Author Topic: Free will and foreknowledge  (Read 4097 times)

Offline Michael

  • Vizekorporal
  • **
  • Posts: 148
  • Thanked: 26 times
  • Religion: Atheist
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #15 on: November 07, 2018, 01:47:07 AM »
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 can’t proof the former logically and your can’t prove the latter unless you are all knowing.

God in His omnipotence does not need child rape and sex trafficking to accomplish His ends. Even if child rape were necessary for some greater good X (which would deny free will), we can still ask the question, is X necessary (and for what?)? Since God is omnipotent, He could make us all happy right away without allowing child rape, and happiness (or agent satisfaction) is all that really matters. So even if permitting some evil R is needed to bring about "greater good" X, X is not needed to bring about God's happiness (as He is perfectly happy eternally) nor our happiness, so X itself (and by extension, R) is not necessary.

So kindly quit making excuses for the existence of rape and abuse. If police officers can stop it, your god surely can.
 
The following users thanked this post: Pon de Replay

Offline Davis Blank - EG

  • St. Joseph's Workbench
  • Wachtmeister
  • ***
  • Posts: 516
  • Thanked: 666 times
  • Religion: Roman Catholic
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #16 on: November 07, 2018, 07:16:49 AM »
Michael,

How would you like God to stop child rape?  Strike each person dead?  Where would you draw the line?  Strike dead for child rape, how about normal rape?  Adultery?  Lying, theft?  Should He block some evils but allow other evils?

How do you define evil?
 
The following users thanked this post: Xavier

Offline Daniel

  • Feldwebel
  • ***
  • Posts: 2400
  • Thanked: 512 times
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #17 on: November 07, 2018, 07:47:00 AM »
Michael - I apologize... I didn't know what I was talking about before. And I still don't know what I'm talking about, so take this reply with a grain of salt. But I am now of the opinion that free will needs to be compatibilistic. Otherwise we run into the exact contradiction you mentioned in your earlier post. (We also need to deny the principle that "ought implies can", since we know that 1.) God punishes people for not choosing rightly, and 2.) God is not unjust, so 3.) there's no injustice in God's punishing a person for failing to choose rightly when that person could not possibly have chosen rightly.)

As for child rape - we probably need to just accept the fact that God wills it, even though we don't know why God wills it. That's what St. Augustine implies, anyway.

Maybe we could say that God does not will the evil, but that God wills that some men will the evil. (Rather, He wills all men to will evil, except those men to whom He gives His grace.)
« Last Edit: November 07, 2018, 08:46:54 AM by Daniel »
 

Offline james03

  • Hauptmann
  • ****
  • Posts: 8144
  • Thanked: 2635 times
  • The Brutal Clarity of a Winter Morning
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #18 on: November 07, 2018, 09:11:02 AM »
Quote
Since God is omnipotent, He could make us all happy right away

Evil comes from Free Will.  It is that simple.  Evil proves we have Free Will.

Free Will is easily proven by considering "Try Again" and "Changing your Mind".  If you model this with a State Machine you end up with an infinite machine if you insist on determinism.  If you accept Free Will you end up with Emotion, Intellect, and Decider.
"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 Daniel

  • Feldwebel
  • ***
  • Posts: 2400
  • Thanked: 512 times
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #19 on: November 07, 2018, 09:18:03 AM »
Quote
Since God is omnipotent, He could make us all happy right away

Evil comes from Free Will.  It is that simple.  Evil proves we have Free Will.

Free Will is easily proven by considering "Try Again" and "Changing your Mind".  If you model this with a State Machine you end up with an infinite machine if you insist on determinism.  If you accept Free Will you end up with Emotion, Intellect, and Decider.
How so? The determinist says that if you could try again, you wouldn't change your mind.
 

Offline Xavier

  • Immaculate Heart of Divine Mother Mary, Save us and the Whole World. Sweet Heart of Immaculate Mary, make of Pope Mario-Francis a Great Saint. Purest Immaculate Heart of Mary, Preserve the Hierarchy, Clergy and Religious in the Truth of the Catholic Faith
  • St. Joseph's Workbench
  • Feldwebel
  • ***
  • Posts: 3724
  • Thanked: 2877 times
  • Indian Catholic
    • Marian Apostolate Life Offering.
  • Religion: Catholic Christian (Roman Rite Latin Traditionalist)
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #20 on: November 07, 2018, 11:04:55 AM »
Our conscience - the innate moral awareness given to us by our Creator - is first witness that God exists and is Good. His Law is written on our hearts, as the Apostle says. St. Francis Xavier used this fact as a proof when evangelizing non-Christians in Japan; they had been wondering how the Ten Commandments could be observed by non-Christians. The Apostolic man showed them that, as all Tradition teaches, and as reason itself shows, each of us have an innate awareness of the moral law of God, that teaches us to distinguish good and evil just as we would light and darkness, and an impulse of conscience to choose the good rather than the evil. This fact shows it was Goodness that made us, and that the Being Who made us and gave us is our conscience is always good and the Source of that Law. Atheistic and evolutionary theories to account for conscience and moral awareness are rather absurd and always fall short. God gave you knowledge of right and wrong so that it may, when you reflect on and ponder it, lead you back to Him. Atheism fails poorly.

Atheism cannot even begin to say "but that is good and this is evil" without falling into error and contradiction. If we are all brute, purposeless beings who came into existence through sheer chance, there is no purpose, no morality and no good and evil.
Please Consecrate yourself to the Immaculate Heart daily, especially in the Sacred Month of August: Do never secede for any pretended reason from the Pope and the Bishops, and pray and work for the Pope and the Bishops to Consecrate Russia one day, as they infallibly will quite soon. Consecrate Russia yourself in Communion and in Union with the Pope and Bishops. Please consecrate aborted babies every day. You can save unborn children with every prayer for their Baptism that you say and help efficaciously end terrible abortion-killing worldwide.

Mary, our Heavenly Mother, implores those who receive Holy Communion Daily, or at least Weekly, to Offer their Lives. TEXT OF THE LIFE OFFERING, adapted and pluralized: Dear Lord Jesus, before the Holy Trinity, Our Heavenly Mother, and the whole Heavenly Court, united with Your most Precious Blood and Your Sacrifice on Calvary, We hereby Offer our whole Lives to the Intention of Your Sacred Heart and to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Together with our life, we place at Your disposal all Holy Masses, all our Holy Communions, all Rosaries, all acts of consecration, all our good deeds, all our sacrifices, and the suffering of our entire life for the Adoration and Supplication of the Holy Trinity, for Unity in our Holy Mother Church, for the Holy Father, Pope Francis the First; and for His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI. For His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and His Holiness Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople, that they may re-unite their flocks with the Catholic Church, and there may soon be but One Fold and One Shepherd. For all the Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church, for all Bishops of the Universal Church that they may be true Apostles and Shepherds; and for Priests, Nuns and Monks, for good Priestly and Religious Vocations, and for All Souls until the end of the world. O my Jesus, please accept our life Sacrifice and our offerings and give us Your grace that we may all persevere obediently until death. Amen." https://marianapostolate.com/life-offering/ Please pray this daily and you and your family will be saved. You will avoid Purgatory.

A simple effective way for thousands of us to save millions of souls. Please also offer the Precious Blood of Jesus' Heart to the Eternal Father, and our Lives in Sacrifice in Union with It, and with Mary's Immaculate Heart, that Jerusalem may be saved, Judah be restored, and the Jews may at long last happily be returned to saving Faith in Jesus Christ.
 

Offline Michael

  • Vizekorporal
  • **
  • Posts: 148
  • Thanked: 26 times
  • Religion: Atheist
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #21 on: November 07, 2018, 01:56:48 PM »
Evil comes from Free Will.  It is that simple.  Evil proves we have Free Will.
Why did the first person to commit evil choose to do evil?
 

Offline Michael

  • Vizekorporal
  • **
  • Posts: 148
  • Thanked: 26 times
  • Religion: Atheist
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #22 on: November 07, 2018, 02:02:31 PM »
But I am now of the opinion that free will needs to be compatibilistic.

I don't understand why any theist (who affirms hell) would be a compatibilist. That means God punishes people for acting on the desires He predetermined for them to have in the first place. They couldn't refrain. It is manifestly absurd. God might as well punish people for where they were born or their race, as you can't choose your race anymore than you choose your inevitable desires.
Quote
As for child rape - we probably need to just accept the fact that God wills it, even though we don't know why God wills it. That's what St. Augustine implies, anyway.
Or we could accept that there is no God.

Quote
Maybe we could say that God does not will the evil, but that God wills that some men will the evil. (Rather, He wills all men to will evil, except those men to whom He gives His grace.)
Pay no attention to the puppetmaster behind the curtain.
 

Offline james03

  • Hauptmann
  • ****
  • Posts: 8144
  • Thanked: 2635 times
  • The Brutal Clarity of a Winter Morning
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #23 on: November 07, 2018, 02:22:09 PM »
Quote
Why did the first person to commit evil choose to do evil?
Pride.

Quote
How so? The determinist says that if you could try again, you wouldn't change your mind.
If decider 1 says to take the heroin, along with decider 2,3,....20.  Then you have to have decider 21 that chooses to quit.  Everytime you try, or "fight the urge", you have to have another decider machine, and this is potentially infinite, limited by life expectancy.

If you change your mind, you have free will.  If you "try again" after failing (e.g. quit heroin), then you have 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."
 
The following users thanked this post: Xavier

Offline Daniel

  • Feldwebel
  • ***
  • Posts: 2400
  • Thanked: 512 times
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #24 on: November 07, 2018, 03:54:28 PM »
Quote
How so? The determinist says that if you could try again, you wouldn't change your mind.
If decider 1 says to take the heroin, along with decider 2,3,....20.  Then you have to have decider 21 that chooses to quit.  Everytime you try, or "fight the urge", you have to have another decider machine, and this is potentially infinite, limited by life expectancy.

If you change your mind, you have free will.  If you "try again" after failing (e.g. quit heroin), then you have free will.
Either I'm not understanding you, or that makes no sense.

For your heroin example, there are two separate and simultaneous desires in the addict who wants to quit: there is the desire to quit the heroin (drawn by reason), and then there is the desire to continue using it (drawn by passion). For the first 20 tries, the passion-drawn desire wins out. Then on the 21st try and all subsequent tries, the reason-drawn desire wins out. Why? Determinism says that the stronger desire always wins out. For the first 20 tries, the passion-drawn desire was stronger, so the addict was unable to quit. But on the 21st try and afterwards, the reason-drawn desire wins out, and the addict finally quits. Why? Christian determinism says that it's because of grace: For the first 20 tries the addict lacked the grace-to-quit, and so he was therefore unable to quit. But the grace-to-quit was then given to him on the 21st try, and from then on he quit. There appear to be only two causes at work: 1.) the lack of grace-to-quit and 2.) the grace-to-quit. Not infinite "decider machines" as you suggest.

If I've completely misunderstood your point, please clarify.
« Last Edit: November 07, 2018, 04:12:57 PM by Daniel »
 

Offline Daniel

  • Feldwebel
  • ***
  • Posts: 2400
  • Thanked: 512 times
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #25 on: November 07, 2018, 04:02:52 PM »
I don't understand why any theist (who affirms hell) would be a compatibilist. That means God punishes people for acting on the desires He predetermined for them to have in the first place. They couldn't refrain. It is manifestly absurd.
It's only absurd if the principle of "ought implies can" is true. As I said before, I think the only way this would work is if we deny that principle. Once you deny that principle, there's no contradiction. God does not will evil, but He causes man to will either good or evil (good, by giving man the grace necessary to will good, or evil, by not giving man the grace necessary in order to will good). If man wills evil, God punishes man... and the punishment is just, because it was man who willed the evil. The fact that man could not have possibly willed good doesn't matter, since we've denied the principle that "ought implies can". Man is bound to will good, even if man cannot will good.
« Last Edit: November 07, 2018, 04:11:42 PM by Daniel »
 

Offline Gardener

  • Drink the poison yourself.
  • St. Joseph's Workbench
  • Hauptmann
  • ****
  • Posts: 8393
  • Thanked: 5814 times
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #26 on: November 07, 2018, 04:39:57 PM »
I don't understand why any theist (who affirms hell) would be a compatibilist. That means God punishes people for acting on the desires He predetermined for them to have in the first place. They couldn't refrain. It is manifestly absurd.
It's only absurd if the principle of "ought implies can" is true. As I said before, I think the only way this would work is if we deny that principle. Once you deny that principle, there's no contradiction. God does not will evil, but He causes man to will either good or evil (good, by giving man the grace necessary to will good, or evil, by not giving man the grace necessary in order to will good). If man wills evil, God punishes man... and the punishment is just, because it was man who willed the evil. The fact that man could not have possibly willed good doesn't matter, since we've denied the principle that "ought implies can". Man is bound to will good, even if man cannot will good.

No, not even close. You're turning God into a shady Jewish lawyer trickster. "Father" would be a joke in such a case, like a parent who beats their child for not eating dinner, despite not having served dinner to the child. If a human father acted like this, he should be locked up in prison or an insane asylum.

God is ready to give grace to all and to save all, but has decreed not to do this against man's will.

St. Thomas covers this issue in SCG, Book III, Q159:

Quote
Chapter 159
THAT IT IS REASONABLE TO HOLD A MAN RESPONSIBLE IF HE DOES NOT TURN TOWARD GOD,
EVEN THOUGH HE CANNOT DO THIS WITHOUT GRACE


[1]I As we gather from the foregoing, since one cannot be directed to the ultimate end except by means of divine grace, without which no one can possess the things needed to work toward the ultimate end, such as faith, hope, love, and perseverance, it might seem to some person that man should not be held responsible for the lack of such aids. Especially so, since he cannot merit the help of divine grace, nor turn toward God unless God convert him, for no one is held responsible for what depends on another. Now, if this is granted, many inappropriate conclusions appear. In fact, it follows that he who has neither faith, hope, nor love of God, nor perseverance in the good, is not deserving of punishment; whereas, it is clearly stated in John (3:36): “He who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.” And since no one reaches final happiness without the aids that we have mentioned, it follows that there are certain men who neither attain happiness nor suffer punishment from God. The contrary of this is shown from the statement in Matthew (25:34, 41) that to all who are present at the divine judgment, it will be said: “Come... possess you the kingdom prepared for you” or “Depart ... into everlasting fire.”
[2] To settle this difficulty, we ought to consider that, although one may neither merit in advance nor call forth divine grace by a movement of his free choice, he is able to prevent himself from receiving this grace: Indeed, it is said in Job(21:34): “Who have said to God: Depart from us, we desire not the knowledge of Your ways”; and in Job (24:13): “They have been rebellious to the light.” And since this ability to impede or not to impede the reception of divine grace is within the scope of free choice, not undeservedly is responsibility for the fault imputed to him who offers an impediment to the reception of grace. In fact, as far as He is concerned, God is ready to give grace to all; “indeed He wills all men to be saved, and to come to the knowledge of the truth,” as is said in 1 Timothy (2:4).But those alone are deprived of grace who offer an obstacle within themselves to grace; just as, while the sun is shining on the world, the man who keeps his eyes closed is held responsible for his fault, if as a result some evil follows, even though he could not see unless he were provided in advance with light from the sun.
"And what use are the victories on the battlefield if we are ourselves are defeated in our innermost personal selves?" - St. Maximilian Kolbe

Providence is a present mystery by which our hope is confirmed and our faith solidified, if we give not into despair or disbelief.
 
The following users thanked this post: Michael Wilson, Daniel

Offline james03

  • Hauptmann
  • ****
  • Posts: 8144
  • Thanked: 2635 times
  • The Brutal Clarity of a Winter Morning
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #27 on: November 07, 2018, 08:17:51 PM »
Quote
For the first 20 tries, the passion-drawn desire wins out.
  There's your error, imprecision.  What do you mean it wins out?  We have an intellect that knows heroin is wrong.  We have an emotional part that wants the heroin.  We then have a decider circuit (logic) that decides, which we label Decider1.  It decides to use the heroin.

Try 2, we have the same conditions.  You still know it is wrong (the heathen will never contemplate what "you" means), your emotion side still wants it, and in this case some other circuit steps in and chooses to forgo the heroin.  We call that Decider2. 

I can set up an infinite series.  Suppose a war breaks out between D1 and D2?  I'll need a D3 to cast the winning vote, ad infinitum.

Here's the deal, most heathens are simpletons.  For example, do they even know what a deterministic system is?  I'll give you an example.  I have a drive way alert system with a light beam going across the driveway to alert me if the Feds are coming.  Their car breaks the beam.  The receiver closes the relay (a deterministic  (IF-THEN) ).  The relay lights up a warning strobe in the house.  THAT is a deterministic system.

If you have to decide, it is not deterministic.  If you deliberate, it is not deterministic.  If you can change your mind, it is not deterministic.  If you can "try again" and again, and again, it is certainly not deterministic.   Everyone knows the feeling of "having to decide" and deliberating.  And we have women who can't decide; until their husband gives it to them.  They are anti-deterministic.

Therefore you have 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: 8144
  • Thanked: 2635 times
  • The Brutal Clarity of a Winter Morning
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #28 on: November 07, 2018, 08:23:02 PM »
Quote
And since this ability to impede or not to impede the reception of divine grace is within the scope of free choice,
  So much for Banez.  I need to tuck this one away for later use.
"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 Gardener

  • Drink the poison yourself.
  • St. Joseph's Workbench
  • Hauptmann
  • ****
  • Posts: 8393
  • Thanked: 5814 times
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Free will and foreknowledge
« Reply #29 on: November 07, 2018, 08:47:07 PM »
Quote
And since this ability to impede or not to impede the reception of divine grace is within the scope of free choice,
  So much for Banez.  I need to tuck this one away for later use.

The Banezians would just say that because man was empowered by sufficient grace, despite being metaphysically unable to choose the good without God so moving him, then said man is indeed culpable for a freely willed choice.

In his treatments on these issues, Garrigou-Lagrange tap dances around such quotes from St. Thomas with some pretty hardcore sophistry, or he just omits them entirely in order to reach his desired conclusion in line with Banez. Fr. William Most, in his book on Predestination, exposes them to the light and shows why the issue of sufficient/efficacious grace is actually missing from Thomas' writings and St. Thomas never really had a coherent teaching on the subject because when he adhered to Scripture, he necessarily moved away from the Augustinian position -- itself largely a vociferous, overly emotional reaction to the Pelagians.
"And what use are the victories on the battlefield if we are ourselves are defeated in our innermost personal selves?" - St. Maximilian Kolbe

Providence is a present mystery by which our hope is confirmed and our faith solidified, if we give not into despair or disbelief.
 
The following users thanked this post: Michael Wilson