You only get it one way. If there is no free will then you are not responsible. Of course, it becomes very hard to define free will. Does the act of feeling as if I am making a decision define free will? The ability of choice? Some may say it is not me who is making the choice but chemical reactions in a predetermined pattern. However, aren't these not too me, chemicals sloshing within my brainpan making the ideas surface that create the choices I make?
Sin implies a vast supernatural consciousness that monitors an individual's progress over life.
The probability of this is next to zero.
Now i'm not saying that you should go fuck, kill or eat the next person you see, as philosophical morality exists, but perhaps you should cast your eyes in that direction before you act on any of these responses.
If we are all but mere actors in a grand play, so engrossed in our respective roles that we have lost sight of reality, would we still be held accountable for our sins? After all, we are just playing the part, no?
>>4945856 Everything is inherently meaningless, so that changes nothing.
Besides, if you define evil as, say, inflicting suffering, most of it has nothing to do with any sort of human 'agency' or 'will'. Its the demands of nature and the various injustices it inflicts upon humanity that makes up the bulk of the worlds suffering, human evil is a drop in the ocean by comparison.
So resorting to the Free Will defense, even if Free Will isn't nonsense (it is, without question, bullshit) doesn't address the salient issue.
>>4945843 to become christian is to believe that a supposedly 'all powerful & loving' god both: chooses to allow suffering (that he caused) to happen, and creates individuals with the knowledge that they will be unable to believe and therefore suffer eternally for finite acts of freedom.
The more I think about it, the more I hope there is no god and no eternity.
>>4945979 I'm pointing out that if free will doesn't exist, that doesn't mean that suddenly, one person doesn't have free will, and everyone else still has it somehow and can CHOOSE whether they can hold him responsible for his sins.
No, if there is no free will, then we can be held responsible for our sins by other people because they have no choice but to do so.
>>4947832 We cannot be united with God unless we freely choose to love him. But we cannot love God if we sin gravely against him, against our neighbor or against ourselves: "He who does not love remains in death. Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him." Our Lord warns us that we shall be separated from him if we fail to meet the serious needs of the poor and the little ones who are his brethren. To die in mortal sin without repenting and accepting God's merciful love means remaining separated from him for ever by our own free choice. This state of definitive self-exclusion from communion with God and the blessed is called "hell."
Jesus often speaks of "Gehenna" of "the unquenchable fire" reserved for those who to the end of their lives refuse to believe and be converted, where both soul and body can be lost. Jesus solemnly proclaims that he "will send his angels, and they will gather . . . all evil doers, and throw them into the furnace of fire," and that he will pronounce the condemnation: "Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire!" The teaching of the Church affirms the existence of hell and its eternity. Immediately after death the souls of those who die in a state of mortal sin descend into hell, where they suffer the punishments of hell, "eternal fire." The chief punishment of hell is eternal separation from God, in whom alone man can possess the life and happiness for which he was created and for which he longs.
The affirmations of Sacred Scripture and the teachings of the Church on the subject of hell are a call to the responsibility incumbent upon man to make use of his freedom in view of his eternal destiny. They are at the same time an urgent call to conversion: "Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy, that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard, that leads to life, and those who find it are few."
Since we know neither the day nor the hour, we should follow the advice of the Lord and watch constantly so that, when the single course of our earthly life is completed, we may merit to enter with him into the marriage feast and be numbered among the blessed, and not, like the wicked and slothful servants, be ordered to depart into the eternal fire, into the outer darkness where "men will weep and gnash their teeth."
God predestines no one to go to hell for this, a willful turning away from God (a mortal sin) is necessary, and persistence in it until the end. In the Eucharistic liturgy and in the daily prayers of her faithful, the Church implores the mercy of God, who does not want "any to perish, but all to come to repentance"
>>4947914 Dude, if you don't even consider theism it's ludicrous to express this kind of egoism What you are doing is imagining God as some sort of deity that operates in the world To Christians, god is BEING ITSELF, the very reason you can think, reason and have emotions Going against the will of god is objectively incorrect if you hold this conception
>>4947936 You do realize that if the Christian God is real then even the most pious and unselfish of Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, etc. (of which there are many) who never had any reason to believe in Jesus and never will, will burn in a lake of fire for fucking eternity in the afterlife. That's 10 million years, times another billion, times another trillion, times a million more, etc. You get the idea. Actually no, you can not. It is insane. Call me a fedora if it makes you happier, though. Just try not to clutch your crucifix too hard.
>>4947989 >You do realize that if the Christian God is real then even the most pious and unselfish of Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, etc. (of which there are many) who never had any reason to believe in Jesus and never will, will burn in a lake of fire for fucking eternity in the afterlife.
Those are your assumptions, how about pulling something to support them? The Church is highly interested in interfaith dialogue with those religions and doesn't consider them infidels who will suffer torture because God is evil. Pull your head out of your ass and realize Christianity has changed from 10 centuries ago
>>4948007 From the Catechism is seems pretty clear to me that Hell is a state of being that comes about from abandoning God and doesn't actually have to do with your religion
"To die in mortal sin without repenting and accepting God's merciful love means remaining separated from him for ever by our own free choice."
Dying in state of mortal sin. Whether you're catholic, atheist or buddhist, the principle is the same
But just keep constructing your straw man of Christianity, laughing at it and calling everyone retards. I'm sure this is very effective instead of respectable dialogue and attempting to understand the position of theists, which are the majority of the world in some form. This is why you are cancer
>>4948019 From what I've read about the Catechism, only those who are 'ignorant' of Christ's sacrifice can still be redeemed without faith in Jesus. But this seems to begs the question; why bother in the first place? In that case, isn't his sacrifice a burden rather than a blessing?
>implying any other faiths give two shits about muh mortal sin
>>4948030 Because without the sacrifice everyone would be in the default state, which is sinful nature without salvation. If 5% manage to be united with God through the rigorous moral perfection that it requires, the sacrifice was worth it
>>4948034 Oh right, so everyone who doesn't believe in Jesus IS going to hell (according to those lunatics). Thanks. Why not just call Judgment Day way before the cumulative historical human population hit 90 billion people? Does God simply not care?
>>4948044 Again, this is your own strawman. Do you even want to argue or are you just here to affirm your intellectual superiority?
One of the main differences between Protestantism and Catholicism is that Catholicism emphasizes the moral life and striving for perfection, and having faith and praying is only a part of it. Protestants are the ones who consider that you get magically saved by having faith and to them you can direct your complaints about atheists burning in hell Also there's purgatory, which is realistically what the majority of people are going to end up with - people who didn't commit serious sins but NEED THE PURIFICATION TO BE ABLE TO UNITE WITH GOD, BECAUSE OUR SINFUL NATURE IS OPPOSED TO GOD. GOD ISN'T ARBITRARILY DECIDING THAT WE'RE BAD BECAUSE WE'RE NOT CATHOLICS.
>>4948055 That's completely untrue. Purgatory has been there since early Christianity, Catholics just formed a firm theology around it. People have been praying for the salvation of dead people for a long time. But, if hell is inescapable and heaven is eternal, for what are they praying? Clearly there is a state of being that concerns people who have yet to be purified but are not without the chance of salvation.
>>4948066 Oh yeah, universal salvation was also present in early Christianity, Catholicism actually takes the moderate view and doesn't go full-happiness This is what they do with many doctrines. Don't pretend that Christians steadily became more lax about their theology because anyone with a minor understanding of church history can clearly see your error
Here is what I have understood based on my limited reading of Christian theology:
It must be the case that God is omniscient and omnipotent. I do not see any way around this. It follows that everything in existence has been preordained.
Creation exists in order to glorify God in all his attributes (to who?). In order to show His love, God created humans and His plan of salvation.
It was necessary for humans to fall and be tainted with original sin, so that they can be redeemed later by the sacrifice of Jesus ,in order to show God's mercy, and this is necessarily preordained. Since God is the opposite of sin and anathema to it, He is justified in not saving anyone at all, and could rightly condemn every human ever to punishment in Hell in order to show His justice. This is how His mercy is shown, by saving some people through Jesus.
It is necessary for some humans to be preordained to not be with God and be punished, because otherwise there would be no place for God's wrath or God's justice to be glorified. Evil must exist as an opposite to God, so that His divine justice may be exercised upon those preordained to sin.
Please note that this is not what I believe. If the things I outlined above are the case, I would rather have not lived at all, than take part in glorifying something like this. Unfortunately I don't have much choice in the matter if it is, since everything I wrote here was preordained anyway and I'll surely be tormented forever.
I may have made errors somewhere in my understanding.
>>4948194 >if god were truly omnipotent he could remove all evil and suffering, and provide humans with free will at the same time (even the will to do evil) Kant plz go. "Omnipotence" is generally defined as being able to do everything that is logically possible. God could be unable to create square circles and still be omnipotent.
Unless you go full Kant and assume "God can make square circles. He can also create rocks so heavy he can't lift them, and then lift them. Fuck logic". But that puts God beyond comprehension and any attempt to comprehend him useless.
>>4948199 >>4948200 What in Orthodox/Catholic theology changes the conclusions? Or are the assumptions (Creation exists to glorify God in all his attributes) different?
Since God did create everything at some point, and he knows everything that will eventually take place, I think there is no way around preordainment. Even with "free will", God knows the end result of everyone's life, and their eternal reward (or lack thereof), so at the end of the day, some people were created with God's knowledge that they will go to Hell.
>>4948215 >being able to do everything that is logically possible. Then I'm omnipotent. I can't make you eat your hand because it's logically impossible for me to do that. Still omnipotent. That definition is useless.
>>4948216 That assumes that God has omniscience in the sense that he knows the linear outcome of everyone's life A different understanding is that since God is outside time, he knows the outcome of every possible choice a person can make and how that outcome influences further etc., but the choice that is going to happen in time ultimately rests on the free will of the individual
>>4948228 >I can't make you eat your hand because it's logically impossible for me to do that But making someone eat their hand is logically possible. Just because YOU can't do it, doesn't mean it's logically impossible (liek a square circle is)
>>4948200 That's because being a christian in 2014 requires immense amounts of cognitive dissonance or flat out ignorance/stupidity.
>Muh specific interpretation is the truth >It's le metaphors! Jebus don't care if I fuck bitches and taunt people about being sinners >Jebus don't care the Church is intellectual dishonest
Christians are just afraid of hell, which is also a retarded and nonsensical concept. As I grow older I find it almost impossible to be civil with christians, especially online. You're just retarded. There's no sense in beating around the bush. I certainly am not going to respect a reality denying cultist who is implicitly insulting my very "soul" by telling me their idiotic traditions are "the truth".
>>4948215 But he is the "alpha and omega" and "knew us before we were born" and still punished us for everything he designed and was aware would happen, taunts eve, smites the earth, commands slaughter etc
You're an apologist fucking moron and behind all of your rhetoric you're just terrified of hell, which makes no sense as a concept. Jesus is the savior of rape and BDSM. You're a moron.
>>4948247 >It's le metaphors! Jebus don't care if I fuck bitches and taunt people about being sinners Metaphors have been part of Christian doctrine and interpretation since the very fucking start, nigger.
The thing about the Bible is that it isn't one book where you can just read it, see something you don't like and say "yup, metaphor!". It's a collection of different books from different genres. Genesis is an Epic, Leviticus is a legal code, the Psalms are poetry and the Gospels are Biographies. All different genres that need to be read in different ways.
Or do you seriously read a newspaper in the same way you'd read a novel?
>>4948229 So some people believe that God does not know the course of each person's life that is actually realized, but only all the possibilities? In other words, all the possibilities of the world unfolding are known by God, but he does not know which exact one is the case?
Also, the idea of something being "outside time" is confusing to me: For instance God has intervened or interacted with humanity in some way at certain points in time. Does this not require God to be on a timeline? Even in the Bible somewhere it says he has taken actions in response to humanity (the Flood, for instance).
Removing linear omniscience from God's attributes does make theology seem less bad, though.
>>4948266 The theological concepts of God in theology can be very abstract and disconnected from the direct involvement in human history, yeah. I can't really answer that, especially for the Old Testament. But if you take Christ as the person of the Trinity, he had to assume a human body to be able to communicate with us, which is more plausible
>>4948276 I just think that ascribing omniscience to God in the sense of knowing the outcomes of everyone's life is problematic, in that it makes God's existence a depressing fact, for reasons I explained in >>4948196
You can say that anything done by God is necessarily good (because he is God) in response, so that there is no reason to feel that any of these things aren't good and just, but then I've been preordained to feel this way, which is even more depressing than knowing that countless people have existed who will be tormented forever to glorify God.
>>4948256 >what makes giving people free will and removing suffering 'logically impossible'? Because it removes the impossibility of doing evil.
As for natural evil, that's a bit harder, but C. S. Lewis believed that a static outside world was needed to differentiate between invididuals. If there was a world with just two minds that could hear eachothers thoughts and nothing else, it would become impossible for one mind to differentiate his own thoughts from those of others, he believed. There needed to be an unchanging "outside" for there to be an "inside".
>>4948291 >Because it removes the impossibility of doing evil. no it doesn't god could simply make people inclined towards good 100% of the time -- evil is still a possibility, but people don't choose it
>>4948289 I don't see where the idea that God creates us solely to glorify him is common at all. It's more commonly understood that God created us so we could share in his divinity. But due to original sin we cannot experience it any longer and we require purification to reach Him again.
>>4948303 I don't mean "where do you get those arguments", I mean ""how do you know they are not pulled out of someone's ass". Like if I think it's raining outside, I stick my hand out, how do you check if God is omnipresent or divinely simple or whatever?
>>4948311 Even the Garden of Eden needed a massive fuck-up button (the fruit of knowledge) to make doing good a real choice. You can't freely do good if doing evil is not an option. That tree needed to be there to make their stay freely willed.
>>4948301 I don't think that changes the conclusion of God being omniscient in the sense I described, because it still requires God to have a reason for the fall to take place, since we could have just shared in His divinity in the first place.
Genesis 3:4 says that Adam and Eve would find knowledge of good and evil after eating the fruit so how can a just god consider eating the fruit a sin if they didn't even know it was wrong -- they had no knowledge of morality so they couldn't possibly know that not following god's commands is sinful, so it is unjust for them to be punished
>>4948318 Because it's theology, and theology is based on certain basic assumptions that progress from there. Once you reach some arguments for theism, you can then start pondering the metaphysical questions and how God related to us etc. If you think metaphysics is just wordgames then it's nothing to you, but it's a big part of western philosophical canon
>>4948335 yes, god had forbidden it but they don't know that not listening to god's 'forbidding' of it is evil without the knowledge so although they went against his will knowingly, they didn't know that doing so would be immoral, so they cannot justly be punished
>>4948391 >it's taken literally in Catholicism Not really. Perhaps there are Catholics that take it literally, but it's not taken literally in Catholic doctrine as early back as St. Augustine (see; De Genesis).
"Responsibility" is a mental technology. We don't have a literal "soul" or "spirit" of "absolute executive control" to which we could endlessly blame or praise. But acting as if we had responsibility gives a psychological boost to attempts to counter common procrastination and shorter-term valuations which prevent longer-term pleasure so to speak.
>>4945797 If there's no free will, sin doesn't exist. It's important we all learn the truth, that free will is illusory, so that everyone can adopt a more forgiving, less vengeful, more empathetic view towards criminals. A strong belief in free will gets you antiquated punitive systems, like in the US. To understand the deterministic nature of things gets you rehabilitation centers wherein criminals are treated humanely, and then properly integrated back into society. In the US, we have people who, like Andy Dufresne, became criminals only after they were imprisoned.
>>4949853 >Free will is illusory There is no good evidence of this in physics, given that our physical theories are incomplete, and that parts of QM (entanglement specifically) provide pretty strong arguments AGAINST determinism. The two sides of the free will debate go along the lines of "All natural things behave predictably according to underlying laws; Human beings are natural things; Human beings behave predictably according to underlying laws." However, we've discovered that the laws of the world on a small scale (think electrons) do not behave in ways that can be understand in terms of simple deterministic laws, but actually behave according to statistical probability, with the mechanics underlying said probability remaining a mystery (and many scientists and mathematicians have argued that they will forever remain a mystery). When this is considered in tandem with the completely unexplained (unexplainable?) observable phenomena of conscious experience, and it is difficult to just write off "free will" as a nonexistent construct of self-important minds. Predictability of choice does not imply a lack of choice
>>4950006 Living in a non-deterministic universe doesn't equate to free will in humans. A person is no more responsible for there action if it's the equivalent of randomly spinning a wheel of choices or if they were always going to predictably pick a choice. The only way we can be responsible for our choices is if we are actually in control of which one we pick, I don't see how randomness helps this at all, I would in fact argue it moves away from it.
>>4950020 Actually, computers are good examples of deterministic machines incapable of making choices unconstrained by certain factors. Computers are constrained by their input and programming to provide a specific output. People aren't you big doof. The concept of free will is that people are capable of taking whatever path they can think of, and the only constraint on what outputs they can provide in any situation is that they cannot use information they do not have.
>>4950038 >the only constraint on what outputs they can provide in any situation is that they cannot use information they do not have. This doesnt worry you at all? they arent constrained by the information they don't have? they aren't completely determined by the information they do have? Where did that information come from exactly?
>>4950041 >>4950038 Furthermore 'people are capable of taking whatever path they can think of' is hilariously vacant' 'capable of taking a path', yes they can choose options presented to them, according to desires *also presented to them* 'whatever path they can think of', exactly. whatever path appears to them. they dont choose which paths appear to them
>>4950022 Because the randomness we have discovered is only "fundamental" in that we currently have no way to look past it, and likely never will. The reason a universe that behaves according to a perceived randomness on a fundamental level is different from a universe that is completely deterministic is that in a completely deterministic universe, free will is impossible, because if you know the state of every particle of the universe to an exact degree, you also know the future of the universe to the same exact degree, and it can be demonstrated that no system can ever make a "choice" about it's future state. In a system governed by probability, however, it is different, because we don't know what underlies the probability. There are a great number of different things that create patterns according to probability, some of them could be argued to be completely deterministic, but others could not.
Basically, a deterministic universe writes out free will completely, but a universe not known to be completely deterministic leaves room for systems (including human minds, and a far greater number of other systems) to make "choices" when faced with situations. When combined with the unexplained phenomenon of conscious experience, I think free will seems relatively likely, though obviously not proven and still possibly illusory.
>>4950048 But computers only have one path according to whatever algorithm is programmed into them. If you press the p key, a computer can not choose to output q. Free will means that when presented with more than one path, the path is selected, not determined. If you ask a person to say p, he can say p, or he can say q, or he can say fuck off, or he can say pineapple, or he can make up a completely new word, but he cannot tell you what the capital of taiwan is if he doesn't know what the capital of taiwan is I'm just trying to hit you with a definition.
>>4950064 I appreciate it, but just think of *why* the person chooses p, q or fuck off, or pineapple or his new word. Are you seriously implying that this decisions springs into being utterly without prior cause? Wouldnt it make more sense that the persons past experiences and genetics shaped how he would choose? And if it weren't determined, it if were truly random, how would that implicate the individual choosing at all? That would simply be a random occurrence presented to the individual. this>>4950062 post sums it up very well We cannot choose what we *want*. Our choices are governed by a desire, and that desire was not chosen by us
>>4950062 A man has the urge to kill someone. He does not do it. A person who doesn't believe in free will would say that it was his will not to kill that person. A person who believes in free will would say that it was his will to kill that person, and he chose against it. Can we struggle against our nature? Or are our struggles against what we see as our nature a part of our nature?
>>4950057 Please explain how not knowing where particles are suddenly jumps to us being able to make choices. What changed from us knowing where all the particles are, to not knowing that made us able to chose.
Are you saying that a choice to decision is just atoms existing in a certain position? It must if that's what changed, and allows you to predict choice if you know where they are. That would have to mean that interaction between those particles is what makes choices (as in how the fundamental particles interact, in which the concept of people etc. is irrelevant). How does those particles being theoretically unknown equate to being able to make choices? Wouldn't it still just be particles interacting that decides everything, the only difference being that you can't predict how they are going to interact?
>>4950069 >A person who believes in free will would say that it was his will to kill that person, and he chose against it. The non-believer would simply reply that the desire not to kill outweighed that of killing, or rather replaced it at the crucial moment.
The fact remains that Free Will does not have a coherent definition. It would imply choosing to want something before you were aware that you wanted it. The concept is simply meaningless
>>4950066 RNG is not true random, it's pseudorandom, sometimes just determined by inputs into really big, scary complex algorithms (which is how we encode pseudorandom bits we transfer through the internet, and because they're actually pseudorandom and not really random, the NSA could access them), or based on measurements of difficult to predict systems, i.e. the number of milliseconds into that specific second.
>>4950075 Are implying that humans aren't really big, scary, complex algorithms?
You do know we have modeled the brain already, it just takes a lot more time to compute at our level of technology (think 1 sec for brain, 1-2 minutes computer). Also we've created programs that can learn (through cross-breading of algorithms) to walk and do crazy shit that isn't predictable.
>>4950079 Yes, I am implying that, for while we have a good model of the brain, we do not have a good model of the electron, proton, neutron, photon, or any of the other fundamental particles, and we still have no explanation for conscious experience or qualia (the ascription of qualitative experiences to different things in nature. i.e. we can determine that the eye recognizes the color red, we can determine how it does it, we can determine how it transfers that information, and even why the body responds to it to some extent, but why does red look the way it does?). >>4950074 You might be right, and I think I'm beat, but I don't think I can give up on the concept of free will. I don't know how much of what we do is predetermined, but I can't explain consciousness, and I'm not sure I'm ready to consider us completely algorithmic yet
>>4950096 One thing I've always liked to hang onto when thinking about consciousness is that we've found the area that deals with out of body experience. You can put electrodes in that specific region of the brain and quite literally cause the individual to see himself from outside his own body, to back in his own point of view like a (or even with) light switch.
>>4950109 That's crazy do you have somewhere I could read about this? I don't think it addresses the fundamental strangeness of consciousness though, its only a different kind of consciousness isn't it? I suppose it might illuminate some of its properties
>>4950096 But it's not that I have a hard time admitting it doesn't exist. I actually used to believe in a completely algorithmic, deterministic universe, until I began to study physics. Now, as a physics major, I keep on encountering more and more questions that simply don't seem to have any coherent sensible answers, specifically in the field of quantum entanglement. Frustration with the bizzarreness of the behavior of the fundamental particles has lead physicists to declare the "random" behavior of particles as fundamental. I refuse to believe this, but instead feel that they must be part of some greater underlying system, but, as some papers have shown, such an underlying system must have some very bizarre qualities, one of such qualities being that, in order for entanglement to make sense, either information must travel faster than light or the world must not be deterministic (what's called the rejection of "local realism" or "hidden local variables") The way we've tried to circumvent this is by getting around the speed of light with "Wormholes" and unobservable extra dimensions, which I also currently reject as being completely undescriptive and incomprehensible in the context of observable reality. The only other option is to reject determinism, but I still simply "feel" that a system must underlie the perceived randomness, and if that system is not random and not predetermined, that suggests that a choice is made. Perhaps I'm wrong about the way the world works, but something about current models of the universe just feels so wrong on a fundamental level.
>>4950116 I read about it a long time ago, can't remember the name of it. You can probably do some quick googling though. If it helps I first heard about it in a video discussing near death experiences. It had some woman who had drowned in a kayaking trip and a couple neurosurgeons.
>>4950123 I didn't mean to imply you were in denial, only offering the view that it isn't that bad of a perspective.
I definitely get why a deterministic worldview would seem lacking, and why you'd look for other answers. Personally I don't think that really gets any closer to explaining what Free Will could be, but now we're entering the territory of, like you say, 'vague feelings'. If that's how it appears to you I can respect that. From my own experience, nothing has ever presented itself to me as indicating a feeling that I was choosing. It always seem to me like my choices are just given to me, and I can think about them and then whether I decide to go with that choice or another also just seems given to me, it just appears at some point, and I dont see how i could have chosen for it to appear, since I didnt know about it before it appeared to me.
>>4950123 The problem with equating this to humans is that you're talking about particles making choices. If we are comprised of particles wouldn't we still be subject to the will of the particles, not 'us'? I don't see how this can lead to complete human minds make choices.
>>4950140 I think that consciousness must somehow be related to this phenomena. This could mean that consciousness is not unique to the brain, or even life, but simply the qualities of human consciousness (like qualia, the color red, all that human condition jazz) are not fundamental to consciousness, but specific to human consciousness, and that consciousness is actually a broader effect on the greater universe. This is pure, unsubstantiated speculation and belief, which is very unscientific indeed, and quite embarrassing for someone going into a scientific field, but it's the only way I can think to fit the greater issues of consciousness in with our understanding of how our brains and fundamental particles work, and is the direction we have to look in if we want to answer grander questions in physics. The alternative is to cast away ideas of free will, throw up our hands and admit that we don't understand why consciousness exists and instead try to quantify it using what we know of how it works in the human brain (a la Michio Kaku), but I think in order for a physical theory to really be complete, it should explain why something exists, and, in my opinion, no matter how elegant our mathematical theories become, until they include an explanation for consciousness, they are incomplete
>>4950162 Out of curiosity, why exactly do you think that consciousness can't derived from brain activity, and exist as brain activity? I don't see how problems in physics need to involve dualism in order to be explained.
>>4950177 Largely because I can't think of anything in brains that is unique from a computer (aren't they just big algorithms?), but I also can't imagine what a computer's conscious experience would be like. I'm therefore left with two options. One is that computers and human brains are in some way different, and in the way that they differ, consciousness exists, or that consciousness is a greater effect of some other phenomena. There's also the fact that consciousness is one of the few things we're pretty certain exists, but cannot come up with a purpose for it, why it should exist. It's not needed to explain how the brain works, that we believe can be explained decently well without any sort of qualitative experience. I therefore think it must arise from something currently unexplained whose unknown explanation is known to be complex. QM fits the bill.
I don't understand why people are arguing that because God is omnipotent and omnipresent (though these things are arguable per se, but we will assume them to be true for now) that means that there is no such thing as free will. God chose to give Man free will, the free will to choose to believe or not to believe (see the temptations of Christ). I don't think of God as being some all-powerful puppeteer that controls ever single aspect of everyone's lives, but instead as a Judge, an aloof arbiter that set things in motion and left it up to Man to seek salvation through repentance for his sins against God, who is all-loving, all-merciful, and all-forgiving, but only grants eternal life to those who find Him and his love and forgiveness through this morality.
God is omnipotent in the fact that he has control over everything, though he is very selective about supernaturally interfering with things.
(Mind that I'm not entirely a Christian, but this is how I understand some of what people are asking about.
>>4948324 I think that maybe God created Adam and Eve sort of how children of 2 or so are; they have no sense or morality, especially the feeling of guilt that goes along with it, until they grow into it, but the feeling is still innate within them, just hidden. Eve eating the apple represents a child's emerging sense of "right" and "wrong" and the guilt that comes with it. The point is that Adam and Eve are supposed to blindly listen to God's word otherwise they will feel the guilt of having betrayed him; God didn't put feelings of guilt in them afterwords, they already had the feeling of guilt innate but it stayed hidden until they unearthed it by disobeying God.
>>4948919 >We don't have a ... "soul" >acting as if we had ... attempts to counter procrastination
First you're assuming there's no subject to assign responsibility to. Then you propose that the purpose of "responsibility" is a carrot in a stick that people created to try to push themselves a little further. This is ambiguous.
"Acting as if" requires the previously dismissed subject ("soul", "spirit", "freewill"), which leads to an absurd conclusion. Your case would be much better defended if you were to dismiss "responsibility" as either an illusion or an evolutive adaptation, well beyond people's control. Would these options better portray the point you tried to make?
>>4945812 because there is free will, despite the fact that the freely chosen decision is known beforehand. The choice is free, it is ours, but it is also knowable by a being who may observe all points in time.
This isn't really as much of a problem as people make it out to be. The bigger problem would be why god would create beings who he knows will go to hell because of their freely chosen actions.
I also think there's a philosophical way out of that conundrum as well, but it's certainly the more interesting question
I cannot emphasize enough now much you need to read Blindsight, by Peter Watts. You WILL enjoy it.
The problem with functionalist theories of consciousness is that of the zombie - you could theoretically have every aspect of functionalist consciousness working in an unconscious automaton, because at the end of the day functionalism has no way of explaining what it is about certain systems that makes them conscious, because it has no mechanism for explaining qualia.
If we are going to explain consciousness scientifically, we must either come up with a purpose for it in an evolutionary context, or admit that as far as we can tell it is an epiphenomenon. As to the idea that consciousness is an epiphenomenon, I direct you to Peter Watt's excellent book for an exegesis on why that idea is utter shit.
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