Free Will

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Roncooper
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Post by Roncooper » Mon Jul 11, 2016 4:44 am

I read her newest post twice. Her argument follows from her assumptions. She believes in Materialism and she believes that she can extrapolate from electrons and protons to human beings using simple either-or logic.

I am a Panentheist (which includes Materialism as a sect) and I don't believe that reality can be explained by simple either-or logic.

As a scientist I believe I should accept reality as I find it and try to explain it. I do not believe I should be redefining reality so that it agrees with a theory (Materialism). For me this is bad science.

Our fundamental difference is our image of the whole. She believes that the physical universe is the whole, whereas I believe the physical universe is part of the whole. My belief stems from my personal experience which I cannot share. I assume the same is true for her.

On a social level, the problem I have with Materialism is that it is biased toward the intellect over the other functions of the psyche. Of course Buddhism is biased toward intuitive consciousness and I have the same problem with it.

In my opinion intellectuals are the only ones who can see the other functions (and their paths) in detail and they have a special role to play in the shaping of the future of society. This role is to make the myths more reasonable not to discredit them. The myths serve the functions and are necessary, but in need of a lot of improvement.
If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants. -Isaac Newton
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Post by Andreas » Mon Jul 11, 2016 5:51 am

Well thing is that I dont agree either with comparing humans or animals with equations, electrons or chemicals. And bringing these concepts as an argument for the lack of free will. There are many examples out there especially addicted people whom their bodies have been conditioned to some really strong chemicals yet they find the strength to detox from them. So the whole argument doesn't make sense to me.

Now as far as the label materialist goes, I think all myths in a sense are materialistic because for a myth to work it has to be believed without a doubt otherwise its not real and although I am more attracted to pluralism I still dont think it should be passed on as a universal myth.
“To live is enough.” ― Shunryu Suzuki
Roncooper
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Post by Roncooper » Mon Jul 11, 2016 4:33 pm

Andreas,

I Like your example of overcoming chemical addiction. It is a strong argument. The other example I find compelling is suicide. Why would a bunch of chemicals kill themselves?

In my opinion all modern myths should have a materialistic component. I just can't accept that materialism is it, and there is nothing more. It leaves out too much.
If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants. -Isaac Newton
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Post by Roncooper » Tue Jul 12, 2016 2:58 am

Dr. Hossenfelder's 2014 blog was still open for comments, so I left a note listing my concerns. I tried to be diplomatic. The site said my post was under review.

Hopefully she will have some excellent comments.
If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants. -Isaac Newton
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Post by CarmelaBear » Wed Jul 13, 2016 10:04 am

Roncooper wrote:Carmela,

I agree. The mystery is bigger than science.
:!:
Once in a while a door opens, and let's in the future. --- Graham Greene
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Post by CarmelaBear » Wed Jul 13, 2016 10:20 am

romansh wrote:
Roncooper wrote:Carmela,

I agree. The mystery is bigger than science.
Is there a more accurate method on understanding the mystery than science?
Nope.

The scientific method serves large numbers of minds, where not everyone can repeat experiments as individuals. Those who conduct the experiments can expose results for review by many others. Science works over time, when so many experiments have been performed with the same result that one more repetition is not likely to yield a different result. There is no more accurate way to provide everyone with a better than fairly reliable foundation for a foothold on what is most likely to be certainly real and what is more likely to be something else.

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Once in a while a door opens, and let's in the future. --- Graham Greene
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Post by CarmelaBear » Wed Jul 13, 2016 10:22 am

Roncooper wrote:Andreas,

I Like your example of overcoming chemical addiction. It is a strong argument. The other example I find compelling is suicide. Why would a bunch of chemicals kill themselves?

In my opinion all modern myths should have a materialistic component. I just can't accept that materialism is it, and there is nothing more. It leaves out too much.
They don't die. They are transformed.

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Once in a while a door opens, and let's in the future. --- Graham Greene
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Post by CarmelaBear » Wed Jul 13, 2016 10:47 am

Roncooper wrote:While poking around I found another myth that...does not rely on illusion. This is Vishistadviata Hinduism which states that both the transcendent realm of consciousness (and the intellect for that matter) and the physical universe are real. From this perspective the immanent and transcendent mystery became you so that you would live your life. Your personal reality is part of the story not an illusion.

...

I won't go into details but this view is the closest to my personal myth because it is reasonable, unbiased, democratic, and all inclusive. It can be made into a world mythology.
I agree.
Once in a while a door opens, and let's in the future. --- Graham Greene
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Post by Roncooper » Wed Jul 13, 2016 6:57 pm

Somebody actually agreed with me.

There is another interesting aspect of this sect of Hinduism that is very different from the Judaeo-Christian tradition and its reliance on dogma. This sect teaches that the most reliable data is scientific, then personal experience, then reason, and if all these fail then resort to dogma.

I wish Christianity was like that.
If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants. -Isaac Newton
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Post by CarmelaBear » Wed Jul 13, 2016 8:17 pm

Roncooper wrote:Somebody actually agreed with me.

There is another interesting aspect of this sect of Hinduism that is very different from the Judaeo-Christian tradition and its reliance on dogma. This sect teaches that the most reliable data is scientific, then personal experience, then reason, and if all these fail then resort to dogma.

I wish Christianity was like that.
The higher up one goes in the Catholic Church hierarchy, the more likely one is to encounter people who look to science and reason even before personal experience (depending on the particulars of the personal experience, of course). The problem with Catholicism, specifically, and Christianity, in general, is that the organization offers huge and important benefits to people who are willing to claim they believe in the dogma. Those who become dependent (and I mean, seriously dependent) on the church have overwhelming incentives to hide their true beliefs and almost no reason to be sincere. Some won't admit what they believe (even to themselves) for fear of losing something they feel compelled to maintain.

So, the dogma is clear to those who do not question church authority, but for those who do question it, a true belief in the dogma is not always at the top of the list of priorities for making the assertion of belief. Social position, financial security, self esteem, family expectations and loyalties, and a host of other considerations take precedence over genuine belief systems.

~
Once in a while a door opens, and let's in the future. --- Graham Greene
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Post by romansh » Fri Jul 15, 2016 12:42 am

"That's right!" shouted Vroomfondel, "we demand rigidly defined areas of doubt and uncertainty!"
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Post by Roncooper » Fri Jul 15, 2016 1:27 am

Thank you. That was a nice talk.
If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants. -Isaac Newton
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Post by romansh » Sun Jul 17, 2016 3:29 pm

Roncooper wrote: I read her newest post twice. Her argument follows from her assumptions. She believes in Materialism and she believes that she can extrapolate from electrons and protons to human beings using simple either-or logic.
So as a scientist you think extrapolation from a subsystem to a larger system has no validity.
In my world I do it all the time.
Roncooper wrote:I am a Panentheist (which includes Materialism as a sect) and I don't believe that reality can be explained by simple either-or logic.
For me the immaterial is mostly a semantic shell game. That you see consciousness, love, hate, fear and concepts in general as immaterial is fine ... for me they are written using the physical world.

And yet you use either or logic to dismiss the truth of materialism.

For me immaterialism is an unnecessary hypothesis.
Roncooper wrote:As a scientist I believe I should accept reality as I find it and try to explain it. I do not believe I should be redefining reality so that it agrees with a theory (Materialism). For me this is bad science.
But you do this in spades with your belief in panentheism. Panentheism is the simplest of the god of the gaps beliefs ... so I commend you for this.
Roncooper wrote:Our fundamental difference is our image of the whole. She believes that the physical universe is the whole, whereas I believe the physical universe is part of the whole. My belief stems from my personal experience which I cannot share. I assume the same is true for her.
And yet to me an existence of a material universe seems perfectly reasonable. What extra insights do we get from assuming that it intermingles with an immaterial universe?
Roncooper wrote:On a social level, the problem I have with Materialism is that it is biased toward the intellect over the other functions of the psyche. Of course Buddhism is biased toward intuitive consciousness and I have the same problem with it.
I don't understand the problem you are having with ... on a social level.

It is almost as though you think our psyche is somehow independent of society, environment, evolution, biochemistry, chemistry and physics in general.
Roncooper wrote:In my opinion intellectuals are the only ones who can see the other functions (and their paths) in detail and they have a special role to play in the shaping of the future of society. This role is to make the myths more reasonable not to discredit them. The myths serve the functions and are necessary, but in need of a lot of improvement.
And here I am completely befuddled as to the relevance of this bit.

If you think materialists should not argue against taking a stance against literal interpretations of religious texts let me know. Even Dawkins somewhere said that the Bible contains some beautiful poetry. I think he would agree whole heartedly with Campbell when Campbell suggests religion turn poetry into prose.

Perhaps we need more poetry about fora and Facebook? Paintings that help us understand the underlying reality of inner city congestion, music that depicts global warming? Don't get me wrong ... I enjoy literature, music, painting and I hope people carry on in that particular pursuit of bliss. I am not overly a fan of poetry, but I hope people continue to find bliss in that too.
"That's right!" shouted Vroomfondel, "we demand rigidly defined areas of doubt and uncertainty!"
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Post by Roncooper » Mon Jul 18, 2016 2:58 am

But you do this in spades with your belief in panentheism. Panentheism is the simplest of the god of the gaps beliefs ... so I commend you for this.
This is completely wrong. This argument died 150 years ago.

The problem I have with materialism is that people actually think it is reality. They become dogmatic fundamentalists who believe ridiculous things.

My belief in Panentheism comes from personal experience. I am not trying to convert anyone.

Like one who was raised in a devout Catholic home, I spent 30 years in devout atheistic, materialistic laboratories. I understand that church. I understand the peer pressure.

My argument is not against materialism, it is to show that it is a belief, and the belief that there is no free will is an act of faith.

Simple logic is not up to the task.

You are obviously a devout materialist, just don't became a dogmatic fundamentalist materialist. Don't take the myth literally.
If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants. -Isaac Newton
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Post by CarmelaBear » Mon Jul 18, 2016 5:57 pm

There is the idea of the supernatural world that somehow interacts and intervenes in the natural world, and there is the notion that the world of the spirit is very much a part of the natural world. Naturalism is related to materialism, but it is not the same. There may always be some transcendent reality that will never be observable by scientific means, and yet it will remain part of the mystical and very real human and organic experience. This experience may eventually become safely accessible through the use of plant-based substances that mediate between the world of matter and the world of oneness. Science identifies particulars that can be quantified and measured, and observable spirit has no boundaries that can be counted or measured.

As a material entity, free will is subject to laws of nature. In the world of the transcendent, will and freedom are the rule of the one and only reality of being. How it works is obvious only to those who have been there. I don't know how someone like me lives in that place, where there is only spirit, but we seem to have direct access to a soul that transcends events and phenomenal experience, living outside the place where pain and suffering reside. It is a fountain of spiritual energy.

~
Once in a while a door opens, and let's in the future. --- Graham Greene
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