The Nature of the Mind: Where is the Free Will?

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the key master
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Re: The Nature of the Mind: Where is the Free Will?

Post by the key master » Fri Mar 18, 2011 5:56 am

To get slightly poetic about it, God does not know his next thought until it appears to him. This is the nature, and the wonder, of Self creation.
:D My tummy hurts from eating too many jelly beans :lol: Thyre so good i cant resist! Wait till the cadburry eggs show up...

enigma
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Re: The Nature of the Mind: Where is the Free Will?

Post by enigma » Fri Mar 18, 2011 6:45 am

Plorel wrote:
And in an Absolute sense, there is no free will. Everything is deterministic.
While it maybe true that there is no induviduum to have free will, the conclusion that everything is predetermined is not so easy to draw. Predetermination is a very humane concept. It says that every state in the future could be foretold accurately from a known present state.

In that predetermination assumes the existence of (linear) time and cause and effect. These concepts don't apply accurately on a subatomar level though, where it is impossible to predict the outcome of a event with certainty, even if all parameters of a state were known.
Imho thats why it is said that "prior to an event there are infinite possibilities but after it, there was only one".
I was unclear about exactly what 'deterministic' means in this case, but if it means predetermined, I agree with your implication that nothing is predetermined. This presupposes 'something' that determines a future state, and this isn't how it appears to work. The best way I can describe what I see is that infinite potential is present continuously. There's a complete absence of boundaries around what 'could happen' next. It doesn't relate directly to the issue of what actualizes, but it's noteworthy that ALL boundaries form at the point of actualization and not potential. IOW, at any given moment, absolutely anything COULD happen.

What DOES happen is a spontaneous, self energized, reciprocal unfolding of infinite potential into a constriction called perspective, placed in a framework called time/space, populated by conceptual forms. In a sense, in this eternal moment, infinite intelligence funnels through this constriction process in order to actualize what we call an experience. This actualized experience, then, consists entirely of imagined conceptual frameworks and boundaries, and the experience formed by these boundaries defines new boundaries, and therefore a new experience, which is what makes it reciprocal.

More poetically, God falls into his own dream and continues to form the dream from within the boundaries of the dream itself. God must dream his way out of his own dream. That's what's happening here. There is nothing outside this dream but this ongoing infinite potential and infinite intelligence from which dream material is formed. The dream unfolds as it will but nobody and nothing can know how it will unfold. God is witnessing the dream from outside, but is creating the dream from within. The 'salvation' is that the dream cannot fail because all boundaries are dream boundaries, and they are transcended when interest has been lost in those boundaries, at which point they simply dissolve.

Nowhere in this is a determining force, or a controller, or a planner, or a chooser. Choices are a delusional overlay onto what is happening with or without the choosing. All happenings are inherent in the fabric of the totality of the unfolding such that all events are so intricately, intimately interwoven as to be essentially one ongoing happening. IOW, every event in the universe is determined by every other event, which is inclusive of the framework in which it occurs. (All events everywhere, in every dimension, throughout time) Given this, for an individuation to believe he has made a volitional choice is an absurdity.

enigma
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Re: The Nature of the Mind: Where is the Free Will?

Post by enigma » Fri Mar 18, 2011 6:48 am

the key master wrote:
To get slightly poetic about it, God does not know his next thought until it appears to him. This is the nature, and the wonder, of Self creation.
:D My tummy hurts from eating too many jelly beans :lol: Thyre so good i cant resist! Wait till the cadburry eggs show up...
Ohhhh, I love the cadbury eggs! One of my best creations. Hehe.

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smiileyjen101
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Re: The Nature of the Mind: Where is the Free Will?

Post by smiileyjen101 » Fri Mar 18, 2011 1:25 pm

Enigma said: What DOES happen is a spontaneous, self energized, reciprocal unfolding of infinite potential into a constriction called perspective, placed in a framework called time/space, populated by conceptual forms.

In a sense, in this eternal moment, infinite intelligence funnels through this constriction process in order to actualize what we call an experience. This actualized experience, then, consists entirely of imagined conceptual frameworks and boundaries, and the experience formed by these boundaries defines new boundaries, and therefore a new experience, which is what makes it reciprocal.
YUM YUM YUM!!! But... :lol:

But.. for the integral parts of this eternal moment that you do have a situation of choice of perspective leading or not to action, you do have free will in which perspective or action you choose, or choose not, which is still a choice.

Did you eat all the black ones key master? - the black ones are my favourite!
Our rights start deep within our humanity; they end where another's begin~~ SmileyJen

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Kutso
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Re: The Nature of the Mind: Where is the Free Will?

Post by Kutso » Fri Mar 18, 2011 1:34 pm

Plorel wrote:
And in an Absolute sense, there is no free will. Everything is deterministic.
While it maybe true that there is no induviduum to have free will, the conclusion that everything is predetermined is not so easy to draw. Predetermination is a very humane concept. It says that every state in the future could be foretold accurately from a known present state.

In that predetermination assumes the existence of (linear) time and cause and effect. These concepts don't apply accurately on a subatomar level though, where it is impossible to predict the outcome of a event with certainty, even if all parameters of a state were known.
Imho thats why it is said that "prior to an event there are infinite possibilities but after it, there was only one".
"Deterministic" doesn't mean that everything is predetermined. It just means that everything follows cause and effect.
Not that. Not that. Not that. Not that. Not that. Not that. Not that. Not that.

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Kutso
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Re: The Nature of the Mind: Where is the Free Will?

Post by Kutso » Fri Mar 18, 2011 1:38 pm

enigma wrote:
Kutso wrote:In Advaita Vedanta one talks about truths at the Absolute level and at the relative level. And in an Absolute sense, there is no free will. Everything is deterministic. However, at a relative level there is free will. Since few individuals have realized the Absolute truth, it could be good to start at the relative level.
If one is just starting, free will is going to be assumed anyway. The title of this thread implies somebody is ready to take a closer look. We can and do talk in various contexts but free will never becomes true at any level.
I don't agree with you. At a relative level, there is the freedom of choice. The freedom of choice is real as long as realization hasn't happen.
Not that. Not that. Not that. Not that. Not that. Not that. Not that. Not that.

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Re: The Nature of the Mind: Where is the Free Will?

Post by enigma » Fri Mar 18, 2011 6:45 pm

smiileyjen101 wrote:
Enigma said: What DOES happen is a spontaneous, self energized, reciprocal unfolding of infinite potential into a constriction called perspective, placed in a framework called time/space, populated by conceptual forms.

In a sense, in this eternal moment, infinite intelligence funnels through this constriction process in order to actualize what we call an experience. This actualized experience, then, consists entirely of imagined conceptual frameworks and boundaries, and the experience formed by these boundaries defines new boundaries, and therefore a new experience, which is what makes it reciprocal.
YUM YUM YUM!!! But... :lol:

But.. for the integral parts of this eternal moment that you do have a situation of choice of perspective leading or not to action, you do have free will in which perspective or action you choose, or choose not, which is still a choice.
There cannot be "integral parts" to Wholeness/Oneness. We're not talking about a mechanism with parts that function together. We're talking about a tightly woven fabric expressing as a multitude of forms. When you wear that polka-dot dress, there isn't one particular dot that can choose how it positions itself, or in any way express independently of all other dots. It's expression is perhaps unique and changeful, but it is always an expression of the totality of the dress. Whatever is expressed is determined entirely by the rest of the fabric.

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Re: The Nature of the Mind: Where is the Free Will?

Post by snowheight » Fri Mar 18, 2011 6:52 pm

enigma wrote:There's a complete absence of boundaries around what 'could happen' next.
Complete?
enigma wrote:Nowhere in this is a determining force, or a controller, or a planner, or a chooser. Choices are a delusional overlay onto what is happening with or without the choosing.
How then do you account for the observer? (if anyone answers, please use the context of the next paragraph) 300+ years of study by the brightest minds in human history result in the conclusion that the Observer is the only thing that is "real". Observation, as it is defined in quantum mechanics, is the mechanism of choice.

Little-me is a phantom and as such has no "will" or anything else. The antiquated notions of God as a watchmaker seem to fail the test of non-duality ... but the rejection of a pre-determined future implies consequences based on the road not taken. Call these consequences "imaginary" if you will, that won't make the whole question go away.

It seems that we are confronted once again with a paradox -- without choice there is only a superposition of potential states but there is noone to make these choices. Perhaps this is one of those limitations which will always remain outside of our conceptual capabilities, perhaps not.
Stop talking. Hear every sound as background. Look straight ahead and focus. Take one deep breath. This is you. This is Now.

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Re: The Nature of the Mind: Where is the Free Will?

Post by enigma » Fri Mar 18, 2011 7:03 pm

Kutso wrote:
enigma wrote:
Kutso wrote:In Advaita Vedanta one talks about truths at the Absolute level and at the relative level. And in an Absolute sense, there is no free will. Everything is deterministic. However, at a relative level there is free will. Since few individuals have realized the Absolute truth, it could be good to start at the relative level.
If one is just starting, free will is going to be assumed anyway. The title of this thread implies somebody is ready to take a closer look. We can and do talk in various contexts but free will never becomes true at any level.
I don't agree with you. At a relative level, there is the freedom of choice. The freedom of choice is real as long as realization hasn't happen.
The 'levels' to which you refer are contexts. The larger contexts transcend and include the smaller contexts, like concentric spheres, but the content of these contexts is not ultimately true and becomes irrelevant from the perspective of the larger contexts. In one context, free will is imagined and believed to be true, but this does not make it actually true.

Your next thought is determined, not by the individual, but by the totality of the unfolding of creation. You cannot know your next thought until it has already occurred and can be observed. As such, how can you determine the content of your choices?

snowheight
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Re: The Nature of the Mind: Where is the Free Will?

Post by snowheight » Fri Mar 18, 2011 7:44 pm

enigma wrote:You cannot know your next thought until it has already occurred and can be observed. As such, how can you determine the content of your choices?
In a strict sense that is true but an individual can often find him or herself in a life-situation in which the probability of the content of the next thought is so high that the strict sense is a defeated bit of meaninglessness.
Stop talking. Hear every sound as background. Look straight ahead and focus. Take one deep breath. This is you. This is Now.

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smiileyjen101
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Re: The Nature of the Mind: Where is the Free Will?

Post by smiileyjen101 » Fri Mar 18, 2011 10:37 pm

There cannot be "integral parts" to Wholeness/Oneness. We're not talking about a mechanism with parts that function together. We're talking about a tightly woven fabric expressing as a multitude of forms. When you wear that polka-dot dress, there isn't one particular dot that can choose how it positions itself, or in any way express independently of all other dots. It's expression is perhaps unique and changeful, but it is always an expression of the totality of the dress. Whatever is expressed is determined entirely by the rest of the fabric.enigma


A dress or fabric is an inanimate object with no mind and with no choice I would agree.
I understand the idea of the fabric of oneness, but it does not translate as you suggest (imho).

In the process of that dress's history (little l life) choices were made by little-me people at every stage of its growth here on Earth, yes maybe some by directive and not by one individual but by many. But at every stage of their involvement with that dress they had free will in its creation and little l life, as I would have in my 'choice' (and I would likely choose not,) to wear it. Showing the reality of willfulness - the expression of free will is a factor itself in the tapestry of little l life.

The stitches of the tapestry are made by many and yes until you stand back and see the whole tapestry you may not understand the stitches put there by others, or indeed even yourself, but that does not negate the influences in putting the stitches there in the first place.

They are - whether accepted as such or not, whether witnessed or chosen or not, there by the choice of someone in response to little l situations.

That this thread has grown and diverted from it's source is proof. Every post, every word within those posts and every letter within those words have been chosen - based on the understandings of individuals, maybe or maybe not impacting upon the whole and others, based on free will choices. To type, not to type, what to say, how to say it, whether to read, how to view it, from what angle - we may not see the all.

But, as said - with my choice of words previously
- But.. for the integral parts of this eternal moment that you do have a situation of choice of perspective leading or not to action, you do have free will in which perspective or action you choose, or choose not, which is still a choice.

Perspective is the part of the tapestry that we can see, interact with and within and as such - you do have free will in which perspective or action you choose, or choose not, which is still a choice.

Whether and how you choose to respond or not is a reality within your control, taking into account the other relative - little l life realities of perspective that butt up against yours(whether your computer is working, or any other circumstance outside of your own).

I offer this perspective in love and with many surrounding perspectives taken into consideration and wholly from the little l life situation - including the recent topic How do you decide upon what to act? - http://eckhart-tolle-forum.inner-growth.info/viewtopic .php?f=4&t=8692

For me the gift of free will comes with the corresponding personal responsibility for the choices I make and the compassion and understanding and gratefulness for the choices of others.
Our rights start deep within our humanity; they end where another's begin~~ SmileyJen

enigma
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Re: The Nature of the Mind: Where is the Free Will?

Post by enigma » Sat Mar 19, 2011 2:19 am

snowheight wrote:
enigma wrote:There's a complete absence of boundaries around what 'could happen' next.
Complete?
Yeah, God doesn't have boundaries....so much....really.
enigma wrote:Nowhere in this is a determining force, or a controller, or a planner, or a chooser. Choices are a delusional overlay onto what is happening with or without the choosing.
How then do you account for the observer? (if anyone answers, please use the context of the next paragraph) 300+ years of study by the brightest minds in human history result in the conclusion that the Observer is the only thing that is "real". Observation, as it is defined in quantum mechanics, is the mechanism of choice.

Little-me is a phantom and as such has no "will" or anything else. The antiquated notions of God as a watchmaker seem to fail the test of non-duality ... but the rejection of a pre-determined future implies consequences based on the road not taken. Call these consequences "imaginary" if you will, that won't make the whole question go away.

It seems that we are confronted once again with a paradox -- without choice there is only a superposition of potential states but there is noone to make these choices. Perhaps this is one of those limitations which will always remain outside of our conceptual capabilities, perhaps not.
The implication of quantum mechanics is that reality is a product of consciousness. It says nothing about choice or volition. There is no paradox.

enigma
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Re: The Nature of the Mind: Where is the Free Will?

Post by enigma » Sat Mar 19, 2011 2:26 am

snowheight wrote:
enigma wrote:You cannot know your next thought until it has already occurred and can be observed. As such, how can you determine the content of your choices?
In a strict sense that is true but an individual can often find him or herself in a life-situation in which the probability of the content of the next thought is so high that the strict sense is a defeated bit of meaninglessness.
IOW, what's actually happening is irrelevant? What does the probability of a given thought have to do with volition?

enigma
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Re: The Nature of the Mind: Where is the Free Will?

Post by enigma » Sat Mar 19, 2011 2:39 am

smiileyjen101 wrote:
There cannot be "integral parts" to Wholeness/Oneness. We're not talking about a mechanism with parts that function together. We're talking about a tightly woven fabric expressing as a multitude of forms. When you wear that polka-dot dress, there isn't one particular dot that can choose how it positions itself, or in any way express independently of all other dots. It's expression is perhaps unique and changeful, but it is always an expression of the totality of the dress. Whatever is expressed is determined entirely by the rest of the fabric.enigma


A dress or fabric is an inanimate object with no mind and with no choice I would agree.
I understand the idea of the fabric of oneness, but it does not translate as you suggest (imho).

In the process of that dress's history (little l life) choices were made by little-me people at every stage of its growth here on Earth, yes maybe some by directive and not by one individual but by many. But at every stage of their involvement with that dress they had free will in its creation and little l life, as I would have in my 'choice' (and I would likely choose not,) to wear it. Showing the reality of willfulness - the expression of free will is a factor itself in the tapestry of little l life.

The stitches of the tapestry are made by many and yes until you stand back and see the whole tapestry you may not understand the stitches put there by others, or indeed even yourself, but that does not negate the influences in putting the stitches there in the first place.

They are - whether accepted as such or not, whether witnessed or chosen or not, there by the choice of someone in response to little l situations.

That this thread has grown and diverted from it's source is proof. Every post, every word within those posts and every letter within those words have been chosen - based on the understandings of individuals, maybe or maybe not impacting upon the whole and others, based on free will choices. To type, not to type, what to say, how to say it, whether to read, how to view it, from what angle - we may not see the all.

But, as said - with my choice of words previously
- But.. for the integral parts of this eternal moment that you do have a situation of choice of perspective leading or not to action, you do have free will in which perspective or action you choose, or choose not, which is still a choice.

Perspective is the part of the tapestry that we can see, interact with and within and as such - you do have free will in which perspective or action you choose, or choose not, which is still a choice.

Whether and how you choose to respond or not is a reality within your control, taking into account the other relative - little l life realities of perspective that butt up against yours(whether your computer is working, or any other circumstance outside of your own).

I offer this perspective in love and with many surrounding perspectives taken into consideration and wholly from the little l life situation - including the recent topic How do you decide upon what to act? - http://eckhart-tolle-forum.inner-growth.info/viewtopic .php?f=4&t=8692

For me the gift of free will comes with the corresponding personal responsibility for the choices I make and the compassion and understanding and gratefulness for the choices of others.
Restating your assumption that free will is a fact does not make it true. What you offer as proof is that this thread has diverted from the original topic (I don't see where it has, but that's irrelevant). That doesn't say anything about volition, it just says that's what happened. The idea that somebody's free will choice brought about the diversion is an assumption. The fact that choices are being declared also does not imply that they are volitional choices. As you say, choices are also a part of the fabric.

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smiileyjen101
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Re: The Nature of the Mind: Where is the Free Will?

Post by smiileyjen101 » Sat Mar 19, 2011 2:57 am

Enigma said: Restating your assumption that free will is a fact does not make it true. What you offer as proof is that this thread has diverted from the original topic (I don't see where it has, but that's irrelevant).
What I actually said was:
That this thread has grown and diverted from it's source is proof. Every post, every word within those posts and every letter within those words have been chosen - based on the understandings of individuals, maybe or maybe not impacting upon the whole and others, based on free will choices. To type, not to type, what to say, how to say it, whether to read, how to view it, from what angle - we may not see the all.
From salem's first pondering typed onto this thread (choice to share) and others responding (choices) from their perspectives (choices) the dynamic nature of this thread has grown and diverted from Salem's original personal musing to this dynamic discourse between many.
That doesn't say anything about volition, it just says that's what happened. The idea that somebody's free will choice brought about the diversion is an assumption.
That you took my expression of 'diverted from its source' as meaning a change in the content direction of the topic is a cultural difference of understanding on an individual level based on our experiences.
The fact that choices are being declared also does not imply that they are volitional choices. As you say, choices are also a part of the fabric.
Showing the reality of willfulness - the expression of free will is a factor itself in the tapestry of little l life.

Did you or did you not choose to respond to my post, whether consciously or unconsciously?

Whatever the answer - isn't that the expression of free will?
Our rights start deep within our humanity; they end where another's begin~~ SmileyJen

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