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ouinon
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19 Jul 2013, 12:33 pm

Been looking, on and off, this last few years, for a religion/church/Monotheism which doesn't believe in Free Will, and failing.

The closest I was able to find for ages was Calvinism, but it wasn't quite right because the absence of free will only seemed to apply to spiritual acts or something ... ( is that right? ) and most Calvinists in practise seemed to believe in free will most of the time ( you should read their tortuous arguments on forums to justify belief in Free Will while not disagreeing with Calvin! :lol ) ...

Then last night it suddenly occurred to me that perhaps the Muslim expression "Inshallah"/"God willing" was/is taken seriously by Muslims; ie. perhaps they *really* don't believe in Free Will. :lol

And I find, after some googling and reading around, that in fact the more orthodox/traditional Muslims, about 90% of the total, called Sunni, *really* do not believe in free will. :) ( The Shia/Shi'ite on the other hand do believe in it ). ... *Finally* some monotheists whose position on Free Will I agree with. :D

This discovery feels really weird to me, because it exposes to me how brainwashed I have been into not taking Islam seriously, or of condemning or dismissing it without a thought, as if one in four people in the world, ( the large majority of them Asian or Indian ) were *all* believing in something medieval or oppressive or necessarily inferior to Christianity, or "primitive" or misguided or unenlightened ... even repugnant/repulsive!

... I had simply never even considered looking at Islam while trying to find a Monotheism which didn't believe in Free Will.

Anyone else been looking for a church/religion which doesn't believe in Free Will? Or been surprised by Islam/the Muslim faith?



ouinon
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19 Jul 2013, 12:34 pm

Golly! I had to pass that Cloud Flare Check Test thing *five* times, including a short comment in the space provided every time, to post this New Topic/Thread!! ! :O :( ... Subject matter a problem much? ! ... or is it this always this hard to post a New Topic now?

PS. ... Can't even edit the above OP without going through the Test process again! Am just going to test with a fresh comment on here, what it is that sets the Test thing off. No, that worked, so it's just for the OP.



GGPViper
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19 Jul 2013, 12:45 pm

So you have a favourable opinion of a particular religion simply because it does not (by your account) have a concept of free will?

Care to elaborate on why you hold this belief? Seems like a quite arbitrary criteria for approval compared to the substantial tenets of a religion...


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ouinon
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19 Jul 2013, 12:50 pm

GGPViper wrote:
So you have a favourable opinion of a particular religion simply because it does not (by your account) have a concept of free will? Care to elaborate on why you hold this belief? Seems like a quite arbitrary criteria for approval compared to the substantial tenets of a religion...

Islam, ( Edit. or at least the Sunni Muslim faith ... am I going to have to do another Captcha Test for this edit? :( ... YES!! ! ) doesn't simply have "no concept of Free Will" it apparently absolutely denies its existence. Everything, absolutely everything, is under God's control.

And that is very far from being an arbitrary criteria to me. Not believing in Free Will has been at the heart of my belief system this last 5 years, and the disappearance/evaporation of my belief in it was a revelation when it happened in Spring 2008. :)

NB. Had to complete a Cloud Flare Captcha Test twice to get this comment posted! :O :( Grrr. ... and this edit is demanding I do it again!! !! !
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GGPViper
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19 Jul 2013, 1:02 pm

ouinon wrote:
GGPViper wrote:
So you have a favourable opinion of a particular religion simply because it does not (by your account) have a concept of free will? Care to elaborate on why you hold this belief? Seems like a quite arbitrary criteria for approval compared to the substantial tenets of a religion...

Islam doesn't simply have "no concept of Free Will" it apparently absolutely denies its existence. Everything, absolutely everything, is under God's control.

Then why are there punishments in Islamic law (Sharia)? Why punish people for their actions if the very same actions are all under God's control, and thus preordained by God?


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ouinon
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19 Jul 2013, 1:11 pm

GGPViper wrote:
Then why are there punishments in Islamic law (Sharia)? Why punish people for their actions if the very same actions are all under God's control, and thus preordained by God?

I don't know. I am only just beginning to read about it all.

I was rather hoping that people with more experience and/or knowledge of this religion than me would have something to say here about it ...

... though if most people are having as hard a time as I am posting anything I wouldn't be surprised if almost noone does. :? ... yep, yet another Captcha Test :( ...

Are you getting this problem.
.



The_Walrus
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19 Jul 2013, 2:17 pm

Just going to do a test post...

free will Sunni Shia Islam Muslim faith God religion free free free

No Captchas.

I am surprised that the Calvinists don't actually believe that foreknowledge (plus omnipotence) undermines free will.



ruveyn
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19 Jul 2013, 2:38 pm

Insha'allah



albedo
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19 Jul 2013, 3:57 pm

Why are looking for? Curiosity? Or are you looking to join?

I think the fact that you are searching for such an aesthetic, is a part of your personality or 'self'.

However why try and match absolutist ideology, to this one particular requirement? Why not simply practice what you truly believe?

In all honesty discussions of 'free will' or lack of it aren't very advanced in Abrahamic religion. Especially not at inception. In is an afterthought, if that. They first focus on what is demanded of practitioners, then then look to join up the dots.

Islam is the Old Testament read from afar, with its own particular culture thrown in, with an after thought of Christianity, which doesn't follow the theme of many contemporary non-christian accounts, and comes up with a totally different but vaguer story. This is not validating Christianity or any religion, just pointing out in the 7th century in a totally different place, they decided they not only knew better, but everything that came before must be wrong. Very convenient IMO.

Personally I think this whole argument of 'free will' misses the mark. Also the concept of pre-determinism, is often confused with lack of free will, they are not the same concepts.

My personal view is you have 'free will' in the sense that as a result of you neurology and neurophysiology, you have 'self', and that self makes 'choices'. Of course these can be influenced by outside forces too, but that doesn't make them not choices, and it is societarily necessary, with few exceptions, that we treat it as so.

It is chaos and circumstance that determines that 'free will'. It is only pre-determined in the sense that chance and circumstance has lead to that point in time. There is also a delay confirmed from neurological research, from where they can predict a choice through fMRI, and when you become aware of it (only currently possible to confirm from a particular type of choice) . This is not a dismissal of a choice, it is part of the process. It is part of understanding relativism rather absolutism.

However I don't see the moral imperative in either position, except to as a means to shirk or divide responsibility.



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19 Jul 2013, 4:08 pm

Why do you want to jetison belief in free will?

Is it that you dont like taking responsability for your choices?

Or what?



albedo
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19 Jul 2013, 5:16 pm

naturalplastic wrote:
Why do you want to jetison belief in free will?

Is it that you dont like taking responsability for your choices?

Or what?


This is the issue that most religions face, they need self driven will in the sense people need to participate in the religion and buy into docrine an practices, but this needs to be limited to explain the 'plan'.

So I doubt that Sunnis have a straight forward explanation for this reason.

They lean heavily on the plan side of things, but they also talk of being 'tested'.



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19 Jul 2013, 5:55 pm

Why don't you want to believe in free will?

How will you give a voluntary offer of Love and gratitude to God if you have no choice in the matter?

Do you think God takes more delight in people wanting to know him and therefore searching for him from their own motivations. or people worshipping him because he forced them and they had no choice in the matter?

If you met a girl you liked and pointed a gun at her and demanded she said she loved you, and so she did, would you believe her and be happy?

If God controls everything, then is it God who starts wars and kills babies?, if you like that sort of god you probably will like Islam because if you read the Koran you will see it is mostly about god torturing people.



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19 Jul 2013, 8:47 pm

In my religion, which comes out of Islam, we believe in both predestination and free will. Some things cannot be changed. They are God's absolute Will. Other things are left up to us.


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19 Jul 2013, 9:17 pm

When a person believes the world is deterministic, then doesn't it automatically follow there is no free will?

If someone has perfect knowledge of my brain/neurons/hormones, they can predict with 100% accuracy how I will respond to stimuli. Then how can I have free will if my reactions are set in stone?
I have heard that the world is in some way indeterministic or probabilistic on a quantum level, but I don't feel I understand that and I certainly don't have any control over quantum particles personally.

I'm not religious, so that's not a problem for me.



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19 Jul 2013, 9:53 pm

ouinon wrote:
GGPViper wrote:
Then why are there punishments in Islamic law (Sharia)? Why punish people for their actions if the very same actions are all under God's control, and thus preordained by God?

I don't know. I am only just beginning to read about it all.

I was rather hoping that people with more experience and/or knowledge of this religion than me would have something to say here about it ...

... though if most people are having as hard a time as I am posting anything I wouldn't be surprised if almost noone does. :? ... yep, yet another Captcha Test :( ...

Are you getting this problem.
.


That's interesting. The best way I have found and an easy way is to observe individuals who practice Islam communicating.

I tried it and found out is a beautiful loving way of communication, by observing different groups on the internet.

Nothing like you see in the west.

It works for the purpose it is designed for.

Not the case in the US for Christianity as it is full of hate, for the most part in opposition to others rather than compassion, in actual day to day practice.

Unfortunately Islam is also sullen through cultural practices that disrespect women, homosexuality etc. Otherwise it would be preferred to me, if I decided to be part of one.

Of course, Patriarchal Christianity is the similar, as well. but not to severity of potential degree of harm, because of the differences in laws of state.


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