That whole free will doesn't exist in the universe thing:

Ficino

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Apr 2012
7,024
Romania
Voluntary = done willingly is simply tautology, they mean essentially the same thing.
All your quotation or your own remarks are doing is saying that a free choice is a decision made freely - but that is just restating the assumption.
The question raised here has been are the mental acts that we call free really so, or are they subject to a determined causation that is simply too complex to recognise.
Also what does free mean, events mentioned in the thread are caused or random - if a mental event not caused and not random then what is the basis of the 'free' act?
How can you explain the meaning of a word without a tautology (in case you understand what a tautology means) ?!!!! What do you understand by "free" when you hear about "free will"?!!!
 

stevev

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Apr 2017
3,609
Las Vegas, NV USA
Recent experiments have proven conclusively that the Copenhagen interpretation is correct.

So- no determinacy-

outcomes, to a specific outcome.

So- free will exists.

And copenhagen has passed every test.
What has passed every test is Quantum Mechanics. No one knows exactly why it's so successful. Copenhagen is an attempt to explain why. It's called an interpretation, not a theory or meta theory. It's still the most accepted but not by a majority of physicists who follow a number of other interpretations or none at all. There is no consensus.

Interpretations of quantum mechanics - Wikipedia
 
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Jun 2016
1,863
England, 200 yards from Wales
How can you explain the meaning of a word without a tautology (in case you understand what a tautology means) ?!!!! What do you understand by "free" when you hear about "free will"?!!!
Exactly what people mean by free is what I am asking. That is not explained by simply using other words that essentially just mean the same - voluntary for free, decision for choice.
The point is all the discussion that hasn't simply asserted 'free will' has been about things being either determined by causality or, if not that, then random (undetermined)
If this freedom is neither of those what is it?
I don't claim to know, I suspect that it is an illusion caused by the complexity of human mental processes making their outcome impossible to predict, with the idea that unpredictable implies uncaused or free.
If you toss a coin you can't predict which way it will fall (too many variables), but that doesn't mean the coin freely decides how to fall.
On the other hand if you offered almost anyone a million pounds with no strings attached you could probably predict pretty confidently that they would accept, yet that is supposedly a free decision.

I don't want to make much of this (as I don't recall where I saw it, and it may be outdated by now) so I use it as an illustration of what I suspect rather than as an argument, but I recall reading of a neurological experiment that recorded the electrical activity in the brain of a choice being made before the conscious mind was aware of it.
 

Ficino

Ad Honorem
Apr 2012
7,024
Romania
Exactly what people mean by free is what I am asking. That is not explained by simply using other words that essentially just mean the same - voluntary for free, decision for choice.
The point is all the discussion that hasn't simply asserted 'free will' has been about things being either determined by causality or, if not that, then random (undetermined)
If this freedom is neither of those what is it?
I don't claim to know, I suspect that it is an illusion caused by the complexity of human mental processes making their outcome impossible to predict, with the idea that unpredictable implies uncaused or free.
If you toss a coin you can't predict which way it will fall (too many variables), but that doesn't mean the coin freely decides how to fall.
On the other hand if you offered almost anyone a million pounds with no strings attached you could probably predict pretty confidently that they would accept, yet that is supposedly a free decision.

I don't want to make much of this (as I don't recall where I saw it, and it may be outdated by now) so I use it as an illustration of what I suspect rather than as an argument, but I recall reading of a neurological experiment that recorded the electrical activity in the brain of a choice being made before the conscious mind was aware of it.
According to the classical understanding you are free in relation to everything that depends on you/is in your power as a rational agent.
 
Sep 2015
407
The Eastern Hinterlands
I'm still confused by this whole thing with the non-existence of free will as it relates to the Big Bang. One of the questions in physics that is particularly confusing to me is the absence of free-will in the universe:

If we believe in the Big Bang Theory – and the universe’s continuous expansion is a strong indication that such theory must be correct – the initial state of the universe was a single point (known as a singularity) that then expanded to the cosmos we know and perceive today, which, of course, includes us.

If so, there is a causal relationship between the Big Bang and us. In other words, free will is not allowed, and all of our actions are just a mere consequence of that first event. Such a view is known as “determinism”, or “super-determinism” (if one finds it productive to reinvent the wheel).

Does free will exist in the universe? (That would be a no.) | Cosmos


I guess my best take on this is the universe is so vast and constantly expanding, that if there are aliens in distant far away star systems and galaxies observing earth, some of them have already seen the earth's sun turn supernova and humans no longer exist, in which case everything we do, our choices and our actions have been predestined and free will doesn't exist. In some galaxies, they are only just observing dinosaurs still roaming the earth. That's how weird the physics of space and time is.
I see free will as a bump car amongst other bump cars in an enclosed area that none of the vehicles can go beyond. The bump cars are free will, the enclosed area fate. You can slam your car against other cars, avoid them or just stay away and settle in one corner and observe the action. You can do all of those but while you're inside the car you can't go beyond the perimeter. But who knows? Maybe if you slam the car hard enough or do so repeatedly you can breach the wall and move beyond. It's one of life's most interesting and intriguing mysteries.
 

Dreamhunter

Ad Honorem
Jun 2012
7,503
Malaysia
Way I see it, not even the Universe itself is in possession of so called 'free will'. So it is in a way kind of absurd to think that anything forming only the tiniest part of the Universe, like a human being, let's just say, could ever have 'free will'.

Rightly speaking, the concept of 'free will' is just what it is. A concept. An illusion. It does not really exist at all.

We're all really only slightly a bit more sophisticated than a fly or a mosquito, which might be thinking all the while that it has complete 'free will' to roam & fly as it likes. Until it gets a swat - by something else that happens to have a bigger 'free will' than it - that snuffs out its life completely, there & then.
 
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Todd Feinman

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Oct 2013
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Planet Nine, Oregon
Way I see it, not even the Universe itself is in possession of so called 'free will'. So it is in a way kind of absurd to think that anything forming only the tiniest part of the Universe, like a human being, let's just say, could ever have 'free will'.

Rightly speaking, the concept of 'free will' is just what it is. A concept. An illusion. It does not really exist at all.

We're all really only slightly a bit more sophisticated than a fly or a mosquito, which might be thinking all the while that it has complete 'free will' to roam & fly as it likes. Until it gets a swat - by something else that happens to have a bigger 'free will' than it - that snuffs out its life completely, there & then.
The problem and delusions arise from the belief in self-nature, the individual as separate from the universe, and It's not so.
 
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stevev

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Apr 2017
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Las Vegas, NV USA
The problem and delusions arise from the belief in self-nature, the individual as separate from the universe, and It's not so.
"Free will" is needed to regulate human behavior. If you do something bad "deliberately" you will be punished. If it's accidental you will be treated differently. We also give people who are judged mentally incompetent or diseased a pass, but they are usually restricted in some way. I don't think that will change. Only the death penalty and torture become insupportable in the absence of free will and most first world countries at least are already there. The lesser punishments are to protect the population and can be justified IMO without invoking free will. If you kill your spouse, no matter how much he or she deserved it, you should still go to prison for a long time even though it was inevitable.;)
 
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Todd Feinman

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Oct 2013
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"Free will" is needed to regulate human behavior. If you do something bad "deliberately" you will be punished. If it's accidental you will be treated differently. We also give people who are judged mentally incompetent or diseased a pass, but they are usually restricted in some way. I don't think that will change. Only the death penalty and torture become insupportable in the absence of free will and most first world countries at least are already there. The lesser punishments are to protect the population and can be justified IMO without invoking free will. If you kill your spouse, no matter how much he or she deserved it, you should still go to prison for a long time even though it was inevitable.;)
Predictive AI a la Minority Report is an issue, too.