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thormas

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thormas last won the day on April 19

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About thormas

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  • Birthday July 20

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  1. thormas

    Free Will

    Joseph, as previously mentioned this is not a burning issue for me and I place it along side of the belief that all (we included) is illusion. Further, I don't think either position or belief is in sync with the experience of most human beings.There is a common acknowledgement (conscious or unconscious because a great many human being simply go about there lives and don't bother with such discussion as many of us here) and agreement (affirmation) with Descartes: " I think therefore I am." For most, as it is for me, the experience is simply that, 'I' am: I am me and I am not illusion. And, the further common experience is, 'I am the captain of my ship.' Most of us recognize influences (see below) but also recognize, accept and defend the idea that I am the maker of decisions, I am the one who decides. I think there is a wisdom in the lived experience of men and women and I think some of us (myself included at times) are too much in our heads. So, as I said earlier in this thread: "I accept that I am not a absolute first cause but I also, acknowledging the paradox, accept that I have freedom." In this statement, I am not denying prior experience, genetics, physical limitations, strings, or the coffee that makes one jittery if they have too much or cranky if they don't have any - I am saying they do not so determine one to remove all true (free) choice. All behavior is not determined; there is personal agency (i.e.. free will). Free choice (and, with it, culpability, responsibility, accountability) is real and most of us accept and live this even while acknowledging that which influences us. I am neither reifying or deifying consciousness or experience: I just do not accept that environmental and behavioral determinism are absolute or that free choice is illusory. Determinists reduce all to a physicalism or a naturalism and reduce personal agency to nothingness. I disagree: "this is a position I find impossible to believe" and not worthy (for me) of serious consideration. I accept and respect it is for others but it is not my position or belief. Perhaps it might be helpful, if this is an established position you hold that is important to you, to present your case and let others react/comment. tom
  2. thormas

    Shades of Grey

    Did a very quick read of previous posts and, having been brought up Catholic, I would not categorize my experience as pathological. By I do recognize the pathology seemingly inherent in the experience of others, including some of those Catholics I grew up with. Perhaps it depended, in part, to what degree the Christianity pervaded one's everyday life. I think many 'ordinary' Christians, throughout history, might have had the less harmful version.
  3. thormas

    Heathens! 2

    Rom had a good one. mine was close: HE'LL be back!!!!!!!!
  4. thormas

    Free Will

    Well, Rom, the intention was humor not avoidance and it is a Saturday, the weekend! Plus we seem to have said it all (for now) and to be at an end ...........
  5. thormas

    Free Will

    Humor Rom - just a bit of humor on a rainy Saturday...........
  6. thormas

    Free Will

    I had chemistry with my wife - is that what you mean? Regardless, it was a totally my decision, no influences, no hesitation, no strings attached - and I'm sticking to this truth.
  7. thormas

    Free Will

    Well, you have swung to the other side and are now an absolute free choicer. You go, Rom.
  8. thormas

    Free Will

  9. thormas

    Free Will

    You know I will have to give some additional thought to your idea of humans being "little first causes." And referring back to 'the beginning of all things' was there nothing and then Bang? And if so, what do we think was the cause to that effect? Or was there something that caused the Bang and if so, what was it and was there a cause for it? Can a closed natural system entirely sufficient to itself be verified, deductively or empirically from within that system?
  10. thormas

    Free Will

    Rom, You wrote, "Other....(opinions - and you specified free will)... are derived from (i.e. based on) a considered ignorance and just an appeal to our perceptions. Some opinions are just assertions." This reads that one opinion (that of free will) is, for you, based in ignorance and therefore a mere assertion and, by inference, inferior to yours which is "..... based on a fair amount of thought, evidence, research, logic." You wrote it, I read it as it is: if, now, you think you have been misunderstood - don't make such all encompassing comments. However, let's leave that aside for now. Moving on, it is you who is not reading carefully and considering what I said: "I accept that I am not a absolute first cause but I also, acknowledging the paradox, accept that I have freedom." In this statement, I am not denying prior experience, genetics, physical limitations, strings, or the coffee that makes one jittery if they have too much or cranky if they don't have any - I am saying they do not so determine one to remove all (free) choice. All behavior is not determined, there is personal agency (i.e.. free will). Free choice (and, with it, culpability, responsibility, accountability) is real and most of us accept and live this even while acknowledging that which influences us. Finally, I am neither reifying or deifying either consciousness or experience: I just do not accept that environmental and behavioral determinism are absolute or that free choice is illusory. You (?) and determinists reduce all to a physicalism or a naturalism and reduce personal agency to nothingness. I disagree: "this is a position I find difficult to believe" and not worthy (for me) of serious consideration. I accept it is for you, respect, well I would typically say, your (free) choice, and would wish you well but this seems pointless since, given your position (or belief), whether you are/will be well or not well is already determined.
  11. thormas

    Free Will

    Again with calling the opinions of people who disagree with your position/opinion to be not just ignorant but a considered ignorance (which contradicts your point because if something is considered, it suggests that a fair amount of thought and research went into it). Say what now? But you continue: your assertions (against free will) come from a "fair amount research, thought ...." One guesses that Rogers and Maslow, to name just two free will advocates, never gave much thought, did any research or utilized logic to arrive at their positions. It never gets old Rom ...................but it is predictable (determined???), but it could be otherwise (freedom of choice)!
  12. thormas

    Free Will

    As PaulS said in December, referring to 'opinions' on free will, "neither can make a convincing case..." acceptable to the other. And most importantly, "not that we need to..." (Concerning the repetition of opinions) he adds "...is a bit boring to me." I agree: it is opinion (belief), I have no need to convince you but you seem to need to convince others and bring them to your position (why not be agnostic about it?). Agnosticism is a position: one 'believes' he can not know if he is free (has free will) or is determined. Some here believe they are determined. My position is that I believe I am free (and not determined), that I make choices and am culpable, responsible, accountable for my actions. So it makes no sense that I would then say I believe I don't know one way or the other, when the case is that I believe one way and not the other. I accept that I am not a absolute first cause but I also, acknowledging the paradox, accept that I have freedom. Many of us, diametrically opposed have had great and informative dialogues, presented our ideas (without the 'ad hominem'), go back and forth and move on.
  13. thormas

    Free Will

    You have made my case: these are a good number of posts under this topic which always seems to go far afield. This is not a burning issue for me (or anyone else given the lack of current new posts). As I mentioned, when this was (again) brought up by you, I was only presenting another position and had no interest (at this time) in yet another discussion. And, with your comment that " ... belief in free will (for some of us) boils down to a considered ignorance ...... " why would anyone be interested in a dialogue when you have closed off any opposing position as ignorance? I have freely decided it is a waste of time. Suffice to say I don't accept the denial of all cause and effect, I recognize a more - but not absolute - causal model, within which there is free choice. I accept that I am the cause of joy or hurt - in greater or lesser degrees - in my life. Am I influenced by others or my prior experiences, or what I have learned or by particular and changing circumstances? Sure, but I am the agent at work in the world and I assume the responsibility for my .....decisions. From what I read, there is no definitive answer that is proof certain, so your position, as all others, is opinion. You seem to be saying the mathematical models describe the chemistry and physics nicely - UNLESS you accept Joseph's position. So the models are useless given his position? This topic like the topic of illusion, the meaningfulness of life, God and on and on have no definitive answers. They are opinions, beliefs.
  14. thormas

    Free Will

    sure it was, as mentioned previously discussed, just differing with your earlier declaration on choice
  15. thormas

    Free Will

    sure it was
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