The Instigator
Thoht
Pro (for)
The Contender
Daniel_a
Con (against)

Free Will does not exist.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/27/2018 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 522 times Debate No: 114460
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (7)
Votes (0)

 

Thoht

Pro

Happy to think with you today.

Format:

R1: State your opinion
R2: Rebut Opponent's Position (Address Rebuttal if you'd like)
R3: Address Rebuttals and Conclude.

As this is a topic that evidence is lacking in to some extent, I feel 3 rounds of 10k characters is more than sufficient. Most of the arguments on my side are deductive, and I have no evidence for anything outside my deductions.

From the materials I've studied thus far, I cannot convince myself that Free Will exists in the current state of the universe, and the current knowledge we have of it. No matter what you do, your Genetics, your Physical Condition, your Brain function, past, emotional state, mental state, and the physics of the universe we can see seem to always lead to every decision we make. Given the correct measuring tools, processing power, and information on a specific subject I believe it is possible to 100% accurately predict every decision the person will make on any topic.

Currently, the technology to do this does not exist. What that means for my view of the world is that we currently feel the illusion of "free will," but only because no one can yet determine what we will do. No one exists that has the power to calculate this. It seems to me that in the future someone will develop this technology. If this technology is developed, will we ever be free again? No matter. For now, what I'd like to ask is that someone debate with me on the topic as it is in current day.

If all of our actions COULD be determined with the proper tools, can we be said to have free will now? I say we do not, although we can currently enjoy the illusion, that does not mean we are currently Free.
Daniel_a

Con

Hello again i think i just finished a debate with you. I try to demnstroate why free will exisits.

Human beings have concinous which allows us to think therfore we can think about how we act and what we do. A common conception is our thoughts being just a bunch of eletrical signals and chemical reactions. This is clearly not true because has there ever been or does it make sense reasonbly that science will ever make a case where they combine a bunch of chemicals and eletrical signals together and create self awarness. If this does not make sense there must be something more to thought than this.

I agree that there are things that affect how we think in our enviornmet. Also people saying our situatiom forces us to act a certian way does not prove we dont have free will, because it is possible to coherse a free indiviual to do something under the right circumnstances. That does not mean without cohersion they could not act freely. Further more there are countless examples of people willingly acting in a way that is determiental to themselves such as to protect those who they love. It is free will that allows them to act in such a way.
Debate Round No. 1
Thoht

Pro

Rebuttal:

1. My stance on free will does far more than take only "electrical signals and chemical reactions" into the equation. Also, you seem to be falling into a personal incredulity fallacy here. Just because something doesn't make sense to you does not mean it is not true. The whole line of your thoughts is stopped immediately because you're simply saying "it isn't true because I don't think its true." Science does in fact tell us that through mapping our brains they can see our "thoughts" happening in real time. There is a recent study that shows we make our decisions before we are consciously aware that we have made our decisions. [1]

2. The argument is not that a certain set of circumstances will force us to make a decision. It is that every decision we make is based on what we were taught, how we were raised, the environment, everything. The fact that someone makes a selfless choice does not mean that they made the choice because of their own free will. If they were brought up being taught to be a "gentleman" over and over growing up, and they thought about it beforehand whether or not to push a woman out of the way of an incoming car, they will do it. A lot of the time we don't have time to think to come to this decision, we simply act. The argument is that they did not freely choose to do this, but their upbringing, physical state, emotional state, et cetera made it a certainty. There is no world in which they would have done any other action. The lack of free will (Determinism [2]) does not mean that one will be selfish or selfless, act moral or immoral necessarily. It means that our choice could never have been made another way.

Expanding:

Something many people bring up on this topic is a coin toss. They say even if through determinism we will 100% of the time always choose to flip a coin to make our decision, that coin toss will be randomly occurring, but it is not. In reality depending on the weight of the coin, the power we hit it with, and at what location, with what air resistance et cetera it will always land heads or tails. The probability of it landing how it lands is 100% and would never change in any universe if the state of the universe were exactly the same.

In order to say free will exists you have to believe in a soul, or something that is not physical that will help determine your actions. I don't believe this to be the case, and no evidence I've seen has ever convinced me of a soul. In fact quite the opposite. If a tumor is growing in your brain, it can effect the decisions you make. [3] If one had a soul or some external construct other than the brain, you would think a brain tumor would not have such clear noticeable effects. Additionally, if one's brain is damaged in the right areas, you can take away specific abilities of theirs. Were a soul in control of our actions or thoughts you would assume this would not be the case. I'll link a specific one on face recognition. [4]

In order to say you have free will, you have to say that were your atoms traded with another person's that your life could have possibly been different. If you had their brain, you were brought up the same way in the same set of circumstances, you would have made different choices. I submit that you likely would not have.

Until we as a society have the technology to measure all of these things, we can accept the illusion of free will, but I submit it is worth knowing that every action we take is likely predetermined. The realization of this will help our society eliminate crime because we will understand that people's decisions are based on their environment and their needs. If we assist people in making a more friendly environment for children and adults both, we can facilitate the end of crime once we can recognize the factors that go into each crime instead of believing that they could have done something different.

If you are happy with your life, I submit you should thank your parents and everyone you've ever known for helping you think the way you do.

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[1] - http://exploringthemind.com...
[2] - https://www.merriam-webster.com...
[3] - https://www.abta.org...
[4] - http://brainmind.com...
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Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 3
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by canis 3 years ago
canis
No there is no other act but your act..
Posted by Thoht 3 years ago
Thoht
It is a fundamentally different concept Canis.

Free Will means that we as humans are free agents of our action, that when we arrive at a decision to be made it is possible that we can pick multiple different options.

If free will does not exist, there are no other potential universes than the one we have.

You do have a "will," but it is not "free."
Posted by canis 3 years ago
canis
But I have no idea why anybody would put a "free" /nothing in front of will.
Posted by canis 3 years ago
canis
Is "want" not "will" ?. Or you can not have a will without a want.. Can you have a want without a will ?.."I want to kill that bitch".. Its not the will that stops you, but probably fear and other "stuff".
Posted by straw_branch 3 years ago
straw_branch
Canis, how do you link will with want? How can you guarantee that the existence of want automatically gives life to will?
Posted by Thoht 3 years ago
Thoht
If your "will" is "determined" is it "free?"
Posted by canis 3 years ago
canis
"will does not exist"..Yes it does because I have a "want"..
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