Saturday, 14 June 2008

".... free will conjures up the spectre of active causal interference."

Quoting a line from Genesis of Eden paper on Fractal Neurodynamics and Chaos: Resolving the Mind-Brain Paradox Through Novel Biophysics, that stirred a deluge of thoughts in my mind and I will try to put them in order.

Interfere with physical causality, in the sense of procuring outcomes that fall short of what is prescribed by causality's tenets? Causality, as it refers to cause and effect sequence of events; where the cause precedes the effect, and free will change the flow of events, interfere with its deterministic course?

Starting by what is quoted by John Eccles:

"'It is a psychological fact that we believe we have the ability to control and modify our actions by the exercise of "will", and in practical life all sane men will assume they have this ability'."

Hidden within an imprint of the potential of free will to affect the course of events, revealed as a tendency that affects our behaviour, but eludes our awareness? An imperceptible hint, a tiny bit of its influence and power? Its full potential hidden in the depths of our brains? Of which a glimpse is given by following up the clues the statement below offers

"Chaotic dynamical systems and quantum mechanics both share attributes which are more consistent with these two features than biochemical reductionism would suggest."

Chaotic dynamical systems, our own brain and mind bring out, and quantum mechanics connected. Sharing attributes, and the attribute most appropriate, in this current of thoughts, come from quantum mechanics. Heisenberg's uncertainty principle, implicated even for the creation of our universe, getting anything out of nothing. A way to overcome the obstacle of cause and effect relationships? Resolve the paradox, as is proclaimed in the following statement,

"Nevertheless free will has a very unpopular history in science because of the paradox of mind acting on a supposedly deterministic physical system."

The mind, by its free will attribute, acting upon deterministically developed chains of events and distorts, warps, erodes, changes their track, stirs them off their course, the deterministic path.

Capable of sparking chains of events that go against the tenets of physical determinism, unexplained. And that falls directly under the influence of our free will, within our grasp and puts the whole creation into perspective.

Free will being referred to as a 'spectre'? Free will an illusion? Along the lines of what mechanists, as is stated in the paper, attribute to the mind, a passive shadow representation of physical causality.

Well, it may be.