Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Human will, yes...Human "free" will, no

Lest you think I am some kind of advocate that humans are merely automatons with no will at all, I am sorry you were mislead by anything I said in my previous post. Yes, humans have a will. Heck, animals have wills! Why do you think horses need to be "broken" before they can be ridden? Why do some believe it is do hard to train a cat? (Actually, cats are fairly easy to train...you just can't do it the way you train dogs. Cats are smarter and more willful, so you have to be more subtle in training a cat. Yet, what Pavlov did to his dog also works for cats; I have trained all of our cats, past and present, to respond to being fed by calling out "meow, meow" at which they come running, even from a distance. In fact, it seems to me dogs take more work to train, but maybe that's because they are dumber than cats.)

Anyway, yes, all humans have will, and I mean ALL humans, throughout history, regardless of when you think human history began (4004 b.c.? One millions years ago? Ten thousand years ago? Somewhere in between?).

But there is a difference between human will and so-called "human free will." Anytime someone does something it is CAUSED by something else. Today it is March 21, 2007, and I am wearing sweat shorts and a T-shirt. I live in far west Texas and according to my indoor thermometer it is 74 degrees F in the house but 83 degrees F outside. So, shorts and a t-shirt is appropriate. However, if it was 53 inside and 31 outside, I would be caused by the weather to wear warm clothing. Another example: I was born with dark brown hair, but due to heredity, my hair (at age 54) is almost completely white-grey, and has been that way since about 26...my mother's side of the family (in fact I cannot remember my aunt, my mother's sister, with anything but white hair!). Now I could dye my hair back to dark brown (and possibly make my husband think I was younger looking than I am), but I choose not to, because hair dyes have been shown to cause cancers, because dying my hair would in fact make me look older and accentuate my wrinkles not to mention the white eye-brow hairs, and because hair dying is a pain and has to be done about once a month. I have enough expenses (Imitrex for my migraines being the biggest) that I have to pay myself (on a very small income...I stay home and homeschool so my kids don't have to go to public schools and so my husband can play breadwinner, a role I used to have when he was training to be a medic). So my hair stays white-grey. Further, it stays long. Now I would like to cut my hair especially in the summer but my husband wouldn't like it...he says I'd look like an "old lady," so I have kept it long. If it was strictly up to me, a lot of things would be different, but my life is not strictly up to me because I am married and have kids (and other obligations).

So thus, to sum up: my "willed" choices depended on the weather, on heredity, on medical research, on my husband, on my kids, just as far as the above examples go.

Okay, you who call yourselves "Christians": who or what causes the weather? Winds and rains and the sun and the moon and the natural forces, right? But Who ultimately controls them? God, who created these forces. Who controls my heredity? the DNA passed onto me by my parents, passed onto them by their parents, passed onto them by their parents, passed onto them by their parents...and so on, passed onto the first parents by God Who created them, Adam from the dust and Eve from Adam. QWhere did the medical research come from? From medical doctors and scientists, who grew up to be smart individuals (dummies don't finish medical school, okay, no matter what their connections are!), who grew to be smart because either their parents were smart of they overcame huge obstacles to achieve smartness; further, these individuals became doctors and scientists because they "want to" for various reasons (more money, want to help humanity, their parent is a doctor, etc.) dealing with various causes. But (now think Christians) Who controls their circumstances, ultimately? For instance, a person who lives in the US is more likely to be able to become a doctor than a shepherd in the Congo...isn't it God Who controls where we are born? And as for the results of research, hair dyes might cause cancer, which might not worry me because I tend to live a healthier lifestle than most...yet ALL the recent dead females on my mother's side died of cancer! So I am more aware than most what caner-causing agents might do to me. And Who caused these women to die, both younger than normal, from cancer? You get the picture. And Who caused, ultimately, me to marry the man I did? And Who caused me to give birth to the two kids, providing ,my husband's sperm to fertilize my eggs at the time He caused to happen and not some other time? You know the answer. So if you believe what I am saying and believe the Bible (read Ecclesiastes to start off) as you say you do, then how can you come up and say that humans can do whatever they want OUTSIDE of causation from God, according to HIS WILL? (Let me say right now that if it was up to me, the child that had been conceived between my son who is now 18 and my daughter who is now 14 would not have miscarried, and who knows what would have happened had this fetus been saved? Downs syndrome? Eight fingers? Profound retardation? Or genius? Or superbly athletic? Or incredibly beautiful? Or a wonderful singer? But it was not to be and God had His way with it!)

So do you still think human will is FREE of all external causation? Try this: will yourself to fly on your own and see how far you get. No hang gliders and similar contraptions, okay? Or will yourself to stay underwater for half and hour and see how long you'll live. Or will yourself the next Katrina-level hurricane to stop spinning and destroying. Only one human being has ever been able to control nature, control demons, control anything by His own will. His name? Jesus Christ, aka God.

And now you know why I don't believe in human "free will."

Deborah Lagarde

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