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Old November 18th, 2017, 04:24 AM   #1
NewLeafsFan
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Default Free will

I always believed in free will until recently when I had an interesting thought. If it's our choice to get married, and we decide not to get married, do we have a soul mate out there somewhere that will die alone because of our decision? I don't think so!


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Old November 18th, 2017, 08:35 AM   #2
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Default Re: Free will

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Originally Posted by NewLeafsFan View Post
I always believed in free will until recently when I had an interesting thought. If it's our choice to get married, and we decide not to get married, do we have a soul mate out there somewhere that will die alone because of our decision? I don't think so!
Free will doesn't mean there is not a plan God has for us or in the case you just brought up, there is someone specific God would have us marry. Free will is the the simple ability to be able to freely use your will to make choices for yourself. To freely choose right or wrong,to freely choose obedience or disobedience.

A lot of people, even Christians, sadly never actually pray if the person they are marrying is actually the right person for them. I think it is one of the reasons so many marriages, even Christian ones, will often end in a divorce (now divorce can happen for so many different factors as well).

So to answer your question though, will God somehow now allow the person He may have had for you to marry because you married someone else? Not necessarily, I don't think it is a guarantee though it automatically means God is going to choose someone else for them either though. I truly think even if a couple was maybe not right for each other in the beginning, in God's grace and love, if they center their relationship in God and truly make the decision to love each other they can still make it work.

I guess a lot of your specific question/thought about marriage would depend on what free decisions the other person decided to make on their own.

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Old November 18th, 2017, 01:36 PM   #3
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Default Re: Free will

In this situation, if you factor in the fact that God is omniscience then He would have known who you are to marry and therefore would have already chosen them as your soulmate. Therefore, your decision is not free as God already intended that. As such, are free will and God's omniscience two counteracting factors?
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Old November 18th, 2017, 08:54 PM   #4
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Default Re: Free will

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Originally Posted by NewLeafsFan View Post
I always believed in free will until recently when I had an interesting thought. If it's our choice to get married, and we decide not to get married, do we have a soul mate out there somewhere that will die alone because of our decision? I don't think so!
Let's reduce this argument to it's basic logical form:

Premise 1: At least some people have a "soul mate" that they are destined to marry.
Premise 2: If humans have free will, then it is possible that someone with a soul mate could not get married, causing their soul mate to be lonely.
Premise 3: No one with a soul mate will be lonely.
Conclusion: Humans do not have free will.

First of all, the argument is invalid as a matter of simple logic. That it is possible for free will to result in someone not meeting their soul mate, does not necessarily mean that this will ever actually happen.

Even besides the argument being logically invalid, the premises are highly questionable:

The first premise is faulty, because there is no reason to suppose that there aren't multiple people in the world that any given individual could have a happy marriage with.

The second premise is faulty because, if God (I'm assuming that you're arguing for theological rather than materialist determinism) predestined two people to be together, there is no reason why He could not ensure that they would freely choose whatever was necessary for that to happen. Historical necessity is not the same as compelling necessity, and it does not necessarily contradict free will.

The third premise is faulty because people get screwed over by the bad decisions of other people all the time. There is no reason to think that this case would be any different.

In brief, this argument is not at all convincing, and would require substantial refinement before it would be.
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Old November 18th, 2017, 09:15 PM   #5
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Default Re: Free will

I'm one that believes we control and forge our own destiny. We are in charge of our lives.

The meaning of life is like the number zero... empty, yet holding infinite potential within itself.
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Old November 18th, 2017, 09:23 PM   #6
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Let's reduce this argument to it's basic logical form:

Premise 1: At least some people have a "soul mate" that they are destined to marry.
Premise 2: If humans have free will, then it is possible that someone with a soul mate could not get married, causing their soul mate to be lonely.
Premise 3: No one with a soul mate will be lonely.
Conclusion: Humans do not have free will.

First of all, the argument is invalid as a matter of simple logic. That it is possible for free will to result in someone not meeting their soul mate, does not necessarily mean that this will ever actually happen.

Even besides the argument being logically invalid, the premises are highly questionable:

The first premise is faulty, because there is no reason to suppose that there aren't multiple people in the world that any given individual could have a happy marriage with.

The second premise is faulty because, if God (I'm assuming that you're arguing for theological rather than materialist determinism) predestined two people to be together, there is no reason why He could not ensure that they would freely choose whatever was necessary for that to happen. Historical necessity is not the same as compelling necessity, and it does not necessarily contradict free will.

The third premise is faulty because people get screwed over by the bad decisions of other people all the time. There is no reason to think that this case would be any different.

In brief, this argument is not at all convincing, and would require substantial refinement before it would be.
So let's take your argument a step further. Since this topic is talking about free will, which can expand beyond romantic relationships, if you are saying humans have no free will then why blame the human if they go on a murderous rampage or rob a bank or whatever else if they did not have the free choice in whether or not they were going to do it but were predestined to do so? If we have zero free will we have no ability to control whether we do right or wrong because in order to choose to do right we need to freely choose wrong.

I am not trying to argue or be antagonistic, I just want you to clarify.

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Old November 18th, 2017, 09:26 PM   #7
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Default Re: Free will

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Originally Posted by SethfromMI View Post
Free will doesn't mean there is not a plan God has for us or in the case you just brought up, there is someone specific God would have us marry. Free will is the the simple ability to be able to freely use your will to make choices for yourself. To freely choose right or wrong,to freely choose obedience or disobedience.

A lot of people, even Christians, sadly never actually pray if the person they are marrying is actually the right person for them. I think it is one of the reasons so many marriages, even Christian ones, will often end in a divorce (now divorce can happen for so many different factors as well).

So to answer your question though, will God somehow now allow the person He may have had for you to marry because you married someone else? Not necessarily, I don't think it is a guarantee though it automatically means God is going to choose someone else for them either though. I truly think even if a couple was maybe not right for each other in the beginning, in God's grace and love, if they center their relationship in God and truly make the decision to love each other they can still make it work.

I guess a lot of your specific question/thought about marriage would depend on what free decisions the other person decided to make on their own.

But Seth what I dont get is if there is gods plan for us, how do we have free will?
You make it sound like we automatically follow gods plan. And if we choose to do someth8ng else, he still has a plan? So how is that free will?

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Old November 18th, 2017, 09:35 PM   #8
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But Seth what I dont get is if there is gods plan for us, how do we have free will?
You make it sound like we automatically follow gods plan. And if we choose to do someth8ng else, he still has a plan? So how is that free will?
No JT you haven't been reading my posts very carefully. God does have a plan He wants you to follow, but you can freely choose to follow it or not.

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Old November 18th, 2017, 09:37 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by SethfromMI View Post
So let's take your argument a step further. Since this topic is talking about free will, which can expand beyond romantic relationships, if you are saying humans have no free will then why blame the human if they go on a murderous rampage or rob a bank or whatever else if they did not have the free choice in whether or not they were going to do it but were predestined to do so? If we have zero free will we have no ability to control whether we do right or wrong because in order to choose to do right we need to freely choose wrong.

I am not trying to argue or be antagonistic, I just want you to clarify.
I don't think you understood. I'm saying that humans do have free will, and that the contrary argument in the OP is faulty.
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Old November 18th, 2017, 09:39 PM   #10
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I don't think you understood. I'm saying that humans do have free will, and that the contrary argument in the OP is faulty.
Whoops well now this is where I made the mistake and misread the post and point you were trying to make. So sorry about that.

@Just JT Try to look at freewill this way. You're a Christian (or at least for the pretense of this you are) and God wants you to become a missionary. Through prayer you really begin to understand this is what God wants you to do. You now have the free will to obey God and become a missionary, which is God's plan for you or to say no I am not going to become a missionary for whatever reason you choose to. It is your free choice to make. When we sin, we are making the free decision to disobey God. When someone rejects Christ as their Savior, they are freely choosing to do so. Now, there are times in history and there will be more times in the future where God divinely intervenes in certain situations. For example, in the book of Revelation, we know Christ is victorious and there is nothing Satan can do about that. In general though when talking about free will, we do have the choice to live the life God wants us to live or not. With that will usually come with positive things or negative things. One is able to freely say they will not accept Christ. That is their decision to make. That decision will carry with it an eternity separated from God away from Heaven (assuming they never make that decision before they die). There are things God does want for us but free will give us the ability to choose to obey or disobey. Back to the case of marriage, if God wants you to marry, there is someone I believe God has for you. You have the ability though to wait for God to reveal that person to you and when He does, either choose to marry them, or choose to marry someone else or not get married at all. It i still your choice to make.

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Old November 19th, 2017, 04:16 AM   #11
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Default Re: Free will

I apologize. I must not have made myself clear. I believed that free will was a thing until i thought about it like this. I no longer believe that it is.

I agree that people should pray for and be more concerned about destiny. I am a Catholic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SethfromMI View Post
Free will doesn't mean there is not a plan God has for us or in the case you just brought up, there is someone specific God would have us marry. Free will is the the simple ability to be able to freely use your will to make choices for yourself. To freely choose right or wrong,to freely choose obedience or disobedience.

A lot of people, even Christians, sadly never actually pray if the person they are marrying is actually the right person for them. I think it is one of the reasons so many marriages, even Christian ones, will often end in a divorce (now divorce can happen for so many different factors as well).

So to answer your question though, will God somehow now allow the person He may have had for you to marry because you married someone else? Not necessarily, I don't think it is a guarantee though it automatically means God is going to choose someone else for them either though. I truly think even if a couple was maybe not right for each other in the beginning, in God's grace and love, if they center their relationship in God and truly make the decision to love each other they can still make it work.

I guess a lot of your specific question/thought about marriage would depend on what free decisions the other person decided to make on their own.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arkansasguy View Post
Let's reduce this argument to it's basic logical form:

Premise 1: At least some people have a "soul mate" that they are destined to marry.
Premise 2: If humans have free will, then it is possible that someone with a soul mate could not get married, causing their soul mate to be lonely.
Premise 3: No one with a soul mate will be lonely.
Conclusion: Humans do not have free will.

First of all, the argument is invalid as a matter of simple logic. That it is possible for free will to result in someone not meeting their soul mate, does not necessarily mean that this will ever actually happen.

Even besides the argument being logically invalid, the premises are highly questionable:

The first premise is faulty, because there is no reason to suppose that there aren't multiple people in the world that any given individual could have a happy marriage with.

The second premise is faulty because, if God (I'm assuming that you're arguing for theological rather than materialist determinism) predestined two people to be together, there is no reason why He could not ensure that they would freely choose whatever was necessary for that to happen. Historical necessity is not the same as compelling necessity, and it does not necessarily contradict free will.

The third premise is faulty because people get screwed over by the bad decisions of other people all the time. There is no reason to think that this case would be any different.

In brief, this argument is not at all convincing, and would require substantial refinement before it would be.


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Old November 19th, 2017, 05:58 AM   #12
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I must not have made myself clear. I believed that free will was a thing until i thought about it like this. I no longer believe that it is.
That's precisely what I took you to mean.

As I explained, this argument is not a very good one.
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Old November 20th, 2017, 03:44 AM   #13
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That's precisely what I took you to mean.

As I explained, this argument is not a very good one.
Sorry I didn't read your post as carefully as I originally should have.

Now I will counter your counter arguments:

I'm not convinced that there are many people that I would be happy marrying. I don't think that close and permanent relationships are as easily replaced as you have described. I mean, why should we be upset when our spouses die when we can simply go out and find another one?

Lets take my original argument and a take it a bit further. You have kids. Are they the same kids that you would have had with a different wife? Who are they supposed to marry? Don't you think that other people in your generation have kids that should marry your kids? I believe that everyone is born for a reason and many specific purposes. That may include getting married and having kids or not.


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Old November 20th, 2017, 10:51 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by NewLeafsFan View Post
Sorry I didn't read your post as carefully as I originally should have.

Now I will counter your counter arguments:

I'm not convinced that there are many people that I would be happy marrying. I don't think that close and permanent relationships are as easily replaced as you have described. I mean, why should we be upset when our spouses die when we can simply go out and find another one?

Lets take my original argument and a take it a bit further. You have kids. Are they the same kids that you would have had with a different wife? Who are they supposed to marry? Don't you think that other people in your generation have kids that should marry your kids? I believe that everyone is born for a reason and many specific purposes. That may include getting married and having kids or not.
Human beings aren't born with all of their personality traits and the like already present, our attachments, dispositions, and so forth are to a large degree the product of our life experience. So the fact that a person grieves over the death of their spouse doesn't mean that they couldn't have fallen in love with and married someone else in the first place.

The bit regarding the identity of kids is an interesting philosophical question, but the same applies. Had a person married a different person than they actually did, they would have loved the children they had with that person just as much as the children they actually had.

To claim that there is only one person compatible with any given person, you would need to claim that humans are incapable by nature of having happy marriages, and are only able to do so by special divine intervention. If, as I think is clear, it is possible for two people to be naturally compatible, then the simple nature of probability means that there are almost certainly other people with whom a given person could have married.

Also, even if all of your premises are true, it doesn't disprove free will. It is certainly in God's power to ensure that people freely choose what is necessary for his plan to unfold.
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Old November 21st, 2017, 02:23 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by NewLeafsFan View Post
I always believed in free will until recently when I had an interesting thought. If it's our choice to get married, and we decide not to get married, do we have a soul mate out there somewhere that will die alone because of our decision? I don't think so!
Depends on the origin of what you understand to be "soulmate".

The concept of soulmates does not come from Christian-Judeo beliefs, but actually has it's roots in ancient Sumer and Egypt.

Free will is often a concept discussed from the Calvinist point of view in response to monotheism; usually because of modern Abrahamic religions mainly Christianity/Catholicism, Judaism.


I'm sorry I couldn't contribute to this thread earlier, as I can already see nobody here was aware of this history, by the direction of all the responses.
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Old November 21st, 2017, 05:00 PM   #16
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They are over 7 billion people alive the odds of finding your soulmate are very low. As for free will, people who believe all their live was planned out from the start are just making up excuses and refuse to look up at the real source of their problems.

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Old November 22nd, 2017, 01:29 AM   #17
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They are over 7 billion people alive the odds of finding your soulmate are very low. As for free will, people who believe all their live was planned out from the start are just making up excuses and refuse to look up at the real source of their problems.
Exactly, the odds are very low. That's why I believe that it is already decided who you will marry and that your paths are destine to cross.

I have never used this as an excuse for anything. I have used it as a reason to think that there are better times ahead.


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Old November 23rd, 2017, 02:28 AM   #18
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Exactly, the odds are very low. That's why I believe that it is already decided who you will marry and that your paths are destine to cross.

I have never used this as an excuse for anything. I have used it as a reason to think that there are better times ahead.
That's even worse because if there was really a plan there would be no way to know if things are going to get better or if this is just the beginning, but if you think things will get better anyway you might be less likely to go do something yourself to make things better.

Same concept for the soulmate thing, by constantly looking for ''The one'' you might be passing on someone great.

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Old November 23rd, 2017, 03:45 AM   #19
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That's even worse because if there was really a plan there would be no way to know if things are going to get better or if this is just the beginning, but if you think things will get better anyway you might be less likely to go do something yourself to make things better.

Same concept for the soulmate thing, by constantly looking for ''The one'' you might be passing on someone great.
At least I wouldn't second guess any decisions I made


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Old November 23rd, 2017, 06:57 AM   #20
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At least I wouldn't second guess any decisions I made
If everything is already planned out, can you really call it decisions? Making a decision is making a choice, if everything is planned out you're not really making choices or decisions.

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