The Instigator
elazar123
Pro (for)
Winning
7 Points
The Contender
Aerogant
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Free Will

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
elazar123
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/21/2014 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 526 times Debate No: 60759
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (6)
Votes (2)

 

elazar123

Pro


With regard to whether human behaviour is a predetermined and inevitable path, or is a free choice in which no forces have an influence upon, humans, as which all other animals, have free choice. For example, since we have the ability to choose one thing over the other, choice is self-contained and not determined in any supernatural sense. Moreover, since humans perform all actions, gain knowledge from, believe in certain faiths, live in specific areas, have distinct historical backgrounds, and behave in general, as a result of conditioning made from external and environmental influence and from limited genetic instincts, we cannot say that something outside the system in which we live in, has had, has, or will have, any influence on our decisions. The reason for this is because if God or something supernatural does in fact influence our behaviour, then it was always part of the system in which we live in because we were influenced by it, and it therefore cannot be God or anything considered supernatural because supernatural means “above nature”, and because, as explained just above, nothing can be considered “above nature,” because it then exists “in” nature, predetermined influences on the actions of human behaviour does not exist.


First, let us examine position that human behaviour is predetermined, in the views of both St. Augustine, and Thomas Hobbes. According to St. Augustine, if God knows the causes of all future events, everything that happens must be predetermined, in that predetermined means to previously plan out for the future, or to execute a strategy for the future. However, Augustine's position is assuming there is a God who does indeed plan all future events, in which I disagree with entirely. If we cannot know of an existence of a omniscient God, as with my opinion, we cannot know if there is a predetermined nature in human behaviour, as also with any other animal. Therefore, we cannot assume that there is a plan to be played out by a God of which we cannot know exists. Now, according to Thomas Hobbes, everything is inevitably and necessary on God, in that we act upon causes that eventually lead to God, the ultimate being. He goes even more so in saying that one cannot go against the will of God because His plan includes whatever action that person may take, right or wrong. I disagree on the premise that we know God exists, as mentioned above, and also that one cannot deviate from His plan. For example, if an action taken by a person is considered wrong by God-fearing people, and in Hobbes view, one cannot deviate from God's pre deterministic plan, then, one may then say that this is a justification of any negative act, even against basic agreed-upon morals. This means if one wants the world to function beneficially, as I and most do, you cannot believe that that all negative actions are justifiable, unless, there is no God, or that humans have free will, or that there are no other morals to conduct our life on other than the ones we create in our minds. Overall, both St. Augustine and Thomas Hobbes are in the view of determinism, but they either, however, do not stand on the same premise as I, or the premise includes possible justification of negative acts, which clearly are against God's will, in most monotheistic religions.


Second, let us examine the position that human behaviour, or at least majority of it, is chosen with free will in the views of both Jean-Paul Sartre and my own, from life experience. According to Jean-Paul Sartre, conscious intention, and therefore action, is a manifestation of free will. So, unless a person is willingly performing an action, it is not the free will of the person acting upon the actions taken, and this can be seen when an accident happens. In an accident, the person involved does not willingly take action in order for reaction to take place. Rather, he or she is not performing as behaviour based on free will. In this way, we can clearly explain how free will works as an agent of human behaviour. Now, in my opinion and experience, what causes a person to choose one thing over the other if they both equally have the same exact form and traits? One may say that only God can choose one over the other if having the same qualities because He knows which will be better, and therefore showing the possible existence of God. However, I believe that indeed to choose, a person must have experience in choosing to compare the better from the worse. For example, once, I was offered two objects to pick from: both were food, both were fruit, both were apples, both were the same type of apples, both did not have any undesirable blemishes, both were the same colour, both were fresh, and both were aesthetically equal. So, the fact that I chose on over the other [and I did] shows that I thought that one was better than the other, which means that I, as a person with free will, can choose one apple, but not the next, and therefore not necessitate the need for an external force with predetermined implications; just as since a baby does not, and cannot, have preference because of the lack of experience, this baby does not have complete free will, but learns and acquires knowledge and, in turn, preference.


In conclusion, human behaviour can be thought to be stemmed from predetermined, inevitable and supernatural sources, or, is a free choice of a person's will, in which no forces have an influence upon. I believe that humans, as which all other animals, have free choice, with respect to what the environment lets us acquire for preference. This is evident since, according to Sartre, willingness is a manifestation of free will. This means that when we participate in willingness and conscious intention of doing things, we are acting out our free will; we have a choice. Moreover, since we are able to pick one thing over another, even when they have the same qualities, shows that it is truly our own experience of that thing in the past that causes a person to choose, not necessarily another external force. Overall, the many discussions and arguments relating to the topic of determinism and free will, embodies a certain, powerful curiosity that reflects our nature; the human nature to discover. (Through free will, that is!)


Aerogant

Con

Free Will would mean there is no pull; there is only push. You are pulled to a book, therefore you do not have Free Will.
Debate Round No. 1
elazar123

Pro

You are right that we are pulled not pushed to do things. However, as we know, both the conscious and the unconscious of a person is makes a personal identification possible and unique. Therefore, since both our conscious and our unconscious are the identifiers of self, and since as you stated that we are pulled, ourselves, both conscious and unconscious, "chooses" our behaviour. Overall, it is our perception of the world and inherited genetics which our mind makes choices off, and so we are pulled to choose between things based on preference, which comes from expereince (consciously or unconsiously, because both are our identifiers of self).
Aerogant

Con

The information which makes identity "unique" is not "unique" information - it's information based on the governing laws and physics of the "Universe". All information comes from the "Universe" and is absorbed by our receptors (human bodies), therefore whence cometh "Us"?
Debate Round No. 2
elazar123

Pro

I completely agree with you! the information external from us and shapes us does not change based on our perception. But, people may have very different perception and or interpretations of reality, and therefore altering his or her qualities and characteristics. The laws of nature defines and shapes us and we sometimes shape nature by inventing things, etc. "Above nature" cannot exists because the world is a physical, closed, natural system, where nothing can be external from it. Therefore, when something is interpreted as "above nature", either we found new bounds to explain the only (purely physical) world, or we cannot yet explain the physical nature of this so-called "above nature" thing; therefore spirituality cannot exist. Also, the same goes with animals. Their limitations to understand, interpret, and most importantly, express their perceptions of what they can possibly perceive, makes them "choose" how they behave; all life is bound and limited by their abilities.
Aerogant

Con

As above, so below; from form, to faculty; to, and fro.
Debate Round No. 3
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by Aerogant 2 years ago
Aerogant
People like David are the reason why I am a wilder beast.

I here by announce that my behavior is justified, for nobody punishes the real issues of this world, like those who destroy other people's work (David) because they learned how to live in fear before they learned how to live free.

I won this debate, however ignorance does not care. Ignorance will not continue to care, unless someone (me) goes out there and destroys it once and for all.
Posted by Aerogant 2 years ago
Aerogant
People like Daltonian are the reason why I am a wilder beast.

I here by announce that my behavior is justified, for nobody punishes the real issues of this world, like those who destroy other people's work (Daltonian) because they learned how to live in fear before they learned how to live free.

I won this debate, however ignorance does not care. Ignorance will not continue to care, unless someone (me) goes out there and destroys it once and for all.
Posted by Aerogant 2 years ago
Aerogant
"I have Free Will".

"I don't have Free Will".

One word turns a sentence that was a lie into a sentence that is now true.
Posted by Aerogant 2 years ago
Aerogant
FMA is correct.

Free will is the contrast of not having free will. We simply take out the negatives of a sentence like "We are not" to change the meaning in contrast to its context.
Posted by FMAlchemist 2 years ago
FMAlchemist
No it doesn't
Posted by Vajrasattva-LeRoy 2 years ago
Vajrasattva-LeRoy
You sure put out a lot of gobbledygook, don't you?
"Free will" isn't something that can be debated, Pro or Con.
"Free will exists" is.
The fact that we can debate the question "does free will exist?" proves that it does.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by AlternativeDavid 2 years ago
AlternativeDavid
elazar123AerogantTied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Con did not even attempt to rebut Pro's arguments.
Vote Placed by Daltonian 2 years ago
Daltonian
elazar123AerogantTied
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro made arguments; con wrote sentences. A metaphor referencing pushing and pulling does not suffice as a contention.