Free will and evolution?
April 21st, 2018 • “http://darwiniana.com/2018/04/21/free-will-and-evolution/”
I ordered a review copy of Miller’s new book, The Human Instinct. We have critiqued Miller on natural selection here before. We can at least credit him with attempting to defend free will. But the phenomenal and noumenal aspects of will need to be distinguished of the whole subject founders. Bennett has an immense study of the ‘will’ but would reject the kantian distinction of noumenon
Actually, to be honest, i have no idea how free will evolved but the eonic model does include a stub concept of the ‘evolution of freedom’.
Check out “A new model of history”: history-and-evolution.com
But wait, the whole model shows directly how free will probably evolves: a macro evolution operator induces potential elements as system action, and man as a micro process develops them as free action, which is not necessarily ‘free will’. That is a big hint as to how ‘free will’ evolves.
But what is free will? Not so easy to answer. We can have degrees of free will, it seems. Free will is on the one hand a kind of potential that stands beyond the mechanical stream which over and over ‘overtakes’ the moments of choice. On the other hand it is a kind of legal demand: you legally responsible…and the idea is of course fundamental to a religion such as christianity which often makes sense on this question until it is muddled with theological trapping.
Many spiritual thinkers (gurdjieff is an example) think man is a mechanical machine that must develop the will. But that doesn’t quite work either. But the point is also somehow fundamental.
In bennett there is a highly complex scheme blending ideas of samkhya and the ‘will’, almost like the version of schopenhauer, in a proliferation of cosmic ‘laws’ which are really versions of the will.
The crucial point is that the level of twelve cosamic laws, man exhibits his ‘Individuality’ as distinguished from his True Self, and his mechanical lowers ‘selves’.
But man as man seems to have ‘free will’ in some fashion both expressing and surpassing all this. One might distinguish ‘will’ from ‘free will’. The ‘will’ is aspect of the total self, latent or active: it is like the title deed to your ‘self’ which may or may not express ‘free will’. In some way, and here christianity has an intuition much muddled by theology, free will has to be the standard. No use saying a criminal should be denied free will on the basis of psychological determinism. You pass muster or you fall away from humanity…a point open to debate, of course…and this might confuse civil and spritual laws…
It is useful to study kant and kantian ethics on these issues…