Browsing All Posts filed under »Free Will«

Responsibility, Identity and Artificial Beings: Persons, Supra-Persons, and Para-Persons

June 2, 2016 by

11

  Thanks to Justin Caouette for inviting me to the blog. I’ll start with a bit that draws ideas from a paper I’m working on for a book on Robot Ethics: The standard criteria for personhood are not obviously inherently impossible for AIs to obtain: they could be self-conscious, they could regard others as persons, they could […]

Barack Obama Is Not My Father: A Simple Argument Against Physicalism

March 26, 2016 by

29

The following is a rather simple (simplistic?) argument against certain forms of physicalism*, specifically, those forms which identify the conscious mind with physical processes of the brain. The argument starts with the principle of the indiscernibility of identicals (thank you, Leibniz), which is usually uncontroversial: If A and B are one and the same thing, […]

Hey, Neuroscience, Why Can’t We Be Friends? Objections to Substance Dualism (Part 1)

October 7, 2015 by

34

For many who’ve taken philosophy courses at the university level (let alone those who teach philosophy), substance dualism appears to be a theory with, dare I say it, no substance. It’s not a “live option.” But, to extend the pun, I think it’s the dismissal, not the theory, that lacks substance. In the introduction to this series of posts, I […]

Mental Illness and Moral Responsibility

January 25, 2015 by

7

My 6th post is up over at flickers. I have copied and pasted it below for those not interested in clicking again. Mental illness affects how we perceive the actions of others and with good reason. Consider two scenarios. In scenario 1 a person crashes into you because they had a non-epileptic seizure while driving. […]

Psychopaths and Moral Responsibility: The State of the Debate

January 20, 2015 by

9

My 5th post over at Flickers is up, check it out here. I’ve copied and pasted it below for those not interested in clicking (and following comments). Cheers! In the last post I suggested that moral responsibility may not come in degrees and based on the discussion that ensued it seems that we are pretty […]

Does Moral Responsibility Come in Degrees?

January 14, 2015 by

3

My 4th substantive post is up over at Flickers. You can find it here. I’ve copied and pasted it below for those who don’t feel like clicking the link. Does Moral Responsibility Come in Degrees?   Many have assumed either implicitly or explicitly that moral responsibility comes in degrees, but why? For me, it seems […]

Luck, Choice, and Rationing Health Care

January 12, 2015 by

11

According to some philosophers, a feature that matters for assessing inequalities is how the inequality comes about. One theory that assesses inequalities in this way is presented by Ronald Dworkin in a position called “luck egalitarianism.” According to the luck egalitarian, a factor that matters when assessing inequalities in a given situation –and whether these […]

On a Freedom Requirement for Forgiveness

January 10, 2015 by

4

My 3rd post over at Flickers of Freedom is up. You can find it here. I’ve copied and pasted it for those of you not interested in seeing how the conversation develops over at Flickers. We have all forgiven someone before.  In fact, forgiveness can often serve as a key ingredient in our most cherished […]

Optimistic Skepticism and Forward-Looking Blame

January 8, 2015 by

1

Below you can find the post in its entirety. Click here to see the original at flickers of freedom and to join in the discussion if you see fit. OPTIMISTIC SKEPTICISM AND FORWARD-LOOKING BLAME Many philosophers (1) have spent substantial time wrestling with, expanding on, and arguing against the central ideas put forth in P.F. Strawson’s […]

Free Will Skepticism and ‘Ought’ Judgments

January 3, 2015 by

Comments Off on Free Will Skepticism and ‘Ought’ Judgments

You can find the link to my first post at Flickers here. It’s titled “Free Will Skepticism and ‘Ought’ Judgments”. For those of you who have been following APT for some time I posted on this topic here in late 2013. The posts are very different but are on the same topic. In this later […]

Free Will Skepticism and Its Implications: An Argument for Optimism — Part 2

December 27, 2014 by

1

Originally posted on Scientia Salon:
by Gregg D. Caruso [This two-part essay was inspired by the author’s TEDx talk on the same topic, which can be viewed here.] [1] I. Addressing Pragmatic Concerns with Free Will Skepticism Let me begin with the concern that giving up free will belief will increase anti-social behavior. This concern…

Free Will Skepticism and Its Implications: An Argument for Optimism — Part 1

December 27, 2014 by

Comments Off on Free Will Skepticism and Its Implications: An Argument for Optimism — Part 1

Originally posted on Scientia Salon:
by Gregg D. Caruso [This two-part essay was inspired by the author’s TEDx talk on the same topic, which can be viewed here.] [1] Contemporary theories of free will tend to fall into one of two general categories, namely, those that insist on and those that are skeptical about the…

Free Will Funnies

November 11, 2014 by

Comments Off on Free Will Funnies

Originally posted on Why Evolution Is True:
I can’t resist a good free will cartoon. This one, courtesty of reader jsp, comes from FoxTrot Classics, by Bill Amend: ? The problem, of course, is that the “preordination” comes not from God, but from the laws of physics. Still, I can predict from those laws that yes,…

CFA: Workshop on the Epistemic Dimension of Moral Responsibility

November 11, 2014 by

Comments Off on CFA: Workshop on the Epistemic Dimension of Moral Responsibility

This looks to be an excellent workshop! I will be submitting an abstract. Find the Workshop info here. For a summary of the workshop see below. Workshop 2015 Responsibility – The Epistemic Dimension II When: May 12-13 2015 Where: VU University Amsterdam It is generally agreed that moral responsibility has an epistemic dimension. Moral responsibility and […]

Essays and Opinions on Free Will (SLATE)

November 5, 2014 by

Comments Off on Essays and Opinions on Free Will (SLATE)

Slate Magazine has recently produced an extremely accessible series of essays on Free Will, you can find them here. The authors include philosophers Alfred Mele, Thomas Nadelhoffer, Walter Sinnott-Armstrong, Robin Collins, Kathleen Vohs, Robert Kane and Derk Pereboom. The series was funded by the John Templeton Foundation, but, for reasons mentioned by Mele in a recent […]

Physics, Determinism, and Possible Worlds

November 5, 2014 by

2

A recent post on the IFL Science page (which I happen to like very much) discusses a new interpretation of quantum physics that was developed by a team led Howard Wiseman of Griffith University in Australia. The team recently published this paper, first authored by Michael Hall, which suggests that Quantum theory is deterministic and that all possible worlds […]

A Free Will Resource via Al Mele

August 25, 2014 by

1

Al Mele, one of the most distinguished and recognizable philosophers writing on free will has launched a new blog where he plans to field questions and generate discussion a few times a week (see the blog here). He hopes to answer questions related to his last two books where he takes on scientific claims that […]

Is Dennett rethinking free will?

April 4, 2014 by

Comments Off on Is Dennett rethinking free will?

Originally posted on Why Evolution Is True:
Reader Jiten called my attention to this post by Gregg Caruso on Flickers of Freedom about Dan Dennett’s comment on Free Will—a comment that appeared in a discussion in the journal Methode. I admit that I haven’t yet read Dan’s whole piece, but Caruso gives an interesting excerpt, which suggests…

CFP: Free Will (University of Michigan-Flint)

February 26, 2014 by

Comments Off on CFP: Free Will (University of Michigan-Flint)

Details “Mankind has a free will; but it is free to milk cows and to build houses, nothing more.” — Martin Luther “[M]en believe themselves free, simply because they are conscious of their actions, and unconscious of the causes whereby those actions are determined.” ― Baruch Spinoza We have an intuitive sense of ourselves as […]

Sam Harris Still Needs to Read More Philosophy

February 12, 2014 by

2

In a scathing review of Sam Harris’ pamphlet Free Will , Daniel Dennett rightfully calls out Harris for some obvious missteps that Harris has taken (once again).  Harris responds here. Though I am more aligned with incompatibilism these days, Harris again makes some serious missteps in his response. First, he forwards his compatibilist thesis with regards to […]