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Old 09-14-2009, 12:42 PM   #18 (permalink)

giant steps
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 15,190

this line by line thing takes the whole paragraph out of context. i wrote paragraphs because those sentences are meant to be taken together, not abstracted and dissected one by one.

that said...

the randomness that you allude to is precisely choice. when faced with a number of competing possibilities we don't flip a coin, we choose. you've pretty much proved that, so no real need to continue with this. but i will anyways...


Also, I forgot to mention random action - when we make a choice arbitrarily without reason or emotion.
is free will. and when we make a choice after carefully considering the available options, that's free will too. it may be logical, it may not, it may be guided by emotion, it may not. but we choose how to proceed. we may do what feels good, but we often do what doesn't feel good. we have moments of super-erogation. we have moments of martyrdom, we have moments of sacrifice and of suffering by choice. we may do none of these things because they are logical and because they are emotional and make us feel good, even in the abstract. i don't sacrifice myself for the betterment of others because i derive happiness from being the kind of guy that does that. i'm not saying it's impossible - there certainly are people that do it for that reason - but there are also others that do it because they choose to. not for the way people are looking at them in society but because out of a number of competing possibilities they thought it was the right thing to do. it won't appear the same way to everyone, and that individual won't make the same decisions every time. it must be choice. what could possibly be predetermined about this?

in all of your responses to me, you somehow missed the most crucial piece. in any computation there is the moment of choice that pre-exists it. the moment that you choose which factors to include in that computation. if you want to boil it down to an emotional/logical computation (which i also disagree with for reasons stated above) how do you factor in the way in which the boundaries of that calculation are determined? is any human capable of understanding the totality of complex situations? we choose what to include and what not to inlcude in the calculation. and then, as i have argued, we choose again when we inevitably come up against competing possibilities and outcomes in which we may or may not act rationally/irrationally/towards our happiness/towards someone else's happiness.
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