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Kuir ë Garang

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Free Will and Determinism
by Kuir ë Garang   
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Last edited: Friday, March 18, 2011
Posted: Friday, March 18, 2011

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Philosophy and Ethics


It's hard for most people to imagine they don't have control over what they do. And it is even more painfully hard for the religious heads and minds to imagine a deterministic world where god is fairly useless. However, the role of god in the lives of those who believe or still believe (they may be on their way to dis-believe) brings to mind a gentleman who does nothing but still gets praised; a man who who commits unspeakable horrors but still has an unlucky woman callled devil to shoulder her blame.

Daniel Dennett, a prominent philosopher, once said that saying we don't have Free Will is like presenting human beings as automatons. While we might not agree with the fact that we're just but automatons, we have to remember that we are driven by our desires and inclinations. All our actions are functions of our desires. There's a pull-push force that determines our actions. Impulsive (heroic) actions are desires driven too.

What gives us an impression that we are free and in charge of our actions (that our actions are indetermiistic) is the weighing of thoughts before our actions. I give it to those who believe they've been given Free Will by god. Just because Mary feels she can decide to go to the movies or go to see a world famous symphony orchestra, it doesn't mean her decisions aren't deterministic. If you didn't have a choice as to whether you should or should not be born, you have little reason to argue that you have any choice as to what you can do.

Free Will is concoction by a powerful tradition to make a case for their existenial pre-eminence. To make sure that god is absolved from the evil happenings in the world, an excuse had to be created to make sure that no one looks up and says: "mr. god, you suck!."  Don't you just love the wise dudes who invented religion. They made god a lucky son of a gun.

So you think you have a choice whether you will cook tonight or you will  order Chinese, however, you have no choice to refuse to  eat or drink. You have no choice whether to sleep or not. You pretend at first but, boo, you give in. What leads to the action you do is the desire or inclination you have and what brings about your desire and inclination you have is a chain of events that dates back to the time before you were born. To claim you have a will that helps you decide to or not to do something is an illusion that is aided by the nearness of the action.

Free Will does two things that are contradictory: it makes sure we arrogantly claim control over what we do, but at the same time argue that god gave us a Free Will. What does god do after giving us the Free Will?: "Hey, don't ask me anything, suckers. I gave you Free Wil!" Or doesn't he have any idea what we do after giving us Free Will. Either way, Free Will makes god a big sucker!

A person who's never seen a car before in her life would assume that a car has a life of its own. A driver who drives the car and the fuel that helps it move are just like the desires that drive a person to action. Your body can't do anything without desires. Without desires, you're just like a car without a driver or fuel; or worse, a broken-down car.

If you're just a body without desires, then you have to know that anything you do is determined by desires whose essence predates your existence. To claim control over something that was put in place before you were born is the most arrogant claim there is. By the way, nature has designed our actions in such a way that claiming control over our actions makes sense; and also, makes us feels good.

Copyright kuirthiy's word




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