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No argument with Sudden Sam but a rather incomplete treatment of the topic..there i said it and i would say it again...my name aint Jake and yours aint Ben

It does lay out the fact that the notion of free will simply doesn't make any sense from the get go.

As for a "complete" treatment, bring it on.

Preface: I like Sam.

But on this subject Sam speculates beyond the science.  He leaps way beyond the empirical results of experiments to draw his conclusions. if you'll listen the this video carefully he will tell you that "you" don't make decisions and then later he will tell you "we" have to decide.  He seems stuck between ideologies, determinism when it suits him and free-thought/will when that fits his argument.

Good point. :)

Next dumb questions: Who am I? Who are we?

Dumb answers: We are who we think we are; we're also NOT who we think we are.

Cue the awesome nature scenes...

@Da Pope:

"Who am I?"

You sir are the Pope, doG's Right Hand Man here on the Earth.  What ever you say here on Earth shall be honored in Heaven.  For example if you decide to let all the Scientologists into Heaven when they die then St. Peter has to let them in when they arrive at the Pearly Gates.

But Good Ol' doG could screw that up by making all the Scientologists live for eternity here on Earth. LOL

If your behavior is determined, it is what it is. Even determinists behave "as if" they have free will. They have (due to determinism) no choice.

What would behaving like a determinist look and sound like anyway? LOL

Free Will is an illusion. People have a sense of having it when they make decisions. What they actually have is the “freedom” to choose between various options. The number of options available is pre-determined.

Say I want to go to see “Star Wars” in the cinema tonight. I have several decisions to make from all the various options available. Which cinema to go to, what viewing time, who to go with, what seats to book and so forth.

All of these decisions are dependent upon various pre-determined factors that I have no control over. If the 7pm screening is fully booked then I cannot select that option. If my friends have particular constraints on their time slots then that also pre-determines what I can choose. I need to check a lot of options to make sure I can actually go tonight.

If none are available for tonight then I will have to postpone it until I have more options available to me. If only one slot is available tonight that meets all the parameters then I only have one option to “choose” from. Maybe I end up with 3 options. Those options however have been entirely pre-determined for me. I had no choice in creating them, only the ability to choose one and only one of them. It may have the sensation of “free will” but in reality all I have is the freedom to choose from one or more options that are all entirely pre-determined.

Even at that point my ability to choose has been pre-determined by various factors like my finances, my ability to get to a cinema, the fact someone built the cinema, the fact the world exists……….

Your freedom to choose whether or not to read this reply was pre-determined by my posting it which was pre-determined by the fact that Unseen published it which was pre-determined by Sam Harris.

Yeah Reg free will is an illusion. But it seems to me you have fallen into a trap in the way you perceive its absence. Why is freedom to choose different from free will? Isn't freedom to choose simply a facet of thinking?

How can factors be predetermined if the complex web of events leading to the"freedom to choose" involves others who were confronted by predetermined options themselves and yet exercised their freedom to choose. In that event there can be no predetermination.

Jake, of course we make decisions, but the question is to what extent are we in control of the processes resulting in those decisions? Is there a meta-you hovering above the processes manipulating and controlling them, or do the processes operate according the the laws governing everything else in the physical worldk? Is there a spiritual plane in addition to the physical plane in which anything that happens is due to antecedent circumstances?

We have no free will whether or not you assume predetermation.

@the One who operates under the impression he cannot be seen:

"...or do the processes operate according the the laws governing everything else in the physical world?"

Yes and No.  You are forgetting the underlying layer of the Quantum.  You are limiting your analyses to the either/or Macro laws of physics and ignoring the Quantum Superposition laws of physics ie. Schrödinger's cat (where the cat is both alive and dead at the same moment).

................................................................................

"We have no free will..."

Can you describe what you mean by the term "free will"?

Yeah Reg free will is an illusion. But it seems to me you have fallen into a trap in the way you perceive its absence. Why is freedom to choose different from free will? Isn't freedom to choose simply a facet of thinking?

Or course we aren't "free to choose" unless being free to choose just comes down to pursuing one of the available options. We pursue the one which antecedent events, pursuant to the laws of the universe, make the only one possible.

@Reg:

"Free Will is an illusion."

Is thought an illusion?

Is memory an illusion?

Is self-awareness an illusion?

Is consciousness an illusion?

Are my senses an illusion?

Is new information an illusion?

Is fear an illusion?

Do I choose to trust someone or is that predetermined?  What about if later I choose not to trust that same person was that also predetermined or did the I/Me think, analyze and consciously decide to change my previous decision based on a thought process which included new information?

Where is the Mind?  Is it synergistic (do the parts add up to more then the sum?)  Does not the mind require a functioning brain?  Can the brain not be synergistic?

I'm a skeptic, color me unconvinced.  I don't accept the term "Free Will"

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