I have Free Will?

I have free will, to choose, to do, to think… Don’t I?

Day by day, hour by hour I make decisions.
I look at the options, weigh up the alternatives, measure the tangibles and feel my desires, then I make a decision because…

I have Free Will!! I do! I can feel myself make the decision.
Don’t I?

It’s how it feels to me.

As I make any decision, from if I should have my fifth coffee for the day to which colour to have my new hovercraft in, I have the Free Will to make my decision based on my desires and judgements. This is how it feels to me, Damn it! I have Free Will.

Maybe there is no free will.

I’ve read, watched and listened to a variety of publications explaining, with well referenced examples of the falsehood of our beliefs in Free Will. Recently I downloaded a copy of Free Will by Sam Harris which I will happily admit, I’m a little nervous to start reading.

Knowing the falsehood of Free Will.

I’ve lived my whole life living in a society which says I have the ability to create any future I desire simply by making a decision, then acting on it. This doesn’t seem to be the case and the reverse is true.

What seems to be happening is I’m acting out a life based on the cascade of events which has lead me to this moment and any decision I make is based on the sum total of all the previous events in my existence. I have no choice but to act as I am. Therefore I have no free will, just the illusion of it.

The real issue isn’t, do I have or not have Free Will, but more, how do I deal with the intelligent understanding of the reality of ‘No Free Will’. I feel like I can make a decision using Free Will and determine the things in my life, to have some control and sense of order over it. But this seems to be a falsehood and contradictory to the reality of ‘No Free Will’.

How do I reconcile this?

I don’t know but I think it’s about Acceptance and I hope to inspire that.

As we develop this site I’m intending to delve deeper and deeper into this topic, to explore what’s going on and how that impacts us on our normal every day routine along with the major challenges in life.
Stay tuned 🙂

 

{ 4 comments… add one }
  • Ashcroft Harrison 12 March, 2013, 5:28 PM

    If, as you say, that ‘The real issue isn’t, do I have or not have Free Will …’, then surely the acceptance you refer to must be the acceptance that you will never really know for sure if you do or do not. My question, then, is, ‘how would it affect you either way if you definitely knew either way that you did or did not have free will?’

    My take is that there seems/feels to be a certain resignation in the notion that there is no free will. It is in the direction of giving up on life, almost. And although at times this can be a release that may invite change, as a way of living it does not encompass the sense of passion or creativity, for example.

    On the other hand, there is definitely a big responsibility if you do have free will. It means that yes, you are the one that is responsible for the way your life is. That may be scary, but it is full, interesting, expansive, and something that seems worth living for to me.

    Reply
  • David Yerle 12 March, 2013, 5:33 PM

    One way to see it is you don’t have intentions: you perceive intentions.

    Reply
  • K 3 April, 2013, 1:04 AM

    I think “free will” can be understood as a condition or state in which one may act. Whether motivated by theological, cosmological, or practical reasons, the desire and/or capability to act is always conditioned. In what ways and to what degree these conditions are understood, realized, accepted, rejected, or rationalized is the basis of action. In other words, action is always colorized by perceived liberty. That I will buy a Big Mac because I want to (e.g., “free will”) should not be mistaken for I will buy a Big Mac (after viewing hundreds of hours of suggestive advertising) (e.g, “free” will).

    Reply
  • Jaye 8 April, 2013, 8:22 AM

    Happy to trade Free Will for Free Wifi any day…..

    Self-determinism is overrated.

    Reply

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