George Ellis: If you seriously believe that fundamental forces leave no space for free will, then it’s impossible for us to genuinely make choices as moral beings. We wouldn’t be accountable in any meaningful way for our reactions to global climate change, child trafficking or viral pandemics. The underlying physics would in reality be governing Read More…
This is not an excellent time to be a materialist. Materialism is losing its Cool. It’s not even making sense.
Egnor: Someday, I predict, there will be a considerable psychiatric literature on the denial of free will. It’s essentially a delusion dressed up as science. To insist that your neurotransmitters completely control your choices is no different than insisting that your television or your iphone control your thoughts. It’s crazy.
When New Scientist’s world comes away feeling empowered by stuff like this, what does it mean for the rest of us?
Sometimes, says Michael Egnor (below right), misrepresentation may be deliberate because Libet’s work doesn’t support a materialist perspective.
At first, Libet thought that free will might not be real. Then he looked again…
He wants to and he tried to—at a speaking engagement at Williams U. But if he is a meat puppet, well, …
He does not really address the fact that most naturalists don’t actually believe that the free will he assumes actually exists.
In everyday life, we casually throw around the terms “confidence,” “chance,” and “likely.” We sometimes attach numbers too. We say that an event has a 90% chance of occurring. But, what do we mean by a “90% chance”?
If it was just noise, you may not hear that any time soon from the textbook mill.
(I think we’ve corrupted KF’s thread long enough.) The entire problem of mind/matter dualism is rooted in a single error of thought: the reification of an abstract descriptive model of experience into an causal agency independent of the mind that conceives it and the mental experience it is extrapolated from. It is similar to the Read More…
Sheldon: My objection, which I will develop in two streams, is that both reductionism and emergence are just wrong, as is the philosophical denial of free will based on them.
George Musser, a science writer reviewing a new book on the subject, thinks it will force free will skeptics to become more sophisticated in their arguments
It really is quite funny. And physicists should stick to physics.
That would appear to make transhumanism an enemy of free will and of freedom generally. But give them credit for being honest about it.