Author Topic: Free will and foreknowledge  (Read 2270 times)

Offline Michael

  • Vizekorporal
  • **
  • Posts: 142
  • Thanked: 23 times
  • Religion: Future-theist
Free will and foreknowledge
« on: April 15, 2018, 02:30:07 AM »
It's been quite a long time since I've posted on here. I was a Catholic who attended the Latin Mass at SSPX chapels. Previously, I went to Indult Masses, and prior to that, the Novus Ordo.

I have now apostatized. I'm a future-theist: I don't believe that God exists now, but that He will exist in the future. To quote Quentin Meillassoux, "The God worthy of hoping for is the one who has the excuse of not existing." I think the argument from evil proves beyond any doubt that God does not exist. No God would allow children to starve, get beaten, the Holocaust, and many other sufferings. A loving God would put us in Heaven right away. I'm aware that oceans of ink have been spilled on the problem, but I don't think any of it is successful.

I think the Free Will Defense fails for multiple reasons. I think the notion of free will is incoherent. Your will operates on the calculations made by the intellect. The intellect perceives something as desirable, and the will acts on it. To put it simply: you do what you desire. You can't choose what you desire, and even when it seems you can, that "choice" would be random or based on what you desire to desire -- and this leads to a regress.

Adam sinned because he desired to, and you can't choose what you want.

But worse than that, and the point of this thread, is the incompatibility of libertarian free will with divine (or any) foreknowledge. To have free will, X and ~X both have to be possible. Now if God knows I will do X, then doing ~X is only a perceived possibility, not an actual one. If it were actual, then it would be possible to change God's foreknowledge, which is absurd. But then I don't have free will, since doing ~X is not possible.

Some may try to escape this by saying "if you chose ~X, God's foreknowledge would have been different." This is a slimy non-answer. The world where you do ~X is a different world, in which case doing X would be impossible, for in that world too, you can't change what God foreknows. The foreknowledge is in place before, during, and after the decision. So any appeal to "would have" is irrelevant: it's not going to be different from what it in fact is.
 

Offline Daniel

  • Feldwebel
  • ***
  • Posts: 2132
  • Thanked: 436 times
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2018, 07:51:47 AM »
God's necessary existence is proven through reason.
God's omnibenevolence is also proven through reason.
Yet there is evil.
The question, then, shouldn't be whether a good God exists (that much is already known)... the question is what accounts for evil?

I think the Free Will Defense fails for multiple reasons.
I agree, the 'free will defence', taken by itself, does not suffice. But not for the reasons you gave.

Your will operates on the calculations made by the intellect. The intellect perceives something as desirable, and the will acts on it. To put it simply: you do what you desire. You can't choose what you desire, and even when it seems you can, that "choice" would be random or based on what you desire to desire -- and this leads to a regress.
This isn't how it works at all. The way it works is, there's first some object which draws or repels the person's lower appetite. (We will call this a 'lower desire'.) The person's intellect then tries to figure out whether this lower desire is something reasonable (i.e. in accordance with truth and reality). The will then makes a choice. (We will call this choice the 'higher desire'.) If the intellect is wrong and the will goes along with it, then the choice is evil (through a kind of 'ignorance'). Likewise, if the will fails to conform to the intellect, the choice is evil (through a kind of 'weakness'). But if the intellect is not mistaken, and the will goes along with it, then the choice--the higher desire--is good. Thus we can't control our desires on the lower level, but we can control them on the higher level, and it is the higher desires which are morally-good or morally-evil acts.

Quote
Adam sinned because he desired to, and you can't choose what you want.
He desired the apple on the level of the lower appetite, but his intellect told him that this desire was wrong. Yet despite his good judgement, he still chose the apple (desired it on the higher level). And that was his sin.
(There is, however, some mysteriousness as to why he desired the apple even on the lower level, given the fact that his lower appetites were not yet thrown out of order by the Fall...)

Quote
But worse than that, and the point of this thread, is the incompatibility of libertarian free will with divine (or any) foreknowledge. To have free will, X and ~X both have to be possible. Now if God knows I will do X, then doing ~X is only a perceived possibility, not an actual one. If it were actual, then it would be possible to change God's foreknowledge, which is absurd. But then I don't have free will, since doing ~X is not possible.

Some may try to escape this by saying "if you chose ~X, God's foreknowledge would have been different." This is a slimy non-answer. The world where you do ~X is a different world, in which case doing X would be impossible, for in that world too, you can't change what God foreknows. The foreknowledge is in place before, during, and after the decision. So any appeal to "would have" is irrelevant: it's not going to be different from what it in fact is.
It is true, if God knows that you will choose X, then you certainly will choose X. You cannot possibly choose not X.
But that doesn't mean you have no choice. The very fact that God knows that you will freely choose X (in the libertarian sense) proves that you will in fact make a free choice (in the libertarian sense). If there was no choice on your part, then to say that God knows you will choose X is a false statement. We could only say that God knows that you will do X, not that you will choose X.
(BoŽthius also brings up another puzzling issue: How is it even possible that the temporal choices we make can cause God's eternal foreknowledge? To this paradox I have yet to find the answer, but I am quite certain that it can be resolved.)
« Last Edit: April 15, 2018, 11:48:52 AM by Daniel »
 
The following users thanked this post: Michael Wilson, Xavier

Offline Kreuzritter

  • Korporal
  • **
  • Posts: 438
  • Thanked: 366 times
  • Religion: Roman Catholic
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2018, 07:59:08 AM »
But worse than that, and the point of this thread, is the incompatibility of libertarian free will with divine (or any) foreknowledge.

We'll see.  You could start by precisely defining "freedom", "will" and "knowledge", because it's obvious from what follows that you have no well-defined concepts in mind but only murky ideas wallowing in numerous metaphysical presuppositions and choices to use the words in apparent senses that beg the question.

Quote
To have free will, X and ~X both have to be possible.

Your first blunder. There's no logical implication that my ability to freely will to do something depends upon the possibility of my being able to do it. You just made this up. It is sufficient, for me to will something, that the willed "act" be cognitively meaningful, that is, it needs to be a purely logical "possibility", but it doesn't need to be possible in a contingent sense: I can't will to "construct a square circle" because "square circle" is a nonsensical pairing of words and there is no object of my will as a result; however, I can very well will to sprout wings and fly like a bird, despite it being an impossibility contingent upon nature, and there is no basis upon which to assert that the fact of this impossibility means I can't have willed this freely.

The underlying confusion here is apparently in an equivocation of two distinct meanings of "freedom", namely, of "freedom" that is impinged upon by the existence of boundaries with "freedom" that is impinged upon by determinism. "Freedom of the will", as used in metaphysical discourse, is referring to the latter kind of freedom, and while you could only have had the former in mind, knowlingly or not, in this part of your argument, you freely switch between the two concepts whenever you need to, resulting in one long fallacy of equivocation.

Yawn.

Quote
Now if God knows I will do X, then doing ~X is only a perceived possibility, not an actual one.

Firstly, you haven't demonstrated this, only asserted it; indeed, you haven't even defined the distinction between a "perceived" and "actual" possibility.

Secondly, it doesn't follow from this what I haven't willed freely.

Finally: God knows that I will do X because I choose to do X and he is transcendent. If my doing "~X" (this is a nonsensical use of logical connectives, but be that as it may) is only a "perceived possibility", then that is because my of MY choice to do X. That God knows this by virtue of His transcendence IN NO MANNER IMPINGES UPON THE CAUSAL PROCESS BY VIRTUE OF THIS KNOWLEDGE ALONE.



Quote
If it were actual, then it would be possible to change God's foreknowledge, which is absurd.

I'd say that's a non sequitur, but then again, you have not defined "actual possibility", so it's difficult to say.

One more time for you: GOD'S FOREKNOWLEDGE OF AN ACT CANNNOT EO IPSO IMPINGE UPON THE ONTOLOGY OF THAT ACT - THAT is absurd. What power does foreknowledge in-and-of itself have over the causal structure of that act? What causal influence does it have that it could annihilate ones free choice in a matter? (of course there is a hidden mechanstic assumption in such arguments which regards foreknowledge as possible only due to events being predetermined - but this is question begging, and it has nothing to do with foreknowledge that is a result of transcendence or of scientia media)

There isn't any sound argument of the form "I can't have freely chosen X because God foreknew this".


Quote
But then I don't have free will, since doing ~X is not possible.

Addressed in the first part.

This is number one bullshit, in the words of a wrestler from Dagestan.

Quote
Some may try to escape this by saying "if you chose ~X, God's foreknowledge would have been different."

I  don't need to "escape" this because it's utterly inconsequential to freedom of will.

Be that as it may ...

Quote
This is a slimy non-answer.

No, it's a perfectly legitimate answer.

Quote
The world where you do ~X is a different world, in which case doing X would be impossible, for in that world too, you can't change what God foreknows.

The foreknowledge is in place before, during, and after the decision. So any appeal to "would have" is irrelevant: it's not going to be different from what it in fact is.

The foreknowledge is only "in place before, during, and after the decision" because of the decision. What part of this do you not understand? I make a FREE choice IN TIME, and that choice is therefore DETERMINED ETERNALLY outside of time, regardless of whether there is a God or there is not, and God, being transcendent, therefore has "foreknowledge" of the act. You are committing a category error in placing in approachign that foreknowledge from a temporal perspective instead of from a transcendent one.

Quote
I think the Free Will Defense fails for multiple reasons. I think the notion of free will is incoherent.

I think the notion of causation is incoherent without reference to the power of free agents as an analogue.  See David Hume for where that leads to.

Quote
Your will operates on the calculations made by the intellect.

The intellect cannot operate without acts of will, indeed, it is regularly invoked by an act of will. If you want to talk about a "regress", there you have one: the intellect prompting the will to prompt the intellect to be used.

Quote
The intellect perceives something as desirable, and the will acts on it. To put it simply: you do what you desire.

Simply bullshit. I regularly ignore what I "desire" or do its exact opposite: it's called being a human being, not an automaton.

Quote
You can't choose what you desire,

I can and do, Q.E.D.. An assertion to counter an assertion.

But it's obvious we have here the second equivocation: confusion of "desire" as a purpose to which I will to direct myself, as a positive judgment of my intellect which may or may not become such an object fo my will, and as motions of the body and soul over which may or may not become objects of intellection, judgment and will - depending upon my choices.

Quote
and even when it seems you can, that "choice" would be random or based on what you desire to desire 

No, that choice would be an act of my free will - see how easy this is?

What do you mean by "random"? More to the point, since you insist upon determinsim, please define what it means for something to be determined and how this happens. Please explain what a "cause" is and how "causes" determine their "effects" - please don't beg the question or appeal to the existence of mathematical formulae which describe mechanicla actions but can't account for why they do.

For my part, I have the analogue of my willing as an immediate object of my experience by which to account for such concepts, but you, placing the cart before the horse and at least implicitly asserting that this experience is illusory, have no such basis.

Quote
-- and this leads to a regress.

Only because you're begging the question through a bunch metaphysical presuppositions.

That evident in your "regress" - it's because there is a MECHANISTIC assumption underlying your entire discourse, which can conceive of no DETERMINED processes but mechancial ones and therefore regards the question like "what caused the will to choose x" to be a demonstration fo an infinite "regress" in the concept of freedom of will. No, RANDOMNESS (however you actually define it) is not the only possible UNCAUSED phenomenon: the choices of the will themselves are also UNCAUSED. You, of course, deny this, but you deny it implicitly in the hidden assumptions udnerlying your attempted proof that "free will" is "incoherent". Such sophistry only impresses the faithless.

Quote
Adam sinned because he desired to, and you can't choose what you want.

You sin because you freely choose to and you will be held accountable to the Ancient of Days for it at the end of time, oh idolater of your own deeply flawed intellect.

Mental illness. That is what the denial of the PHENOMENOLOGICAL FACT, self-evident to the subject, of his own free agency would be if any of the "intellectuals" who denied it actually LIVED as though they believed their own bullshit. But, of course, none of them take their own assertions seriosuly enough to live by them. Yes, yes, ye olde reductionism. Ye olde denial of the experience of the subject in favour of a theoretical world constructed by his intellect. Sights, sounds, emotion, nothing is real except except some abstract world I can write down in equations on a piece of paper. I experience my existence as an I, an existential subject, who is free, but so what: that theoretical world is more real than the self-evidently real - it's the "true" one.

But what's the point of arguing? I'm just an automaton.


Quote
No God would allow children to starve, get beaten, the Holocaust, and many other sufferings.

And you know this because ... human beings have magical intrinsic value in as cosmic accidents in a godless world, which you then project upon a world in which your idea of "God" would exist in order to state what he would or would not do? Sure. "Evil" doesn't exist in a godless world, yet here you are appealing to its existence to demonstrate that God doesn't have any ... pat yourself on the back, why dontcha?

To the contrary, I say: humans are vile, disgusting creatures, who deserve much worse than they get, and the fact that this world which utterly rejects Him is a lot less bad than it ought to be is the surest sign that God IS benevolent and merciful: God may be "omnibenevolent", but one first has to define that term and determine where and to whom such "benevolence" would "rightly" apply - it's semantics. I don't truck with sophists. Q.E.D.

I'll leave it to you amateur "philosophers" to squabble it out - I have better things to do with my time than argue with a "future-theist" who thinks that OUR ideas are "absurd".
 
The following users thanked this post: james03, Michael Wilson, Daniel, Xavier, Davis Blank - EG

Offline Kreuzritter

  • Korporal
  • **
  • Posts: 438
  • Thanked: 366 times
  • Religion: Roman Catholic
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2018, 08:19:26 AM »
Quote
A loving God would put us in Heaven right away.

Justice aside, how is that supposed to work in the first place when the will rejects God?

No, seriously: Heaven is a theosis, an eternal union with the divine, to which an eternal union of the subject's will with that of God, indeed of his spirit with the divine spirit, is not just necessary but essential. Thus bringing a person into that state forever, contrary to his will, would consitute an everlasting annihilation of him as a subject, to whom will is something essential - in other words, it is in principle impossible (subjecthood, consciousness, will - these are inseperable, one cannot have one without the other).

God will allow us in a point at which this is possible, and for the reprobate it will never be possible because of his bad will. Suffering is natural consequence of this rejection and those of good will will be purified by it, while those of bad will will cry "How dare you!". You're overestimating mankind's own justice in insisting that a loving God would definitely treat them like you believe you would (of course you wouldn't - if you or any other human including myself had God's power I would shudder to see what the world would look like).

But then that's something underlying every "argument from evil": presumption. Presumption of how God would or would not act, and also a bunch of semantic issues that turn the whole issue into a sophistic game.

Of course you deny free will, so the point is probably moot ...
« Last Edit: April 15, 2018, 08:28:42 AM by Kreuzritter »
 
The following users thanked this post: Daniel, Xavier, Davis Blank - EG

Offline An aspiring Thomist

  • St. Joseph's Workbench
  • Wachtmeister
  • ***
  • Posts: 633
  • Thanked: 189 times
  • Religion: Roman Catholic
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #4 on: April 15, 2018, 11:19:18 AM »
Michael, you donít seem to have a good conception of Godís transcendence and how His foreknowledge would work with free beings. Firstly, knowledge does not necessarily imply causality as you will admit. I know a ball will drop to the ground without even touching it if I see someone else drop it. Therefore, how is Gods knowledge of free events self contradictory of them being free? Your hidden assumption is to make God much like us except Ge knows how everything works. So in you view a God may know how anything determinate might work, but how could He know a future free choice? He canít know like a scientist knows how such and such natural event occurs and will occur. How could God know a free choice unless he completely determines it or it is completely determined and therefore not free?

Hereís how. God is outside of time. Hence, there is no future to Him. Everything is present to Him in eternity. Your future free choice is present to Him ďnowĒ. So, God knows you will freely choose X because you will. But you do not freely choose X because God determines you to do so. Godís knowledge is not always casual. You could do or not do X in an ontological way. Considering you alone, you may or may not choose X. But God considering your actual future choice which is present to Him, knows what you will do. So there isnít a possibility frond Godís point of view for you not to do X. Here is an analogy: you see a man sitting on a chair. He freely chose to sit. Yet, you have knowledge of him doing so and furthermore, he could have chosen not to. Your sight has no casual relationship to his free choice and yet your knowledge is more or less certain. God foreknowledge of free choice is similar. Itís only strange to us because we are in time unlike God and therefore cannot ďperceiveĒ those future things ďpresentĒ to us like God can.

Also the problem of evil is not incompatible with a good God logically speaking. There a thread not to long ago on it. Basically, you would have to prove it is evil for God to allow an evil for a greater good or prove that in a specific case there is no possible greater good which could come from some evil. You canít proof the former logically and your canít prove the latter unless you are all knowing.
 

Offline james03

  • Hauptmann
  • ****
  • Posts: 7996
  • Thanked: 2510 times
  • The Brutal Clarity of a Winter Morning
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2018, 06:10:54 PM »
Quote
I think the argument from evil proves beyond any doubt that God does not exist. No God would allow children to starve, get beaten, the Holocaust, and many other sufferings.

Quit virtue signaling.  If you want to shreak against God, at least use a massacre the size of what the Chicoms did, or the Russians.

The argument from evil proves one thing: Free Will.  Free Will is the prime directive.

Quote
I think the notion of free will is incoherent. Your will operates on the calculations made by the intellect. The intellect perceives something as desirable, and the will acts on it. To put it simply: you do what you desire. You can't choose what you desire, and even when it seems you can, that "choice" would be random or based on what you desire to desire -- and this leads to a regress.
  I desire to romp with a bunch of whores.  It would be fun, and I'd like a few lines of coke to go with it.  I don't do that.  You leave out "emotions", which are about 95% material, and well studied.  Desire comes from your emotions.  Your intellect many times presents a case against what you desire.  You freely choose one way or the other depending on how strong you are in the virtues.

The infinite regress falls on the side that denies Free Will.  Take the case of Trying Again.  You now will need another "decider machine" to counter the "decider machine" that chose to give up.  If you give up again, then try again, you will now need yet another "decider machine".  As you can see, this leads to an infinite regress, only limited by death.  Free Will exists.

Quote
But worse than that, and the point of this thread, is the incompatibility of libertarian free will with divine (or any) foreknowledge. To have free will, X and ~X both have to be possible. Now if God knows I will do X, then doing ~X is only a perceived possibility, not an actual one. If it were actual, then it would be possible to change God's foreknowledge, which is absurd. But then I don't have free will, since doing ~X is not possible.

A complete blunder.  God is outside of time, and technically doesn't have "foreknowledge" -- He's already there.  Inside of time, you have autonomy and Free Will.  God gives Grace to those He will save, unto salvation.  Those who are not saved He leaves to their own machinations after they reject Grace.  Omnipotence does not mean God can deny Truth, because He is Truth itself.  He can not deny Himself.  He can not make a circle a square, for example.  He does not violate His decree of Free Will.  He saves whom He will save based on His Sovereign Plan.
"But he that doth not believe, is already judged: because he believeth not in the name of the only begotten Son of God (Jn 3:18)."

"All sorrow leads to the foot of the Cross.  Weep for your sins."
 

Offline james03

  • Hauptmann
  • ****
  • Posts: 7996
  • Thanked: 2510 times
  • The Brutal Clarity of a Winter Morning
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2018, 06:14:57 PM »
Michael,
Will you grant that it is a reasonable belief on my part that if Stalin, Hitler, and Mao had been killed by God I would not have been born?

I hold it is more than just reasonable, it is basically 100% assured that I would never have been born considering my families involvement in the wars.

So why are you trying to convince me that God not killing these historical figures is bad?  Are you saying I should never have been born?
"But he that doth not believe, is already judged: because he believeth not in the name of the only begotten Son of God (Jn 3:18)."

"All sorrow leads to the foot of the Cross.  Weep for your sins."
 

Offline Kirin

  • Wachtmeister
  • ***
  • Posts: 539
  • Thanked: 124 times
  • Religion: Discordian
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #7 on: April 15, 2018, 09:10:04 PM »

So why are you trying to convince me that God not killing these historical figures is bad?  Are you saying I should never have been born?

1 Person never being born
vs
80 Million lives lost during WW2 and could have been saved had Hitler, Mussolini, Mao, Stalin etc never come to power.

Is there really a competition here? Your savior gave his own life to save humanity purportedly didn't he? You wouldn't wish the same?
 

Offline james03

  • Hauptmann
  • ****
  • Posts: 7996
  • Thanked: 2510 times
  • The Brutal Clarity of a Winter Morning
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #8 on: April 15, 2018, 11:40:55 PM »
Only 1?  How about no one alive today would exist.  There would be humans, but they wouldn't be the people alive today.

God permits the evil that originates from Free Will to achieve His purpose.  The Prime Directive is Free Will.
"But he that doth not believe, is already judged: because he believeth not in the name of the only begotten Son of God (Jn 3:18)."

"All sorrow leads to the foot of the Cross.  Weep for your sins."
 

Offline james03

  • Hauptmann
  • ****
  • Posts: 7996
  • Thanked: 2510 times
  • The Brutal Clarity of a Winter Morning
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #9 on: April 15, 2018, 11:42:51 PM »
Quote
You wouldn't wish the same?
If the choice was either I go to hell and all of humanity is saved and goes to heaven, or I go to heaven, and all of humanity, including my family, goes to hell, I would choose heaven.

Hell is for eternity, as you will soon find out.
"But he that doth not believe, is already judged: because he believeth not in the name of the only begotten Son of God (Jn 3:18)."

"All sorrow leads to the foot of the Cross.  Weep for your sins."
 

Offline Xavier

  • Glory to God in the Highest Heaven, and Peace to His people on Earth of good will.
  • St. Joseph's Workbench
  • Feldwebel
  • ***
  • Posts: 2610
  • Thanked: 2255 times
  • Blessed Be the Hour that the Son of God was born!
  • Religion: Catholic Christian
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #10 on: April 16, 2018, 01:06:32 AM »
Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. From beginning to end. The more important is, why. Why did you apostatise, as you proudly declare you have? Were you praying the Rosary regularly? Was there was some sin you were habitually attached to? Did you go to confession and Mass often?

Now. Reason proves that God is essential and immutable Goodness in many ways, we will make use of only 1 here. (1) Man discerns a natural moral law on his conscience. (2) this moral law is unvarying and immutable. (3) it proves that there is a moral lawgiver, who is immutably and essentially good. (4) and this Goodness is Whom we call God.

Now, 1 is a fact. Whenever atheists say "oh look, that's evil", they themselves bear witness that the natural law is inscribed on all hearts, as the Apostle says, even those without grace. What atheists fail to realize is this awareness of moral good and evil must necessarily lead them to God. 2 is shown by the fact even atheists recognize somethings are objectively and intrinsically evil. 3 and 4 folliow.

Rightly, therefore does the Catechism say "deep within his conscience man discerns a law which he has not laid upon himself but which he knows to hold him in obedience."

1. Now, since God is Goodness itself in Whom there is no darkness or deceit, it follows that it is as foolish and absurd for you to say, God may be good when things are good, but he is bad if things are bad; as it would be for one to say, the sun exists when it is day but doesn't when it is night; the sun always exists whether you see it or not; and God's Goodness is always manifest in the law in our hearts that urges us to choose the good and eschew evil; since reason proves God is necessarily good, we know He is eternally and immutably such.

God made our first parents good; they could have chosen a different path and then there would have been no suffering and death. But they chose to learn the knowledge of evil and to sin; where there is sin, there must be suffering. Only suffering wilfully borne can expiate all sin and lead us back to paradise. Since no man could bear the full burden of sin, God sent His Son, born of a Virgin, as He foretold on the day our first parents sinned, to deliver us from the curse of sin and the suffering it must necessarily engender.

2. Your foreknowledge argument commits an elementary fallacy called the modal fallacy. Look it up. It confuses the truth value of a proposition with its modality. From the fact that God knows X, all that follows is that X is actually true; not that it is necessarily true. X comes to pass within time contingent upon the events that freely led to it only. When life and death, heaven and hell are placed before you, ypu know from conscious first hand experience that you can choose which one you want; for that matter, if tea and coffee were placed before you, you could. So, you know your intellect can weigh two choices rationally and your will can choose between them freely. That is all the God-given and naturally innate power of free will implies.

We have free will because we are not mere matter; mere matter would operate without freedom. God is the source of freedom and He made us free in His own image. The soul He breathed into us is endowed with the natural faculties of the intellect and the power of free will. Ndes confirm that the soul exists.

It escapes you that you fall into the greatest difficulties by denying free will. Doing so necessarily leads to both intellectual and moral nihilism. You have no way of knowing the output of your cognitive faculties is reliable if they are irreversibly determined by blind forces as you believe; nor can you ever make a truly moral choice if there is no real possibility of choosing in the first place. A tree is not a moral agent; if it falls and crushes someone, it did so necessarily, given the laws of physics. If everything is necessary in like manner, there is no morality possible and your question collapses. Atheism refutes itself and reduces to absurdity.
Mary, our Heavenly Mother, implores those who receive Holy Communion Daily, or at least Weekly, to Offer their Lives. TEXT OF THE LIFE OFFERING: "My dear Jesus, before the Holy Trinity, Our Heavenly Mother, and the whole Heavenly Court, united with Your most Precious Blood and Your Sacrifice on Calvary, I hereby Offer my whole Life to the Intention of Your Sacred Heart and to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Together with my life, I place at Your disposal all Holy Masses, all my Holy Communions, all Rosaries, all acts of consecration, all my good deeds, all my sacrifices, and the suffering of my entire life for the Adoration and Supplication of the Holy Trinity, for Unity in our Holy Mother Church, for the Holy Father and Priests, for good Priestly vocations, and for all souls until the end of the world. O my Jesus, please accept my life Sacrifice and my offerings and give me Your grace that I may persevere obediently until my death." Amen. https://www.avemariamaternostra.com/life-offering-promises.html It is recommended that you make this Life Offering as soon as you feel ready, and to renew it from time to time.

Please read the Blessed Mother's promises in the link: those who make it seriously will face no Purgatory (promise 5) since they would have completed it here, will have all their loved ones released from Purgatory the day they offer their life with intent to persevere (promise 4), and can save the souls of all their family members in due time by their life offering (promise 3). It will benefit all souls who have ever lived until time's end (promise 2) A simple effective way for thousands of us to save millions of souls. Inflamed in Large Letters of Love, you will have your name written in the Hearts of Jesus and Mary forever (promise 1).
 

Offline Xavier

  • Glory to God in the Highest Heaven, and Peace to His people on Earth of good will.
  • St. Joseph's Workbench
  • Feldwebel
  • ***
  • Posts: 2610
  • Thanked: 2255 times
  • Blessed Be the Hour that the Son of God was born!
  • Religion: Catholic Christian
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #11 on: April 16, 2018, 07:09:52 AM »
So, no surprise - Michael held to Gerry Matatics' ecclesia vacantism and to Jansenist lite anti nfp extreme opinions not very long ago. From such a "rigorist" position, he's now fully lapsed, losing faith not only in Jesus Christ Our Lord, but even in any notion of God as Creator of us all; is the pattern of the road leading to apostasy becoming clear, folks? For the love of God, remain SSPX or Indult traditionalists. That is the correct position and helps you keep the Faith for life and your soul for eternity.
Mary, our Heavenly Mother, implores those who receive Holy Communion Daily, or at least Weekly, to Offer their Lives. TEXT OF THE LIFE OFFERING: "My dear Jesus, before the Holy Trinity, Our Heavenly Mother, and the whole Heavenly Court, united with Your most Precious Blood and Your Sacrifice on Calvary, I hereby Offer my whole Life to the Intention of Your Sacred Heart and to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Together with my life, I place at Your disposal all Holy Masses, all my Holy Communions, all Rosaries, all acts of consecration, all my good deeds, all my sacrifices, and the suffering of my entire life for the Adoration and Supplication of the Holy Trinity, for Unity in our Holy Mother Church, for the Holy Father and Priests, for good Priestly vocations, and for all souls until the end of the world. O my Jesus, please accept my life Sacrifice and my offerings and give me Your grace that I may persevere obediently until my death." Amen. https://www.avemariamaternostra.com/life-offering-promises.html It is recommended that you make this Life Offering as soon as you feel ready, and to renew it from time to time.

Please read the Blessed Mother's promises in the link: those who make it seriously will face no Purgatory (promise 5) since they would have completed it here, will have all their loved ones released from Purgatory the day they offer their life with intent to persevere (promise 4), and can save the souls of all their family members in due time by their life offering (promise 3). It will benefit all souls who have ever lived until time's end (promise 2) A simple effective way for thousands of us to save millions of souls. Inflamed in Large Letters of Love, you will have your name written in the Hearts of Jesus and Mary forever (promise 1).
 
The following users thanked this post: Davis Blank - EG

Offline james03

  • Hauptmann
  • ****
  • Posts: 7996
  • Thanked: 2510 times
  • The Brutal Clarity of a Winter Morning
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #12 on: April 16, 2018, 10:59:10 AM »
Xavier,
I believe you are wasting your time.  Most heathens are midwits with normie IQ.  They believe professing their heathen beliefs makes them sophisticated.  The higher IQ heathens readily convert and would not make the errors we see on this thread.

For example, note the hypocrisy.   There is no "Problem of Evil" on the Theist side.  We know that this is proof that we have free will.  The "Problem of Evil" is a big problem for the heathen.  Just mentioning "Evil" shows their contradiction. 

And I've already pointed out that the infinite regress lies with them.  "Changing your mind" and "Trying again" sets up an infinite regress for a deterministic system. 

And do you really believe Michael doesn't believe in Free Will?  At most, he hopes he doesn't have free will, but he knows he is free to believe and do whatever he wants.  Next Michael will be offering us shares in the Brooklyn Bridge to purchase.

The higher IQ sincere heathens can be easily converted by pointing out the immaterial world and philosophy.  They will get it.  The normie heathens who are sincere can be easily converted by pointing out THEIR problem of evil, since being sincere, they will readily admit evil exists.  This is why Jordan Peterson is so popular.  The sincere heathens know that their beliefs are flawed, but they haven't had much in the way of a rational presentation of God up to now (to the shame of the Catholic Church).

It looks like Stefan Molineux and Mike Cernovich have both left behind their heathen beliefs.  Or are at least far down the road to conversion.
"But he that doth not believe, is already judged: because he believeth not in the name of the only begotten Son of God (Jn 3:18)."

"All sorrow leads to the foot of the Cross.  Weep for your sins."
 
The following users thanked this post: Xavier

Offline Xavier

  • Glory to God in the Highest Heaven, and Peace to His people on Earth of good will.
  • St. Joseph's Workbench
  • Feldwebel
  • ***
  • Posts: 2610
  • Thanked: 2255 times
  • Blessed Be the Hour that the Son of God was born!
  • Religion: Catholic Christian
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #13 on: April 18, 2018, 05:22:25 AM »
Hi James. I've seen 5 people come to the Church personally. : ) It usually takes a lot of prayer for them, and a little patient explaining. Of course a dose of good will and openness to God's grace on their side never hurts! My personal goal is to help 10000 people come to Christ or return to the Church over the next 10 years. Either in person or through a website I intend to start for that purpose. You may have seen people convert also; usually more souls convert when times were better in the Church.

St. Apollonius, whose feast we celebrate today, was a tireless apologist for the Church. He helped souls come to Christ. May he pray for Michael.

As for Michael, we can only hope that God's grace works on him and he comes back to the Church. Imo, those who've tried to be Catholic, but failed - especially because the current situation in the Church can perhaps be partially exculpatory - should be helped by us to the extent we can. Let's pray Michael and all we know to have left the Faith come back.
Mary, our Heavenly Mother, implores those who receive Holy Communion Daily, or at least Weekly, to Offer their Lives. TEXT OF THE LIFE OFFERING: "My dear Jesus, before the Holy Trinity, Our Heavenly Mother, and the whole Heavenly Court, united with Your most Precious Blood and Your Sacrifice on Calvary, I hereby Offer my whole Life to the Intention of Your Sacred Heart and to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Together with my life, I place at Your disposal all Holy Masses, all my Holy Communions, all Rosaries, all acts of consecration, all my good deeds, all my sacrifices, and the suffering of my entire life for the Adoration and Supplication of the Holy Trinity, for Unity in our Holy Mother Church, for the Holy Father and Priests, for good Priestly vocations, and for all souls until the end of the world. O my Jesus, please accept my life Sacrifice and my offerings and give me Your grace that I may persevere obediently until my death." Amen. https://www.avemariamaternostra.com/life-offering-promises.html It is recommended that you make this Life Offering as soon as you feel ready, and to renew it from time to time.

Please read the Blessed Mother's promises in the link: those who make it seriously will face no Purgatory (promise 5) since they would have completed it here, will have all their loved ones released from Purgatory the day they offer their life with intent to persevere (promise 4), and can save the souls of all their family members in due time by their life offering (promise 3). It will benefit all souls who have ever lived until time's end (promise 2) A simple effective way for thousands of us to save millions of souls. Inflamed in Large Letters of Love, you will have your name written in the Hearts of Jesus and Mary forever (promise 1).
 

Offline Michael

  • Vizekorporal
  • **
  • Posts: 142
  • Thanked: 23 times
  • Religion: Future-theist
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2018, 01:32:46 AM »
Your will operates on the calculations made by the intellect. The intellect perceives something as desirable, and the will acts on it. To put it simply: you do what you desire. You can't choose what you desire, and even when it seems you can, that "choice" would be random or based on what you desire to desire -- and this leads to a regress.
This isn't how it works at all. The way it works is, there's first some object which draws or repels the person's lower appetite. (We will call this a 'lower desire'.) The person's intellect then tries to figure out whether this lower desire is something reasonable (i.e. in accordance with truth and reality). The will then makes a choice. (We will call this choice the 'higher desire'.)(emphasis added)

Okay, but why does it choose one way rather than another? Let's say you have a choice between A and B (e.g. to sin or to not-sin), and reason-desire sets for both of them, RD-A and RD-B. You proceed to choose A. Why did you choose A? You might point to RD-A to explain it, but RD-B was there as well, so why did RD-A take priority over RD-B?

If your answer is free will, then you fell into the circle: You chose A because you chose A. This is indistinguishable from randomness -- RD-A and RD-B are necessary conditions for A and B, but neither leads to the outcome, so the agent (or the "self" or agent-self) randomly lands on one desire over the other.

If your answer is that RD-A was stronger, then you couldn't have done otherwise given your mind's purpose of acting on the stronger set of reasons. If you could choose B despite RD-A being stronger (i.e. if the purpose is not fixed), then the strength of RD-A doesn't fully explain why you chose A rather than not.

If there is no answer why you chose one rather than the other, then "free will" is randomness.

Quote
Thus we can't control our desires on the lower level, but we can control them on the higher level, and it is the higher desires which are morally-good or morally-evil acts.

Do we have control over the way we control our higher desires? On what basis do we choose to perform good over evil?

Susan Wolf: "In order for an agent to be autonomous, it seems, not only must the agent's behavior be governable by her self, her self must in turn be governable by her self ó her deeper self, if you like ó and this must in turn be governable by her (still deeper?) self, ad infinitum."

Quote
Quote
Adam sinned because he desired to, and you can't choose what you want.
He desired the apple on the level of the lower appetite, but his intellect told him that this desire was wrong. Yet despite his good judgement, he still chose the apple (desired it on the higher level). And that was his sin.

Why did he choose to eat the fruit rather than not? Did he want to "desire it on the higher level"? Or was it random?

Quote
It is true, if God knows that you will choose X, then you certainly will choose X. You cannot possibly choose not X.
Ok.

Quote
But that doesn't mean you have no choice.
If by choice we mean having two or more alternative possibilities, then clearly you don't have a choice. I don't have the freedom to invalidate what God already knows. Tell me how to get to heaven if God already knows I'm going to hell.

Quote
The very fact that God knows that you will freely choose X (in the libertarian sense) proves that you will in fact make a free choice (in the libertarian sense).

The compatibility of free will and foreknowledge is the very thing in dispute, so you can't assume it to prove it.

Quote
If there was no choice on your part, then to say that God knows you will choose X is a false statement.


If by choice, you mean free choice, then it is a false statement -- because free will and foreknowledge are not compatible. If by choice, you mean a mental event that generates an intention, then God could foreknow that -- the question is whether the choice is determined or free (or random).