He thinks there is too much of this no-free-will nonsense in the science blogosphere. “If Pigliucci or Coyne would like to debate free will, they can consider this a challenge from me”:
The question as to whether free will is real turns then on whether there is always compulsion in nature. And that question turns whether every physical event has a physical cause — a cause dictated by the laws of nature, as understood by physicists. The answer to this is clear: it is not true that every physical event has a physical cause. There are at least four categories of physical events that do not have physical causes:
1) The Big Bang had no physical cause. The Big Bang was the primordial physical event that could not have had a physical cause, because the Big Bang itself was the origin of the “physical.” In other words, the whole universe — i.e., everything that is physical — did not have a physical cause, which would seem to be the ultimate negation of the assertion that “every physical event has a physical cause.” The truth is that no physical event ultimately had a physical cause.
2) The effects of the singularities at the centers of black holes have no physical cause because a singularity is not physical thing. It is undefined in modern physics and thus, whatever it is, it is not a physical cause.
3) All gravitational effects in curved space time have no physical cause, for two reasons. First, space time is not physical. Second, energy is not conserved in curved space time according to general relativity. All materialist understandings of physical cause entail an exchange of energy, so if energy is not conserved then there is no justification for arguing that all physical effects have physical causes.
4) Quantum entanglement is not physical causation. Entangled particles can be billions of light-years apart and yet the waveform collapse of one particle can instantaneously determine the state of the distant particle. According to special relativity, causation of a physical nature cannot exceed the speed of light. Thus quantum entanglement is not an example of a physical cause.
Free will denialism is a bizarre cult. It’s not even wrong — it’s self-refuting nonsense. That a philosopher/biologist with the educational credentials of Massimo Pigliucci would endorse such gibberish is a scandal. It’s evidence for the stranglehold that materialism and atheism have on otherwise able minds.
The science blogosphere is polluted with materialist and atheist rubbish of this sort and free will denial is at the top of the pile. If Massimo Pigliucci or Jerry Coyne would like to debate free will, they can consider this a challenge from me. We can debate it anywhere — in blog posts, on YouTube, or in person. Pick the forum. It would be a delight to have a “conversation” with meat.Michael Egnor, “My challenge to two atheists who deny free will” at Mind Matters News (February 10, 2022)
Takehome: Free will has no physical cause? At least four categories of events in nature have no physical cause. Free will denial isn’t science, just atheism in a lab coat
Mind Matters News offers a number of articles on free will by neurosurgeon Dr. Michael Egnor including
Can physics prove there is no free will? No, but it can make physicists incoherent when they write about free will. It’s hilarious. Sabine Hossenfelder misses the irony that she insists that people “change their minds” by accepting her assertion that they… can’t change their minds.
Does “alien hand syndrome” show that we don’t really have free will? One woman’s left hand seemed to have a mind of its own. Did it? Alien hand syndrome doesn’t mean that free will is not real. In fact, it clarifies exactly what free will is and what it isn’t.
But is determinism true? Does science show that we fated to want whatever we want? Modern science—both theoretical and experimental—strongly supports the reality of free will.
How can mere products of nature have free will? Materialists don’t like the outcome of their philosophy but twisting logic won’t change it
Does brain stimulation research challenge free will? If we can be forced to want something, is the will still free?
Is free will a dangerous myth? The denial of free will is a much more dangerous myth
Also: Do quasars provide evidence for free will? Possibly. They certainly rule out experimenter interference.
Can free will even be an illusion? Michael Egnor reiterates the freeing implications of quantum indeterminacy
Also, by Baylor University’s Robert J. Marks: Quantum randomness gives nature free will Whether or not quantum randomness explains how our brains work, it may help us create unbreakable encryption codes