No. 118 (essentialsaltes) wrote,
No. 118


Got a lot of work done today, so I can enjoy my weekend with a free conscience. Though I did just waste some time hanging around on hold. Being on hold with the credit card company took longer and was more painful than my last trip to the dentist, where I got fitted for a crown. Not only was I subjected to the soothing holiday stylings of the 101 strings, but I was transferred from Accounts to Disputes to Fraud to Security with lengthy periods on hold between each. And finally, when the fourth person had asked -- "Mellow greetings, citizen, what seems to be your boggle?" -- the answer I received was anticlimactically simple. GRR!

Last night, I spent some time lying awake thinking about the conflict between free will and determinism. I find myself more and more convinced that free will is an illusion, or a useful fiction, or at the very least much less free than one might suppose. After all, who would choose, of their own free will, to lie awake thinking about the conflict between free will and determinism?

Even supposing that one had 'free will', that hardly means that one is in total control of one's destiny. Perhaps you choose to read a new book. Without already knowing its contents, there is no way for you to predict its ultimate effect on you and your future choices. If one's will is so free that no amount of reading can have any effect on one, then we are all capricious and incorrigible monsters. Since it would appear that most people can be affected by learning, reading and experience, this is fortunately not the case. Thus, even freely made choices (assuming they exist) can lead to unseen ends, uncontrolled by the will. If one chose, for example, to read some Borges before turning in, one might find oneself lying awake thinking about the conflict between free will and determinism.
Tags: anger, blog

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