On Apr 2, 11:22 pm, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net> wrote:
> On 4/2/2012 7:12 PM, Craig Weinberg wrote:
> > On Apr 2, 5:05 pm, meekerdb<meeke...@verizon.net> wrote:
> >> But the experiment didn't show there was more or less free will. It
> >> didn't even show
> >> there was any free will. It just showed that inducing a belief in free
> >> will changed
> >> performance.
> > Performance in what though? Readiness to execute personal will.
> >> It might have also shown that belief in alien abductions changed
> >> performance.
> > No, they did controls to eliminate that. There may be other beliefs
> > that change people's ability to take action as well, but this study
> > suggests that this specific idea that we should doubt the existence of
> > our own free will has a negative impact on the very thing that is
> > being considered.
> >> Either one is perfectly consistent with determinism.
> > No, determinism would not allow a mention of a deterministic function
> > of the brain to affect the performance of that function, because then
> > it wouldn't be deterministic - it would be open to suggestion by
> > others and by ourselves.
> There is nothing in determinism that prevents a change in response to
Is there anything in determinism that prevents making suggestions?
What is free will other than using your own intention/suggestion to
change the behavior of your body and mind?
Should we try to pretend that the experiments are running themselves?
Making their own suggestions?
> > If I can suggest beliefs to myself that
> > causally affect the performance of anything at all, then I am using
> > free will to determine their function rather than only being
> > determined by them.
> That's just assuming what you want to prove. I'd say you were determined to
> suggest that
> belief to yourself.
What would be the role of such a 'belief'? If I am determined to
believe that I am suggesting beliefs to myself, why not cut out that
whole useless process and just have the determination directly execute
its function, like breathing or digesting food? It's like saying that
a computer could maybe benefit by telling itself to 'try harder' to
execute a line of code. If a program is equipped for resource
optimization, it will prioritize computations in the processor queue
but there is no plausible experience of 'effort' or belief which could
impact performance in doing that. Why would there be? The only reason
is because we are reverse engineering our own experience and
> All kinds of systems have feedback loops and they are still
Effort is not a feedback loop. A computer can compute more often, or
for longer, or devote more resources to a task, but any kind of
additional abstraction layer which represents those strategies as
participatory experiences would be a redundant waste of resources.
Besides, such a disembodied, unexplained experience has no means of
grounding to physical reality. Every feedback loop would require
another feedback loop to interpret the model presented by the parent
interpretation process. If we need to see a representation of an
orange tree rather than just unconsciously react to the conditions
presented by an orange tree, then why wouldn't a single neuron also
need such a representation for its detections?
Why wouldn't the organelles of the neuron that interpret that feedback
loop with a perceptual illusion also require their own perceptual
illusion, and so on. Its a Cartesian-homunculus-regressing notion. I
see no reason that such a theatrical production as human experience
would materialize ex nihilo when every system, organ, cell, and
molecule in the universe is assumed to function without any illusions
of participation. What makes these monkeys on Earth so special?
If we have internally perceived worlds for any reason at all, then
everything should have an equivalent phenomenology for the same
reason. If that is the case, and I think that it is, then there is no
reason to assume that those phenomenological experiences can be
understood or anticipated through the mechanisms they are associated
with. We can't feel our own neurological structures, and neurological
imaging can't reproduce our feelings, so we should not expect that
either presentation can be reduced to the other. Determinism is what
you get when you choose to look outside of yourself. Within the
psyche, it is you who is doing most of the determination while your
neurology carries out your will.
You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups
"Everything List" group.
To post to this group, send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
To unsubscribe from this group, send email to
For more options, visit this group at