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Michael Chui
Family Member

Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Seattle, Washington, USA
Posts: 3,977

Quote:
 Originally Posted by Interesting Ian So physical laws, or at least the forces described by physical laws, constrain reality to behave as it does.
Which came first? The law or the reality? Perhaps you should read Newton's book, before you assume that he waved his hand and consigned all of reality to his laws of motion.

Quote:
 Originally Posted by Interesting Ian But of course in this case we have no explanation of why physical processes unfold the way they do. We can't say the Earth orbits the Sun due to gravity since all physical laws are merely descriptive.
Correct. We can't. However, the explanation is based on the evidence at hand, contingent upon the awareness that the explanation could always be wrong. It's a theory. It's a very nice theory, but it remains only a theory.

For instance, gravity does not explain why the Earth orbits the Sun at all. It explains why the Earth does not fly away from the Sun. It does not suggest why the Earth started orbiting in the first place.

Quote:
 Originally Posted by Interesting Ian But in this case mental causation and physical causation are of 2 entirely differing natures. Only mental causation refers to a real causal power existing in nature.
Then let us drop physical causation and explore mental causation. Tell me about it. What is it?

Quote:
 Originally Posted by Interesting Ian In this case there cannot be any question that we have free will unless one means by "free will" something obscure.
I hold the term "free will" to be interchangeable with "choice".

Quote:
 Originally Posted by Interesting Ian Indeed to deny this is to embrace epiphenomenalism and I would argue that epiphenomenalism is incoherent (I can provide this argument if you wish).
You're making assertions without argument; provide the argument, please, and explain what it is while you're doing so.

Quote:
 Originally Posted by Interesting Ian (I won't go into them at this point as it would take me 10's of thousands of words!)
Starting with a thousand words at a time would be acceptable. Professing a surplus of knowledge is not an argument.