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Old 07-23-2009, 11:50 PM #1
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Determinism?

Can't afford the $30 it costs to search.

Been doing some thinking recently about determinism, and cannot seem to find a logical reason why it isn't so.

The way I figure, we as humans are a product of our environment and our genetics, neither of which we control. Each decision we make is based off a variety of factors of which we do not control. All of these factors come from other preceding factors which caused them, all again outside our control. So in a sense, it seems like our lives were determined the moment they began, because the circumstances of our birth were predetermined and we are in totality a product of those circumstances.

In other words, because of how you were born and raised and now live, you were/are gonna do the things you do and you were/are gonna decide how you decide because things happened before you could do anything about them that caused you to do those things and make those decisions.

This is disregarding any divine influence of any sort, and I don't really wanna hear about the quantum uncertainties at the atomic level, I'm talking about about a realizable scope here. I know this is a pretty dry world view, and I'd like to be convinced that I'm wrong, so I'm looking for a bit of help in that category.
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Old 07-24-2009, 12:03 AM #2
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Quantum uncertainities play a role though. Chemical processes within the brain depend on quantum mechanics, so it is applicable to your question.
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Old 07-24-2009, 12:09 AM #3
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Is there any other relatable argument? I assume that under perfect circumstances a true duplication of a situation will yield the same results as the original, but I realize that such phenomenon might render that assumption false.

But even considering the quarks and **** randomly bouncing around ****ing my **** up, it still holds that none of our decisions and direction are really within our grasp, thus leaving the stipulation that we are not in true control of our lives holding tentatively true and thus making our existences deterministic in that sense.
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Old 07-24-2009, 12:20 AM #4
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Quantum uncertainities play a role though. Chemical processes within the brain depend on quantum mechanics, so it is applicable to your question.
Quantum uncertainties just relieve causal determinism.
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Old 07-24-2009, 12:40 AM #5
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Been doing some thinking recently about determinism, and cannot seem to find a logical reason why it isn't so.
Please do me a favor. If you do find a logical argument for cause and effect, let me know! Sounds like I'm in the same boat you're.
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Old 07-24-2009, 01:08 AM #6
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Please do me a favor. If you do find a logical argument for cause and effect, let me know! Sounds like I'm in the same boat you're.
he presented his logical argument
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Old 07-24-2009, 01:22 AM #7
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he presented his logical argument
Sigh...

No, that's not what I meant...

I'm talking about an argument FOR the discussion at hand, (determinism) stating otherwise in equal fashion. Obviously, (being that you're new) you haven't been reading my other posts throughout this sub-forum
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Old 07-24-2009, 06:12 AM #8
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Old 07-26-2009, 05:50 PM #9
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I'm talking about an argument FOR the discussion at hand, (determinism) stating otherwise in equal fashion. Obviously, (being that you're new) you haven't been reading my other posts throughout this sub-forum
Could a being that knew everything, every tiny little aspect of every single thing that was going on in the universe, he could predict the future, no? This is onew of the general arguments made by determinists.

A smaller example is flipping a coin. If we knew the exact force and angle with which the flip was made, the air currents in the room, and the density and angle of the surface the coin was going to land on, we could calculate whether it would land on heads or tails.

The point is that there seem to be laws that govern the aspects of the physical world, which is where the ideas of determinism and cause itself come from. Causation requires laws (Hume).
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Old 07-26-2009, 09:00 PM #10
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Could a being that knew everything, every tiny little aspect of every single thing that was going on in the universe, he could predict the future, no? This is onew of the general arguments made by determinists.
Huh?

Can you please reword that portion of your post please? I can only make out half (at best) of what you're trying to address

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A smaller example is flipping a coin. If we knew the exact force and angle with which the flip was made, the air currents in the room, and the density and angle of the surface the coin was going to land on, we could calculate whether it would land on heads or tails.

The point is that there seem to be laws that govern the aspects of the physical world, which is where the ideas of determinism and cause itself come from. Causation requires laws (Hume).
I'm not sure of where you're going w/ this, contrast to mine. Are you for or against determinism? It sounds very much like you're for, and are subsequently trying to explain to me the working nature of its philosophy, in gist -- in attempt to eradicate mine? The question I have, is what's there to disagree w/ me on? Please, I'm open to discussion

I'm not against Nomological (cause and effect) determinism. I'm for it, w/ the exception of their being a, "God" as the source to all things, physically. I believe we exist within a realm fully governed by physical law, w/ the disagreement that anything supernatural or divine exists. I can only perceive what's in fact in front of me; I believe reading into any other possibility is inexcusable until rational arguments are formed in support of its cause. Divine intervention is a plausible theory, but I don't feel there's sufficient data to accept that when our lives are literally on the line. Basically, claiming 50/50 odds on the matter is (to me) clearly pressumptious; therefore, rollin' the dice (quite frankly) is a risk I'm not willing to take. If, I were to ever have, "faith" on an incomplete concept, I would first require a known fact to base that faith on. Personally, I don't think that's a whole lot to ask for...
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Old 07-26-2009, 09:04 PM #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aaron5604 View Post
Huh?

Can you please reword that portion of your post please? I can only make out half (at best) of what you're trying to address
He's talking about Laplace's Demon, a theoretical "demon" who could predict the future because it knows every physical interaction occurring in the entire universe.

I agree with the rest of your post though.
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Old 07-26-2009, 09:23 PM #12
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Huh?

Can you please reword that portion of your post please? I can only make out half (at best) of what you're trying to address



I'm not sure of where you're going w/ this, contrast to mine. Are you for or against determinism? It sounds very much like you're for, and are subsequently trying to explain to me the working nature of its philosophy, in gist -- in attempt to eradicate mine? The question I have, is what's there to disagree w/ me on? Please, I'm open to discussion

I'm not against Nomological (cause and effect) determinism. I'm for it, w/ the exception of their being a, "God" as the source to all things, physically. I believe we exist within a realm fully governed by physical law, w/ the disagreement that anything supernatural or divine exists. I can only perceive what's in fact in front of me; I believe reading into any other possibility is inexcusable until rational arguments are formed in support of its cause. Divine intervention is a plausible theory, but I don't feel there's sufficient data to accept that when our lives are literally on the line. Basically, claiming 50/50 odds on the matter is (to me) clearly pressumptious; therefore, rollin' the dice (quite frankly) is a risk I'm not willing to take. If, I were to ever have, "faith" on an incomplete concept, I would first require a known fact to base that faith on. Personally, I don't think that's a whole lot to ask for...
Didn't you ask for an argument for determinism? That's what I gave. I'm pro-determinism (for the time being), I was just going more into the working nature of its philosophy like you said. Not trying to eradicate your ideas.

The point of Laplace's demon is that it seems like a being with such powers could perfectly predict the future. If that's true, then determinism must be true, i.e, the conditions and aspects of a point and time depend completely on the conditions and aspects of the preceding point in time. This is all based on physical laws because without laws there can be no causation.
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Old 07-26-2009, 09:49 PM #13
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He's talking about Laplace's Demon, a theoretical "demon" who could predict the future because it knows every physical interaction occurring in the entire universe.

I agree with the rest of your post though.
Alright, I appreciate the response

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Didn't you ask for an argument for determinism? That's what I gave. I'm pro-determinism (for the time being), I was just going more into the working nature of its philosophy like you said. Not trying to eradicate your ideas.
Sigh...

No.

My appologies for my first post being a little unclear. My second post although should of legitimized the context (meaning) of the first. I'm not searching for an argument that supports determinism (cause and effect.) I'm searching for one that retaliates in equal fashion, the same as the OP.

In other words: I was agreeing 100% w/ the OP. If there's still confusion lingering after having read this, then just leave it at that. There is, and has never been any ongoing dispute against determinism ANYWHERE in this sub-forum from me. I would of figured that much would of cleared the first post, but obviously I was wrong.

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The point of Laplace's demon is that it seems like a being with such powers could perfectly predict the future. If that's true, then determinism must be true, i.e, the conditions and aspects of a point and time depend completely on the conditions and aspects of the preceding point in time. This is all based on physical laws because without laws there can be no causation.
Eh, (to be honest) sounds like fiction to me, more so than the bible.
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Old 07-27-2009, 02:13 AM #14
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If you do find a logical argument for cause and effect, let me know!
This is what confused me because I was reading fast. "A logical argument for cause and effect" sounds like a pro-determinism argument. My bad I guess.

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I'm not searching for an argument that supports determinism (cause and effect.) I'm searching for one that retaliates in equal fashion, the same as the OP.




Eh, (to be honest) sounds like fiction to me, more so than the bible.
Quantum mechanics is the only empirically based argument against determinism. I'm assuming you're familiar with quantum physics/mechanics and its implications and I don't have to explain to you why it refutes determinism.

To bolded: I'm not sure if you were joking, but if you weren't then you simply misunderstood the thought experiment.
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Old 07-27-2009, 04:10 AM #15
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To bolded: I'm not sure if you were joking, but if you weren't then you simply misunderstood the thought experiment.
No, I wasn't joking. However:

I wasn't specifically referring to the gist idea of an existing origin, but the wording the guy chose to use in describing his philosophy, as a mathematician. Perhaps it's just me, but the word, "intellect" (among others) in his famous quote gives off the impressions of that of another divine 'being.'

As far as Quantum mechanics is concerned, I've only researched the very basic understandings of the issue. I haven't gone into depth as to what it entails exactly, not yet at least...
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Old 07-27-2009, 03:17 PM #16
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No, I wasn't joking. However:

I wasn't specifically referring to the gist idea of an existing origin, but the wording the guy chose to use in describing his philosophy, as a mathematician. Perhaps it's just me, but the word, "intellect" (among others) in his famous quote gives off the impressions of that of another divine 'being.'

As far as Quantum mechanics is concerned, I've only researched the very basic understandings of the issue. I haven't gone into depth as to what it entails exactly, not yet at least...

Sorry if this is becoming redundant, but the actual existence or even possibility of a being like Laplace's demon has nothing to do with his argument. Perhaps you already know that and I'm misreading you. If so I appologize.

In the quantum world, as far as we can tell, things seem to be smeared out as opposed to solid, distinct, and stable as they are in our world. We cannot know the velocity and position of an electron at the the same time for instance. It's not that our observational abilities are the problem (seemingly) but that electrons and other elementary particles only exist as probability functions or waves, rather than solid matter. In quantum theory, every possible event actually occurs, and we are simply located at the point of one of those occurrances. A die rolled, for instance, actually lands on all six sides, it also falls off the table, it also spontaneously combusts. Every single possibility occurs, we are simply in the world where it has landed on "3" let's say. Look up "Schrodinger's Cat."

edit: One extremely strange thing about the quantum world is that every time we try to observe or measure one of these "particles" acting like a wave, the wave function collapses and it behaves like a particle again.

String theory or M-theory proposes that elementary particles like electrons and quarks are actually 1-dimensional strings that vibrate at various frequencies (appearing as a different particle depending on the frequency), and so elementary particles are actually little "loops." And all of this and the rest of the universe exist in 11-dimensional hyperspace. I can hardly claim to understand even a small percentage of it.

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Old 07-27-2009, 03:59 PM #17
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The way I figure, we as humans are a product of our environment and our genetics, neither of which we control. Each decision we make is based off a variety of factors of which we do not control. All of these factors come from other preceding factors which caused them, all again outside our control. So in a sense, it seems like our lives were determined the moment they began, because the circumstances of our birth were predetermined and we are in totality a product of those circumstances.

In other words, because of how you were born and raised and now live, you were/are gonna do the things you do and you were/are gonna decide how you decide because things happened before you could do anything about them that caused you to do those things and make those decisions.
Free Will?
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Old 07-27-2009, 04:39 PM #18
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Read it again.
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Old 07-27-2009, 09:59 PM #19
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Sorry if this is becoming redundant, but the actual existence or even possibility of a being like Laplace's demon has nothing to do with his argument. Perhaps you already know that and I'm misreading you. If so I appologize.
No, you're fine...

Basically, (using my own words here) my interpretation was that, "Laplace's demon" acts as an origin (or his words, "intellect") in providing every means necessary in predicting even the slightest/tiniest detail from the past and present in order to perfectly orchestrate the future, creating, "fate" while simultaneously eliminating even the possibility of, "free-will" as we know it.

But really, I think this here is mostly besides the point, or foreplay to the matter, so to speak. Technically, you're correct, since nomological means scientific, NOT divine. Theological determinism more accurately fits

However, I do think some of the "Chaos" arguments against it prove to be at least mildly interesting.

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In the quantum world, as far as we can tell, things seem to be smeared out as opposed to solid, distinct, and stable as they are in our world. We cannot know the velocity and position of an electron at the the same time for instance. It's not that our observational abilities are the problem (seemingly) but that electrons and other elementary particles only exist as probability functions or waves, rather than solid matter. In quantum theory, every possible event actually occurs, and we are simply located at the point of one of those occurrances. A die rolled, for instance, actually lands on all six sides, it also falls off the table, it also spontaneously combusts. Every single possibility occurs, we are simply in the world where it has landed on "3" let's say. Look up "Schrodinger's Cat."

edit: One extremely strange thing about the quantum world is that every time we try to observe or measure one of these "particles" acting like a wave, the wave function collapses and it behaves like a particle again.

String theory or M-theory proposes that elementary particles like electrons and quarks are actually 1-dimensional strings that vibrate at various frequencies (appearing as a different particle depending on the frequency), and so elementary particles are actually little "loops." And all of this and the rest of the universe exist in 11-dimensional hyperspace. I can hardly claim to understand even a small percentage of it.
Let me clarify here...

For example:

Even if we can only account for 1 function at a time, whereas quantum mechanics says 2, 3, and 4 are occurring along side one as well, (beyond our perception) how does that really argue the possibility of prediction, despite ones present, or possible knowledge?
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Old 07-27-2009, 11:03 PM #20
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For example:

Even if we can only account for 1 function at a time, whereas quantum mechanics says 2, 3, and 4 are occurring along side one as well, (beyond our perception) how does that really argue the possibility of prediction, despite ones present, or possible knowledge?
wut. i don't think anyone here, definitely including myself, knows anything about quantum mechanics. the little i know has already been contradicted in above statements. let me remind you guys that "what the bleep do we know" is a crock of ****.
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Old 07-28-2009, 12:46 AM #21
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wut. i don't think anyone here, definitely including myself, knows anything about quantum mechanics. the little i know has already been contradicted in above statements. let me remind you guys that "what the bleep do we know" is a crock of ****.
I'm just trying to interpret his post...
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