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New research finds free will can keep us honest

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posted on Jan, 29 2008 @ 05:02 PM
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New research finds free will can keep us honest


www.physorg.com

The results were clear: those with weaker convictions about their power to control their own destiny were more apt to cheat when given the opportunity as compared to those whose beliefs about controlling their own lives were left untouched.
(visit the link for the full news article)




posted on Jan, 29 2008 @ 05:02 PM
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Very interesting. So, it seems that one way to potentially corrupt an entire society is to systematically convince its people that they have no free will.

www.physorg.com
(visit the link for the full news article)



posted on Jan, 29 2008 @ 08:32 PM
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This reminds me of another study I read once. The study placed religious students of various beliefs along with atheist students and agnostics. They were all placed in a test environment in which they wrote a mock exam. The exam ranged from mathematics to language.

The results showed that regardless of faith, the religious students attempted to cheat far more than their atheist and agnostic counterparts.

If memory serves right, the results showed the religious students were about 30% more likely to cheat on a test.


My take on it is that non religious peoples moral code is one they have formulated themselves, and hence, as it is their own, they abide by it very strongly. Where-as religious people have had their moral code dictated to them, and there may be some question as to 'why' each rule is in place, and a natural defiance of dictated rules.



posted on Jan, 30 2008 @ 05:21 AM
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reply to post by johnsky
 


Interesting. It does make sense that, as a whole, religious people would actually have less conviction about their moral code than those who feel that their moral code is their own. IMO, this would likely apply to religion in the sense of institutions of religion, not necessarily people who have strong spiritual beliefs that they have arrived at themselves.

So here is some actual, scientific research that sheds some light on what could make that true. Those who believe their actions are all dictated by and controlled by a higher power do not have to always accept sole responsibility for what they've done. Now, the question in my mind is, why?

Here's a thought... if you realize that no one will ever be responsible for your own transgressions besides you, meaning that you had free will and you chose to do something that you, internally, know to be wrong, you cannot give yourself a "free pass". You must take responsibility for your actions, and consequently, anyone who is not a psychopath (actually no conscience) will make a choice weighted heavily with consideration of their own self-judgment. IMO, we judge ourselves as we judge others, though we may not always understand that, it believe it is a truth of human nature. It also seems that such a view, combined with a few logical steps, can be supported by this research. Other opinions?



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