----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Bruno Marchal 
  To: everything-list@googlegroups.com 
  Sent: Friday, March 12, 2010 11:54 AM
  Subject: Re: Free will: Wrong entry.




  Marty,


    I think the question, "Do you believe in free will?" could as easily be, 
"Do you believe in Santa Claus or God or Fate and on and on." We loudly assert: 
"I do what I want!!" But without considering the factors that influence 
(determine?) our wants and desires. No.    I don't suppose I 'believe" in free 
will.




  You are right. Free will is a bit like God, Santa Klaus, or the primitive 
Universe. The main problem is that people have very different definitions, 
usually loaded with heavy connotations, and lot of emotional factors, wishful 
thinking, etc.


  To defend free-will, or at least "responsibility", I often mention the lawyer 
who defend a murderer by saying that his client was just obeying to the 
Schroedinger equation.
  This obviously will not work, if only because the members of the jury can 
respond by "we judge you fully guilty and ask jail for life", and then add, but 
don't worry, we are also just obeying to Schroedinger wave equation.


  Such explanation doesn't just lead to arbitrariness, but they are wrong, 
deeply wrong. No universal machine can know all its influencing and determining 
factors, and that is why, in complex environment, they will have to use 
shortcut in decision procedure, which invokes their conscience, and their 
notion of good and bad, and eventually have to engage their responsibility, in 
some large or small measure. Experts can debate infinitely on each individual 
cases, and can never be sure on this matter, and that is why in many law 
systems, a reference will be made on the judge intimate conviction.


  If we are determinate, we cannot live at the level where we are determinate. 
The soul (Bp & p) of the machine (Bp) is "really" NOT a machine, from its 
personal point of view. So, some free will exists. And some feeling of 
guiltiness are founded, even if only "god" can know and judge impartially.


  Bruno




  http://iridia.ulb.ac.be/~marchal/


  Bruno,

          What sort of "short cut" are you talking about? I don't see any short 
cuts here. I can see where people will find reasons afterwards to justify their 
decisions by consulting conscience and notions of good and bad, but that's all 
  a posterior.        marty a.










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