Day 202 Question 202:
Do we have free will?
Upon surfing the great waves of the Internet I stumbled upon this question. My interest was immediately perked. I warn you, this entry will probably go in every direction possible by the time I reach the end. I started to think about what free-will was (before actually going and doing some research) and the only thing that came to mind was people doing whatever they wanted…having the freedom to do what they feel like doing. I then started wondering if this was an actual possibility…is free will really possible? I believe that in life everyone has choices…millions of choices. People can choose how they act and how they react to everything. Loving someone is a choice just as much as hating someone is a choice. The concept of free-will is a nice one but in all honesty, I do not believe as human beings we really are free. The moment that the government became part of our lives, we gave up the freedom to make certain choices. These choices were made for us. I am not saying this is bad in all circumstances….murderers, rapists, child molestors, etc. need to be punished…there is a need for some control (in my opinion). However, if two men that love each other very much want to get married they are unable to in several states. They have lost their free-will because someone else has made the choices for them. Obviously, in the state that this world is in now, if people act as freely as they wanted, we would open the doors for mass chaos. Being controlled to a certain extent has become natural to us….I believe at this current time we need some control based on how quickly we are seeing everything advancing. I guess I am unsure if people really do have free-will. I say this because people can choose to do and say anything they want but some of these things are going to lead to punishment…so do they really have a choice???
Is it possible for devout Christians to have free-will? If they are true devout, practicing Christian they are living by the words of the Bible and the beliefs of God. I am not insulting or saying it is wrong…these are just things I am questioning in my head. With saying this though, these are people that are choosing to follow the word of God. It gets very confusing. I, personally, do not believe that religious/words of the Bible should be taken lightly. I have met many “Christians” that seem to pick and choose what they want to believe in and follow when it comes to religion and the Bible. It is their free will to do so but is that right??? In what aspects of life do we truly get to choose what is right and wrong and according to whom are these things determined as right and wrong? I say this because people have said that God is the creator and the all-knowing, so I would think that they should follow his words verbatim but that is not the case for a lot of people. Many Christians are sinners (just like I am too…but I am not a Christian) and choose what is right and wrong for them personally. Is that allowed when it comes to practicing religion and being a Christian? I am not asking in an accusatory manner by any means….these are just questions floating through my head. I am not trying to step on any toes, I just needed and example and I felt that the practice of religion was a good one to use.
A lot of this thinking started over the whole Chik-Fil-A ongoings. I do not want to get into all of the details because I have heard about it nonstop for days. It is just one of those things that makes me question how much free-will we have if any. The CEO of this company used his “free-will” to state his personal beliefs but immediately the media and the public and the government became heavily involved. The government has been involved in the issue of gay marriage for a long time. If there are two differing opinions by the masses, if free-will really a possibility. On either side, people are going to debate, shout that the other is wrong and in some cases this could lead to violence. We have seen hate crimes sky rocket over the years. The homosexual person uses their free will to be openly gay and gets beaten horrifically or even killed. The perpetrator uses his/her free will to be angry and act against and issue that he/she does not agree with. The laws say this is not right so the perpetrator is to be punished. Does anyone in this scenario really have free-will? Can free will exist if we have laws set in place for the masses?
I guess I could go back and forth all day on this topic and what it comes down to is that I really don’t know if free-will is really possible. I would love to hear what others have to say…not to influence me but to educate me. I love to have my eyes opened to different view-points. To my readers, I hope your weekend is magical and mystical and the sun soaks your skin and you smile a lot more than not!
I am a big believer in free-will … not that things, people, upbringing etc doesn’t influence you but i do think at the end of it all it is YOU who has to decide, and that can be to follow or live by a set of rules. But free-will is something that everyone has and most struggle with identifying.
I believe in free will. Or as I like to call it, free agency or freedom to choose. Regardless of what parameters are in place to ‘control’ the masses people still make a choice to do or not do something or to follow the law or not. To say there is no free will is to say that someone has no choice. It’s like someone who dislikes their job and says they have no choice to work there… They do have a choice… Quit or stay working there. They have chosen to stay. There needs to be opposition in all things. If there was no opposition then there would be no free will or freedom to choose. One would not know happiness or sadness. Must be opposition. there are things that cause people to stay silent or not make a decision but that’s still a choice. Inaction is still a choice. I’m not sure the argument of choosing what is right and wrong is valid in the case of proving if there is free will… Although, it does prove that there is free will because they have chosen something right or wrong.
Regarding the scenario above, you have already proven that free will exists because each person made a choice regardless of consequences. All actions have a positive or negative outcome. If the outcome was positive and the perp actually embraced the gay person would you still say there wasn’t free will? The outcome has nothing to do with the existence of free will. The actions prior to the outcome proves there is free will. The laws are there to govern people and yes control chaos BUT people can still choose to do whatever they want. I’m rambling and probably repeating myself. Haha. Great post.
I believe in free will but rarely able to apply .
But I truly think.. So many of our DREAMS at first seem Impossible, then they seem Improbable, and then when we Summon the Will, they soon become Inevitable…
Nice post 🙂
Excellent post, also a great reference point when it comes to studies involved with semantics. Some words do have powerful associations attached to them don’t they? I really enjoyed reading your words!
A very enjoyable read. I do believe in the west we are lucky enough to enjoy freedom of expression and that, largely, we can live our lives in whichever way we wish to. Unfortunately, this is not true for the rest of the world, where oppressive governments dictate your every move. Another point to consider is that my freedom ends where yours begins and we must all learn to constrain ourselves for the sake of everyone else around us.