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Re: [evol-psych] Is Free Will an Illusion?

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  • Sussa Bj�rkholm
    ... Hallelujah! I am finally able to agree with Edgar on free will. Yes, defined like that, we all have free will. In the brain there are populations of
    Message 1 of 115 , Jun 1, 2009
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      On Thu, May 28, 2009 at 3:10 PM, Edgar Owen <edgarowen@...> wrote:

      However even rabbits have free will just as humans do in the sense that they as bounded independent organisms initiate actions within the boundaries of their beings which are not completely determined by external events (causes).

      All 'higher' (down to very low levels actually certainly including at least some aspects of insect behavior) organisms have free will in this sense.


      I am finally able to agree with Edgar on free will. Yes, defined like that, we all have free will. In the brain there are populations of neurons with intrinsic rhythm. Their membrane potential fluctuates with a certain frequency, causing them to fire intermittently and thereby activate other neurons.

      This firing is of course modulated by outside influence (metabolites, light (indirectly, via retina-pineal-connections etc), but as long as the organism's brain is alive, they are able to fire without input external to the cell itself. 

      However, with this as a criterium, we will have to include plants and bacteria in the group of organisms with free will, they all have ion channels that change their permeability without stimulus from outside the cell. 

      Sussa
       

      sussab@...
    • zdeluce
      IMO there is no such thing as free will.. A creation is oncapable of what its creator endowed it with.. which is reaction to certain stimuli and only
      Message 115 of 115 , Sep 10, 2009
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        IMO there is no such thing as free will.. A creation is oncapable of what its creator endowed it with.. which is reaction to certain stimuli and only particular reactions.


        Although all is rigedly fixed, it is fixed in such a way which "appears" to allow for a vague, minute degree or definite type of latitude & this latitude  most resolute! Sort of like a dog chai­ned to a pole, it can  roam around  to some extent howev­er its miniscule domain is speci­fic & thus set! This scenario can  but infer that while cert­ain "set" options­ are possi­ble others are not. It is this fixed "liberty" which  many  confuse  with free will. I must con­tend that  various alter­na­tives & choices  "might" be open if only cer­tain  ones. I believe there "might" be some  lati­tude in  a beings life & that being may be given, say, five  choic­es  &  it's  most  "probable"  that  it's been prede­ter­mined which  choice  he  will  make but never-the-less he's  given  a choice, if  you  choose  to  call it th­at. Lets assume for the sake of argu­ment that someone knows you  better  than you  know your­self & that someone  rounds up five mem­bers of the  oppo­site  sex, all rela­tively  good look­ing & charm­ing however  different as day & night. I staunchly believe  it can be  ascer­tained  before­hand, prior  to your  ever having layed eyes  or  ears  upon them, which one, above  the  others, will  cap­ture your fancy! This once again is  what  is confu­sed with free will. Free in a limit­ed  fash­ion as the possibi­lities are fixed & in  cer­tain situa­tions  one has a choice  be­tween  two evils & must choose  between  the  lesser of them but how does one know why or even what makes them choose what they do? They might  choose  to  believe that they  rea­soned it out but then again why do they then reason the "only" one way that they do? Six of one, half a dozen of  another & wolfs howl at the moon?

         



        --- On Fri, 5/15/09, Robert Karl Stonjek <stonjek@...> wrote:

        From: Robert Karl Stonjek <stonjek@...>
        Subject: Re: [evol-psych] Is Free Will an Illusion?
        To: "Evolutionary-Psychology" <evolutionary-psychology@yahoogroups.com>
        Date: Friday, May 15, 2009, 7:25 PM

         
        ----- Original Message -----
        Sent: Saturday, May 16, 2009 10:27 AM
        Subject: Re: [evol-psych] Is Free Will an Illusion?

        Sonny,

        No Sonny, the answer is yes. All you have to do is understand that there is no determinism anywhere in the world because of quantum random effects. Thus the actions of any organism cannot be completely determined by external influences. Greatly so sure, but completely so impossible.

        Edgar

        RKS:
        If this is so then the individual can not predict the outcome of quantum random effect either, so they are not free either.  If you can't control (predict) your own behaviour then you are not free.
         
        Robert

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