Predeterminism vs Free Will

This topic contains 5 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  Mary A Goetsch 4 years ago.

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  • #4671 Score: 1

    Mary A Goetsch
    Participant
    4 votes
    @mary-a-goetsch

    What determines which seeds of memory will gain new life (conception) in some future time? Is the Universe random, somewhat dependent upon emergent collective consciousness, or totally another higher power design? I am limiting this to three choices for sake of simplicity.

    This post has received 1 vote up.
  • #4692 Score: 0

    Aurora Carlson
    Keymaster
    110 votes
    @aurorac

    Hi Mary! Such a great question you ask!
    I am thinking that the future unfolds according to my (and our) choices in the present. The more conscious those choices, the more it is my/our conscious self that determines the “future”. Otherwise, these seeds just sprout according to karma (conditioning) and lead to wherever karma goes.

    But your question doesn’t come from a vacuum and I would love to know what observations have led you to it, if you’d like to share.

  • #4713 Score: 0

    Mary A Goetsch
    Participant
    4 votes
    @mary-a-goetsch

    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.

  • #4810 Score: 1

    Deepak Chopra
    Moderator
    60 votes
    @deepakchopra

    Dear Mary, thank you for your question! You can watch my answer in Readers Ask: What is the Mystery of Memory?

    Love,
    Deepak

    This post has received 1 vote up.
  • #5411 Score: 2

    Menas Kafatos
    Moderator
    41 votes
    @menask

    The “higher power” does not design. It just Is. The design idea is really a dualistic perspective. It assumes there is an external “designer” who creates the universe out of (what?). Some say out of emptiness. Some say out of His/Her own Being. But the most important thing is to consider the one who watches the design. Without someone “watching”, there is no “design”. Design is in the eye of the beholder! No?

    This post has received 2 votes up.
  • #5466 Score: 0

    Mary A Goetsch
    Participant
    4 votes
    @mary-a-goetsch

    Yes. This is another way of explaining how quantum theory plays into design (predestination) and free will (choice). When there is an observer (human being or beings), the wave function collapses and it is “set” in time; time ceases when the human dies, but others in the group hold those memories. There only appears to be design because we are involved. I guess design and free will are not mutually exclusive andactually two topics. We can’t answer this question. We’ll know when we die, but a moot point at that time!

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