Saturday, January 07, 2006

An interesting take on free will

So let's for a moment imagine that you and I are cells living in an evolving chicken embryo. Of course you and I don't know this. You're doing your thing. I'm doing my thing. Never in a million years do we think that what we're doing has any impact on any other cell, anybody else around. You're building your yacht and I'm building my estate, and you're fixing your motorcycle and we are all doing various random activities which seem to have no connection to each other. And then there is this smart-aleck cell that says: "I think there is some kind of thematic principle to our histories. And even though we all kind of feel like our activities are very random and disconnected and fragmented, I really think that somehow – in a way that we ourselves don't even realize – we are contributing to some greater plan that is actually being fulfilled through us. In some way, each and every one of us, without knowing, are instruments of this theme. And it's playing through us."

Of course, a number of us cells right away call him a nut. But this guy is absolutely committed to proving his point, and he develops this contraption – a rocket ship – and he gets out of the scene, and he starts taking pictures of the whole chicken. And he proves that every single one of us atoms was contributing to the development of a cosmic chicken. You thought you were just building your yard, but in fact, you were building the beak. And you thought you had nothing to do with me when you were fixing your motorcycle, but in fact you were completing the feet. And so on, and so forth, there actually has been this pattern that we were completely unaware of but to which we've been contributing all along.

You thought you were free to do whatever you wanted –and you were – but nevertheless there was a predetermined plan at work as well. And so it is with our lives on earth.

Choice and Fate. Very Catholic answer, why choose sides when you can have both?

EDIT - 1/12, 8:23PM, link fixed

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