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Old 08-06-2019, 01:25 PM
monstro is offline
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 20,740
Originally Posted by kayT View Post
I agree with JAQ. As an atheist it would never occur to me to say "why does god" anything, since I don't believe in god. I believe in what I can see, and I can see that I get to make choices (i.e. free will). Other arguments in this thread about what constitutes free will make zero sense to me.
I don't know about you, but I see evidence of my "not free will" all the time. I make a myriad of decisions every day without thinking about them first. Hell, sometimes I don't even remember making them.

I wake up with thoughts swirling in my head that I did not consciously put there. Those thoughts are connected to my mood through mechanisms I am not in control of. And my initial mood no doubt sets the stage for all subsequent thoughts and moods.

Sure, like you I experience the sensation of free will quite frequently. But I also experience the sensation of not having free will--like when a brilliant idea pops into my mind out of nowhere or when I catch myself in the midst of a habit I am trying to train myself out of. So which sensation is the most accurate one? I don't know. I am not in the right vantage point to know. But I can offer a reasonable hypothesis that explains both phenomonen: I don't have free will, but because I have some awareness of my cognition, it seems as if I do. And sometimes I can see through the illusion because of that awareness.

I can also say that I author my choices without using the loaded term "free will". I made the choice to cross the street at the crosswalk this morning rather than between blocks. But I can't say that choice was made through free will since I cannot know with absolute certainty why I made that choice. I can tell myself a reasonable-sounding story, but that is all it would be.

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