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MisterSwig

My Free Will Theory

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I created a blog to introduce my theory on free will:

https://freewilltheory.blogspot.com/2019/04/free-will-is-learned-skill.html?m=1

My goal is to identify the necessary steps in the development of free will, starting from birth. I briefly discuss reflexes, feelings, and purpose, and how they relate to gaining control over one's body and mind.

I appreciate any comments or criticism, placed here or on the blog.

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4 hours ago, MisterSwig said:

I created a blog to introduce my theory on free will:

https://freewilltheory.blogspot.com/2019/04/free-will-is-learned-skill.html?m=1

My goal is to identify the necessary steps in the development of free will, starting from birth. I briefly discuss reflexes, feelings, and purpose, and how they relate to gaining control over one's body and mind.

I appreciate any comments or criticism, placed here or on the blog.

I would have assumed that at the beginning of a theory of free will you would define exactly what you mean by “free will” before addressing what you argue makes it possible (and what you submit is necessary for a complex system to do it) and why.  

Identifying “free will” is necessary to make a persuasive argument, to make a reasoned rational claim which justifies your theory as against any other speculation, and distinguishes your chosen topics (feelings, reflexes, purpose) as uniquely generating free will as opposed to generating mechanistic (determined) animation.

Accordingly, for any particular aspect of your theory of free will, a reader should always be clear about what you mean by  free will, and clearly shown how and why the particular aspect relates to it and not determinism.

 

Edited by StrictlyLogical

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4 hours ago, StrictlyLogical said:

Accordingly, for any particular aspect of your theory of free will, a reader should always be clear about what you mean by  free will, and clearly shown how and why the particular aspect relates to it and not determinism.

Thanks. If I write a longer treatise for a general audience, I would definitely need to do that. But I wrote this introduction for Objectivists and people who already share a non-deterministic view of free will, so I did not bother addressing determinism just yet. I also left out a bunch about concept-formation, since Rand wrote a whole book on that already. After listening to others, I apparently also need to address Pavlov's theory.

I suppose I could define free will at the start. But I worry about distracting the reader's attention from the process, which does not begin with free will already established. I tried to incorporate induction into my style. In general, I want the reader to use his own concepts and definitions, and be convinced that my theory fits with his own general knowledge. However, I could not resist giving a hint in the title, where I call free will a learned skill.

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In response to comments, I've posted a critique of David Hume. I talk about his method and theory on free will, compared to my own. I also provide the introspective evidence for my theory, as well as how it works with the law of causality.

https://freewilltheory.blogspot.com/?m=1

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2 hours ago, StrictlyLogical said:

Do you want any help honing your theory i.e. strengthening it in response to possible criticism?

Absolutely, any suggestion or criticism is appreciated. Even if someone thinks the theory is ridiculous, I'd like to know why.

I have plans for additional essays, but will prioritize responding to reader's points or objections. Thanks.

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I agree with the article but I would put it a little differently or maybe add to the last section.

Free will pertains to directing your consciousness. We are beings who are able to focus and regulate our consciousness towards topics that we are interested in. To learn any subject, ideas are entered into our minds but they do not have to be true so we have to check their efficacy. To validate any idea, we can test it against the facts of reality and use the feedback from our sensations (perceptual faculty) or logic (rational faculty) to confirm our thoughts or adjust if necessary. Choosing to think or not to think, as Galt says it, defines whether or not we are to modify or confirm our thoughts based on the facts of reality or to evade it and default to willful blindness. Both of which can only be explained by the volitional ability to direct and regulate consciousnesses.

I hope this helps.

Edited by Ali Shannon
Choice of words

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11 hours ago, Ali Shannon said:

I hope this helps.

Thank you, it does help. I'm planning to compare my theory to behaviorism. I think I'll address your point in that article. I'm contemplating the notion that, in a sense, we are capable of self-conditioning our own responses to stimuli. We might even condition the sort of idea-checking behavior that we do to avoid believing or acting improperly.

Edited by MisterSwig

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On 4/13/2019 at 10:39 AM, MisterSwig said:

I created a blog to introduce my theory on free will:

https://freewilltheory.blogspot.com/2019/04/free-will-is-learned-skill.html?m=1

My goal is to identify the necessary steps in the development of free will, starting from birth. I briefly discuss reflexes, feelings, and purpose, and how they relate to gaining control over one's body and mind.

I appreciate any comments or criticism, placed here or on the blog.

I think approach involving classification and growth is good.

Further, I think before we go into the details of free will and its relation to growth, we should try to understand why the subject of Free Will is so important. Therefore, basic examples involving subjects of Ethics and Independence, Literature and Naturalism/Romanticism, Psychology and conceptual faculty will be good. Comparing Peter Keating and Howard Roark will be especially interesting for me.

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