Free Will is it real?
"Everything that happens is the summation of everything that arrives at now, the next step is inevitable"...

I read somewhere that scientists have determined that everything in the observable universe is made of the same stuff. So, this little rock we live on that coalesced around a star we call the Sun is made of the same stuff the rest of universe is made of. All the matter that makes up our Earth has been around for many billions of years. For billions of years, way before 'life' evolved, the matter on Earth moved around, changed shape, cooled, eroded and erupted into shapes we can only imagine, all without the help of a single living cell or any intelligent being.

Following massive 'Global Cooling' on a scale we cannot begin to imagine matter changed into different forms, elements combined, separated, rocks and gasses formed. All because the circumstances and conditions that prevailed from moment to moment made it so. At any infinitely small moment in time the course that matter was taking through time was determined by the summation of everything that had gone before, plus the current state it was in. What happened from each infinitely small moment in time to the next was a physical inevitability.

In other words, if a piece of matter over millennia of development becomes the number 5 and at a precise moment in time it collides with a piece of matter that has evolved over millennia into the number 6, then in the next moment in time the two pieces of matter become the number 11 and so on. No choice, no brain, no intelligence, no decision, just physical inevitability.

So for Millennia the Earth got on quite nicely without the form of matter we call 'organic' or 'life' or 'intelligence', developing from moment to moment naturally as matter does given its ever changing environment molded by circumstances, conditions, time, heat, gravity, energy etc.

It follows then that when the sum total of all physical circumstances necessary for matter to evolve into the first organic cell happened, the next step was inevitable and for that matter [no pun] every infinitely small step since that time had been around for billions of years before what we call 'organic' evolved, it was there all the time. Organic is still matter.

In fact whatever weird and wonderful life forms have yet to evolve on earth in the future as the physical conditions change, their component parts are already here, the only thing that's missing are the precise circumstances necessary to trigger their evolvement.

 

And here's the block buster, that I must say took me several years to reconcile, it follows that if inorganic matter is subject to the strict process of inevitable progress based on the summation of what has gone before then the same rule must apply to organic matter. And that includes us and all other animals, insects and plants, because matter is matter however we want to label it.

So even what I'm writing now can be said to have resulted from the sum total of all physical factors that led up to the point of creation, my experience, education, remembered knowledge, race memory etc, it’s all automatic, I have no choice but to write it. Even if I decide to scrap this and not to publish it on the Internet, that would also be the inevitable consequence of every minute factor that preceded the decision, again inevitable. I therefore concluded that free will does not exist, even what we 'think' and the subsequent decisions we make are just what 'matter does' in the current situation on the basis of everything that lead up to that precise moment in time.

To illustrate the point, consider for a moment that your progress through time is no different to a feather that drops from a bird, lands in a mountain stream and finds its own way to the ocean, constrained by the limitations of the rivers banks, buffeted by the wind, acted upon by gravity and the possibility that something may pluck the feather from the stream before it ever reaches the ocean.

Agree or disagree, it makes no difference your standpoint and every other thought you have ever had was determined by the physical circumstances that led you to each precise moment in time and there is absolutely nothing you can do about it. Just go along with it and enjoy the ride, or not as the case may be.

The Big-Bang was merely the shaking of a billion, billion, billion... dice; dice that are still rolling.

  

Rock [matter] just does what it does, it has the intrinsic ability under specific circumstances to default to a stage where it can observe itself with incredible eyes, to talk to itself, even to question its very existence.

We don't need to send probes to other planets in our own solar system to determine if life is possible beyond Earth. Life elsewhere in the universe is inevitable providing the conditions for what we call life exist, all the 'ingredients' certainly do.

It's a 'no-brainer' to conclude that there are probably forms of life in the universe that we cannot possibly even begin to imagine. It was only a few years ago that scientists believed all life required sunlight, the discovery of exotic life forms in the ocean depths around volcanic fumaroles, devoid of light, quashed that belief.

 

To take this argument to its logical conclusion it follows that if it were possible to input the full history to date of every atom in the universe into a massive computer, it would be possible to predict the course of every atom to the end of time.

 

This article was written before I discovered the works of the fifteenth century philosopher Baruch Spinoza; that someone came to the same conclusions about human 'free will' that I came to independently, but over 500 years ago is belittling.

It seems to that as a race we may be advanced technologically, that's just the inevitable course of nature, but our intellect appears to be much the same. Despite people having such profound thoughts 500 years ago it's amazing that 95% of the worlds current population still believes in some form of god or another.

 

 

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