Sunday, April 15, 2007

Dancing with Determinism/Prancing with Predestination/ Flirting with Fatalism and Free Will

So Aside from issues like is there a G-d and how many ..... and the endless debates on mind over matter -dualism/monism/materialism/determinism/causality/free will/mental force/volition/meditation/neuroplasticity/medication/psychotherapy........Neuroscientific discoveries in general keep promoting new debates /questions and disconcerting contradictions and cloudy conclusions .

Between the ancient neuroscientific discoveries that are constantly being fine tuned /perfected and new ones constantly discovered , one can basically tweak the parts of the brain directly related to fear/logic/ reasoning/ free will/ choice/impulse /pain and so many other parts of personality.

So fiddling around with the prefrontal cortex and free will /will and related activities, ok according to fatalism would probally have no effect on end result. According to determinism the fiddling would probally just be part of that complex causality theory. According to predestination and Judaism specifically pirkei avot - "everything is predestined but freedom of will is given".
So is tweaking the chemical levels that would affect free will physically on a prefrontal cortex or other brain part level is that considered an extension of general free will or overstepping those nebulous spiritual boundaries into flirting with fate and messing with mysticism territory.

Even basic elementary concepts like our purpose in life is to avoid sin and do acts of kindness and that whole free will versus preprogrammed concept doesnt make much sense if we can tweak our brains to react accordingly.Whether through mental force/meditation/ medication or surgery.
If an individual with an overactive sex drive and too many partners takes a personality dulling dose of stimulants to eliminate excess sexual neediness is there credit issued for discipline of which the actual neediness was eliminated?

What about religious discipline and adherence due to chemical fixing/medicating. Why would credit be given if there is no challenge involved.
Are preprogrammed robots rewarded for their fine sense of cognitive choice and decisions.How about robots that are fixed ?

Lets not forget about those SSRI's and stimulants that really mess with personality. Personality pruning is not as simple as it presents.

At what point does free will mess with frivolous free for all and flirting with fatalism.

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