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Mental Causality and human free will

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1 Mental Causality and human free will
Juleon Schins Delft University of Technology The Netherlands Of genetische overeenkomst ook gedragsovereenkomst inhoudt: gewoonlijk wel

2 Intuitive conditions for free will
1. There must exist a personal self capable of determining originally the future evolution of a material body 2. This original determination should not conflict with physical laws ‘Ik’ mag NIET bepaald zijn door (i) de natuurwetten (ii) toeval (iii) God

3 Standard argument against free will
Electrodes measuring action respond before electrodes measuring one’s conscious experience of willing that action Stemmen Criticism: how can a neurologist exclude that one is measuring the conscious experience of having acted?

4 Classical causality

5 Modern causality Quantum mechanics marks the end of phenomenic causality ? Straightforward philosophical interpretation of quantum impredictability: causality is (i) transcendent and (ii) hylemorphic

6 Quantum-hylemorphic causality
material reality physical laws choice

7 Positive evidence in favour of a non-material self, source of mental causality
The moral judgement The intentional judgement The mathematical judgement

8 Evolutionary diversification
Economical policy: free market versus government interference Political organisation: federation versus union, direct versus indirect elections Religion: no god, one god, many gods Philosophy: the world exists (not), the world is (not) knowable VREEMD! Je kunt ook overleven zonder de overtuiging dat je fundamentele rechten hebt, dus evolutionair overbodig (zie aap)

9 The moral judgement Every biologically normal human judges that (s)he has absolute personal rights This claim of personal rights is verifiably universal This claim has no added value for evolutionary survival Darwinism (variation and selection are sufficient principles for the birth and diversification of all life) is not able to account for the universality of this claim DIT IS GEEN MOREEL ARGUMENT MAAR NATUURWETENSCHAPPELIJK: iedereen kan de meting uitvoeren evolutie -> diversificatie

10 The mathematical judgement
Kurt Gödel proved in 1931 that (i) derivation (or procedure) and truth judgement are fundamentally different concepts: A  B (ii) every consistent axiomatic system contains true but undecidable statements (not derivable from the axioms) Ergo: mathematical truth is not an intrinsic property of axiomatic systems, but a transcendent one intuitief duidelijk: afleiding = verband tussen twee stellingen, waarheid is eigenschap van stelling zelf

11 The mathematical judgement
All humans can (if they wish) understand Gödel’s argument The human mathematical truth judgement is not processive (deductive) Deductive causality = material causality = physical lawfulness The human mathematical truth judgement has a non-material origin

12 The intentional judgement
First order intentionality: the ability to have intentions Second order intentionality: the ability to conceive that others have intentions Third order intentionality: the ability to conceive that others conceive that thirds have intentions

13 nth order intentionality
Peter knows that John knows that Angie knows that Clara knows… … that Jack tries to get hold of mum’s legacy

14 Past time (millions of years)
humans Order of intentionality ? 4 chimpanzees 3 primates mammals birds 2 reptiles Geen kwestie van terugkoppeling Software wet: programmeren van nieuwe functies kost veel tijd, en veelal nieuw flow-schema amphibians 1 fish insects plants bacteria 700 600 500 400 300 200 100 Past time (millions of years)

15 Non-quantitative lawfulness
The three mentioned judgements (moral, mathematical, intentional) are not examples of human behaviour conflicting with physical laws, but examples of behaviour that cannot be explained by them Yet the regularity, the universality displayed by these examples points to a non-quantitative law, describing its proper object (by definition non-material)

16 Conclusion We have seen that
a principle is operative in nature that cannot be described by quantitative laws this principle is the causal source of moral, intentional, and mathematical judgments Does this prove mental causality? Yes. Does mental causality prove free will? No. However, it satisfies all the philosophical conditions for free will

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