Freewill vs Stimuli

The ideas expressed in this post stem from years of accumulated stimuli

Are we making our own choices or just reactions to stimuli?

Imagine a moment you are a lonely nerve ending. All of the sudden something rubs against you—“are you there?” “Yes, I am here”. But it takes another to stimulate relational awareness. Without other there would be no way of identifying self existence. It is said by some that god (or the universe) would not know it is god because there is nothing outside of itself to bring it to awareness of itself.

On the other hand, identifying self by other is also as ambiguous an introspection, because what others think of you rarely adds up to what you think of you. All of us are simply reflections of our external world.

So what is the difference between commenting, hitting the like button, or just moving on? Do you have to agree to appreciate another point of view? I was accused at watchtower of trolling christian blogs. I responded that I only read two, usually hit the like button to appreciate their efforts, yet only comment occasionally if stimulated to do so. But for some the reward is bloviating what stimulation they incurred previously. That is trolling, fanaticism—a self aggrandized irritation.

You may comment or not, but that choice has already been made by the years of stimuli, or not. There may-be freewill, but it was captured in a bottle long ago the moment humans learned the art of civilization.

Author: jim-

One minute info blogs breaking the faith trap.

65 thoughts on “Freewill vs Stimuli”

  1. i do some transcribing work for Rupert Spira (a British non-dualist ‘teacher’). i find he describes awareness in a most clear, simple way.
    if you’re interested, i can send you the latest lecture i did, which i think is very good. what Ramana refers to as ‘Self’, Rupert calls ‘presence of awareness’.
    i can send you either my written transcript, or his talk in mpv format (1 hr talk)
    lemme know!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Slightly off-topic for THIS post, but in line with previous posts of yours …

    The following excerpt is from the article indicated below:

    “Working in the Amazon, evolutionary anthropologist Joe Henrich discovered how deeply people’s psychology is influenced by their culture. Yet, he realised, most psychology studies focus on just one type of culture: Western, Educated, Industrialised, Rich and Democratic. People from these WEIRD societies have a peculiar way of thinking compared with most of humanity, which means we are missing the big picture of human thinking. Henrich explains the origins of WEIRDness, its impact on history and its role in the modern world. “

    https://www.newscientist.com/article/mg24732982-500-joe-henrich-interview-psychology-must-look-beyond-western-cultures/

    You do have to “subscribe” in order to read the entire article, but I thought you might find it intriguing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This reminds me of that quote I love from Wade Davis about diversity in all things being humanities greatest legacy. So academia studies studies about one demographic that suits itself, while the rest of the world lives totally different lives just fine without them. Sounds like a christian approach. But we’re not any more special than anyone else. I noticed that a lot in the Panama jungle. Brilliant intellect and most never finished high school.

      Like

  3. You Asked — “So what is the difference between commenting, hitting the like button, or just moving on?”

    My Answer — :

    just moving on = Self: — You have what you need, goodbye.

    hitting the like button = Other: — Something positive for someone else.

    commenting = Us: — My mind to your mind, food for thought

    You Stated — “I was accused at watchtower of trolling christian blogs.”

    My Response — Tell them your free will allows for trolling 😉 (whether you did it or not is irrelevant)

    Liked by 1 person

  4. To me this seems like a crisis of anti existentialism, Jim. Decades ago I learned to accept, go with the flow of information and break out of the programming imposed by societal systems and beliefs. I found out there was such a thing as infinity and I was a part of that. I still felt the stimuli but I now had a choice as to how I responded to it. I could reject whatever I wanted that didn’t fit my mindset of the moment and accept any idea however preposterous it appeared at first so I could explore ‘strange new worlds and new civilizations…’ I call that free will because it transcends any and all limiting rules, laws, or other impositions set down by society and/or nature or powers such as divinities.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. ahh…free will is one of the hardest problem. according to both buddhism and hinduism, only a ‘liberated’ man has free will. until then, we follow a script or rather… respond to mental tendencies we are born with. add to that beliefs, learned behavior, preferences fed to us by family and culture, there is little room left for free choice.
    personally, i take no responsibility for me free will. i just do as i’m told.

    there is a great benefit to listening to different points of view: whenever we react to something, (whether if offends us, or irritates us, or simply makes us uncomfortable) there is an opportunity to ask ourself why we reacted like we did. one reason i love chatting with tildeb… he triggers me in all sorts of ways😂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I like to think of it this way: I have free will (with restrictions in capability) (in a society of restrictions) (In a world with obstacles) (In conflict with others) and a dash of distraction by mind-blowing desires.

      Diluted free will with a warning label

      Liked by 1 person

  6. No will is ever free! I’ve yet to find one for less than 6.50! A real decent will will cost ya 20 bucks at least! So, even if ya could find a free will, it would probably be pretty much a second hand one or one that simply doesn’t work at all.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. One of the reasons I stopped commenting on opposites views because it is pointless. We never see eye to eye on the matter anyway. Add to that assumptions, misunderstandings and judging one another when neither me nor the other person have the insight to do so.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Why would we need to see eye to eye in order to enjoy dialogue? On the contrary. Without the opposition you wouldn’t even know you believe anything. I am the back to your front, and the left to your right. Imagine a world where everyone believes exactly the same way. It would have no value.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I am grateful that everyone is unique, and it is not good to only be friends with people who are exactly like ourselves. We need new input, we need differences. So, I think from that angle I do agree with you. However, to have discussions that transpires into never-ending circles is in my opinion a waste of time. You say that you are misunderstood on christian blogs, and that is something relatable. We do not come as blank slates and open minds into discussions. We come with sub-conscious biases more or less set in stone. Our versions of others are inaccurate predictions based on our limited experience that life in this reality has programmed us with. From the outside perspective of another person we should always reserve ourselves from judgment. However, this is impossible because it is part of our navigation system. ❤ Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

        1. The best way to overcome bias is to learn about other religions. But I get your point. A christian would say
          That Buddha, or Sri Ramana Maharshi has tapped into some godly truth, but… But to really understand your own beliefs you need to understand theirs. Then there is no but…because the only reason Christianity stands on it own is to fall short of complete reason.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. “The bias blind spot is the cognitive bias of recognizing the impact of biases on the judgment of others, while failing to see the impact of biases on one’s own judgment. … In a sample of more than 600 residents of the United States, more than 85% believed they were less biased than the average American.”Wikipedia “Everyone” thinks that they are less biased than others. It is simply easier to spot in others.

            In your blog-post it is stated that the art of human civilizations became the end of free will. Problem with this reasoning is that prior to that we did not have abstract thinking or language. Meaning that the free will you are referring to were based on primitive instincts of the lower brain. Ultimately saying that the free will in mention did not include planning into the future nor learning from the past. This information is the accepted and well established view regarding human evolution.

            The stimuli referred in this blog-post would imply nothing but stimuli/event and response. We need the higher brain functions to make good choices. Blind instincts is not free will. Having a simulator that can play out, predict the consequences of your choices, then allow you to pick the desired likely outcome is free will. Blind instincts does not make you chose, you respond to all stimuli immediately the way you have been programmed to.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. I’ll redress© two of these points (see that?)
              ”We need the higher brain functions to make good choices. Blind instincts is not free will
              I think your crediting higher brain function a little too much. What good choices have we made and how have we made them? We start by analyzing the data, but the more we analyze the more variables we see. After carefully considering about three things we go with our gut. That gut feeling, or “primitive instincts of the lower brain” has the backing of evolution and we use it much more than we think. Planning a future that never comes or learning from the past seems like a great idea on the surface but it does something to foul the natural processes we can never foresee—hence the growing mess and increased lower brain function, primarily tribalism. To think the past forms the present is a misnomer. The wake does not power the ship, yet we treat it as though it does though evidence shows that learning history means we are destined to repeat it, not the other way around. The rise of fascism and socialism here in America is a current example of that.
              Certainly there are physical aspects of our lives where we learn from stimulus (like touching bare wire in a pasture might teach us) but who can change their personality or bias without stimuli that is from a handful of options accepted and dispensed by the herd?
              This is an interesting topic. But I would say things are not what they seem (ever) and thinking drives us to believe we are independent free agents, but is actually the walls we claim to detest.
              There are patterns that keep repeating themselves against nearly everyone’s individual wishes. Why do you suppose we do that?

              Liked by 1 person

            2. Dear Jim. I hope we are keeping this discussion friendly, and that I am doing my part remain kind. Free will is in my opinion complicated and not straightforward, and your comment oversimplifies my view. Previous blog-posts and my book demonstrates a much wider angle. I struggle to repeat my entire view on the matter in a short, straight to the point and summarized way (the way a comment should be). Maybe one day I will learn how to communicate more efficiently. Wish you a wonderful week ❤

              Liked by 1 person

          2. You Stated — “A christian would say
            That Buddha, or Sri Ramana Maharshi has tapped into some godly truth”

            My Response — As a Christian, I say: Truth is relative. Buddha hasn’t tapped into anything because truth cannot be tapped.

            Something is either true or it is not
            Truth is only true in relation to something
            Not every truth to everyone is true to everyone else
            Some truths are true to everyone
            No individual truth is accepted by everyone
            All these things are true but maybe not to you Oo

            Isabella sees the truth in this type of conversation because it’s a snake that eats its own tail, ever-growing, ever moving, but getting nowhere.

            Just a thought

            Liked by 1 person

            1. if truth were relative, it would not be truth. for truth to be truth, is has to be changeless and apply the time, would it not??

              how do you know what buddha discovered and on what grounds do you dismiss his findings??

              Liked by 2 people

            2. You Stated — ” has to be changeless and apply the time, would it not??”

              My Response — It would not need to apply any time, truth is at the start thus time is irrelevant. It doesn’t need to work at it to be true.

              There’s a game I like to watch and play called “Family Feud”. At first I wasn’t winning but I knew the correct and truthful answers. The reason I wasn’t winning is because the survey wasn’t about what I considered to be true but rather what a group of people collectively considered to be true.

              Once I understood that I had to re-condition my thoughts to calculate in popular understanding as truthful factor in answering a basic question.

              “Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth. ~Marcus Aurelius

              You Asked — “how do you know what buddha discovered and on what grounds do you dismiss his findings??”

              My Answer — I do not dismiss his findings, we simply do not agree with each other.

              Like

            3. You updated and stated — “changeless and apply ALL the time”

              My Response — The human experience is not aware of “changeless” or “all time” so it would be nonsensical to apply any condition or understanding we have to those two concepts.

              As human beings we only have a changing and relative existence. Any understanding we have is in relation to that reality we are subject to.

              Your example is proof of what I’m saying, what was once pure logic and a way of life for millions is now ludicrous and to some evil. Who is to say that all we understand now will equally be nonsensical in a future governed by possible mental prowess. The possible end of science and the beginning of mind over matter. (as an example not a claim)

              Truth is relative

              Like

            4. ”Truth is relative”. Then it is not fact, or truth. Is it “most” truth is relative, or all truth? Perhaps “I am the way the truth and the life” would be better stated I am a way, a truth, and a life?

              Like

            5. All truth is relative but to each individual it is fact. People live and die based on the facts that they know to be true.

              We live on a world at war with the truth

              Like

            6. Maybe we are what exist after the last time everything came and went.

              Truth be told… the most important thing is what’s right now.

              Like

      2. “Imagine a world where everyone believes exactly the same way. It would have no value.”

        You have hit upon an excellent description of the Christian notion of heaven! Ha! A vast space of nothingness. Whiteout.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Isn’t the opposite true? Every description of heaven has been a place where people do not agree. If they had how could there be a falling out?

          Like

            1. If any of it were true, that the universe is under the control of a monarchy is at odds with all practicality. There is something, however, I ran across that ties in to your data theory that may interest you. You game?

              Liked by 1 person

            2. I probably should make this a whole post. It appears those that have the total awakening experience see human form as a product of consciousness.
              He said “the world is a projection of the one who sees it, in exactly the same way that a dream is a projection of the dreamer—that in fact everything you see is your own projection from your mind. When that projecting system vanishes, then you no longer see things as inside or outside, you simply recognize it as being your own self”.
              “But until that moment (awakening), everything you see is a an internal projection, in much the same way that a movie is projected on to a screen, but it’s all going on inside your own head”—David Godman, excerpt on Sri Ramana Maharshi who spent 55 years in this state of consciousness.
              What we see as our reality is a scripted projection from the mind onto a background which is consciousness that permeates everything. Like watching a movie in the theater, you can never see the screen behind the images. That screen is consciousness that pervades the entire cosmos.

              Liked by 1 person

            3. This is very interesting. I just heard the same thing about 10 min ago.

              I am taking a quick break from a movie I’m watching with my wife called “Coma”. Just before I took this break they were describing in the movie the very same thing you are describing to me now.

              I still do not fully understand how serendipity works but its becoming clear to me it serves a purpose in making connections.

              I will look into this more thanks, very exciting!

              Like

            4. Fascinating individual, he realized something at a young age (best time to grasp something before the mind is cluttered) and held onto it long enough to do a deep dive into it.

              He stated that his experience could only truly be understood directly, not by the words he shared with people. (this seems to be the case with most extraordinary encounters by people)

              He went on to talk about a state of being that exposed a truth about consciousness but only once devoid of self. OR a state of being where you are either “I” or are a sort of “collective”.

              I think he was able to access that “creative state” I’ve been studying, but in a much more stable sense and with the awareness he was doing so. I think this allowed him to retain more of what he was experiencing.

              Like the “past lives children” who accessed information of other people in such a deep way as to believe that they were them. This would match what he was stating and he seemed to be immune to believing that he was other people because he started with removing the idea of “I” or the state of being an individual. In other words he entered a creative state accessed a data stream (or akashic record) without becoming lost in it, because he had a disciplined and trained mindset.

              It occurs to me that if we treated these events the same as normal scientific research then we could extract, through refined processes, what works best from each encounter to perfect a better experience until we had a viable end product.

              Take for instance this new room (see video), when untrained minds, with no advanced awareness, enter the room they have extraordinary experiences but why not combine the room with a person like this to expand the experience and achieve a more refined product. I would even go as far as to say add something like DMT or a related drug in moderation to enhance the experience.

              There is a knowledge or technology weaved into or reality that we are not utilizing in an effective way. I think dreams, meditation, experiences like this individual describes are enough evidence of it to move forward but the war between the believers and the nonbelievers has made the “grey area” illegal on both sides. It’s in this area where we could make the next jump in our understanding.

              Just my thoughts on it

              Liked by 1 person

  8. If we could somehow be beyond the brain’s physical attributes (dictated by the laws of physics) there would be free will. Interestingly enough, though, one feels that deep insight can occur, and it can be beyond the regular workings of the multiverse. That is freedom in a way, but that way still (in real life) must be what largely adjusts and changes via the physical aspects of the brain and by the environment.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Freedom would exist then, only in the mind. Or only when one no longer has any desire.
      I would challenge the idea that there are laws of physics, or nature. There are however, patterns in which we demarcate tiny portions as regularities, until they are not.

      Like

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