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Mr Walker

Does god have free will?

65 posts in this topic

Does the christian /jewish/ muslim god, in particular, have free will?

Do entities labelled god(s), in general, have free will?

Any opinions appreciated, but rationales/reasons for your opinions would be particularly interesting.

You dont have to believe in the existence of a god or gods to answer this.

It is a theological/philosophical/cosmological question, which goes to the potential nature of god(s),

imagined, constructed or real.

Edited by Mr Walker

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um idk can they even truly think? or is it just some kind of computer that runs programs?

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I am deeply suspicious of free will and lean heavily towards fate and predestination.

I have no idea whether "God" has free will or not. I know very little about the nature of God. I believe we live in some kind of strange holographic universe but as far as a Creator deity and all that, I really don't know. Many near death experiencers come back and talk about "the Light" and say the Light is alive and conscious and sentient.

I think the most accurate way of explaining God is by saying that we are a part of God, perhaps each one of us is like a cell in God's body. And that we are all expressions of God much in the same way that the characters on the holodeck on the Star Ship Enterprise are generated by the Ship's computer.

Art

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wouldnt be much of a god without free will, would it?

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Where do you see evidence of a restricted will?

Imo, only humans can restrict a god's will.

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god is not a person, certainly god is not a human being and therefore the question is irrelevent considering free will is a mortal issue

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um idk can they even truly think? or is it just some kind of computer that runs programs?

That is for you to decide. Does a fully sapient and self aware artificial intelligence have free will?

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I am deeply suspicious of free will and lean heavily towards fate and predestination.

I have no idea whether "God" has free will or not. I know very little about the nature of God. I believe we live in some kind of strange holographic universe but as far as a Creator deity and all that, I really don't know. Many near death experiencers come back and talk about "the Light" and say the Light is alive and conscious and sentient.

I think the most accurate way of explaining God is by saying that we are a part of God, perhaps each one of us is like a cell in God's body. And that we are all expressions of God much in the same way that the characters on the holodeck on the Star Ship Enterprise are generated by the Ship's computer.

Art

An articulate and thoughtful response. Most appreciated, even if it doesnt help me answer the questions. Do you consider, hypothetically, that a god would be different from humans (who might not have free will,) in having free will as a aspect of their nature power, or is your belief in the predeterminism of life/the universe so complete that it even encompasses god(s)?

Ps, out of interest , what evidences, experiences, or logical deductions/rationales, " leans you heavily towards fate and predestination"?

Edited by Mr Walker

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wouldnt be much of a god without free will, would it?

Do you extend that analogy/statement towards humans as well? I am interested in this statement as it goes to the heart of what a god is, and also to whether a god is fundamentally the same as, or different from, any other sapient self aware entity.

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lack of freewill relieves oneself from responisiblity of their actions. Lack of freewill is then just a BS excuse, for gods or mortals. But again, a god lacking in freewill would not be much of a god.

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In my opinion, the question regarding the existence of something called either free-will or of predeterminism cannot be answered or even imagined, without knowing whether there is a purpose for any of this. I mean, without knowing the purpose of existence of life, this universe or an entity called god (if it does exist), I don't see how the question of free will or destiny can be answered. Just a thought...

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god is not a person, certainly god is not a human being and therefore the question is irrelevent considering free will is a mortal issue

Do you consider god to be sapient and self aware? Can a god alter the universe through the application of thought, intent and /or technology? Do you think a god is aware of the consequences of its actions? Does a god form intent, and act on that intent ? Or is your construct of god basically of an immaterial and non conscious entity? Or are you saying that god must have free will, while mortal humans may not?

The relevance of the question is in eliciting thoughts and opinions from people on the nature of god as they see it /him

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Where do you see evidence of a restricted will?

Imo, only humans can restrict a god's will.

Moi? I see no evidence of any true restriction on the free will of any sapient self aware entity. There appears to be no physical restriction preventing the formation of intent, or of the capacity to initiate action based on intent. IMO all self aware sapient entities, including gods and humans have free will, as a consequence of their self awareness. Any entity which can extrapolate the results of their actions and form decisions in that knowledge, inherently has free will.

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lack of freewill relieves oneself from responisiblity of their actions. Lack of freewill is then just a BS excuse, for gods or mortals. But again, a god lacking in freewill would not be much of a god.

I tend to agree. At least in can be used in this manner.

So you argue that humans AND gods have free will and the responsibility which comes from that?

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In my opinion, the question regarding the existence of something called either free-will or of predeterminism cannot be answered or even imagined, without knowing whether there is a purpose for any of this. I mean, without knowing the purpose of existence of life, this universe or an entity called god (if it does exist), I don't see how the question of free will or destiny can be answered. Just a thought...

OK so , in your opinion, you cannot know. What do you choose to BELIEVE? Do you believe you have free will ? Do you believe somethng we call a god would have free will. Does it make a material difference what you (or others) believe?

In other words, can believing in free will cause people to create quite different outcomes in their world, from what would occur, from them NOT believing in free will?

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well no....I dont beleive in gods....

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OK so , in your opinion, you cannot know. What do you choose to BELIEVE? Do you believe you have free will ? Do you believe somethng we call a god would have free will. Does it make a material difference what you (or others) believe?

In other words, can believing in free will cause people to create quite different outcomes in their world, from what would occur, from them NOT believing in free will?

I think you misunderstood what I meant, I said I think nobody can concretely answer as to whether there is a free-will or a predestiny that can be associated with the concept of anything at all without knowing as to why it exists in the first place, if it does in fact exist. Without knowing as to why something called a god may or may not exist, no one can say for sure if that entity does have a free will or not.

As for your question, I believe that I do exist, and I know that I have a choice in most of the things that can happen in my life, and that the rest depends on the conditions and the environment. It doesn't matter whether I believe in a free-will or not, I know I always have the option to decide certain things and that somethings are beyond my control. Having a belief or not is very different from knowing for sure, right? And a choice can only exist if there is a purpose. If I want a certain outcome or I know of a particular event to take place at some point in the future, only then I can think of how I should act upon it or as to whether I even have a choice in that matter and to what extent, and also about what other factors could have a role in it. Without the knowledge of a consequence or an undeniable purpose or an inevitable event, the question of a choice or a destiny does not arise.

Edited by dlonewolf85

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well no....I dont beleive in gods....

Ok but you believe that himans have free will, and cannot escape responsibilty for their choices and actions? If you were asked to design/construct a god, would you build free will into your design/ construct ? Why /why not?

Edited by Mr Walker

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I think you misunderstood what I meant, I said I think nobody can concretely answer as to whether there is a free-will or a predestiny that can be associated with the concept of anything at all without knowing as to why it exists in the first place, if it does in fact exist. Without knowing as to why something called a god may or may not exist, no one can say for sure if that entity does have a free will or not.

As for your question, I believe that I do exist, and I know that I have a choice in most of the things that can happen in my life, and that the rest depends on the conditions and the environment. It doesn't matter whether I believe in a free-will or not, I know I always have the option to decide certain things and that somethings are beyond my control. Having a belief or not is very different from knowing for sure, right? And a choice can only exist if there is a purpose. If I want a certain outcome or I know of a particular event to take place at some point in the future, only then I can think of how I should act upon it or as to whether I even have a choice in that matter and to what extent, and also about what other factors could have a role in it. Without the knowledge of a consequence or an undeniable purpose or an inevitable event, the question of a choice or a destiny does not arise.

I didnt misunderstand. At least i dont think i did. :innocent: I accepted your statement that you do not think that you can know.

However in areas where we lack knowledge we can construct belief. I thus asked what you believed. The rest of your response is an excellent answer, IMHO, because it tends to agree with my own position. :whistle:

Being aware of consequence confers responsibilty for our choice of actions and their consequences. That is true whether we have true free will or not. Acknowledgement of this creates a "mental feedback" on our thought processes, which can take several forms, including pride or guilt, and thus reinforce our choices of behaviour.

Denial of all accountabilty /responsibility frees us from guilt but denies us any pride in our achievements, and creates a completely different world view/mindset. IMO this is one reason why acknowledgement of free will, whether it actually exists or not, is important.

On a second reading i disagree, in part, with what you say. We are creatures of both imagination and logic. Thus we can not only logically extrapolate consequence and future outcomes; we can imagine and creatively construct ones we would like to work towards, and ones we would seek to avoid. One doesn't require knowledge of a future, in order to create and shape a desired future. Imagination and creativity can "make" or construct the template/vision which we then physically strive to bring to reality..

A dream can be the basis for a life's work, and end up completely reshaping the world.

Edited by Mr Walker

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I agree to what you said about the existence of free-will in humans even when his entire life can seem to revolve around some dreams. Yes, almost always, we do have a choice in working towards shaping the future, even though we may not be sure as to whether or not, we would even live to see the next day - a choice that is merely based on a belief.

But let's go back to the original question as to whether god has a free will or not. The concept of a god is not a concrete one, right? God can be said to be a construct of man's imagination based on his perception of a hypothetically ideological world, which was created and is preserved by a loving fatherly figure, who judges the wrong doings and rewards all the goodness that exists in man. Now, can there be a concrete answer as to whether or not such an entity has a free-will or if his actions are predetermined? I guess, all we can do is choose to believe or not to, anything based on our wishful imagination and from the lessons that we learn in our lives, but there is no way of ever knowing it for real. Wouldn't you agree?

Also, thank you for your views. Even as an atheist, I found this thread to be very interesting and also a food for thought. Take care, man!

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well yeah,according to ancient Hindu teachings,there is one particular teaching called EKAM SAT that means god is one ad only one but we know him by many names,and yes god has free will because

in Bhagavad Gita it is stated Humans are subjected to rules of nature but the supreme being is above all this and therefore has free will

welcome and my GOD bless you

Edited by persius

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yes god has free will because in Bhagavad Gita it is stated Humans are subjected to rules of nature but the supreme being is above all this and therefore has free will

welcome and my GOD bless you

I am sorry, but that doesn't make any sense...

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Does the christian /jewish/ muslim god, in particular, have free will?

Do entities labelled god(s), in general, have free will?

Any opinions appreciated, but rationales/reasons for your opinions would be particularly interesting.

You dont have to believe in the existence of a god or gods to answer this.

It is a theological/philosophical/cosmological question, which goes to the potential nature of god(s),

imagined, constructed or real.

I think it would be helpful if you provided your definition of Free Will.

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Do you consider god to be sapient and self aware? Can a god alter the universe through the application of thought, intent and /or technology? Do you think a god is aware of the consequences of its actions? Does a god form intent, and act on that intent ? Or is your construct of god basically of an immaterial and non conscious entity? Or are you saying that god must have free will, while mortal humans may not?

The relevance of the question is in eliciting thoughts and opinions from people on the nature of god as they see it /him

no i don't believe god is self aware. self is ego and god is not a person, as i said earlier, so therefore god does not have ego so therefore 'self' awareness is irrelevent too.

i believe god is an all conscious entity although entity is not the word i would use. and no i am not saying god must have free will;. as you must have read in my original post i said god cannot possibly have free will because that is a mortal concept.

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I agree to what you said about the existence of free-will in humans even when his entire life can seem to revolve around some dreams. Yes, almost always, we do have a choice in working towards shaping the future, even though we may not be sure as to whether or not, we would even live to see the next day - a choice that is merely based on a belief.

But let's go back to the original question as to whether god has a free will or not. The concept of a god is not a concrete one, right? God can be said to be a construct of man's imagination based on his perception of a hypothetically ideological world, which was created and is preserved by a loving fatherly figure, who judges the wrong doings and rewards all the goodness that exists in man. Now, can there be a concrete answer as to whether or not such an entity has a free-will or if his actions are predetermined? I guess, all we can do is choose to believe or not to, anything based on our wishful imagination and from the lessons that we learn in our lives, but there is no way of ever knowing it for real. Wouldn't you agree?

Also, thank you for your views. Even as an atheist, I found this thread to be very interesting and also a food for thought. Take care, man!

Gods can be, and are, many things, IMO. That's why i phrased the question as I did An atheist could phrase a hypothetical/ philosophical response. Those who see god as anthromorphic could phrase a different response etc. My main interest was philosophical, on how people see the nature of gods. But certainly, one's perception of the form and function of gods will shape their response.

The question just struck me while reading posts about god's nature . Creative or destructive? Whatever gods are, do they know what they are doing and the consequences of their own choices? In a sense, are gods choices as likely to produce outcomes uncertain as our own. Does a god need to prepare a plan B and C in case plan A doesnt come off as the god hopes it will? If a god knows all the future consequences of its actions, can/does it have free will?

ie do they form an intent around rational purpose for their own ends? And if so, do/can they have free will, or are their own choices and actions limited by predestination? How does such free will compare to a humans, and to non- self aware living things?

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