Sam Harris and Free Will Thought experiment.

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PaulSacramento
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Sam Harris and Free Will Thought experiment.

#1

Post by PaulSacramento » Mon Mar 12, 2018 8:17 am

Sam Harris proves you don't have free will.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t5ebjk319Wg


He does this, of course, by defining it HIS way.

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Re: Sam Harris and Free Will Thought experiment.

#2

Post by RickD » Mon Mar 12, 2018 11:31 am

Wow,

He convinced me!

What I got from him, is that in order for freewill to exist, we not only choose something among available choices, but we must completely understand why we chose that.

Is this guy supposed to be smart?
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Re: Sam Harris and Free Will Thought experiment.

#3

Post by Nils » Mon Mar 12, 2018 3:33 pm

RickD wrote:Wow,

He convinced me!

What I got from him, is that in order for freewill to exist, we not only choose something among available choices, but we must completely understand why we chose that.

Is this guy supposed to be smart?
I think Harris is rather smart, but he has joined the physiologists that think that the question of free will can be decided by science and by physiology specifically. They have adopted a definition of free will that presumes that a thought process has to be conscious to count as an expression of free will and responsibility. Given that, Harris demonstration is meaningful as well as an interesting book by Wegner, The illusion of conscious free will. Wegner describes lots of experiments that show that we are little conscious of how we think.

I don't agree with Harris definition and I don't think that the question of free will can be determined by science. I think it is a metaphysical question (and that shows that there is no free will, for better reasons).

Nils

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Re: Sam Harris and Free Will Thought experiment.

#4

Post by Nessa » Mon Mar 12, 2018 9:14 pm

harris needs to get lost in his own landscape

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Re: Sam Harris and Free Will Thought experiment.

#5

Post by 1over137 » Mon Mar 12, 2018 10:37 pm

I would ask Sam Harris if there was a free will how it would look like. (in his opinion)
But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good.
-- 1 Thessalonians 5:21

For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.
-- Philippians 1:6

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Re: Sam Harris and Free Will Thought experiment.

#6

Post by PaulSacramento » Tue Mar 13, 2018 4:46 am

RickD wrote:Wow,

He convinced me!

What I got from him, is that in order for freewill to exist, we not only choose something among available choices, but we must completely understand why we chose that.

Is this guy supposed to be smart?
Harris is a smart guy, the problem is that he can't see the self refuting arguments he creates or the simple fact that he has no explanation for the reality that we actually live in and that is that we MUST function as if there IS a free will and since that is demonstrably so, why?
Logical consistency tells us that the being FREE to CHOOSE among the available choice is free will.
The without choice there can be no responsibility or consequences ( one can argue the contrary but no logically).
Sam feels that because we are "wired" to have limited choices to any choice that somehow we are not free to choose WHICH choice we make.
He is wrong.
In his example, I choose this way:
I visualized a number of cities I have been too and those that I would like to visit.
From what was a available to me, I narrowed it down to a few and from those, with a combination of emotion and reason, narrowed it down even further and from that, I chose 1.
I have a variety or reason why I chose that one but the point is that I did choose and I can tell you why and, as importantly, I am responsible for that choice.

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Re: Sam Harris and Free Will Thought experiment.

#7

Post by RickD » Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:50 am

Paul,

You are correct. Harris is redefining free will, then he disproves his straw man free will, while doing nothing to disprove actual free will.
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9 God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

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Re: Sam Harris and Free Will Thought experiment.

#8

Post by PaulSacramento » Wed Mar 14, 2018 5:34 am

Michio Kaku: Why Physics Ends the Free Will Debate

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jint5kjoy6I

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Re: Sam Harris and Free Will Thought experiment.

#9

Post by Kurieuo » Wed Mar 14, 2018 6:14 am

Unless Kaku is willing to admit quantum physics is dependant upon agency, then the uncertainty principle doesn't really amount to the type of free will that I'd hold to. The important question is whether the uncertainity is due to an agent's choosing, or whether the uncertainity is rather due to some strange physical randomization phenomena (which would be nonetheless mechanical even if we don't know what to expect).

What is central to free will, is that an agent is able to will and participate in a decision resulting in an action. Not merely that the end result be indeterminable. Heck, we can often determine the actions of many people ahead of time, but it doesn't mean they weren't the agent ultimately responsible for carrying through with their action, no matter how influenced they may have been physical and external contributing factors.

Often the question is asked whether nature or nurture is at play. Yet, there are actually three that I see. Nature and nurture are certainly important, and at times greatly overbearing contributing factors in a person acting or behaving or certain way. Yet, I see a third factor that is often not even mentioned that is most important, and that is agency -- the actual person themselves who either goes along with, vetoes or rises above to go against their nature and nurture.
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Re: Sam Harris and Free Will Thought experiment.

#10

Post by RickD » Wed Mar 14, 2018 6:31 am

K,

Is there something about believing in free will that means one must believe in God?
1 Corinthians 1:9
9 God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Audie wrote:
"Christianity is not a joke, but it has some very poor representatives."


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Re: Sam Harris and Free Will Thought experiment.

#11

Post by PaulSacramento » Wed Mar 14, 2018 7:05 am

Kurieuo wrote:Unless Kaku is willing to admit quantum physics is dependant upon agency, then the uncertainty principle doesn't really amount to the type of free will that I'd hold to. The important question is whether the uncertainity is due to an agent's choosing, or whether the uncertainity is rather due to some strange physical randomization phenomena (which would be nonetheless mechanical even if we don't know what to expect).

What is central to free will, is that an agent is able to will and participate in a decision resulting in an action. Not merely that the end result be indeterminable. Heck, we can often determine the actions of many people ahead of time, but it doesn't mean they weren't the agent ultimately responsible for carrying through with their action, no matter how influenced they may have been physical and external contributing factors.

Often the question is asked whether nature or nurture is at play. Yet, there are actually three that I see. Nature and nurture are certainly important, and at times greatly overbearing contributing factors in a person acting or behaving or certain way. Yet, I see a third factor that is often not even mentioned that is most important, and that is agency -- the actual person themselves who either goes along with, vetoes or rises above to go against their nature and nurture.
He was pointing out that physics dispels determinism.

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Re: Sam Harris and Free Will Thought experiment.

#12

Post by PaulSacramento » Wed Mar 14, 2018 7:07 am

RickD wrote:K,

Is there something about believing in free will that means one must believe in God?
No and I don't think the issue is that since some ( probably most) atheist believe there is free will.
The issue is materialism and not atheism it seems.
For the materialist, free will is an issue because it eventually leads to something non-material.

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Re: Sam Harris and Free Will Thought experiment.

#13

Post by Kurieuo » Wed Mar 14, 2018 7:45 am

PaulSacramento wrote:
RickD wrote:K,

Is there something about believing in free will that means one must believe in God?
No and I don't think the issue is that since some ( probably most) atheist believe there is free will.
The issue is materialism and not atheism it seems.
For the materialist, free will is an issue because it eventually leads to something non-material.
I agree with PaulS, that it isn't logically necessary one must believe in God. At least, it's not readily apparent.

There is something about free will however that means giving up on physical/materialism as I see it. Which helps to explain why many Atheist philsophers end up advocating determinism - as the majority proclaim virtuing that which they can only physically see, smell, touch, feel or taste. Such leads to us being run mechanistically, like a cog in a wheel.

However, then there are those like Thomas Nagel for example, or Jordan Peterson. Nagel is an Atheist philosopher who believes nature is much more than the physical world, and Peterson acknowledges (I think) that consciousness isn't qualitatively physical yet he is agnostic as to God.
"Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved." (Romans 10:13)

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