Ego Depletion and Freewill

Physiology and resisting temptation. The role of glucose and freewill.

If freewill exists, then cause and effect are not in succession—and the past does not determine the future. You are messed up all by yourself.

It would be poor judgment to say that the force compelling a bad choice is deterministic, whereas the force countering it is free.

Free will supports culturally valued behavior. Such behavior often requires a personal sacrifice for the sake of the collective. This position implies that selfish behavior is intuitive, primary, and easy, whereas socially responsible behavior is only won by a successful struggle against the unfree forces of self-interest. Contrary to this view, recent research suggests that culturally valued cooperation often comes easily and intuitively, and that, in fact, selfish behavior is the most often the result of deliberation.

When we look back on the important choices we’ve made in our lives, it is likely to think we could have chosen differently and had a different outcome. This would be incorrect.

Ego depletion refers to the idea that self-control or willpower draws upon a limited pool of mental resources that can be used up. When the energy for mental activity is low, self-control is typically impaired, which would be considered a state of ego depletion. Glucose plays a big role in maintaining our normative self, or the societal self.

Imagine trying to make a rational decision with the all-seeing eye holding a hammer over your head? It would get tiring, hence the hypocrisy of belief in freewill. Every decision depletes energy. Every resistance to perceived temptation does the same. Eventually glucose wears down and you are charged with sin, the inability to continuously resist two opposing forces you never initiated.

Mermaid cave art

Fostering Ideas—Free Will

How to dodge free will to filter good and bad ideas

Having thoughts come into your head by a long chain of incidental contact, can give one the strangest ideas, sometimes harmful, sometimes brilliant. It is then our responsibility to either foster the idea, or reject it. How do we do that if free will is at such a premium?

Is it a good idea to foster an idea that has no proof in reality, but is seen by many as an overall benefit to the species?

Religion is the idea that keeps giving (and taking) with unintended outcomes, that, not only don’t work for the skeptic, but they don’t work for the believer either.

  • There are no miracles
  • Prayer is never answered by a god
  • The idea of peace on earth has never materialized even with a majority citizenry and leadership.
  • Love is still at a premium
  • Where’s the bliss? Isn’t it time to show me the money, after taking so much of mine for so long?

Collaboration outside of your circle of belief is critical to sound reasoning. Occasionally I’ll throw out an idea to the group to get validation. Sometimes the post gets a lot of comment, but nothing directed at the idea itself (you’re all too kind sometimes) but when that happens I go back to the drawing board to adjust my thinking.

We may not have the free will to generate our own ideas, but do we (I hope) have the ability to foster them, or filter them? Do we have that choice? Is this filtering ability the difference between a skeptic and a true believer—or psychopath?

Recalling, computing, pondering, is overwhelmed by the datas you foster. Those conscious choices, what you read and watch, have a profound impact on our output. One can rarely consider something they’ve never heard of. Choose wisely my fiends.

Humility Challenges Freewill for Top Spot

TCA Newsflash Sept, 2018

Displays of public humility have recently squeezed into top competition for religious hypocrisy. Narrowly edging out last years winner “freewill” where christians have demanded religious autonomy by aligning with a god figure that monitors their every move and thought.

“Having freewill was not our choice, but at least humility can be maintained by heirs of deceptive, psaltry-face and open submission, while privately going about business as usual”, said spokesman Wel Mild.

“Voluntary humility is a gesture in honest hypocrisy, while freewill is a guaranteed phenomenon that only drives wheels of conjecture”. God (the writers) commands humility in scripture, and the promise to avenge the enemy in the next life is by design—a quell on the masses rights to be fairly treated now. “I know we’re treating you unfairly now, but hang in there. It’s for the best and god will be your rearward” (he’s got your back—when he feels like it) Meanwhile, those that write, then interpret the rule book reap the rewards of your labor in the now, while producing nothing of value for the benefit of society. It’s all quite clever really—but not very cute.

In third place, pride was nominated but indecipherable from humility in outcome based research and scratched from the competition. A tie for first place would have put “too much head nodding” into the realities conundrum, placing Christians in an awkward stance of non-contradiction. “It would be too much for our readers” said Mr Mild, “having to expose themselves openly to public obviousicity”. No amount of humility can make the Father proud, and maintaining a state of worthlessness while taking pride in a humilitous effort is a pill we prefer to overlook”, according to the committee.

Forth-place runner-up is pedophilia. Officials refused to comment after some paper shuffling seems to have lost the data. Misplaced millstones paperweights were to blame, as well as select pages torn from the committee bibles. Surveillance video revealed nothing, but lack of evidence is forthcoming and status quo of faith.

Christianity—having what it takes to take what you have and make the world a better place—only much later.