• lepriçok
    44
    The classical theory of freedom views it as free will which further on is the ability/right to freely choose. This principle can be transferred to the metaphysical level, discussing if there are metaphysical causes adverse to free choice. Metaphysical entities are not obvious and we can only speculate if they have or don't have real effect on our choices. Empirical causes are obvious and our free or forced choice is evident to every person. So my question is, which point of view is more important in libertarianism. Should libertarianism be metaphysical or empirical. How this distinction is related to the question of religion, and is it necessary for libertarians to be atheists. The opposite to freedom empirically is dependence, slavery. Are we slaves to God as well? Is it good or we should rebel?
  • Fine Doubter
    97
    The universe is only semi-deterministic as there is so much contingency everywhere. Ayer pointed out that an obstacle to free will is constraint, not "determinism". I attach huge importance to freedom of religion and to you changing yours as often as you want. My advice is if you want to have one, don't choose one whose God regards you as a slave - either in its sources or the careless image projected by prominent operatives.
  • Terrapin Station
    13.3k
    The classical theory of freedom views it as free will which further on is the ability/right to freely choose. This principle can be transferred to the metaphysical level, discussing if there are metaphysical causes adverse to free choice. Metaphysical entities are not obvious and we can only speculate if they have or don't have real effect on our choices. Empirical causes are obvious and our free or forced choice is evident to every person. So my question is, which point of view is more important in libertarianism. Should libertarianism be metaphysical or empirical. How this distinction is related to the question of religion, and is it necessary for libertarians to be atheists. The opposite to freedom empirically is dependence, slavery. Are we slaves to God as well? Is it good or we should rebel?lepriçok

    I don't understand how you're using the terms "metaphysical" and "empirical." It doesn't seem to resemble how I use those terms or what I'd say conventional usage is in an academic context.
  • lepriçok
    44
    I don't understand how you're using the terms "metaphysical" and "empirical." It doesn't seem to resemble how I use those terms or what I'd say conventional usage is in an academic context.Terrapin Station

    My usage should be obvious - there is a physical world and a metaphysical one. The physical world is sensory, or empirical, whereas metaphysical is supersensory. Philosophers argue what these two realities are, but, in a broad understanding, empirical is what we see, hear and feel and metaphysical is the unseen. Causes may be empirical that is seen, heard and felt and metaphysical arising from deeper layers of reality. These deeper layers are soul, God, entities etc. So free will can be fettered by obvious empirical causes and there could be invisible shackles. Therefore if we, for instance, believe that we empirically are not constrained, we may be not free in a deeper sense. The discussion would be, if this deeper understanding of freedom is important to libertarianism. Or should we be satisfied by illusion.
  • Terrapin Station
    13.3k
    My usage should be obvious - there is a physical world and a metaphysical one. The physical world is sensory, or empirical, whereas metaphysical is supersensory. Philosophers argue what these two realities arelepriçok

    That's not actually the academic philosophical usage of "metaphysics" by the way.

    But okay, so you're using "metaphysics" in some kind of mystical "beyond physics"/"transcendental" sense.

    So what does it mean to say that we can "transfer" something like the freedom issue to "the metaphysical level," and what would metaphysical causality be (in other words, what would a specific example of it be)?
  • lepriçok
    44
    The universe is only semi-deterministic as there is so much contingency everywhere. Ayer pointed out that an obstacle to free will is constraint, not "determinism".Fine Doubter

    Freedom, I think, is an inherent property of consciousness that could be defined as a relation between an area and a line drawn through it. Our consciousness is information transformed into a surface or a picture, representing reality. Our body moves in it as a line. Freedom is the ability to choose a trajectory in the area, which is based on our will. The area could be not only space, but also possibilities, an abundance of which makes us choose one or two, however we cannot choose everything at once. Therefore, here too we have a certain trajectory of choices in our life. This is freedom if we are not made or forced to choose certain trajectories. However, choices are influenced not only by external empirical factors, but also by internal, metaphysical ones. Firstly, because choices are constructs of our deep brain. Thus a question arises if they can be considered 'free'.
  • Terrapin Station
    13.3k


    Here's a recent post of mine explaining the standard academic philosophical definition of metaphysics, by the way:

    https://thephilosophyforum.com/discussion/comment/317325
  • lepriçok
    44
    So what does it mean to say that we can "transfer" something like the freedom issue to "the metaphysical level," and what would metaphysical causality be (in other words, what would a specific example of it be)?Terrapin Station

    Simply put, there are two general types of causality - energy shifts and will. Energy can have a simple form or a complex structure processing information and computing. The shifts in energy manifest in forces that act on one another. The other case is will, which is a psychological construct which may have some underlying energy structure. So beyond the empirical reality we have unseen forces that have not only a simple form, but also a more complex one. Especially, if there are living entities that are some sort of transcendental wills. So we may have unseen circumstances around us like a multivector of forces of energy and unseen willing subjects like in religion God, gods, demons, spirits, souls etc. if we believe in them. We are parts of the whole and the question is what's the relation between them, determined, free or mixed.
  • lepriçok
    44
    Here's a recent post of mine explaining the standard academic philosophical definition of metaphysics, by the way:Terrapin Station

    So where, in your opinion, these first principles reside? Has being or existence layers that are beyond physics? Doesn't theology discuss things that ar 'supernatural' in a mystical/mysterious way? My question about freedom asks about its first principles, its existence and its relation to God in a theological manner. This is metaphysics of freedom, as opposed to the empirical one, which is related to violence, control and surveillance in modern society.
  • Terrapin Station
    13.3k


    I'm probably not going to understand this, because I'm a physicalist/materialist who doesn't buy any sort of nonphysical stuff, mystical stuff, "transcendental" stuff etc. It all seems incredibly incoherent to me.

    With that in mind though, you're positing some sort of "metaphysical" energy?

    I don't even buy that there can be energy "on its own," by the way. Energy obtains via the relative motion of physical objects.

    (And as another "warning," most "information" talk strikes me as a bunch of gobbledygook.)

    So where, in your opinion, these first principles reside?lepriçok

    Personally I don't buy that anything like that obtains extramentally. I'm an antirealist on logic and mathematics, with respect to the standard ways those fields are instantiated. I think there are real relations, and that to some extent is what the foundations of logic and mathematics are based on, but those real relations are not identical to logic and mathematics, which is a mental construction we create.

    Has being or existence layers that are beyond physics?lepriçok

    I like to warn against conflation with the discipline of physics per se. What I'd say is that there's nothing beyond the physical. "The physical" is not the same thing as the discipline of physics, although obviously there's a connection there.
  • lepriçok
    44
    (And as another "warning," most "information" talk strikes me as a bunch of gobbledygook.)Terrapin Station

    In that case, what is your opinion from your point of view. What is free will, if we have one. Is it important? Do libertarians talk nonsense, especially, the 'metaphysical/religious' ones? What are we?
  • Terrapin Station
    13.3k
    What is free will, if we have one.lepriçok

    Free will obtains via the fact that the world is not strongly deterministic. The standard view in the sciences, by the way, is that the world is not strongly deterministic, where that's been the standard view for over 150 years now, but somehow the message isn't getting through. In online forums like this, everyone still seems to think that it's the early 1800s and they're supporting Laplace for president. (See "Laplace's demon" if you don't know what I'm talking about.)

    (The above isn't to suggest that the standard view in the sciences is ever correct because it's the standard view. The idea is rather than the "there is no free will" crowd always wants to appeal to it being a standard view or implication of the sciences that there is no free will. That's wrong, though. The "there is no free will" crowd should have looked at what was going on in the sciences after the mid-1800s.)

    So free will is will phenomena--the phenomena of conscious "directedness," decision-making, etc. (consciousness being properties of brains), where we're able to exploit the fact that the world isn't strongly deterministic by biasing probabilities of one option we're considering versus other options, in a dynamic way, until at decision-point, we bias the probability we're going with at 1 (or 100%).
  • lepriçok
    44
    @Terrapin Station
    This reductionist view is rather weak for my liking. There are lots of arguments, but simply put the structure is 1(entire reality 2(our knowledge, constructs and suppositions)). For 1 - it is my 'meta', for 2 - your reductionist materialism. If 1 and 2 is 100%, 1 would make 70% and 2 would make 30%. Our scientific 30% is a load of delusions and wrong speculations, despite that they may be effective. While the first part, the unknown hides all the answers to the mystery of reality, of which science understands nothing.
  • Isaac
    1.3k
    the "there is no free will" crowd always wants to appeal to it being a standard view or implication of the sciences that there is no free will.Terrapin Station

    That's because it completely is the standard view of the sciences, when it comes to brain function.

    Although brains obey quantum mechanics, they do not seem to exploit any of its special features. Molecular machines, such as the light-amplifying components of photoreceptors, pre- and post-synaptic receptors and the voltage- and ligand-gated channel proteins that span cellular membranes and underpin neuronal excitability, are so large that they can be treated as classical objects. — Koch C., Hepp K. (2006). Quantum mechanics in the brain. Nature
  • NOS4A2
    1.1k


    I believe libertarianism should be about physical constraints to liberty, ie chains and shackles, but also about threats to liberty, ie. coercion. Religion would fall under the latter, even if there is no physical impediment to liberty.
  • lepriçok
    44
    The point of the subject was to relate the question of freedom, free will to the problem of political order. Libertarianism should assume the narrower, reductionist understanding or the broader, 'metaphysical' one? Which is more appropriate in our days? Or is it just an illusory, impossible ideology?

    @NOS4A2
    I reject any kind of coercion - science and atheists also use it. Isn't the ideology of absolute truth a coercion? For instance, many scientists believe that they are 100% truth.
  • NOS4A2
    1.1k


    The point of the subject was to relate the question of freedom, free will to the problem of political order. Libertarianism should assume the narrower, reductionist understanding or the broader, 'metaphysical' one? Which is more appropriate in our days? Or is it just an illusory, impossible ideology?

    I think “libertarianism” (personally, not a fan of the label) should assume all of it, at least insofar as liberty and freedom is the guiding principle beneath the ideology. Freedom, I think, is appropriate in every setting, from politics to metaphysics, because in its absence is always some form or other of slavery.
  • Isaac
    1.3k
    also about threats to liberty, ie. coercion. Religion would fall under the latter, even if there is no physical impediment to liberty.NOS4A2

    How is coercion (even if there is no physical impediment) count as a threat to liberty when speech has no causal effect?
  • lepriçok
    44
    I don't even buy that there can be energy "on its own," by the way. Energy obtains via the relative motion of physical objects.
    (And as another "warning," most "information" talk strikes me as a bunch of gobbledygook.)
    Terrapin Station

    I don't claim that there's energy on its own, energy is a state of matter - kinetic and potential, which materializes in motion. Information is also much more than 'gobbledygook', it also is a state of matter, like transfer of form through space, processing of morphisms, their representation etc.
    Will is a state of mental matter, which is made of information processing, decision and physical action. I don't consider it serious to claim that the speculative subatomic/atomic/molecular theory of matter is sufficient and exhaustive. It is rather lacking in many respects, as it doesn't explain many phenomena fully and satisfactorily, like consciousness, mind, genetic processes, qualities of perception.
    If we assume that qualities are more fundamental than quantities, all quantitative science is rubbish. This would imply that the path mathematics+physics and everything they derive is wrong, as it distorts the true nature of our reality. Freedom is more correctly understood through empirical observation, and some sort of metaphysical/religious interpretation, which implants entities rather than numbers into the concept of matter. Matter as a swarm of bits and units is unrealistic, this view is not productive discussing free will and freedom. The concept of probability doesn't help here a bit.
  • Terrapin Station
    13.3k


    Huh? :razz:

    Every claim there seems very confused and/or incoherent to me.
  • Terrapin Station
    13.3k
    That's because it completely is the standard view of the sciences, when it comes to brain function.Isaac

    If only that were what I was referring to (for one).

    Also, if only the idea were just about quantum mechanics.

    Yet another moronic response from you that demonstrates an inability to read/comprehend what you're reading very well.
  • Terrapin Station
    13.3k
    simply put the structure is 1(entire reality 2(our knowledge, constructs and suppositions)). For 1 - it is my 'meta', for 2 - your reductionist materialism. If 1 and 2 is 100%,lepriçok

    Again huh? That doesn't seem "simply put." It seems like pretty gobbledygooky with a bunch of assumptions (including re just what I'm claiming) that aren't justifiable.
  • Isaac
    1.3k
    If only that were what I was referring to (for one).

    Also, if only the idea were just about quantum mechanics.
    Terrapin Station

    Oh dear. Its never not about you and your ideas is it? Read my post and tell me where my response has anything whatsoever to do with what your crazy ideas are or are not about.
  • NOS4A2
    1.1k


    How is coercion (even if there is no physical impediment) count as a threat to liberty when speech has no causal effect?

    The threat of jail or punishment is not the same as being thrown in jail or punishment, but it no less indicates a possible future.
  • Terrapin Station
    13.3k
    Oh dear. Its never not about you and your ideas is it? Read my post and tell me where my response has anything whatsoever to do with what your crazy ideas are or are not about.Isaac

    What a dumb response. You quoted me and responded as if you were disagreeing with what I said. But your comment didn't actually address what I said.
  • lepriçok
    44
    Again huh? That doesn't seem "simply put." It seems like pretty gobbledygooky with a bunch of assumptions (including re just what I'm claiming) that aren't justifiable.Terrapin Station

    This time put squarely, I can tell you what's really gobbledygooky https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_equations_in_quantum_mechanics

    A pretty load, huh?

    Can you justify that? Or somebody told you? I know there's 'probability'...
  • Isaac
    1.3k
    The threat of jail or punishment is not the same as being thrown in jail or punishment, but it no less indicates a possible future.NOS4A2

    So what. It can't be an actual imposition on liberty because is has no causal effect. It's only a imposition on liberty if I believe the threat, so why don't I just not believe it and then no problem. Seems like it's all the fault of the listener constraining their own liberty by choosing to believe threats.
  • Isaac
    1.3k
    You quoted me and responded as if you were disagreeing with what I said. But your comment didn't actually address what I said.Terrapin Station

    I literally quoted the bit I was responding to, which was a claim about the beliefs of the ""there is no free will" crowd", specifically that they consider causal determinism with regards to decision-making capacities in the brain to be the standard scientific consensus when it isn't.

    I am one of the "there is no free will" crowd and I don't believe in causal determinism with regards to brain activity simply because I haven't looked at anything which has happened in science since the 1800s. I believe in causal determinism with regards to brain activity because it is a widely held view among a large proportion of modern scientists that the elements involved in brain activity are large enough to be treated as classical objects, as specified, word for word, in the quote I cited. Classical objects are those for which
    If the present state of an object is known it is possible to predict by the laws of classical mechanics how it will move in the future (determinism) and how it has moved in the past (reversibility).
  • NOS4A2
    1.1k


    So what. It can't be an actual imposition on liberty because is has no causal effect. It's only a imposition on liberty if I believe the threat, so why don't I just not believe it and then no problem. Seems like it's all the fault of the listener constraining their own liberty by choosing to believe threats.

    Good point. The listener essentially gives up his liberty to preserve his life. You don’t have to believe the threat if you don’t want to, you can still say “so what” and do nothing, but the threat is evidence someone might use force on you.
  • Isaac
    1.3k


    So why do you think libertarianism should be about threats to liberty when such threats do not in any way constrain the liberty of the listener?
  • alcontali
    702
    How this distinction is related to the question of religion, and is it necessary for libertarians to be atheists.lepriçok

    It really depends on whether there exists a list of forbidden behaviours. For example:

    Some right-libertarians consider the non-aggression principle to be a core part of their beliefs.

    That sounds very much like defining a forbidden behaviour. A moral system that has just one rule is pretty much surely incomplete. In such trivial system, it will not be possible to determine for any possible behaviour if it is moral or immoral. Therefore, you can expect the users of such trivial moral system to fall back on a real moral system that will be lurking somewhere in the back and that will be the true source providing answers in morality.

    For example, you will find that atheists in the West tend to implicitly fall back on rules provided by Christianity. So, what they believe in, is not really "no rules" or "atheism" but some badly-defined, crippled system of implicitly-assumed but not well-understood Christianity. The real stuff tends to be more consistent. Still, I personally admire the incredible consistency of Islamic law which in my opinion defeats the much, much weaker consistency of Christianity.

    Are we slaves to God as well?lepriçok

    Only if you choose to be.

    Still, choosing not to be, has consequences.

    Someone will make the rules, and if it is not God, then it will most likely be a mafia cartel of banksters that controls the local legislature by hacking and subverting the voting circus. In that case, you will inevitably become the slave of that bankstering mafia. At that point, being a slave to God does not look so bad anymore. On the contrary, God won't suck you dry by requiring you to hand over evermore taxes to be used by the indebted State for evergrowing interest payments to the bankstering cartel.

    Is it good or we should rebel?lepriçok

    If you rebel against God by rejecting his law, then the alternative will invariably be even worse. Still, you are perfectly allowed to do that. You can happily enjoy the misery of your own choice, why not?

    I personally like quite a few principles of libertarianism. I have a profound distrust for State power and the State in general. I am an avid user of bitcoin. Furthermore, I only use free (and open-source) software. I am a tor user, and I am deeply invested in cryptography. However, I still recognize that libertarianism is not a complete moral system. It is not the complete answer.
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.