And, we're either affected by causes in our choices or we're not. There's not a third possibility. And in both possibilities we do not have freewill. Because in both of them we don't get to 'choose' our actions. In the first scenario we are completely biased by prior conditioning and in the second one we don't even get to choose, we just act blindly. And that's why the very idea of freewill is nothing but a logical fallacy that has no meaning at all.
But, where does that extremely strong illusion come from? The feeling that I am able to choose? As I said, our inability to see through the complex causality chain that completely blinds us from knowing how our actions originated. There is another reason for the illusion. The fact that you are the one who takes actions makes you feel that you are responsible for those actions whereas it's causality that it responsible for them.
If you design a program that adds numbers. You write the program deciding what the machine should do with the input, then after you're done you try. You put two numbers: 1 and 4. The machine adds and the results is: 5. Now, who added the numbers? You? No... the machine did. But, did the machine have any choice but adding them? Could it subtract them for example? No. That's impossible. You designed it so it will add numbers and nothing else. Can we say that the machine has freewill just because the machine is the one doing the math? Of course not.
So, how does that apply to us? The rules of physics are the program, the programming code that we can't break. Who wrote that code? This question is irrelevant. The code is there and we can see it. Knowing who wrote it doesn't change the fact that it's there. It could be the creator of our universe, if there's one. Could be anything. It doesn't matter. The code is there and we're abiding it and that's all that matters. And, we're the ones making the choices. We didn't choose to do it, we're forced to do it, just like the machine is forced to add numbers.
Now, everything I just said generates tons of questions. Like:
How does that affect our daily lives?
Does all this mean that criminals shouldn't be punished for their crimes?
And of course, endless questions from ATS members that I will do my best to answer.
It doesn't affect your life in anyway. In fact, knowing all this and believing it or not will have no effect on your future decisions. The universe including you and your choices is nothing but a giant video that is being played and we are nothing but actors in that film. And, criminals will be punished for their crimes regardless of how we think the universe works because knowing about how it works is itself nothing but a part of the chain. So, we won't actually get the chance to decide what to do with criminals, we will do what we have to do with no choice.
I end that by saying that I don't claim all this to be an absolute fact, it's what I think how the universe works and it's all up for discussions and I might end up changing my mind about all this, if someone comes with a good argument. Also, this is all based on our current knowledge which, as I said before, is subject to change. We could discover something astonishing in human nature that makes everything I just said nothing but a mountain of bull$h!t. Before I end this... I want to say that I am aware of the so called random behavior found in the sub-atomic level where stuff behaves in a way that is contradicting to our logic. But to that I say something very simple:
Isn't our whole universe built from those illogical atoms? How come that when adding billions of illogical and inconsistent things you get at the end something logical and consistent like reality in our scale? Doesn't that mean that we just can't figure out the logic and consistency at that level, yet?
Thanks for reading,
edit on 9-10-2011 by TheAlmo because: (no reason given)