There is no Hope without Jesus

Healthy skepticism of ALL worldviews is good. Skeptical of non-belief like found in Atheism? Post your challenging questions. Responses are encouraged.
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Re: There is no Hope without Jesus

#406

Post by Nicki » Tue Apr 03, 2018 8:18 pm

Kenny wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 5:54 pm
Nils wrote:
Sun Apr 01, 2018 1:29 pm
What I try to show with my example Em (below) is that there is no possibility to have an “independent mind” (at least if there is no God)
the other part of your comment is full of t(1) t(x=+1) and a host of other algebra type symbols. I am having difficulty understanding what you are saying when you speak this way. Perhaps you can make your point differently, or perhaps this is something we can just agree to disagree on
Did you read his original post about that which I quoted above? It's a little clearer I think. I find it a compelling argument in a way. :shock:

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Re: There is no Hope without Jesus

#407

Post by 1over137 » Tue Apr 03, 2018 9:05 pm

Nils wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 1:05 pm
Nicki wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 2:06 am
Nils wrote:
At time t1, say two weeks after conception, there is an embryo. It is the product of heredity and possibly some environmental influences, no free will. At t2, say a month later, it is the product of how it was at t1 and the environmental influences between t1 and t2, no free will. At t3 it is the product of how it was at t2 and the environmental influences between t2 and t3. No free will. So you can continue in small or big steps until you come to present time, say tn. But in the same way, there is no free will at tn, so never free will. Do you agree? If not, where am I going wrong?
Nils
I understand what you were getting at here and I think you explained it most clearly this first time. The only way I can answer it though is to say a lot of us believe that our brains always (due to heredity then, I suppose) develop the ability to think independently and therefore have free will. Free will is in our genes in a way.
Nicki, I think that the ability to think and decide is innate and determined by heredity. But when you deliberate you weight reasons pro and con and then you use your desires, preferences, memories, intuitions, etc., the totality of your mind. All of these were caused by some earlier external influences or possible inherited via the genes. I don’t understand what else could have influenced or caused them. So in which way you can think “independently” seems mysterious to me. It goes against my intuition and my (hopefully) rational thinking.

An example. My wife asks me if we shall go to Paris or go boating on our holiday. I think of a lot of practical considerations and find that both alternatives are possible. So, in some sense I’m free to choose any alternative. At the same time I have strong desire to go boating so I say so. I still was free to chose otherwise but was I free not to have a strong desire? I can’t see that. My wife could possible have changed my desire by telling that the weather could be cold and rainy. But without that external influence my strong desire would have remained. Was I free to change my desire, I wouldn’t say so. No free will in this case

This example is not meant to prove that there is no free will. Just to illustrate one case.

Nils
I have (or better is to say "I could have had") strong desire not to stay with and help some people around me cause sometimes they hurt me a lot.
Yet, I chose to stay with them.
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: There is no Hope without Jesus

#408

Post by Kenny » Tue Apr 03, 2018 10:08 pm

Kenny wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 5:54 pm
Nils wrote:
Sun Apr 01, 2018 1:29 pm
What I try to show with my example Em (below) is that there is no possibility to have an “independent mind” (at least if there is no God)
the other part of your comment is full of t(1) t(x=+1) and a host of other algebra type symbols. I am having difficulty understanding what you are saying when you speak this way. Perhaps you can make your point differently, or perhaps this is something we can just agree to disagree on
Nils wrote:
Sun Apr 01, 2018 1:29 pm
Did you read his original post about that which I quoted above?
Which post # are you referring to?
Nicki wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 8:18 pm
It's a little clearer I think. I find it a compelling argument in a way. :shock:
Yeah initially when it was just H&E, t(n), and t(n+1), I was cool with it, and we had a conversation. But then he took it to the next level and introduced t(1), h(1), t(2) h(2) t(n), h(n), n+1, t(x), t(y) and more; each meaning something different and it just became too much work.

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Re: There is no Hope without Jesus

#409

Post by Nicki » Wed Apr 04, 2018 12:24 am

Kenny wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 10:08 pm
Nicki wrote:Did you read his original post about that which I quoted above?
Which post # are you referring to?
My post #401 - I deleted the post number off his :oops:

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Re: There is no Hope without Jesus

#410

Post by Kenny » Wed Apr 04, 2018 5:41 am

Nicki wrote:
Wed Apr 04, 2018 12:24 am
Kenny wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 10:08 pm
Nicki wrote:Did you read his original post about that which I quoted above?
Which post # are you referring to?
My post #401 - I deleted the post number off his :oops:
Yes I remember that one; as a matter of fact, I believe that was the one I responded to on #386. I was okay with that one, but after that things kinda got complicated. Perhaps I'm just being lazy; but I'd rather keep my focus on answering questions rather than keeping track of symbols.

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Re: There is no Hope without Jesus

#411

Post by Nils » Thu Apr 05, 2018 1:44 pm

Kurieuo wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 4:43 pm
Nils, notice how you work from the premise that we are wholly physical. There are also a whole lot of assumptions being made, which need proving in and of themselves before you reach your conclusion. I think, it is at these various points -- or premises -- that Kenny and Nicki would likely disagree with you and therefore reject your conclusion.
You are right, Kurieuo, I have been arguing from the materialistic/physical point of view. But I don’t need to do that. If I included a non-physical spiritual soul in my world view that wouldn’t change the conclusions. What is important to my argument is standard event causation, that everything (within our universe) is caused by something (or random). This excludes fancy things as backwards (in time) causation and perhaps downwards causation (mental to physics). You talk about other assumptions/premises, I am really interested to know what you think of.
I'll agree with you that free will, indeed consciousness itself, is mysterious. Yet, what we consider mysterious today doesn't necessarily mean it ought to be rejected as untrue, but is perhaps more reflective of our current state of knowledge. Consider that lightning seems to have been quite mysterious to various people in ancient times.

As for a modern example. I'm sure you're familiar with the double-slit experiment. When electrons or photons are fired through a double slit, what is the differentiating factor between whether you get a particle effect or wave disambiguation effect? Isn't this also quite mysterious? Yet, we don't say its not happening or untrue because we can't make sense of it.
There are lot of things, especially in quantum theory, that are counter intuitive, but that is different to being mysterious. Other things, for instance consciousness, we don’t understand but that is part of the extremely complex brain so in that case we may have hope to understand it better in the future. I think that free will is metaphysical impossible (given the premise of standard causation) and I can’t see that any advances in science could ever overcome it, it is mysterious in a more fundamental way.

Nils

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Re: There is no Hope without Jesus

#412

Post by Kurieuo » Thu Apr 05, 2018 6:10 pm

Nils wrote:
Thu Apr 05, 2018 1:44 pm
Kurieuo wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 4:43 pm
Nils, notice how you work from the premise that we are wholly physical. There are also a whole lot of assumptions being made, which need proving in and of themselves before you reach your conclusion. I think, it is at these various points -- or premises -- that Kenny and Nicki would likely disagree with you and therefore reject your conclusion.
You are right, Kurieuo, I have been arguing from the materialistic/physical point of view. But I don’t need to do that. If I included a non-physical spiritual soul in my world view that wouldn’t change the conclusions. What is important to my argument is standard event causation, that everything (within our universe) is caused by something (or random). This excludes fancy things as backwards (in time) causation and perhaps downwards causation (mental to physics). You talk about other assumptions/premises, I am really interested to know what you think of.
We could perhaps flesh out the embedded assumptions/premises in your acceptance of a materialistic/physical point of view. As you likely know, one premise can have many other supporting premises and arguments. AND, these would really need to be delved into, in order to explain why you (and many others) believe in such a narrow view as the physical world being all that there is. Still yet, that it is illogical to consider things outside of a physical worldview, and even perhaps a thought crime to do so.

Tolkien once commented about myths to CS Lewis, and by "myth" in the context of the discussion, he really meant anything that doesn't fit in with a materialistic view of the world:
"How can it be wrong for a prisoner to think of things that exist, other than walls and jailers. Doesn't the fact that we can think of things outside the walls, suggest perhaps that things do actually exist outside those walls? After all, if the prison really is all that there is, then how is it that we can picture things that exist beyond the prison? This is where myths come in. Myths exist outside the prison. Myths allow us to escape from the prison, or if we're not able to escape at the very least they allow us to catch a fleeting but powerful glimpse of the beauty that lies beyond the walls." (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NzBT39gx-TE)
Now then, perhaps "free will" itself is just a myth many have accepted. Sofaras my modus tollens argument which is based upon intuition, it perhaps inline with Tolkien's less forceful argument here that the fact we can think of things outside the walls [of materialism] is suggestive that things really do exist outside those walls:
1) If heredity and environment is responsible for our decisions (P), then we can’t influence our decisions (Q).
2) We do influence our decisions. (¬Q) (based upon our own intrinsic first-hand experience and strong intuition of such)
3) Therefore, heredity and environment isn't all that is responsible for our decisions. (¬P)

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Nils wrote:
Kurieuo wrote:I'll agree with you that free will, indeed consciousness itself, is mysterious. Yet, what we consider mysterious today doesn't necessarily mean it ought to be rejected as untrue, but is perhaps more reflective of our current state of knowledge. Consider that lightning seems to have been quite mysterious to various people in ancient times.

As for a modern example. I'm sure you're familiar with the double-slit experiment. When electrons or photons are fired through a double slit, what is the differentiating factor between whether you get a particle effect or wave disambiguation effect? Isn't this also quite mysterious? Yet, we don't say its not happening or untrue because we can't make sense of it.
There are lot of things, especially in quantum theory, that are counter intuitive, but that is different to being mysterious. Other things, for instance consciousness, we don’t understand but that is part of the extremely complex brain so in that case we may have hope to understand it better in the future. I think that free will is metaphysical impossible (given the premise of standard causation) and I can’t see that any advances in science could ever overcome it, it is mysterious in a more fundamental way.
You didn't answer my question: When electrons or photons are fired through a double slit, what is the differentiating factor between whether you get a particle effect or wave disambiguation effect?
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Re: There is no Hope without Jesus

#413

Post by 1over137 » Thu Apr 05, 2018 9:42 pm

size of a slit?
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

#foreverinmyheart

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Re: There is no Hope without Jesus

#414

Post by Kurieuo » Thu Apr 05, 2018 10:02 pm

1over137 wrote:
Thu Apr 05, 2018 9:42 pm
size of a slit?
:lol: not the answer I was expecting.
These users liked this post by Kurieuo:
Nicki (Sun Apr 08, 2018 8:24 am)
"Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved." (Romans 10:13)

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Re: There is no Hope without Jesus

#415

Post by Nils » Fri Apr 06, 2018 12:48 am

Kenny wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 5:54 pm
the other part of your comment is full of t(1) t(x=+1) and a host of other algebra type symbols. I am having difficulty understanding what you are saying when you speak this way. Perhaps you can make your point differently, or perhaps this is something we can just agree to disagree on
Ken, I was wondering why you didn’t comment my argument and guessed that you perhaps wasn’t comfortable with the notation. It is easier to write an exact argument using symbolic expressions than do that with words only but I think it may be more difficult to understand. So I will try a similar argument.


The argument about Me
1. How I a now depends on how I was at some earlier time some moments ago and the environment between that earlier time and now (and on nothing else).
2. I can repeat that proposition to that earlier time and a still earlier time.
3. From 1 and 2 I get that how I am now depends on how I was at the still earlier time and the environment between that time and now (and on nothing else).
4. I can go backwards in time sufficient many times repeating step 2 and 3 until I reach the moment just after conception. I will then get that how I am now depends on how I was just after conception and the environment between that time and now (and on nothing else).
5 How I was just after conception depends on the genes/heredity only.
6. How I am now depends on heredity and the environment between the time just after conception and the and the environment between that time and now (and on nothing else).

This is the same argument as the argument about Em (first version in #355) but now backwards in time so I now called it Me.

Hopefully this is easier to read and I repeat my question. If you don’t agree, where is it wrong? Kurieuo thought that I have some premises which you may not agree with. Is that correct?

Nils

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Re: There is no Hope without Jesus

#416

Post by Byblos » Fri Apr 06, 2018 6:12 am

Nils wrote:
Fri Apr 06, 2018 12:48 am
Kenny wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 5:54 pm
the other part of your comment is full of t(1) t(x=+1) and a host of other algebra type symbols. I am having difficulty understanding what you are saying when you speak this way. Perhaps you can make your point differently, or perhaps this is something we can just agree to disagree on
Ken, I was wondering why you didn’t comment my argument and guessed that you perhaps wasn’t comfortable with the notation. It is easier to write an exact argument using symbolic expressions than do that with words only but I think it may be more difficult to understand. So I will try a similar argument.


The argument about Me
1. How I a now depends on how I was at some earlier time some moments ago and the environment between that earlier time and now (and on nothing else).
2. I can repeat that proposition to that earlier time and a still earlier time.
3. From 1 and 2 I get that how I am now depends on how I was at the still earlier time and the environment between that time and now (and on nothing else).
4. I can go backwards in time sufficient many times repeating step 2 and 3 until I reach the moment just after conception. I will then get that how I am now depends on how I was just after conception and the environment between that time and now (and on nothing else).
5 How I was just after conception depends on the genes/heredity only.
6. How I am now depends on heredity and the environment between the time just after conception and the and the environment between that time and now (and on nothing else).

This is the same argument as the argument about Em (first version in #355) but now backwards in time so I now called it Me.

Hopefully this is easier to read and I repeat my question. If you don’t agree, where is it wrong? Kurieuo thought that I have some premises which you may not agree with. Is that correct?

Nils
Using the same reasoning, we can deduce not only do we not have free will but neither do we have reliable cognitive faculties with which to process logic and reasoning since we did not start out with them (or end up with them if working backwards). Similarly, an acorn or an apple seed could not possibly produce an oak tree or an apple tree because they did not start out with them.

Your reasoning is faulty because first, you erroneously assume a living human being does not start with free will (says who?), and second, the reason you make this first faulty assumption is that you are not considering the essence of what it is to be a human being (and more fundamentally the distinction between essence and existence of anything that exists).
Let us proclaim the mystery of our faith: Christ has died, Christ is risen, Christ will come again.

Lord I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed.

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Re: There is no Hope without Jesus

#417

Post by Nils » Fri Apr 06, 2018 11:31 am

Kurieuo wrote:
Thu Apr 05, 2018 6:10 pm
Nils wrote:
Thu Apr 05, 2018 1:44 pm
Kurieuo wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 4:43 pm
Nils, notice how you work from the premise that we are wholly physical. There are also a whole lot of assumptions being made, which need proving in and of themselves before you reach your conclusion. I think, it is at these various points -- or premises -- that Kenny and Nicki would likely disagree with you and therefore reject your conclusion.
You are right, Kurieuo, I have been arguing from the materialistic/physical point of view. But I don’t need to do that. If I included a non-physical spiritual soul in my world view that wouldn’t change the conclusions. What is important to my argument is standard event causation, that everything (within our universe) is caused by something (or random). This excludes fancy things as backwards (in time) causation and perhaps downwards causation (mental to physics). You talk about other assumptions/premises, I am really interested to know what you think of.
We could perhaps flesh out the embedded assumptions/premises in your acceptance of a materialistic/physical point of view. As you likely know, one premise can have many other supporting premises and arguments. AND, these would really need to be delved into, in order to explain why you (and many others) believe in such a narrow view as the physical world being all that there is.
I am interested

Still yet, that it is illogical to consider things outside of a physical worldview, and even perhaps a thought crime to do so.
I don’t understand. This sentence seems to be incomplete.

Tolkien once commented about myths to CS Lewis, and by "myth" in the context of the discussion, he really meant anything that doesn't fit in with a materialistic view of the world:
"How can it be wrong for a prisoner to think of things that exist, other than walls and jailers. Doesn't the fact that we can think of things outside the walls, suggest perhaps that things do actually exist outside those walls? After all, if the prison really is all that there is, then how is it that we can picture things that exist beyond the prison? This is where myths come in. Myths exist outside the prison. Myths allow us to escape from the prison, or if we're not able to escape at the very least they allow us to catch a fleeting but powerful glimpse of the beauty that lies beyond the walls." (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NzBT39gx-TE)
Now then, perhaps "free will" itself is just a myth many have accepted.
I am not impressed of the video and besides there are room for myths also with a materialistic view. But that would be a long story.
Sofaras my modus tollens argument which is based upon intuition, it perhaps inline with Tolkien's less forceful argument here that the fact we can think of things outside the walls [of materialism] is suggestive that things really do exist outside those walls:
1) If heredity and environment is responsible for our decisions (P), then we can’t influence our decisions (Q).
2) We do influence our decisions. (¬Q) (based upon our own intrinsic first-hand experience and strong intuition of such)
3) Therefore, heredity and environment isn't all that is responsible for our decisions. (¬P)
I’ll be back about intuition.

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Nils wrote:
Kurieuo wrote:I'll agree with you that free will, indeed consciousness itself, is mysterious. Yet, what we consider mysterious today doesn't necessarily mean it ought to be rejected as untrue, but is perhaps more reflective of our current state of knowledge. Consider that lightning seems to have been quite mysterious to various people in ancient times.

As for a modern example. I'm sure you're familiar with the double-slit experiment. When electrons or photons are fired through a double slit, what is the differentiating factor between whether you get a particle effect or wave disambiguation effect? Isn't this also quite mysterious? Yet, we don't say its not happening or untrue because we can't make sense of it.
There are lot of things, especially in quantum theory, that are counter intuitive, but that is different to being mysterious. Other things, for instance consciousness, we don’t understand but that is part of the extremely complex brain so in that case we may have hope to understand it better in the future. I think that free will is metaphysical impossible (given the premise of standard causation) and I can’t see that any advances in science could ever overcome it, it is mysterious in a more fundamental way.
You didn't answer my question: When electrons or photons are fired through a double slit, what is the differentiating factor between whether you get a particle effect or wave disambiguation effect?
I tried to explain why I don’t think the answer is important, but I think that the answer you are looking for is: The difference is the measuring device. If a quantum event is measured upon it will change. Isn’t that obvious :-). If you were taught that when you were young you may have thought now that it was intuitively true.
I insist that the free will mystery would be an other kind of mystery, more fundamental.

Nils

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Re: There is no Hope without Jesus

#418

Post by Nils » Fri Apr 06, 2018 11:54 am

Byblos wrote:
Fri Apr 06, 2018 6:12 am
Nils wrote:
Fri Apr 06, 2018 12:48 am
Kenny wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 5:54 pm
the other part of your comment is full of t(1) t(x=+1) and a host of other algebra type symbols. I am having difficulty understanding what you are saying when you speak this way. Perhaps you can make your point differently, or perhaps this is something we can just agree to disagree on
Ken, I was wondering why you didn’t comment my argument and guessed that you perhaps wasn’t comfortable with the notation. It is easier to write an exact argument using symbolic expressions than do that with words only but I think it may be more difficult to understand. So I will try a similar argument.


The argument about Me
1. How I a now depends on how I was at some earlier time some moments ago and the environment between that earlier time and now (and on nothing else).
2. I can repeat that proposition to that earlier time and a still earlier time.
3. From 1 and 2 I get that how I am now depends on how I was at the still earlier time and the environment between that time and now (and on nothing else).
4. I can go backwards in time sufficient many times repeating step 2 and 3 until I reach the moment just after conception. I will then get that how I am now depends on how I was just after conception and the environment between that time and now (and on nothing else).
5 How I was just after conception depends on the genes/heredity only.
6. How I am now depends on heredity and the environment between the time just after conception and the and the environment between that time and now (and on nothing else).

This is the same argument as the argument about Em (first version in #355) but now backwards in time so I now called it Me.

Hopefully this is easier to read and I repeat my question. If you don’t agree, where is it wrong? Kurieuo thought that I have some premises which you may not agree with. Is that correct?

Nils
Using the same reasoning, we can deduce not only do we not have free will but neither do we have reliable cognitive faculties with which to process logic and reasoning since we did not start out with them (or end up with them if working backwards). Similarly, an acorn or an apple seed could not possibly produce an oak tree or an apple tree because they did not start out with them.
What I say, Byblos, is that what we are and do depend on heritage and environment only. That doesn’t exclude that the abilities to have cognitive faculties or the predispositions to become an oak are written in the genes.

Your reasoning is faulty because first, you erroneously assume a living human being does not start with free will (says who?),
I think that we inherit the faculty to deliberate and choose, that these features are in the genes. If you call that to have free will you use an other definition than I do. I relate free will to be truly deserving blame and praise and I don’t think that we deserve that if we are products of heritage and environment only.
and second, the reason you make this first faulty assumption is that you are not considering the essence of what it is to be a human being (and more fundamentally the distinction between essence and existence of anything that exists).
I don’t know or understand how you define “essence” and which is the distinction between it and “existence”, please tell me.

Nils

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Re: There is no Hope without Jesus

#419

Post by 1over137 » Fri Apr 06, 2018 12:27 pm

Kurieuo wrote:
Thu Apr 05, 2018 10:02 pm
1over137 wrote:
Thu Apr 05, 2018 9:42 pm
size of a slit?
:lol: not the answer I was expecting.
:)
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

#foreverinmyheart

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Re: There is no Hope without Jesus

#420

Post by Byblos » Fri Apr 06, 2018 12:33 pm

Byblos wrote: Using the same reasoning, we can deduce not only do we not have free will but neither do we have reliable cognitive faculties with which to process logic and reasoning since we did not start out with them (or end up with them if working backwards). Similarly, an acorn or an apple seed could not possibly produce an oak tree or an apple tree because they did not start out with them.
Nils wrote:What I say, Byblos, is that what we are and do depend on heritage and environment only. That doesn’t exclude that the abilities to have cognitive faculties or the predispositions to become an oak are written in the genes.
But that's just an arbitrary choice you're making to exclude free will from heritage and environment and yet include reliable cognitive faculties. After all, no new born demonstrates reliable cognitive faculties nor do they display free will. So why the arbitrary inclusion of one and the exclusion of the other?
Byblos wrote: Your reasoning is faulty because first, you erroneously assume a living human being does not start with free will (says who?),
Nils wrote:I think that we inherit the faculty to deliberate and choose, that these features are in the genes. If you call that to have free will you use an other definition than I do. I relate free will to be truly deserving blame and praise and I don’t think that we deserve that if we are products of heritage and environment only.
Free will is not just the ability to deliberate and choose but also to be held accountable for one's choices. That you do not consider the latter the same as the former, once again, is an arbitrary decision on your part. Do you consider human beings as rational animals or not? I would presume you do.
Byblos wrote: and second, the reason you make this first faulty assumption is that you are not considering the essence of what it is to be a human being (and more fundamentally the distinction between essence and existence of anything that exists).
Nils wrote:I don’t know or understand how you define “essence” and which is the distinction between it and “existence”, please tell me.
I really think this is the crux of this type of debate, i.e. from which worldview vantage point one is arguing. I subscribe to the natural law and by extension to natural theology and classical theism. In my estimation it is the only worldview that can make sense of EVERYTHING. That's the preamble to saying I'm not sure this thread is the place to discuss such topics but I'll leave it to the Mods to decide if they want to split it.

Before discussing essence and existence, let me ask you this question: do you believe that universals exist? By universals I don't mean propositions (although they could be) but abstract ideas that are shared with common things. Take for example the concept of triangularity. Would you agree with me that triangularity exists whether or not any triangles ever existed?
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Kurieuo (Fri Apr 06, 2018 5:38 pm)
Let us proclaim the mystery of our faith: Christ has died, Christ is risen, Christ will come again.

Lord I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed.

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