[extropy-chat] Best To Regard Free Will as Existing

John K Clark jonkc at att.net
Fri Apr 6 16:20:16 UTC 2007

Samantha Atkins Wrote:

>So you agree that free will consists only in the fact that we don't know
> what we're going to do until we do it? A digression: does God
> have free will?

No. For the mind to totally understand itself it must form a perfect
internal model of itself. The model must not only describe the
rest of the mind in every detail but it must also depict the
model itself with a micro model. This micro model must represent
the rest of the brain and the micro model itself with a micro
micro model. This path leads to an impossible infinite regress.
Both the brain and the model must be made up of a finite number
of elements. If we are not to lose accuracy the components of
the brain must have a one to one correspondence with the elements
of the model. But this is impossible because the brain as a whole
must have more members than the part that is just the model.

This argument does not hold if the mind is infinite, that is if
it has an infinite number of segments. It would be possible to
find a one to one correspondence with a proper subset of itself;
for example you CAN find a one to one correspondence between
the set of odd integers with the set of all integers. Thus an
infinite intellect could predict all its actions without error.

So humans have free will but GOD if SHE exists does not.

> So now you want to talk about invisible unicorns?
> I rest my case regarding the merits of this topic.

The topic has merit because a misunderstanding of it has caused gross 
confusion in philosophy and absurdities in criminal law; but that's not to 
say all the posts on this list on the subject have had merit.

  John K Clark

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