Dissident_is_here t1_j31v0dv wrote

So much wrong here. Where to start?

First of all, my original post did not even imply materialism. Nowhere did I state that all mental states have a physical basis, merely that some do. If you are going to deny that, then please explain to me how it is that reading this is producing thoughts in your head? Or seeing pigments on a piece of cloth produces the sensation of color? Even the most hardcore dualist has to acknowledge the connection between mind and brain.

Second, you seem to be stuck on this point that a deterministic world is like a factory that produces the same things over and over. The world is so, so far away from this that I'm unclear how you came to that conclusion. Let's remove life from the question. Is the world of minerals, rocks, chemicals, etc. deterministic? If it is, voila, a deterministic world that produces nothing identical. Science is unsurprised. There is of course quantum indeterminacy, but this is not well understood and even then, would just be randomness. I certainly hope this is not what you are looking to in order to avoid determinism. If this world is not deterministic, please give me the mechanism outside of cause and effect that influences it.

Finally, even though my post wasn't an argument about whether or not we have free will, but rather my opinion on what type of free will argumentation is best from a deterministic point of view, I'll respond to the free will argument you posted. It is quite poor in my opinion. The scientist, or Laplace's demon, or whoever is in the position to know all deterministic factors possible, would also know the effect their telling would have upon the person making the choice. This is simply another deterministic factor. The knowledge that a person has about what is being predicted, or what is being deliberated in their own mind, is itself a causal factor. This is the fly in the ointment for libertarians. All factors they can mention when talking about choices must be causal, or not. If they are causal - whether we are talking about microbes, neurons, knowledge, outside interaction, or pure contemplation - then we are speaking about cause and effect: a process with a conclusion defined by its beginning. If not causal, then we must introduce randomness - this too is of course problematic, because randomness, even more than causality, removes the agent's freedom. So which class does "their knowledge" (that of the choice-maker) fall into? Is it causal? Then the choice is not free. Is it random? Then also, not free.


Dissident_is_here t1_j2yizws wrote

I'm finding your thought process very very hard to follow. Given that people are not identical, why would one input have an identical output?

You aren't arguing very clearly. If you don't think that physical events have an impact on mental states then you are at odds with all of neuroscience. If you are just trolling, then have a nice day.


Dissident_is_here t1_j2vbyjz wrote

So many issues here.

  1. The assumption that anyone simply picks beliefs based on their perceived utility is utterly baseless. In fact the opposite is often true - people find themselves believing something despite knowing its implications are dangerous to their well-being.

  2. Your comparison to the boat is flawed. Naturalism doesn't just reject the search for the life jacket. It rejects the entire reality of the boat in the first place. Only theists see us in need of rescue. Naturalists believe we will die, of course, but would never concede that there is an alternative.

  3. You have falsely limited the options here. A naturalist argues that we actually have no reason to believe that utility goes on after death, and the best response the theist has is "well, what if it did"? Well, what if the creator of the universe was a sadistic beast who took pleasure in eternally torturing those who believed in his existence? Or what if paganism is true and the whole system rests on the whims of all-too-human gods who don't care what we believe? Or what if Hinduism is true and we are reincarnated based on our life deeds? It seems that if we are seeking to maximize utility beyond what we all perceive to be its end rather than during the period we can all agree it exists, we don't have any logical basis to believe we know what would maximize such utility.


Dissident_is_here t1_j2sye9a wrote

You don't need any conception of physics to arrive logically at the conclusion that the common conception of "free will" is an absurdity. The best arguments deal solely with what we know of the way minds work and their connection to what we know of the brain and biological life in general.

Additionally, I find the comparison to the experience of color quite bizarre. The experience of color has a quite clear physical basis. We may not know the ins and outs of how physical events lead to mental states, but we do know that they in fact do so.

Nothing about our knowledge of the world provides a basis for the experience of free will. In fact, there is no experience of free will at all. Free will is not a sensation, but a conclusion we draw about our sensations. So it is very very different than our experience of color. Arguing that because our experiences can't be directly described in terms of physical events, we don't need to tie free will to physics doesn't really get you anywhere here.


Dissident_is_here t1_j0xgpb8 wrote

Not remotely close, other than the fact that both are centered on powerful families. Yellowstone is like if they stripped all the comedy, rich dialogue, social commentary, and tight plotting out of Succession; moved it to Montana; made all the characters paper thin and one note; and added ridiculous amounts of over-the-top drama and action.