Hear, hear! I do not think there is, or ever has been, a "traditional
sense" of the meaning of "free-will". I don't think the term has,
been properly understood. Let me point you to Leibnitz "On Necessity and
Contingency" right before you (re?) read Deutsch's final chapters in FoR
which touch on this
subject. Afterwards, David Lewis "On the plurality of worlds" extends these
ideas, with some formalism.
In short, I think that to really engage with the topic an understanding of
difference between what a necessary truth is and what a contingent truth is
and then an understanding of why if indeterminism does not give one freedom
anymore than determinism takes it away. We have to agree upon what we mean
"free" before we can begin to discuss other technicalities (such as whether
free-will exists or not).
Once we accept that freedom is tied to this notion of "contingency" we
will see that just because our actions are entirely and completely
by the laws of physics: we are nonetheless, still free.
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: Henry Sturman
> To: Fabric-of-Reality@yahoogroups.com
> Sent: Wednesday, July 10, 2002 9:11 PM
> Subject: Re: Rationality of free will in the multiverse
> >>Consider statement J: "People have free will." (I am using "free will"
> >>its traditional sense; i.e., J means "People's choices are not
> >Well, that's a very odd definition of free will. I've argued before
> >there is no conflict between what we normally think of as free will and
> >Also, your definition of free will implies that if I normally have no
> >will I would suddenly get it by determinately choosing to make one of
> >decisions contingent on some random event, in the hyphothetical
> >where true random events existed in nature. But it seems obvious that
> >a random event does not constitute my free will.