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Free Will and Violence

Free will is the philosophical idea that describes how when you look back and reflect on certain things, you could have acted differently and controlled your actions. Or, "the power of acting without the constraint of necessity or fate; the ability to act at one's own discretion." I will argue against us having free will and for determinism, as the human experience appears as a series of events of wanting, and having urges for things, which synthesise into future events. The human experience may even be preplanned, which I will explore further, and how we may think we are making choices, but the future is so unknown that we could be just following a script. You cannot change a don't want into a want; if you don't want to do something it's because you either consciously or unconsciously don't think it is necessary; you either want to do something, which you do because of unconscious influences, or you are forced to, working and being productive for example. If you don't want to work, you will not survive or thrive. The subject of violence will also be discussed in connection to free will and the power of unconscious influence.

I look at violence through a neutral light: as something that isn't good or bad in itself, but a means to an end, and necessary in certain situations. Violence is a synthesis, and keeps the wheels of history turning. The most recent example of this is the Christchurch Mosque shooting. I believe the uniformal lack of free will drove him to do what he unfortunately did. He was accepting what he was researching online and experiencing in person about the situation in Europe, and I believe he couldn't have chosen a different path, or to ignore what was happening. That mode of outrage and action is probably his default mode in that sort of situation; he did it because he thought it was a necessity. After all, when you do something like that, what are you choosing? You're merely reacting to propaganda (and I mean that, not in the sense of lies, but in the sense of information), and unconsciously being influenced to do something and synthesise that historical event. This unconscious influence is a part of life when you are an advanced mammal, submerged and powerless in a liberal, democratic, capitalist, mass media society. Never underestimate the power of unconscious influence!

No one has free will, as we are slaves to the mass of information, propaganda, and our human emotions and biology, especially when the political paradigm has so much power over human emotions and the distinctions between public and private life have largely been erased. Violence and terrorism will continue if the fundamentally unnatural aspects of today's society aren't corrected. Everything that happens is an input feedback loop of actions and reactions; we live in accordance to human impulses, take in information we agree with, are influenced by it and then act in ways that, if we reflect on it later, we wouldn't have been able to choose differently. Even hermits in the remotest areas of Earth, away from developed, mass media societies, don't have free will; they react to things which happen locally and are influenced by that stimuli to act accordingly to how I previously described.

Because we don't have free will in mass media societies, anything and everything you do in life is because you are influenced and want to (you can't control it), or are forced to. Even if you reflect on your day today, if you had thoughts of ill-will, but you didn't want to act on them, who are you to say you have free will when you didn't want to act on that feeling? Maybe you're influenced by society to not do that, or maybe it was not meant to happen; not in the universe's script of events. Your desires control you, because certain things are necessary to do, or you have in-the-moment urges. Think of free will as either being uncontrollably influenced or socialised to jump off a cliff, or being pushed off. We all have urges and emotions, like the need and drive to have kids. The people who go down the anti-natalist path are unnaturally influenced to go that way, and they often end up miserable and addicted to substances and regret it, because their natural human emotions are undeniable. What is the function of seeking out partners if not to have offspring with them? What other purpose could this emotion have? This is fundamental to the human experience, and if it is something that your ancestor's couldn't ignore, it is something that you can't ignore.

On a metaphysical level we could even postulate that events are predetermined. Maybe God, or whatever supreme being you may believe in, made us and the universe this way: following a script, enslaved by our humanity, and unable to control everything that makes us human. After all, man is an animal and not a perfect species. Civility is a weakness, and a system of control over our true selves. If we are not constantly trying to overcome ourselves and root out competition from eliminating us, we will stagnate. Thus, accepting violence as a solution when it is necessary is masculine and the true nature of man.

Do we control our thoughts, or do our thoughts control us? If we control our thoughts, why have many people never thought about if we control our thoughts? I have been driven by wants and influences to ponder this, or in other words: a series of thesis, antithesis, and synthesis. Many humans probably have less control over what they do than others, and some people are solely driven by urges, caused from biological truths like lower intelligence and higher levels of testosterone. The lack of free will is restricting their ability to think abstractly enough to reach this point. Another thought experiment is the phenomenon of anxiety and new year's resolutions. If you have free will and can just control what you think or feel, why can't humans control their anxiety? Laziness is a driving factor of not following up with new year's resolutions. We can't control if we are lazy in certain moments, because if we could control how lazy we are, humanity would be the most efficient and productive mammal on Earth, but we aren't, since humanity isn't a perfect species. In fact, humanity is such an imperfect species that robots are being made by our brightest people to make 'perfect decisions' for us. Maybe making artificial intelligence will be another example of bad decisions made by humans?

I think the universe is a wholly deterministic system, and our brains are machines that follow the laws of cause and effect, just like absolutely everything else in this universe. There is an illusion of having free will; everything that will ever happen was predetermined the moment the universe came into existence and I believe there is nothing you can do to change that. The universe may very well be a series of predetermined acts waiting to unravel themselves, or a series of fate.

In conclusion, complete control over everything that makes us human, like denying the innate urge to have kids without regretting it later on, is not possible, especially in a society that is as complex, overbearing and self-sustaining as ours. Many regulations (read: attempts to control you), some of which are unnecessary from our standpoint, are by necessity enacted by the system to maintain order and not rock the boat. Human choice needs to be increasingly controlled more by elites as the system gets more complex, for the sake of the system's survival. Even in simpler systems or societies, we would still have no free will as we would be acting on our natural, undeniable, lower human urges. Upon reflection of past events in your life, you may also realise that some things are done out of emotion or urges to, necessity, or that it was fated to happen due to determinism.

"As society and the problems that face it become more and more complex and as machines become more and more intelligent, people will let machines make more and more of their decisions for them, simply because machine-made decisions will bring better results than man-made ones. Eventually a stage may be reached at which the decisions necessary to keep the system running will be so complex that human beings will be incapable of making them intelligently. At that stage the machines will be in effective control. People won't be able to just turn the machines off, because they will be so dependent on them that turning them off would amount to suicide."


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