On May 13, 4:19 pm, R AM <ramra...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Sun, May 13, 2012 at 6:19 PM, Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com>wrote:
> > On May 13, 11:46 am, R AM <ramra...@gmail.com> wrote:
> > > On Sun, May 13, 2012 at 3:27 PM, Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com
> > >wrote:
> > > > What would be the point of learning though? What would be the
> > > > difference between any one outcome and any other one if decision
> > > > making were determined? It is only because of our own experience of
> > > > free will that we can project some significance of any particular
> > > > outcome.
> > > Maybe it is because of the significance of outcomes that we believe to
> > have
> > > free will.
> > That assumes a possibility of significance without it. I don't think
> > that can be supported.
> I don't see what free will has to do with the outcomes of surviving or not
> surviving.

If you have free will, then the outcome of not surviving presents the
ultimate threat to the continuation of free will, as well as the
complete loss of subjective significance and the expectation of
negative sensory experiences.

If there were no free will, then outcomes of surviving or not
surviving would not be significantly different...they would only be
two differently numbered addresses in an infinite sequence of
meaningless outcomes.

> > > > Evolution doesn't care how species mutate or whether
> > > > individuals survive, why should the individuals themselves care
> > > > either?
> > > Because individuals that care about outcomes survive?
> > Only if they translate that care into behavior using their free will.
> > Without free will, care is meaningless to survival.
> Individuals that care about outcomes survive.

You already said that but you aren't addressing my reply that care in
and of itself cannot impact survival.

> Of course this implies a
> behaviour directed to producing good outcomes. No free will involved.

These two sentences contradict each other. Why "of course"? Only
because through free will you can choose how to make sense of your
circumstances, prioritize which outcomes are most desirable to you,
and which desires you choose to act upon. This is free will. Of course
free will is involved. Nothing but free will is involved.

> > > > Only if we program them to act like they are doing that. They never
> > > > would learn anything on their own.
> > > The fact is that learning is possible in a deterministic universe.
> > Even if it were possible, learning would be irrelevant in a
> > deterministic universe.
> Whatever. The fact remains that learning is possible in a deterministic
> world. And individuals that survive thanks to learning, too.

It depends on what you consider learning. Does a stone worn down by
the ocean 'learn' to be smooth? Blue green algae has survived for a
billion years without much learning. Our sense of learning comes
purely out of free will - a desire to enhance our effectiveness in
making more sense and acting more effectively on that sense.


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