Reply To: Predeterminism vs Free Will

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Mary A Goetsch
4 votes

My perspective is coming from the atheist view that since the cosmos works without any higher power designing it, that process might emerge out of a “collective consciousness”. Whether it is conscious, or unconscious is an artificial line when it comes to trying to understand where our impulses (choices) come from. I am familiar with Sam Harris and his philosophy of pre-determinism and his book entitled, “Free Will.” The ideas make sense to me and explain more than if we think we really are determining our life flow, our conscious flow. The Libet experiments are old stuff: even before nmr technology, it was known that we only become conscious of what we have just “decided” fractions of a second after the brain has already sent the impulses to the muscles in question. So, where do those ideas come from? Skeptics say humans are NOT the center of the cosmos and therefore do not determine anything. Yet, it can’t be completely random since even crystals will re-crystallize in less time the second time around (Rupert Sheldrake experiments). It is easy to take the middle-of-the-road position: I say the cosmos is neither extreme (higher-power designed; random) but something in the middle; namely, emergent collective consciousness.