• RepThatMerch22
    55
    My view is that determinism must be true.

    At the most basic level, things happen because they are caused by other things.

    If you roll a pair of dice, the result is not random, but determined by the laws of physics. If you knew all relevant information (e.g. force of throw, distance of throw, angle of throw, nature of surface, etc.), you could figure out what the result would be.

    Take that simple example and apply it to everything. The fact is that you couldn't have all the information to determine what could happen, for example, with human behaviour. But hypothetically if you did, then you would be able to predict it with ease.

    How different are we from ants, really? Ants are just less complex. How different are ants from dice? Think about it.

    Free will must be an illusion. You only do things because something in your brain told you to. If you understood all the chemistry and physics behind the operation of your brain, you would be able to see why you do things.

    Ultimately, the free will vs. determinism debate is useless and probably harmful. If you believe in determinism, people become depressed and feel hopeless because they view themselves as prisoners. From a practical standpoint that isn't a useful way to live a life.

    If you believe in determinism, people will ask what happens of criminals who commit atrocious crimes. Well, that is still determined. Should they bear the blame though? Absolutely - because otherwise civilisation would not work.

    But putting aside morality, etc. -- if you think about this question on the most fundamental cause/effect level, it is undeniable to me that determinism simply MUSt be true. What exactly is truly random? Events in the universe only occur as a result of the operation of physical laws.
  • Rich
    3.2k
    At the most basic level, things happen because they are caused by other things.RepThatMerch22

    Determinism is more than just casual. It claims everything is already determined.

    People make Choices in direction of action based upon experiences (memory). There is a choice (do U move left or right) but outcomes are always undermined because choices are being made everywhere v and there are constraints.
  • Uneducated Pleb
    38
    At the most basic level, things happen because they are caused by other things.RepThatMerch22
    That is a metaphysical claim that can at least be doubted with current evidence. At what is currently thought as the "most basic level", quantum mechanics, there are events which appear to not have a cause. Some reading on quantum mechanics and causation should at least be able to shake the foundation of faith in the stated quote.
  • tom
    1.5k
    My view is that determinism must be true.

    At the most basic level, things happen because they are caused by other things.
    RepThatMerch22

    Since the discovery of quantum entanglement, you can't have determinism and causality; they are incompatible unless you make a radical change to our conception of the Reality.

    Also, results like the Free Will Theorems of Kochen and Conway prove you can't have determinism and causality.

    Free will must be an illusion. You only do things because something in your brain told you to. If you understood all the chemistry and physics behind the operation of your brain, you would be able to see why you do things.RepThatMerch22

    This isn't even true of computers, so I have no idea why you think it is true of brains.
  • darthbarracuda
    2.9k
    Determinism cannot be proven synthetically, as we could never hope to perceive and understand every happening. It also cannot be proven analytically, because it's not obvious a priori that an event always has to have a cause. For instance,
    when you said:

    At the most basic level, things happen because they are caused by other things.

    If you roll a pair of dice, the result is not random, but determined by the laws of physics. If you knew all relevant information (e.g. force of throw, distance of throw, angle of throw, nature of surface, etc.), you could figure out what the result would be.

    Take that simple example and apply it to everything. The fact is that you couldn't have all the information to determine what could happen, for example, with human behaviour. But hypothetically if you did, then you would be able to predict it with ease.
    RepThatMerch22

    You have not really argued for this, but merely asserted that determinism must be true, with its associated consequences.

    The question of determinism, as you seem to understand, is whether we would be able to accurately predict what would happen in the future given we know everything that is currently present.

    All of this being said, however, I do agree with you that determinism, or something very close to it, is likely true. Most of our scientific advances are that of universal law-like tendencies. Science itself has been successful in part because it assumes things do have causes, or explanations, for why they are the way they are. So although empirical evidence can never fully prove that determinism is true, neither can it fully prove that indeterminism is true (as it is with most metaphysical debates). Given the success science has had operating under a deterministic perspective, it seems reasonable to assume that the world operates deterministically, or at the very least under tendencies that do not radically differ whenever.

    The problem with your OP is that you assert that determinism must be true. How are you getting necessity out of empirical observation?
  • Pseudonym
    1.2k
    Since the discovery of quantum entanglement, you can't have determinism and causality; they are incompatible unless you make a radical change to our conception of the Reality.

    Also, results like the Free Will Theorems of Kochen and Conway prove you can't have determinism and causality.
    tom

    No one has proven anything, it is a perfectly legitimately contested theorem

    http://m.oxfordscholarship.com/mobile/view/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199577439.001.0001/acprof-9780199577439-chapter-14

    It requires a belief in set axioms, which some authors believe beg the question.

    Using experiments like this to justify a belief you choose to hold is fine, and if that belief really can no longer be justified then of course we must discard it, but presenting contested results as if they answered the question once and for all doesn't help anyone.
  • tom
    1.5k
    No one has proven anything, it is a perfectly legitimatlt contested theoremPseudonym

    For a start, the incompatibility of determinism and causality is an empirical fact, unless we radically alter our conception of the Reality.

    Secondly, it is proved by the Free Will Theorems precisely that determinism and causality are incompatible with reality.

    Now, you claim that:

    No one has proven anythingPseudonym

    Really? Literally nothing has ever been proven?

    For your information, Kochen is a rather famous mathematical logician, and Conway one of the most famous living mathematicians. They know what they are doing, and know what they have proved. What I claim they have proved, is less than they claim, because I am taking into account the Superdeterministic loophole.
  • BlueBanana
    917
    Take that simple example and apply it to everything.RepThatMerch22

    How about I just don't?

    How different are we from ants, really?RepThatMerch22

    We aren't.

    How different are ants from dice?RepThatMerch22

    Uh, a lot. One is a living being with a free will, one is an object with neither a consciousness nor an ability of any sorts to cause anything or react to anything.
  • Pseudonym
    1.2k


    You're missing the point of what I'm saying entirely. The simple fact is that some equally intelligent people have come to an alternative conclusion, as the paper I cited shows, meaning that nothing has been proven, it has only been theorised.
  • charleton
    1.2k
    Determinism is more than just casual. It claims everything is already determined.Rich

    This implies fatalism which is not true. Nothing is 'already' determined in the sense it is know. Things are determined by antecedent conditions. That does not imply anything 'already'.
    Unless you believe in God.
  • tom
    1.5k
    You're missing the point of what I'm saying entirely. The simple fact is that some equally intelligent people have come to an alternative conclusion, as the paper I cited shows, meaning that nothing has been proven, it has only been theorised.Pseudonym

    Don't be silly! And by the way Bohmianism is refuted by the Free Will Theorem, and Bell, and Kochen-Specker, and experiment.

    And, because you weren't paying attention, allow me to elaborate. I did not claim that the Reality is deterministic, or indeterministic. I did not claim it is causal or acausal.
  • tom
    1.5k
    This implies fatalism which is not true. Nothing is 'already' determined in the sense it is know. Things are determined by antecedent conditions. That does not imply anything 'already'.
    Unless you believe in God.
    charleton

    Or you accept the consequences of General Relativity.
  • Rich
    3.2k
    Precisely. North fatalism or Determinism describes nature. The Mind has choices in the direction it attempts to move.
  • Rich
    3.2k
    Given the success science has had operating under a deterministic perspective, it seems reasonable to assume that the world operates deterministically, or at the very least under tendencies that do not radically differ whenever.darthbarracuda

    If science operated under determinism it v would not be operating. Science has always operated on tendencies it habits that repeat approximately, that is good enough For All Practical Purposes, and in recognizing such, technologists build in necessary fail-safe provisions. Complete failure happens all the time.

    On top of this, current technology is for the most part based on probabilistic tendencies (quantum mechanics), and even the most current security technology is being based upon quantum action at a distance. Determinism never had and never will be party of practical science applications.
  • charleton
    1.2k
    This implies fatalism which is not true. Nothing is 'already' determined in the sense it is know. Things are determined by antecedent conditions. That does not imply anything 'already'.
    Unless you believe in God.
    — charleton

    Or you accept the consequences of General Relativity.
    tom

    How so?
  • charleton
    1.2k
    ↪charleton Precisely. North fatalism or Determinism describes nature. The Mind has choices in the direction it attempts to move.Rich

    No. All choices are determined too. There is no way the brain is outside reality.
    The point I was making is that despite determinism the future is unknown and yet to unfold.
  • charleton
    1.2k
    If science operated under determinism it v would not be operating.Rich

    If it were not for determinism there would be no science at all, only magic.
  • Pseudonym
    1.2k
    Don't be silly!tom

    Oh well, if I'd known that the Oxford University journal was silly I wouldn't have been citing it all these years

    How about this one, specifically stating a model consistent with both causality and local determinism.

    https://www.google.co.uk/url?q=http://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1742-6596/504/1/012015/pdf&sa=U&ved=0ahUKEwjTy6rS4N_YAhUCI8AKHVbxC2YQFggjMAY&usg=AOvVaw3_v7Q0Jr37DuqRGIeAsw9d

    Let me if this one's silly too, maybe by process of elimination well end up with a set of respected journals we can actually trust.
  • Rich
    3.2k
    What exactly in this article gives you hope for Determinism? That someone else shares your hope? The article says nothing new other than suggesting that possibility, sometime in the future, something new might be experimentally tested and discovered. Well, Determinists have been holding it for this hope for 100 years and certainly they can continue. However, at this point, there is not a shred of evidence supporting Determinism. It remains a belief by some who hold for a some reason that I can't phantom. But to each his/her own. Fatalism appeals to many and manifests in many forms.

    BTW, his analysis of migrating butterflies was a bit silly.
  • tom
    1.5k
    Oh well, if I'd known that the Oxford University journal was silly I wouldn't have been citing it all these yearsPseudonym

    Now you are jumping the shark. You don't even read the papers you cite, let alone comprehend them. If you did you wouldn't cite them!

    Allow me to repeat: I have not claimed that QM is deterministic or indeterministic. Can you understand that?
  • BlueBanana
    917
    Allow me to repeat: I have not claimed that QM is deterministic or indeterministic. Can you understand that?tom

    Nothing he said implies otherwise, however you have claimed that the universe is not both determinisric and causal.
  • BlueBanana
    917
    What exactly in this article gives you hope for Determinism?Rich

    Why do you assume it does? It was merely meant to be an example of what might be true.
  • BlueBanana
    917
    No. All choices are determined too. There is no way the brain is outside reality.charleton

    According to determinism.
  • Rich
    3.2k
    Right. It is a nice story.
  • tom
    1.5k
    How so?charleton

    Well, you claimed, based on no argument, that fatalism isn't true. In which case General Relativity is not going to work for you, you are going to need a new theory. GR is fatalistic.

    Quantum mechanics is also compatible with fatalism, which is called Superdeterminism in that field.
  • BlueBanana
    917
    If it were not for determinism there would be no science at all, only magic.charleton

    1) Magic could be deterministic.
    2) Scientific method requires neither determinism nor causality, they are results of it.
  • BlueBanana
    917
    GR is fatalistic.tom

    How so? Afaik it's just deterministic.
  • bahman
    527
    That is a metaphysical claim that can at least be doubted with current evidence. At what is currently thought as the "most basic level", quantum mechanics, there are events which appear to not have a cause. Some reading on quantum mechanics and causation should at least be able to shake the foundation of faith in the stated quote.Uneducated Pleb

    Yes. we can start a chain of causality if a particle can do it. We know it internally.
  • charleton
    1.2k
    No. All choices are determined too. There is no way the brain is outside reality.
    — charleton

    According to determinism.
    BlueBanana

    Determinism is a fact of the universe it does not have an opinion. It's true whether you believe it or not.
  • charleton
    1.2k
    1) Magic could be deterministic.BlueBanana

    There's no such thing as magic.
  • charleton
    1.2k
    Well, you claimed, based on no argument, that fatalism isn't true. In which case General Relativity is not going to work for you, you are going to need a new theory. GR is fatalistic.tom

    You did not even begin to answer my question.
    And you seem to be confusing Relativity with QM.
    I shall not hold my breath. LOL
bold
italic
underline
strike
code
quote
ulist
image
url
mention
reveal
youtube
tweet
Add a Comment

Welcome to The Philosophy Forum!

Get involved in philosophical discussions about knowledge, truth, language, consciousness, science, politics, religion, logic and mathematics, art, history, and lots more. No ads, no clutter, and very little agreement — just fascinating conversations.