable kind of hurt that exists among human relations, never to return. It is now within our power to reach that mountaintop — the Golden Age of man — that we have all hoped and dreamed would one day become a reality.


Quote: Originally Posted by karrieView Post

To boil down to its most simple everything I've read... the idea is that peace for humanity, peace with one's own death, every positive outcome one wishes to see, could be achieved if we all just THINK the same, and think hard enough.

Most utopian theory has been based on 'discoveries' like that haven't they? But instituting those theories tends to be less 'simple' and more terrifyingly oppressive.

This discovery of our nature does not tell anyone how to think or what to do. It frees us to think however we want and to do whatever we choose, so how can it be oppressive? It does not demand conformity. It creates an environment where everyone has free expression. Therefore, it does the exact opposite of what you are imagining, although I do understand people's wariness and skepticism. It just sounds too good to be true. But it is true because what I am presenting is an invariable law.
 
s_lone
#79
Quote: Originally Posted by peacegirlView Post



This discovery of our nature does not tell anyone how to think or what to do. It frees us to think however we want and to do whatever we choose, so how can it be oppressive? It does not demand conformity. It creates an environment where everyone has free expression. Therefore, it does the exact opposite of what you are imagining, although I do understand people's wariness and skepticism. It just sounds too good to be true. But it is true because what I am presenting is an invariable law.

But it does demand conformity. It demands that nobody ever blames anybody. If that is not conformity, I wonder what it is. Having free expression requires having the freedom to blame someone else right?
 
karrie
#80
Quote: Originally Posted by peacegirlView Post

But it is true because what I am presenting is an invariable law.

Any invariable law should not require three pages of imaginary conversation to get across.
 
peacegirl
#81
Quote: Originally Posted by s_loneView Post

But it does demand conformity. It demands that nobody ever blames anybody. If that is not conformity, I wonder what it is. Having free expression requires having the freedom to blame someone else right?

Of course, having freedom of expression means an individual can say whatever he wants, or do whatever he wants, but in order to have true freedom of expression we must create a world in which no one wants to hurt another in his words or his actions, or those behaviors will be restricted for good reason. Until this new world becomes a reality we will continue to need the laws that are in existence, politicians, police, government, and all those agencies that help to keep order. You don't have to become a citizen of this new world if you don't want to. You could keep living in the world we have now if you want this, but why would you want this if you could have greater freedom than you have now? Remember, no one is forcing you to do anything you don't want to do. You will be the one to decide what is better for you, no one else, and that is basically the theme of the rest of the book. It just extends into all areas of human relations to show how a world of no blame is so much better than the world we live in now; a world of judgment, blame, and punishment.

I don't consider an agreement conforming to anything. I think of a conformist as someone who does certain things because it gets a positive response from others.

Quote: Originally Posted by karrieView Post

Any invariable law should not require three pages of imaginary conversation to get across.

This invariable law can be stated in a few sentences, but it would need clarification. I hope you can see how difficult this discussion is when everyone has a definition of determinism that is not what the author is proposing. That's why people are coming to all kinds of wrong conclusions. If we don't have any understanding of how we are defining our words, then there is bound to be confusion.
Last edited by peacegirl; Aug 25th, 2010 at 02:12 PM..
 
gopher
#82
''I can't walk through a mountain. But I can decide to climb it, surround it, or dig through it.''

Free will means you can do anything by choice.
 
peacegirl
#83
Quote: Originally Posted by s_loneView Post

Peacegirl, the edit button is at the top right part of the post you did. But it disappears after a while.

Thanks, I'll look for it again.

Quote: Originally Posted by s_lone

Why not? That would mean you have a perfectly good understanding of why one becomes a pedophile. Do you? It seems to me that there is something unrealistic about the claim that all causes that lead someone to do evil acts would disappear... Because of what? The absence of any kind of blame?

I understand that it seems unrealistic that all the causes of evil would disappear. That is why for right now, instead of focusing on whether this knowledge can change the worst element in society, let's step back a minute to understand more clearly what this law states. You gave me a pretty good synopsis but we need to continue discussing why responsibility goes up, not down, with the removal of all blame and judgment. Not everybody gets this, and since you are the most active participant, I hope we can continue the conversation in a way that will allow others to follow the reasoning.

Quote: Originally Posted by s_lone

This all sounds beautiful and great. I'd love to live in that world he speaks of. But he doesn't explain how this world can realistically come to be. Let's say you magically managed to brainwash every single human into not blaming everybody, I still don't see how this stops pedophiles to lust after children, or rapists to want to rape.

First of all, the things that exist in today's world will not exist in the new world because children will be brought up so differently. They would never grow up to desire these things. I know that this is not a complete answer, but for our purposes right now we can't jump so far ahead of ourselves that these principles will appear impotent in the face of such atrocities.

Quote: Originally Posted by s_lone

I did read the last part of chapter 2. He elaborates on what would go on in the mind of someone who wants to hurt someone else and concludes he would not end up hurting the person because of the ''no blame'' principles that are universally applied.

Yes, that is true, but there are other factors involved. He writes in the economic chapter, which you have not yet gotten to:

Thus far we have arrived at the prerequisite steps that must be taken for there to be a permanent solution. Remember that we are working this problem backwards and until other facts are revealed we still have a distance to go, so please bear with me. There is one key point which needs clarification. Preventing war and crime by removing all advance blame does not necessarily remove the factors that made in the world of free will those evils the preferable alternative, so there are other factors to consider before these principles will work. In our present world innumerable wars, revolutions, and crimes were a reaction to various forms of hurt that did not allow any alternative but to retaliate as a reaction to injustices inflicted on them. In other words, when those about to fight back discover that they will no more be retaliated upon, it is also necessary for them to realize that the factors responsible for this consideration of war, as the lesser of two evils, must also be removed; and are they given any choice but to remove these factors when they know that the people they have been hurting will never blame them for this?

Quote: Originally Posted by s_lone

Don't get me wrong, I am all for making this world a better place, and I am for any kind of moral/ethical/philosophical system that can get us there. The author seems to think that his system can get us there and I'm willing to go along the ride. But I will bring along my criticism with it. And if the author happens to be right, then hopefully criticism can help improve the theory because so far, I don't see it as being very convincing, and believe me, I am open minded.

I have no problem with questions you may have. I welcome people who keep an open mind and try to understand. If you are not convinced, that's fine. I will try to help clarify things. The only thing I can't tolerate is people telling me he was arrogant and a crackpot. He was a very humble man who had unusual analytical ability.

Quote: Originally Posted by s_lone

What fails to convince the most is how the causes that lead one to evil would disappear in a blameless environment.

That's perfectly understandable. The rest of the book, although just a blueprint of this new world, shows how these principles change every area of human relation so that the causes that have led people to desire hurting others, will be entirely eliminated.

Quote: Originally Posted by gopherView Post

''I can't walk through a mountain. But I can decide to climb it, surround it, or dig through it.''

Free will means you can do anything by choice.

The author is not arguing the fact that people can choose. But their choices, once they make them, could not have been otherwise since any other choice, at that moment, would have given less satisfaction under the circumstances. We can only choose that which gives us greater satisfaction, not less satisfaction, at each and every moment of time, which is why man's will is not free.
Last edited by peacegirl; Aug 26th, 2010 at 06:37 AM..
 
JLM
#84
Quote: Originally Posted by gopherView Post

''I can't walk through a mountain. But I can decide to climb it, surround it, or dig through it.''

Free will means you can do anything by choice.

This may be kind of a non issue. There are things that our in our power to make happen and there are things we are not able to make happen and there are other things that are eventually going to happen, if we keep doing certain things long enough. For instance if you are going to skate on the ice, eventually if done long enough you are going to slip and fall.
 
s_lone
#85
Quote: Originally Posted by peacegirlView Post


The author is not arguing the fact that people can choose. But their choices, once they make them, could not have been otherwise since any other choice, at that moment, would have given less satisfaction under the circumstances. We can only choose that which gives us greater satisfaction, not less satisfaction, at each and every moment of time, which is why man's will is not free.

Good morning Peacegirl, thanks for your response. As long you keep giving me your feedback, I'm willing to keep going, so long as we both understand that we have other things to do. I can't get into chapter 4 until tomorrow.

But for the time being. I have this rather simple but potentially devastating question for you.

Why even bother?

If we go along the author's reasoning that our will is not free, aren't we forced to admit that whatever we do won't change the outcome of what will happen? Why put so much effort in thinking and writing about these things if it can't change anything? I understand the author wrote all of this because it's probably what gave him ''the most satisfaction''. But why should anyone care about what he has to say if in the end, our will isn't free and nothing we can possibly do will change the outcome of what will happen?

If no one is interested in the book in question, you can't blame anybody can you? That would be rather dishonest of you right?

His version of determinism is as fatalistic as any other that I've encountered. All I am is a ''thinking'' machine which necessarily follows the guideline to ''always choose what brings me the most satisfaction''. What's the difference between me and a robot if that's the way things work? A robot could very well have this programmed into its artificial intelligence.

You already said in a previous post that we are not automatons. How is that true in the light of what the author says about the fact that free will does not exist?
 
peacegirl
#86
Quote: Originally Posted by s_loneView Post

Good morning Peacegirl, thanks for your response. As long you keep giving me your feedback, I'm willing to keep going, so long as we both understand that we have other things to do. I can't get into chapter 4 until tomorrow.

Good morning! I will keep answering as long as you keep questioning and the conversation stays civil, which I'm sure it will. Chapter Four is his second discovery which will open up a huge can of worms, and I don't want to get off on a new tangent just yet. So please feel free to move on s_lone (I'm really happy you have the desire), but let's focus on the first two chapters when talking publicly, because right now these two chapters are most important.

Quote: Originally Posted by s_lone

But for the time being. I have this rather simple but potentially devastating question for you.

Why even bother?

If we go along the author's reasoning that our will is not free, aren't we forced to admit that whatever we do won't change the outcome of what will happen? Why put so much effort in thinking and writing about these things if it can't change anything? I understand the author wrote all of this because it's probably what gave him ''the most satisfaction''. But why should anyone care about what he has to say if in the end, our will isn't free and nothing we can possibly do will change the outcome of what will happen?

Because we CAN change the outcome of what will happen, even though our will is not free. This is not a fatalistic point of view. We have the knowledge now of how to create the conditions that will bring peace to the entire world. Once scientists recognize this law of our nature, we can begin to transition from a world of blame and punishment to a world of no blame in which conscience would never permit the atrocities that occur in a free will environment. In today's world, people can easily take advantage of others in order to get what they want because they know they will be blamed and punished if they are caught. This gives them the advance justification to do the very thing threats of punishment have tried to prevent without much success. These atrocities could never take place in the new world. So there is a lot to be excited about once this knowledge gets disseminated across the globe.

Quote: Originally Posted by s_lone"

If no one is interested in the book in question, you can't blame anybody can you? That would be rather dishonest of you right?

I would never blame anyone, but it would sadden me. If no one is interested, this discovery will still be brought to light because this knowledge is part of the real world, but it may take 100 years instead of 50 years to get recognized. So, yes, it would make me sad if no one is interested, but I would never blame anyone. I will just keep moving forward and try to reach people who are interested.

Quote: Originally Posted by s_lone

His version of determinism is as fatalistic as any other that I've encountered. All I am is a ''thinking'' machine which necessarily follows the guideline to ''always choose what brings me the most satisfaction''. What's the difference between me and a robot if that's the way things work? A robot could very well have this programmed into its artificial intelligence.

Because a robot does not have a will. It is programmed to do what it has been instructed to do. Please read the first page in Chapter Three where he says that fatalism implies that we do nothing to change the outcome of a situation. A mother who sees her child running in the street would not say, "Well, it's fate that my child gets hit by a car so I might as well just throw my hands up in surrender and let my child get hit." In other words, we do everything we can to prevent a situation we don't want to occur, and when we've done everything we can possibly do and it still happens, we can then say it was fate ordained.

Quote: Originally Posted by s_lone

You already said in a previous post that we are not automatons. How is that true in the light of what the author says about the fact that free will does not exist?

Once again, even though our will is not free because we must pick the choice that gives us greater satisfaction, we are the agents involved in making our choices, therefore we are not robots that just reacting to a program that has already been set up advance.
Last edited by peacegirl; Aug 26th, 2010 at 10:19 AM..
 
Dexter Sinister
#87
"When you know you are not going to be blamed for what you do it also means that you must assume complete responsibility for what you do because you cannot shift it away from yourself under the changed conditions" That is utter nonsense, and lies at the heart of what's wrong with this guy's thinking. If you know you won't be blamed, which I take to mean nobody will hold you to account, for what you do, it means what you do has no possible negative consequences for you, and under those circumstances there's no conceivable motive for wanting to shift it away from yourself. That doesn't make you responsible, it makes you always innocent, nothing's your fault, nothing you do can ever be wrong in anybody else's opinion. That's concentrated essence of BS, and my considered opinion is that Seymour Lessans is an ignorant fool who doesn't understand what he thinks he's writing about. It's immediately obvious that he has no idea what a mathematical or scientific law is or how to state one, because he never does state one in a form any mathematician or scientist would recognize, but repeatedly claims he has. It's just flim flam.
Last edited by Dexter Sinister; Aug 27th, 2010 at 01:47 AM..
 
peacegirl
#88
Quote: Originally Posted by Dexter SinisterView Post

"When you know you are not going to be blamed for what you do it also means that you must assume complete responsibility for what you do because you cannot shift it away from yourself under the changed conditions" That is utter nonsense, and lies at the heart of what's wrong with this guy's thinking. If you know you won't be blamed, which I take to mean nobody will hold you to account, for what you do, it means what you do has no possible negative consequences for you, and under those circumstances there's no conceivable motive for wanting to shift it away from yourself. That doesn't make you responsible, it makes you always innocent, nothing's your fault, nothing you do can ever be wrong in anybody else's opinion. That's concentrated essence of BS, and my considered opinion is that Seymour Lessans is an ignorant fool who doesn't understand what he thinks he's writing about. It's immediately obvious that he has no idea what a mathematical or scientific law is or how to state one, because he never does state one in a form any mathematician or scientist would recognize, but repeatedly claims he has. It's just flim flam.

Quote has been trimmed, See full post: View Post
You're completely wrong. It just shows how confused a person can get when he doesn't understand. When you know that no one will hold you to account because the world knows that your will is not free, the negative consequences don't come from blame and punishment, it comes from the consequence of not being held responsible for something you know you did, which cannot be justified under the changed conditions. This is the worst possible punishment society can offer. How is it possible for someone to shift that which is his responsibility when no one holds him responsible? You don't even understand the two-sided equation, which is the core of this discovery, for even though the world knows you are not to blame, YOU KNOW YOU ARE TO BLAME. It's not that there's no motive for wanting to shift the blame because you are already innocent from all wrongdoing, you can't shift it, and your conscience cannot accept knowing that you did something to hurt someone without one ounce of justification. The mind needs justification when it comes to hurting another. That's what conscience IS CREATED FOR. Under these conditions, conscience does not grow weaker, it grows much much stronger. I am asking you to stop belitting this author, or I will ignore you next time you post, even if you have something worthwhile to say.
 
Cliffy
#89
Quote: Originally Posted by alleywayzalwayzView Post

I'm not disagreeing with you on that free will and determinism are mutually exclusive. I disagree with the notion that free will isn't real past my own imagination. Since I believe free will is God-given it would be something much bigger than chemicals in the brain.

It may be difficult to prove something like morals and free will are absolute, although the argument is there. But I don't have to prove that truth is absolute that's a natural revelation, a priori knowledge.

One man's truth is another man's BS. The truth is only what a person is willing to believe. Facts can be manipulated, just like the bible, to say whatever a person wants it to say (that is why Christianity has 2500 different sects). There are no absolutes except in the mind of a believer. Belief is not truth, it is just a mind game.
 
JLM
#90
[QUOTE=peacegirl;I am asking you to stop belitting this author, or I will ignore you next time you post, even if you have something worthwhile to say.[/QUOTE]

THAT would just destroy any credibility you have.
 

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