December 19, 2022 at 11:41 am #238233ALBKeymaster
I know, TS, you want to avoid being a fatalist and I was only trying to help you out of the hole you had dug yourself into by insisting that “what did not happen could not have happened simply because it didn’t happen” and the implications of this for what is going to happen in the future.
I have listened a number of times to what Sabine Hoffenfelder says at the beginning of the talk you posted here where she is presenting the case against the doctrine Free Will (which I am not defending). At one point near the beginning she says;
“This means in a nutshell that the whole story of the Universe in every single detail was determined already at the Big Bang. We are just watching it play out.”
I take this to mean that the future is already determined and that we can do nothing about it (in fact that what all of us are going to do is part of this predetermined future). In less philosophical language, what will be be, must be.
What do you think she means?December 19, 2022 at 11:51 am #238234
She means we are part of it, not outside observers. What is to happen has antecedents already, and we are among them. Whether our wishes prevail or not, we don’t know. But we must act on them, which is what we do.
Only when we make socialism will we know.
I’m not in a hole. Necessarianism is not fatalism, because we are in the chain of cause and effect, not outside of it.December 19, 2022 at 12:40 pm #238235MooParticipantDecember 19, 2022 at 12:52 pm #238236
What will be will be. No doubt about that.
Or are we to say what will be won’t be?
One is a logical phrase. The other is nonsense.December 19, 2022 at 1:59 pm #238239Lizzie45Participant
Ah yes, the multi-talented Sabine Hossenfelder.December 19, 2022 at 2:45 pm #238240
Here’s another take: I yams what I yam.December 19, 2022 at 5:42 pm #238253Bijou DrainsParticipant
I just tried to explain to my beloved that me droppining her favourite vase and breaking it, couldn’t have happened any other way. I presume that her responding with a swift kick to my bollocks has a similar explanationDecember 19, 2022 at 7:10 pm #238260
Yep. A clear case of her being motivated.December 19, 2022 at 7:16 pm #238262ALBKeymaster
Ok, TS, as you say Sabine Hossenfelder seems to be a “necessitarian” which I see Wikipedia defines as harder than a “hard determinist”:
“Necessitarianism is a metaphysical principle that denies all mere possibility; there is exactly one way for the world to be.… Necessitarianism is stronger than hard determinism, because even the hard determinist would grant that the causal chain constituting the world might have been different as a whole, even though each member of that series could not have been different, given its antecedent causes.”
(Not sure what this distinction is unless it’s that some are saying that the Big Bang could have been different.)
The question is : are you one?
Nobody is saying that humans are outside the universe or are not subject to its laws but that doesn’t commit you to the view that “the whole story of the Universe in every single detail was determined already at the Big Bang. We are just watching it play out.”
That sounds like fatalism to me. In any event, we are not just watching it play out. We are participating in it (even if, on this metaphysical theory, as puppets).
You have described “What will be will be” and “I am what I am” as deep thought but in fact they are just trite truisms. Actually the whole thing is a trite truism which is not going to have any effect of what happens or be of any use in even telling what is going to happen. Even Hossenfelder admits this.
That’s why metaphysics went out with the 18th century (except amongst theologians) was replaced by empirically-based science, in this case neurology.December 19, 2022 at 8:01 pm #238264
I’ve said already that we are not just watching things play out, but are part of them.
I’ll paraphrase Sade and say to you that I am not responsible for my manner of thinking. I cannot change my manner of thinking. I cannot not be as I am. My manner of thinking has evolved with each stage of my life. It is as much part of me as are my organs.
You too cannot change your manner of thinking. Like mine, it may be changed or it may not. Either way, it will continue to be dependent on factors both external and internal. Of the latter, most are unperceived by us. Those of which we perceive their origin have come from conscious experience and learning.
It matters not to me that we hold different positions, which I believe we are bound to. What is important is that we work for socialism, although I consider you and others somewhat deficient in materialism. I will continue, in speaking of Will, to refuse the adjective Free. I will say Will, Volition, and I will continue in daily life to stop everyone who uses the adjective in mid-speech and challenge it, and explain why I challenge it.
I am confident in my materialist position. I also suggest that, if comrades believe in free will, that they drop the barrier to idealists joining the party, so as to be consistent, providing those idealists want world socialism as much as we all do. At least idealists who profess free will are not claiming to be materialists, so I don’t expect the same clarity on the point that I expect from avowed materialists.
So, let’s leave it there.December 19, 2022 at 8:20 pm #238265December 19, 2022 at 8:22 pm #238266
P.B. Shelley.December 19, 2022 at 8:27 pm #238267
Holbach. Scroll to chap. XI.December 19, 2022 at 8:29 pm #238268December 19, 2022 at 8:53 pm #238269
Extracts from The Western Socialist.
By W.C. Currey.
It is claimed by some persons that man has the free and absolute choice in his conduct between several possible alternatives.
That word possible deserves a little attention. Whatever one decides on and does is thereby proved possible. Whatever one does not do is manifestly impossible. It should be clear on this basis alone that whatever one does is the only conceivable “possible.” But before an action takes place it seems to us that there is a variety of possibilities. Why does a man select a particular one? Free will advocates say because he voluntarily chooses to do so.
Everyone of us starts on his human career as a microscopic blob of protoplasm. Even before union, the male part is motile. Has a spermatozoon free will? The developing embryo adds new responses daily. Stimuli excite [the newborn baby] its nervous mechanism and it gives the appropriate response.
From conception to cremation the human animal continues to adjust itself to the compulsions acting on it from within and without.
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