I was thinking the other day about the nature of free will-whether it was truly a viable concept given the determinist position that everything we do we do because it’s in our nature to do it and we really have no free choice in the matter.
So, I was thinking that in order to exercise free will I’d have to do just the opposite of what I was inclined to do; so that when making a decision, if it made total sense to do A-that A would be the best choice for my well-being-would be preferable to choice B in every way-that I would instead choose B in order to exercise said freewill even though it would result in a bad outcome for me.
I suppose the determinist would respond that the likelihood was I harbored masochistic tendencies and therefore perfectly natural and predictable that I would choose B.
So, given my said masochistic tendencies I instead choose A, I suppose the determinist would then respond that it is only natural to preserve one’s well-being and therefore no freewill will have been exercised in that case either.
So, what if I embraced the absurd-if I imagined a preternatural essence hovering about me-something that I interact with on a daily basis-a sort of magical companion? That would certainly take the wind out of the determinist’s sails wouldn’t it?
I guess, in the end, the freewill thing might depend on how carefully I listen to my invisible friend.