Free Will Needs to be called out as what it is, a Lie
First off, I would like to say that I'm writing this article for this reason. It has recently come to my attention that people think that free will is a part of our society. They then make the assumption that the latter is not important and has no "rule" over how our society functions. In my first Blog, I will try to argue against this. A lot of credit, I must add, goes out to Sam Harris. He is a philosopher and a neuroscience and I must say that a lot of the weight of our current scientific world, within his scientific sphere, will depend on him for furthering our current science. So, I will add here to start off my debate, a lot of my arguments will probably be pulled from his book "Free Will" by Sam Harris because I have recently read it and, sense I don't have free will, the stuff that I'm saying will sound good to me.
My first argument against free will is consciousness. First I will clarify what the conscious and subconscious, or unconscious, minds are. The conscious mind is what we are currently thinking. For example, right now I'm thinking about free will. It is in my conscious mind. Now the sub-conscious mind, which is directly related to the conscious mind, is where most of your thinking is done. For matters of sanity this is where most "thinking" is done. If you think about it, how maddening would it be if each option in a given situation were to go through your conscious mind. What sure should I wear with these pants would no longer be a question of what matches the shirt, but you would have to take in account for ALL of your shirts, ALL of the ways you could put on that shirt, ALL of the ways you could alter that shirt, and ALL of the endless other options not listed. If you can't see the madness that this would ensue, I would question your sanity at that point.
This is where the phantasmagorical event starts. As a "viewer" of our own conscious mind we perceive that ALL decisions are available for us to choose. How is it then fair to say that if I didn't have the conscious thought to cut a hole in my shirt that I was, in a sense, "free" to do so. For another example, we will look at a case involving a home intrusion that happened in Connecticut. "In the early morning of July 23, 2007, Steven Hayes and Joshua Komisarjevsky, two career crimnals, arrived at the home of Dr. Williams and Jennifer Petit in Cheshire, a quiet town in central Conneticut." (Sam Harris "Free Will" pages 1-2) They found Dr. Petit sleeping in a armchair in the house. According to taped confessions, Komisarjevsky then proceeded to beat Petit over the head. He continued as he would later report in a moment of rage until Dr. Petit was unconscious. They then bound Dr. Petit, his two daughters, and his wife to a bed upstairs. Hayes then took the wife to the bank to force her to withdrawal $15000. At this point, the wife believed that she would be released because she had no idea about Petit's physical condition. While Hayes was at the bank Komisarjevsky took pictures of the naked daughters and masturbated on them. Hayes, on his way back, stopped at a gas station and bought some 4 gallons of gasoline and continued back home. After arriving, Komisarjevsky and Hayes debated what they should do with the money when they realized that the husband had escaped. In a state of panic they doused the house with gasoline and set it ablaze leaving the daughters upstairs to die of smoke inhalation. When asked later in a police interview why they didn't release the two girls before burning down the house, Kosmisarjevsky responded, "It never crossed my mind". So how is this a matter of free will if the choice was never presented to him? (Most of this was pulled from Sam Harris' book, will edit if needed)
Now, whether or not he is telling the truth is not of importance. The point is that when ever a person is presented with a choice, all of the options are not presented along with that choice. Lets take a look at another example. Recently the ability to measure the brain has made a leap because of the creation of a new machine, the fMRI. This has made it possible to truly measure certain parts of the brain previously unaccessable, or at least not to the clarity that this new device gives us. In this study though they presented a patient with a choice and they found that they could predict the patients choice 7 seconds before it came into their consciousness (They weren't supposed to make the choice but merely press a button when they started to think about the choice in a sense). Where is the free will in this?
(Brain Scans Can Reveal Your Decisions 7 Seconds Before You “Decide” | Exploring The Mind!)
So for our next and final experiment I will conduct a live one. I'm going to write the word rabbit. Am I free to go back and change it to elephent? Yes, of course I am. But somehow rabbit just seems like a better word. This brings up the subject of another case. Everyone has the free will to go sit in their bed. But say for a hypothetical experiment I will "will" myself to stay in bed indefinably. I would find myself making increasingly more heroic efforts to keep myself in this hypothetical bed. What about this scenario. I'm hungry and I think I will go eat a sandwich, but I'm writing a blog. I can continue writing, but I feel that my point has been made, so I think I will go get that sandwich after all.