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Scientific explanation of free will?

sab6979 at ocvaxa.cc.oberlin.edu sab6979 at ocvaxa.cc.oberlin.edu
Wed Nov 9 16:08:32 EST 1994


In article <399fqv$fle at dcsun4.us.oracle.com>, pbfriedm at us.oracle.com (Perry Friedman) writes:
>In <1994Nov2.205208.18532 at cabell.vcu.edu>, psy3brp at cabell.vcu.edu (Brian R. Pike) writes:
>>pbfriedm at us.oracle.com (Perry Friedman) writes:
>>
>>>Can someone please give me a SCIENTIFIC (ie non-religious) explanation
>>>of free will.
>>
>>>The concept that free will does not exist is disturbing and I don't want
>>>to get into it here, as this is not really the appropriate place.  I am
>>>just hoping that someone can explain to me a reason why free will COULD or
>>>SHOULD exist (and please leave "God" and "souls" out of it... unless you
>>>can come up with a SCIENTIFIC explanation of either of those).
>>
>>This is a question that has been debated for 100's of years.  The
>>answer for science is that there can be no freewill.  For science
>>assumes (must assume) that nature is governed by universal laws that
>>can be predicted and tested.  The science of behavior, psychology,
>>also makes this assumption about behavior.  That is, all behavior is
>>governed by natural and universal laws that, like the physical
>>sciences, can be discovered and tested, and behavior reliably
>>predicted and controlled.  To profess belief in freewill is to
>>relinquish this prediction and control.
>
brian, 
	i know you posted a while ago, but i wanted to let you know about Dr.
Mark Hallet at the NIMH in Bethesda, MD.  i'm sorry that i dont' have his 
address or phone number.  Dr. Hallet lectured here last year on free will; he's 
doing some very interesting neurological research on the basis of free will. 
if you get in touch with him, i think he'll be able to provide you with some
great insight.  he's a very amiable man, who, i'm sure, would be willing to talk
to you about his research.  good luck.
let me know what you come up with; this topic interests me too. 

adam brickman



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