Author Topic: Searching for GOD...  (Read 1697446 times)

Stranger

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34500 on: February 10, 2019, 08:31:47 AM »
Conscious willpower of the human soul generates its own causal events...

The Burns sidestep. Saying what generates the events has nothing to do with how it does so. Either it does so entirely because of the reasons that led to the choice or not. If not, then part of the choice has nothing to do with either the "conscious willpower" or the actual choice - so it must be random.

...otherwise we are just mechanistic machines driven by the laws of physics with no will of our own.

Back to your favourite fallacy of the moment: argumentum ad consequentiam. Also a large side helping of the foolishness that pretends that the logic has anything to do with physics - it doesn't; it's just logic.
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jeremyp

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34501 on: February 10, 2019, 09:33:17 AM »
There is a belief that God knows all past, present and future. He is beyond Time. It may seem conflicting but could still fit into the world order. 
If God knows the future, goodbye free will.

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Phyllis Tyne

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34502 on: February 10, 2019, 09:43:10 AM »
If God knows the future, goodbye free will.
Shite.

You would have to know your future to affect it.Not God.
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jeremyp

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34503 on: February 10, 2019, 09:43:53 AM »
There is much written about why the Gospels offer objective evidence of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus.  This is just one aspect:
If they were deliberately written and selected by believers, how can you explain the obvious inconsistencies in each Gospel?  The inconsistencies offer evidence which you would expect to find from original eye witness accounts,  but not from deliberately selected and edited texts.  But these inconsistencies do not detract from the profound underlying message.
The inconsistencies are explained by later writers making mistakes or deliberate edits of the earlier documents, or by using a different tradition, or by copying errors. 

In any case, if you have inconsistent eye witness accounts, the correct thing to do is not construct a narrative that more or less fits both accounts, but to treat both as untrustworthy until you find further evidence that corroborates one or the other.
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jeremyp

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34504 on: February 10, 2019, 09:45:30 AM »
Shite.

You would have to know your future to affect it.Not God.
Nope. If God knows I am going to choose a curry over pizza, next Wednesday, I have no free will to alter my choice or God would be wrong.
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Alan Burns

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34505 on: February 10, 2019, 09:47:19 AM »
I do.

But how can you take personal credit for something which you admitted in #34475 is just a link in the chain of physically driven cause and effect events?

It is equivalent to the moon claiming personal credit for orbiting the earth.
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jeremyp

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34506 on: February 10, 2019, 09:59:10 AM »
But how can you take personal credit for something which you admitted in #34475 is just a link in the chain of physically driven cause and effect events?

It is equivalent to the moon claiming personal credit for orbiting the earth.
Not really since the Earth does most of the work.
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Alan Burns

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34507 on: February 10, 2019, 10:10:00 AM »
Nothing  'generates causal events' out of thin air.  If that were to happen, then those events would be random events.
Your presumption ignores the possibility that events can be generated from something which is currently undetectable by our human senses or man made equipment.
The truth will set you free  - John 8:32

Phyllis Tyne

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34508 on: February 10, 2019, 10:11:58 AM »
Nope. If God knows I am going to choose a curry over pizza, next Wednesday, I have no free will to alter my choice or God would be wrong.
Why would you alter it.What would make you alter it.
God would know you had altered it.
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Stranger

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34509 on: February 10, 2019, 10:14:04 AM »
But how can you take personal credit for something which you admitted in #34475 is just a link in the chain of physically driven cause and effect events?

Because I am a thinking being that makes choices. You are simply looking at things at different levels of abstraction.

If we were to ask (say) why a moth flies towards a lightbulb, you could go on about how the photons of light impact on the nervous system and how that eventually drives its wings to fly in a certain direction - but that wouldn't be a useful or sensible approach to take. To actually answer the question sensibly and appropriately you'd need to talk about the evolution of the response and how flying with respect to light sources was a useful tactic before artificial light came into the picture.

Likewise, if you want to understand humans, you need to talk about the fact that we have sophisticated minds that are able to handle complex abstract concepts and make choices based on reasoning and our own personal priorities, hopes, fears, desires, and so on.

In both cases the basic physical interacting molecule descriptions wouldn't be wrong, but neither would it tell you what is really going on and why.

That is the only way things can logically work. Even if we have a soul, it must still operate deterministically (each stage of a choice determined by what led to it) or not, and if not, you have to accept that, to the extent it isn't so determined, it must be determined by nothing (random). Our choices don't happen out of nothing, they are the product of our personalities, wants, fears, desires, and so on. Despite what you insist - that is actually what we all experience.

Your proposed 'alternative' contradicts itself, so it's a non-starter - it's simply impossible.
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Alan Burns

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34510 on: February 10, 2019, 10:14:12 AM »
Not really since the Earth does most of the work.
I think you missed my point.
The laws of physics are ultimately responsible for the moon orbiting the earth.
And in an entirely material universe, the laws of physics are ultimately responsible for all the electro chemical activity in the human brain.
The truth will set you free  - John 8:32

Alan Burns

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34511 on: February 10, 2019, 12:52:38 PM »
Because I am a thinking being that makes choices. You are simply looking at things at different levels of abstraction.

If we were to ask (say) why a moth flies towards a lightbulb, you could go on about how the photons of light impact on the nervous system and how that eventually drives its wings to fly in a certain direction - but that wouldn't be a useful or sensible approach to take. To actually answer the question sensibly and appropriately you'd need to talk about the evolution of the response and how flying with respect to light sources was a useful tactic before artificial light came into the picture.

Likewise, if you want to understand humans, you need to talk about the fact that we have sophisticated minds that are able to handle complex abstract concepts and make choices based on reasoning and our own personal priorities, hopes, fears, desires, and so on.

In both cases the basic physical interacting molecule descriptions wouldn't be wrong, but neither would it tell you what is really going on and why.

That is the only way things can logically work. Even if we have a soul, it must still operate deterministically (each stage of a choice determined by what led to it) or not, and if not, you have to accept that, to the extent it isn't so determined, it must be determined by nothing (random). Our choices don't happen out of nothing, they are the product of our personalities, wants, fears, desires, and so on. Despite what you insist - that is actually what we all experience.

Your proposed 'alternative' contradicts itself, so it's a non-starter - it's simply impossible.
Thank you for your detailed response.

I still do not see how personal credit can be claimed for choices and thoughts which have been entirely predetermined.  In this scenario, your claim for personal credit is just as much an illusion as your perception of freedom to make conscious choices.
The truth will set you free  - John 8:32

bluehillside Retd.

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34512 on: February 10, 2019, 01:30:55 PM »
AB,

Quote
I still do not see how personal credit can be claimed for choices and thoughts which have been entirely predetermined.

Why not? As you've just ignored the 19,867,237 times that's been explained to you already why not actually try to deal with the answer?
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torridon

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34513 on: February 10, 2019, 02:56:07 PM »
Your presumption ignores the possibility that events can be generated from something which is currently undetectable by our human senses or man made equipment.

Whether it is undetectable or not is irrelevant, my point was that this entity of which you speak cannot produce events that are simultaneously both random and not random; the idea is a self contradictory oxymoron.  A choice cannot be be free of the determinants that resolve it, it makes no sense, and this is true whether the choice-maker is undetectable or not.

ekim

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34514 on: February 10, 2019, 03:13:46 PM »
Nothing  'generates causal events' out of thin air.  If that were to happen, then those events would be random events.  Our will derives from something.  We all have a will of our own, in the sense that my will is personal to me and yours to you, just as my habits are personal to me and yours are to you.  But that doesn't mean that my will is somehow disconnected from the broader information flows, rather it is constructed from them.  Each mind processes information in a unique way, my neural pathways have developed differently to yours over the passage of time. so we end up making choices that reflect our individuality.  That doesn't validate any notion that we are somehow magically divorced from the broader flows of cause and effect.  If I want something, it is always traceable back to some reason giving rise to that desire.  To deny this principal is to claim that our will is random.
From the perspective of the Abrahamic religions, I suspect that what you say is only half of the story.  You describe what would be considered as 'self will' and the alternative to this is not 'random' but 'God's Will'.  The only 'freedom' then appears to be a choice between surrendering to 'God's Will' or to continuing to serve 'self will' interests ..... 'Thy Will be done' not 'My will be done'.

Stranger

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34515 on: February 10, 2019, 03:17:56 PM »
I still do not see how personal credit can be claimed for choices and thoughts which have been entirely predetermined.  In this scenario, your claim for personal credit is just as much an illusion as your perception of freedom to make conscious choices.

No matter how you choose to describe it, the logic of the situation is necessarily the same. Today, you and I are thinking beings who make choices based on our wants, hopes, fears, priorities, and so on (our personalities).

Unless there is something random involved, our personalities are what they are for reasons. We started out in some initial state (at birth, conception, or whenever) and then accumulated experiences. Those are the only things that can have resulted in us being the way we are. Those things make you and me different people - without randomness there can be nothing else.

This must be logically the same even if we have a soul - that too had to came into existence in some initial state and then gain experience. And again, if we exclude randomness, those are the only things that could make one soul different from another.

When we come to make a choice, there is only who we are (our personalities) and the circumstances of the choice. There can be nothing else but randomness. The choice must be determined by the past for it to make any sense at all to say that it was me or you that made the choice.
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torridon

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34516 on: February 10, 2019, 03:41:30 PM »
Thank you for your detailed response.

I still do not see how personal credit can be claimed for choices and thoughts which have been entirely predetermined.  In this scenario, your claim for personal credit is just as much an illusion as your perception of freedom to make conscious choices.

On the other hand, no man (or woman) is an island.  That means, that each of us is part of the interconnected web of life, and indeed, of the web of all things.  We cannot be entirely divorced from the influences that have shaped us.  I did not ask to be born or have a say in my childhood, I am a product of influences that I did not seek out but which nonetheless shaped me into what I am. Formative influences do not suddenly stop when we reach adulthood, we go on interacting and changing constantly.  So, if I make a choice, where does the final responsibility for that choice lie, with me, or with the forces that shaped me ?  In the eyes of the law in most cases it is good enough to say that the responsibility lies with the adult unless he/she is considered to have 'diminished responsibility'.That's a good enough position for society to take currently.  But in reality there is no clear and absolute dividing line delineating boundaries of responsibility; ultimately we are all in this together and no man (or woman) can ever be an island.

jeremyp

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34517 on: February 10, 2019, 07:48:19 PM »
Why would you alter it.What would make you alter it.
God would know you had altered it.
You should ask that question of Alan Burns. Heís the one who believes in free will, not me. Good luck with that though.
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jeremyp

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34518 on: February 10, 2019, 07:52:12 PM »
I think you missed my point.
The laws of physics are ultimately responsible for the moon orbiting the earth.
And in an entirely material universe, the laws of physics are ultimately responsible for all the electro chemical activity in the human brain.
Thatís true and itís why I donít believe in free will.
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Alan Burns

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34519 on: February 10, 2019, 07:58:54 PM »
You should ask that question of Alan Burns. Heís the one who believes in free will, not me. Good luck with that though.
You could look upon your life as a painting, where every brush stoke is done by you using your own gift of freewill.  The fact that God can see the finished work from His timeless dimension does not take away our freedom to create it.
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torridon

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34520 on: February 11, 2019, 07:10:13 AM »
You could look upon your life as a painting, where every brush stoke is done by you using your own gift of freewill.  The fact that God can see the finished work from His timeless dimension does not take away our freedom to create it.

Why do you think we don't all end up with the same painting then ?  There must be reasons why we differ

Littleroses

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34521 on: February 11, 2019, 08:55:36 AM »
You could look upon your life as a painting, where every brush stoke is done by you using your own gift of freewill.  The fact that God can see the finished work from His timeless dimension does not take away our freedom to create it.


That is NOT a fact, merely an assumption on your part.
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Phyllis Tyne

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34522 on: February 11, 2019, 12:10:29 PM »
Thatís true and itís why I donít believe in free will.
That actually sounds like its based on a questionable adherence to reductionism.

What is it that makes you hold onto reductionism..........at the lower levels of organisation?
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Alan Burns

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34523 on: February 11, 2019, 12:13:03 PM »
Why do you think we don't all end up with the same painting then ?  There must be reasons why we differ
We all have the God given freedom which enables us to take credit for what we do with our own precious lives, each of us using our own unique set of talents.
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torridon

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Re: Searching for GOD...
« Reply #34524 on: February 11, 2019, 12:40:22 PM »
We all have the God given freedom which enables us to take credit for what we do with our own precious lives, each of us using our own unique set of talents.

So why do we differ ?  Given we all start from a similar DNA encoded information set why do some people turn out painters, others bus drivers, other priests ?