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Determinism (also called antiserendipity) is the philosophical proposition that every event, including human cognition and behaviour, decision and action, is causally determined by an unbroken chain of prior occurrences.[1] With numerous historical debates, many varieties and philosophical positions on the subject of determinism exist from traditions throughout the world. Look up determinism in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... A related article is titled uncertainty. ... This article is about the philosophical position. ... Agnosticism (Greek: α- a-, without + γνώσις gnōsis, knowledge; after Gnosticism) is the philosophical view that the truth value of certain claims — particularly metaphysical claims regarding theology, afterlife or the existence of God, gods, deities, or even ultimate reality — is unknown or, depending on the form of agnosticism, inherently unknowable due to... “Uncertain” redirects here. ... Probability is the likelihood or chance that something is the case or will happen. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with estimation. ... For other uses, see Believe. ... Theory of knowledge redirects here: for other uses, see theory of knowledge (disambiguation) According to Plato, knowledge is a subset of that which is both true and believed Epistemology or theory of knowledge is the branch of philosophy that studies the nature, methods, limitations, and validity of knowledge and belief. ... A related article is titled uncertainty. ... For other uses, see Philosophy (disambiguation). ... This article is about the word proposition as it is used in logic, philosophy, and linguistics. ... Causality or causation denotes the relationship between one event (called cause) and another event (called effect) which is the consequence (result) of the first. ...

Contents

Philosophy of determinism

It is a popular misconception that determinism necessarily entails that humanity or individual humans have no influence on the future and its events (a position known as Fatalism); however, determinists believe that the level to which human beings have influence over their future is itself dependent on present and past. Causal determinism is associated with, and relies upon, the ideas of Materialism and Causality. Some of the philosophers who have dealt with this issue are Steven M. Cahn, Omar Khayyám, Thomas Hobbes, Baruch Spinoza, Gottfried Leibniz, David Hume, Baron d'Holbach (Paul Heinrich Dietrich), Pierre-Simon Laplace, Arthur Schopenhauer, William James, Friedrich Nietzsche and, more recently, John Searle, Ted Honderich, and Daniel Dennett. It has been suggested that Theological fatalism be merged into this article or section. ... In philosophy, materialism is that form of physicalism which holds that the only thing that can truly be said to exist is matter; that fundamentally, all things are composed of material and all phenomena are the result of material interactions; that matter is the only substance. ... Causality or causation denotes the relationship between one event (called cause) and another event (called effect) which is the consequence (result) of the first. ... For other people, places or with similar names of Khayam, see Khayyam (disambiguation). ... Hobbes redirects here. ... Baruch de Spinoza (‎, Portuguese: , Latin: ) (November 24, 1632 – February 21, 1677) was a Dutch philosopher of Portuguese Jewish origin. ... Leibniz redirects here. ... For other persons named David Hume, see David Hume (disambiguation). ... Baron dHolbach Paul-Henri Thiry, baron dHolbach (1723 – 1789) was a German-French author, philosopher and encyclopedist. ... Pierre-Simon, marquis de Laplace (March 23, 1749 - March 5, 1827) was a French mathematician and astronomer whose work was pivotal to the development of mathematical astronomy. ... Arthur Schopenhauer (February 22, 1788 – September 21, 1860) was a German philosopher best known for his work The World as Will and Representation. ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (October 15, 1844 – August 25, 1900) (IPA: ) was a nineteenth-century German philosopher and philologist. ... John Rogers Searle (born July 31, 1932 in Denver, Colorado) is the Slusser Professor of Philosophy at the University of California, Berkeley, and is noted for contributions to the philosophy of language, philosophy of mind and consciousness, on the characteristics of socially constructed versus physical realities, and on practical reason. ... Ted Honderich, British philosopher, (born 1933) Grote Professor Emeritus of the Philosophy of Mind and Logic, University College London and Visiting Professor, University of Bath. ... Daniel Clement Dennett (born March 28, 1942 in Boston, Massachusetts) is a prominent American philosopher whose research centers on philosophy of mind, philosophy of science and philosophy of biology, particularly as those fields relate to evolutionary biology and cognitive science. ...


Mecca Chiesa notes that the probabilistic or selectionistic determinism of B.F. Skinner comprised a wholly separate conception of determinism that was not mechanistic at all.[2] A mechanistic determinism would assume that every event has an unbroken chain of prior occurrences, but a selectionistic or probabilistic model does not.[3][4] Burrhus Frederic Skinner (March 20, 1904 _ August 18, 1990) was an American psychologist and author. ... In philosophy, mechanism is a theory that all natural phenomena can be explained by physical causes. ...


The nature of determinism

The exact meaning of the term determinism has historically been subject to several interpretations. Some, called Incompatibilists, view determinism and free will as mutually exclusive. The belief that free will is an illusion is known as Hard Determinism. Others, labeled Compatibilists, (or Soft Determinists) believe that the two ideas can be coherently reconciled. Incompatibilists who accept free will but reject determinism are called Libertarians — not to be confused with the political sense. Most of this disagreement is due to the fact that the definition of free will, like that of determinism, varies. Some feel it refers to the metaphysical truth of independent agency, whereas others simply define it as the feeling of agency that humans experience when they act. Compatibilism, also known as soft determinism and most famously championed by Hume, is a theory which holds that free will and determinism are compatible. ... In logic, two mutually exclusive (or mutual exclusive according to some sources) propositions are propositions that logically cannot both be true. ... Compatibilism, also known as soft determinism and most famously championed by Hume, is a theory which holds that free will and determinism are compatible. ... Free-Will is a Japanese independent record label founded in 1986. ... In philosophical debates about free will and determinism, libertarianism is generally held to be the combination of the following beliefs: that free will is incompatible with determinism that human beings do possess free will, and that determinism is false All libertarians subscribe to the philosophy of incompatibilism which states that... Plato (Left) and Aristotle (right), by Raphael (Stanza della Segnatura, Rome) Metaphysics is the branch of philosophy concerned with explaining the ultimate nature of reality, being, and the world. ... Agency considered in the philosophical sense is the capacity of an agent to act in a world. ...


Ted Honderich, in his book How Free Are You? - The Determinism Problem gives the following summary of the theory of determinism:

In its central part, determinism is the theory that our choices and decisions and what gives rise to them are effects. What the theory comes to therefore depends on what effects are taken to be... [I]t is effects that seem fundamental to the subject of determinism and how it affects our lives.[5]

Varieties of determinism

Causal (or nomological) determinism is the thesis that future events are necessitated by past and present events combined with the laws of nature. Such determinism is sometimes illustrated by the thought experiment of Laplace's demon. Imagine an entity that knows all facts about the past and the present, and knows all natural laws that govern the universe. Such an entity might, under certain circumstances, be able to use this knowledge to foresee the future, down to the smallest detail.[6] Simon-Pierre Laplace's determinist dogma (as described by Stephen Hawking) is generally referred to as "scientific determinism" and predicated on the supposition that all events have a cause and effect and the precise combination of events at a particular time engender a particular outcome. [2]. This causal determinism has a direct relationship with predictability. (Perfect) predictability implies strict determinism, but lack of predictability does not necessarily imply lack of determinism. Limitations on predictability could alternatively be caused by factors such as a lack of information or excessive complexity. An example of this could be found by looking at a bomb dropping from the air. Through mathematics, we can predict the time the bomb will take to reach the ground, and we also know what will happen once the bomb explodes. Any small errors in prediction might arise from our not measuring some factors, such as puffs of wind or variations in air temperature along the bomb's path. In philosophy, physics, and other fields, a thought experiment (from the German Gedankenexperiment) is an attempt to solve a problem using the power of human imagination. ... In the history of science, Laplaces demon is a hypothetical demon envisioned in 1814 by Pierre-Simon Laplace such that if it knew the precise location and momentum of every atom in the universe then it could use Newtons laws to reveal the entire course of cosmic events... Prediction of future events is an ancient human wish. ...


Logical determinism is the notion that all propositions, whether about the past, present or future, are either true or false. The problem of free will, in this context, is the problem of how choices can be free, given that what one does in the future is already determined as true or false in the present. This article is about the word proposition as it is used in logic, philosophy, and linguistics. ...


Additionally, there is environmental determinism, also known as climatic or geographical determinism which holds the view that the physical environment, rather than social conditions, determines culture. Those who believe this view say that humans are strictly defined by stimulus-response (environment-behavior) and cannot deviate. Key proponents of this notion have included Ellen Churchill Semple, Ellsworth Huntington, Thomas Griffith Taylor and possibly Jared Diamond, although his status as an environmental determinist is debated. [7] Environmental determinism, also known as climatic determinism, is the view that the physical environment, rather than social conditions, determines culture. ...


Biological determinism is the idea that all behavior, belief, and desire are fixed by our genetic endowment. There are other theses on determinism, including cultural determinism and the narrower concept of psychological determinism. Combinations and syntheses of determinist theses, e.g. bio-environmental determinism, are even more common. Addiction Specialist Dr. Drew Pinski relates addiction to biological determinism: Categories: Biology stubs ... Cultural determinism is a term used to describe the concept that culture determines economic and political arrangements. ...


"Absolutely. It's a complex disorder, but it clearly has a genetic basis. In fact, in the definition of the disease, we consider genetics absolutely a crucial piece of the definition. So the definition as stated in a consensus conference that was published in the early '90s, it's a genetic disorder with a biological basis. The hallmark is the progressive use in the face of adverse consequence, and then finally denial."


Theological determinism is the thesis that there is a God who determines all that humans will do, either by knowing their actions in advance, via some form of omniscience[8] or by decreeing their actions in advance.[9] The problem of free will, in this context, is the problem of how our actions can be free, if there is a being who has determined them for us ahead of time. Theological determinism is the religious view that all events in the world were pre-ordained by God. ... This article is about the thesis in academia. ... This article is about the term God in the context of monotheism and henotheism. ... Omniscience is the capacity to know everything infinitely, or at least everything that can be known about a character including thoughts, feelings, life and the universe, etc. ...


Determinism with regard to Ethics

Some hold that, were determinism true, it would negate human morals and ethics. Counter to this argument, some would say that determinism is simply the sum of empirical scientific findings, making it devoid of subjectivism. Morals and Ethics do not hold the universal permanance that physical rules do (like magnetism polarity), but their very existence can also mean they were an inevitable product themselves. That, possibly through an extended period of social development, a confluence of events formed to generate the very idea of morals and ethics in our minds. In other words, all events that actually occur are unavoidable, proven by the fact that these events do, in fact, occur. The old "chicken before the egg?" debate manifests again, here.


Determinism in Eastern tradition

The idea that the entire universe is a deterministic system has been articulated in both Eastern and non-Eastern religion, philosophy, and literature. Determinism has been expressed in the Buddhist doctrine of Dependent Origination, which states that every phenomenon is conditioned by, and depends on, the phenomena that it is not. A common teaching story, called Indra's Net, illustrates this point using a metaphor. A vast auditorium is decorated with mirrors and/or prisms hanging on strings of different lengths from an immense number of points on the ceiling. One flash of light is sufficient to light the entire display since light bounces and bends from hanging bauble to hanging bauble. Each bauble lights each and every other bauble. So, too, each of us is "lit" by each and every other entity in the Universe. In Buddhism, this teaching is used to demonstrate that to ascribe special value to any one thing is to ignore the interdependence of all things. Volitions of all sentient creatures determine the seeming reality in which we perceive ourself as living, rather than a mechanical universe determining the volitions which humans imagine themselves to be forming. A deterministic system is a conceptual model of the philosophical doctrine of determinism applied to a system for understanding everything that has and will occur in the system, based on the physical outcomes of causality. ... Buddhism is a variety of teachings, sometimes described as a religion[1] or way of life that attempts to identify the causes of human suffering and offer various ways that are claimed to end, or ease suffering. ... The doctrine of Pratītyasamutpāda (Sanskrit: ) or Paticcasamuppāda, Pali: ; Tibetan: ; Chinese: ) Dependent Arising is an important part of Buddhist metaphysics. ... Indras net (also called Indras jewels or Indras pearls) is a metaphor used to illustrate the concepts of emptiness,[1] dependent origination[2], and interpenetration[3] in Buddhist philosophy. ... Not to be confused with sapience. ...


In the story of the Indra's Net, the light that streams back and forth throughout the display is the analogy of karma. (Note that in popular Western usage, the word "karma" often refers to the concept of past good or bad actions resulting in like consequences.) In the Eastern context "Karma" refers to an action, or, more specifically, to an intentional action, and the Buddhist theory holds that every karma (every intentional action) will bear karmic fruit (produce an effect somewhere down the line). Volitional acts drive the universe. The consequences of this view often confound our ordinary expectations. For other uses, see Karma (disambiguation). ...


A shifting flow of probabilities for futures lies at the heart of theories associated with the Yi Jing (or I Ching, the Book of Changes). Probabilities take the center of the stage away from things and people. A kind of "divine" volition sets the fundamental rules for the working out of probabilities in the universe, and human volitions are always a factor in the ways that humans can deal with the real world situations one encounters. If one's situation in life is surfing on a tsunami, one still has some range of choices even in that situation. One person might give up, and another person might choose to struggle and perhaps to survive. The Yi Jing mentality is much closer to the mentality of quantum physics than to that of classical physics, and also finds parallelism in voluntarist or Existentialist ideas of taking one's life as one's project. Alternative meaning: I Ching (monk) The I Ching (Traditional Chinese: 易經, pinyin y jīng; Cantonese IPA: jɪk6gɪŋ1; Cantonese Jyutping: jik6ging1; alternative romanizations include I Jing, Yi Ching, Yi King) is the oldest of the Chinese classic texts. ... For other uses, see Tsunami (disambiguation). ... Existentialism is a philosophical movement emphasizing individualism, individual freedom, and subjectivity. ...


The followers of the philosopher Mozi made some early discoveries in optics and other areas of physics, ideas that were consonant with deterministic ideas[citation needed]. Mozi (Chinese: ; pinyin: ; Wade-Giles: Mo Tzu, Lat. ...


Determinism in Western tradition

In the West, the Ancient Greek atomists Leucippus and Democritus were the first to anticipate determinism when they theorized that all processes in the world were due to the mechanical interplay of atoms, but this theory did not gain much support at the time. Determinism in the West is often associated with Newtonian physics, which depicts the physical matter of the universe as operating according to a set of fixed, knowable laws. The "billiard ball" hypothesis, a product of Newtonian physics, argues that once the initial conditions of the universe have been established the rest of the history of the universe follows inevitably. If it were actually possible to have complete knowledge of physical matter and all of the laws governing that matter at any one time, then it would be theoretically possible to compute the time and place of every event that will ever occur (Laplace's demon). In this sense, the basic particles of the universe operate in the same fashion as the rolling balls on a billiard table, moving and striking each other in predictable ways to produce predictable results. The term ancient Greece refers to the periods of Greek history in Classical Antiquity, lasting ca. ... Concern has been expressed that this article or section is missing information about: discussions of existence of atoms among prominent physicists up to the end of 19th century. ... This article is about the philosopher. ... ‎ Democritus (Greek: ) was a pre-Socratic Greek materialist philosopher (born at Abdera in Thrace ca. ... Classical mechanics is a model of the physics of forces acting upon bodies. ... In the history of science, Laplaces demon is a hypothetical demon envisioned in 1814 by Pierre-Simon Laplace such that if it knew the precise location and momentum of every atom in the universe then it could use Newtons laws to reveal the entire course of cosmic events...


Whether or not it is all-encompassing in so doing, Newtonian mechanics deals only with caused events, e.g.: If an object begins in a known position and is hit dead on by an object with some known velocity, then it will be pushed straight toward another predictable point. If it goes somewhere else, the Newtonians argue, one must question one's measurements of the original position of the object, the exact direction of the striking object, gravitational or other fields that were inadvertently ignored, etc. Then, they maintain, repeated experiments and improvements in accuracy will always bring one's observations closer to the theoretically predicted results. When dealing with situations on an ordinary human scale, Newtonian physics has been so enormously successful that it has no competition. But it fails spectacularly as velocities become some substantial fraction of the speed of light and when interactions at the atomic scale are studied. Before the discovery of quantum effects and other challenges to Newtonian physics, "uncertainty" was always a term that applied to the accuracy of human knowledge about causes and effects, and not to the causes and effects themselves. A line showing the speed of light on a scale model of Earth and the Moon, taking about 1â…“ seconds to traverse that distance. ... This box:      Werner Heisenberg and Erwin Schrödinger, founders of Quantum Mechanics. ...


Minds and bodies

Some determinists argue that materialism does not present a complete understanding of the universe, because while it can describe determinate interactions among material things, it ignores the minds or souls of conscious beings. In philosophy, materialism is that form of physicalism which holds that the only thing that can truly be said to exist is matter; that fundamentally, all things are composed of material and all phenomena are the result of material interactions; that matter is the only substance. ... For other uses, see Mind (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Soul (disambiguation). ...


A number of positions can be delineated:

  1. Immaterial souls exist and exert a non-deterministic causal influence on bodies. (Traditional theistic free-will, interactionist dualism).[10] [11]
  2. Immaterial souls exist, but are part of deterministic framework.
  3. Immaterial souls exist, but exert no causal influence, free or determined (epiphenomenalism, occasionalism)
  4. Immaterial souls do not exist — the mind-body problem has some other solution.
  5. Immaterial souls are all that exist (Idealism).

René Descartes illustration of dualism. ... Epiphenomenalism is a view in philosophy of mind according to which some or all mental states are mere epiphenomena (side-effects or by-products) of physical states of the world. ... Occasionalism is a philosophical theory about causation which says that neither matter nor mind can be a true cause of events. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article may require cleanup. ... This section may require cleanup to meet Wikipedias quality standards. ...

Modern perspectives on determinism

Determinism and a first cause

Since the early twentieth century when astronomer Edwin Hubble first hypothesized that red shift shows the universe is expanding, prevailing scientific opinion has been that the current state of the universe is the result of a process described by the Big Bang. Many theists and deists claim that it therefore has a finite age, pointing out that something cannot come from nothing. The big bang does not describe from where the compressed universe came; instead it leaves the question open. Different astrophysicists hold different views about precisely how the universe originated (Cosmogony). The philosophical argument here would be that the big bang triggered every single action, and possibly mental thought, through the system of cause and effect. Edwin Powell Hubble (November 20, 1889 – September 28, 1953) was an American astronomer. ... This article is about the physical phenomenon. ... For other uses, see Big Bang (disambiguation). ... Theism is the belief in one or more gods or goddesses. ... Deism is belief in a God or first cause based on reason, rather than on faith or revelation, and thus a form of theism in opposition to fideism. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ...


Determinism and generative processes

In emergentist or generative philosophy of cognitive sciences and evolutionary psychology, free will does not exist.[12][13] However an illusion of free will is experienced due to the generation of infinite behaviour from the interaction of finite-deterministic set of rules and parameters. Thus the unpredictability of the emerging behaviour from deterministic processes leads to a perception of free will, even though free will as an ontological entity does not exist.[12][13] A termite cathedral mound produced by a termite colony: a classic example of emergence in nature. ... Cognitive science is usually defined as the scientific study either of mind or of intelligence (e. ... Evolutionary psychology (abbreviated EP) is a theoretical approach to psychology that attempts to explain mental and psychological traits—such as memory, perception, or language—as adaptations, i. ... This article is about ontology in philosophy. ...


As an illustration, the strategy board-games chess and Go have rigorous rules in which no information (such as cards' face-values) is hidden from either player and no random events (such as dice-rolling) happen within the game. Yet, chess and especially Go with its extremely simple deterministic rules, can still have an extremely large number of unpredictable moves. By analogy, emergentists or generativists suggest that the experience of free will emerges from the interaction of finite rules and deterministic parameters that generate infinite and unpredictable behaviour. Yet, if all these events were accounted for, and there were a known way to evaluate these events, the seemingly unpredictable behaviour would become predictable.[12][13] This article is about the Western board game. ... Go is a strategic board game for two players. ... Random redirects here. ...


Dynamical-evolutionary psychology, cellular automata and the generative sciences, model emergent processes of social behaviour on this philosophy, showing the experience of free will as essentially a gift of ignorance or as a product of incomplete information.[12][13] Evolutionary psychology (abbreviated EP) is a theoretical approach to psychology that attempts to explain mental and psychological traits—such as memory, perception, or language—as adaptations, i. ... A cellular automaton (plural: cellular automata) is a discrete model studied in computability theory and mathematics. ... The Generative Sciences (or Generative Science) is the interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary sciences that explore the natural world and its complex behaviours as a generative process. ...


Determinism in mathematical models

Many mathematical models are deterministic. This is true of most models involving differential equations (notably, those measuring rate of change over time). Mathematical models that are not deterministic because they involve randomness are called stochastic. Because of sensitive dependence on initial conditions, some deterministic models may appear to behave non-deterministically; in such cases, a deterministic interpretation of the model may not be useful due to numerical instability and a finite amount of precision in measurement. Such considerations can motivate the consideration of a stochastic model when the underlying system is accurately modeled in the abstract by deterministic equations.[14] Note: The term model is also given a formal meaning in model theory, a part of axiomatic set theory. ... In mathematics, a differential equation is an equation in which the derivatives of a function appear as variables. ... Stochastic, from the Greek stochos or goal, means of, relating to, or characterized by conjecture; conjectural; random. ... Point attractors in 2D phase space. ... In the mathematical subfield of numerical analysis, numerical stability is a desirable property of numerical algorithms. ... “Accuracy” redirects here. ...


Arguments against determinism

Libertarianism is the belief that we have complete free will. Compatibilism is a mixture of Libertarianism and Determinism.

The negation of determinism is sometimes called indeterminism. Image File history File links Question_book-3. ... Indeterminism is the philosophical belief contradictory to determinism: that there are events which do not correspond with determinism (and therefore have no cause). ...


Determinism, quantum mechanics and classical physics

Since the beginning of the 20th century, quantum mechanics has revealed previously concealed aspects of events. Newtonian physics, taken in isolation rather than as an approximation to quantum mechanics, depicts a universe in which objects move in perfectly determinative ways. At human scale levels of interaction, Newtonian mechanics gives predictions that in many areas check out as completely perfectible, to the accuracy of measurement. Poorly designed and fabricated guns and ammunition scatter their shots rather widely around the center of a target, and better guns produce tighter patterns. Absolute knowledge of the forces accelerating a bullet should produce absolutely reliable predictions of its path, or so we thought. However, knowledge is never absolute in practice and the equations of Newtonian mechanics can exhibit sensitive dependence on initial conditions, meaning small errors in knowledge of initial conditions can result in arbitrarily large deviations from predicted behavior. For a generally accessible and less technical introduction to the topic, see Introduction to quantum mechanics. ... For other uses, see Phenomena (disambiguation). ... Classical mechanics (commonly confused with Newtonian mechanics, which is a subfield thereof) is used for describing the motion of macroscopic objects, from projectiles to parts of machinery, as well as astronomical objects, such as spacecraft, planets, stars, and galaxies. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with estimation. ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... Point attractors in 2D phase space. ...


At atomic scales the paths of objects can only be predicted in a probabilistic way. The paths may not be exactly specified in a full quantum description of the particles. Actually, path is a classical concept which quantum particles do not have to possess. The probability arises from when we measure the path of the particle which actually it does not have precisely. However, in some cases quantum particles have exact path, and the probability of finding the particles in that path is one. The quantum development is at least as predictable as the classical motion, but it describes wave functions that cannot easily be expressed in ordinary language. In double-slit experiments, light is fired singly through a double-slit apparatus at a distant screen and does not arrive at a single point, nor does it arrive in a scattered pattern analogous to bullets fired by a fixed gun at a distant target. Instead, it arrives in varying concentrations at widely separated points, and the distribution of its hits can be calculated reliably. In that sense the behavior of light in this apparatus is deterministic, but there is no way to predict where in the resulting interference pattern an individual photon will make its contribution (see Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle). A wave function is a mathematical tool that quantum mechanics uses to describe any physical system. ... Slit experiment redirects here. ... For other uses, see Light (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Interference (disambiguation). ... In modern physics the photon is the elementary particle responsible for electromagnetic phenomena. ... In quantum physics, the Heisenberg uncertainty principle, sometimes called the Heisenberg indeterminacy principle, expresses a limitation on accuracy of (nearly) simultaneous measurement of observables such as the position and the momentum of a particle. ...


Some people have argued that in addition to the conditions humans can observe and the rules they can deduce there are hidden factors or hidden variables that determine absolutely in which order electrons reach the screen. They argue that the course of the universe is absolutely determined, but that humans are screened from knowledge of the determinative factors. So, they say, it only appears that things proceed in a merely probabilistically determinative way. Actually, they proceed in an absolutely determinative way. Although matters are still subject to some measure of dispute, quantum mechanics makes statistical predictions that would be violated if some local hidden variables existed. There have been a number of experiments to verify those predictions, and so far they do not appear to be violated although many physicists believe better experiments are needed to conclusively settle the question. (See Bell test experiments.) It is, however, possible to augment quantum mechanics with non-local hidden variables to achieve a deterministic theory that is in agreement with experiment. An example is the Bohm interpretation of quantum mechanics. In physics, a hidden variable theory is urged by a minority of physicists who argue that the statistical nature of quantum mechanics implies that quantum mechanics is incomplete; it is really applicable only to ensembles of particles; new physical phenomena beyond quantum mechanics are needed to explain an individual event. ... This article is about the field of statistics. ... In quantum mechanics, Bells Theorem states that a Bell inequality must be obeyed under any local hidden variable theory but can in certain circumstances be violated under quantum mechanics (QM). ... The Bohm interpretation of quantum mechanics, sometimes called the Bohmian Mechanics or Ontological interpretation is an interpretation postulated by David Bohm in 1952, which was an extension of the de Broglie-pilot-wave theory of 1927. ...


On the macro scale it can matter very much whether a bullet arrives at a certain point at a certain time, as snipers and their victims are well aware; there are analogous quantum events that have macro- as well as quantum-level consequences. It is easy to contrive situations in which the arrival of an electron at a screen at a certain point and time would trigger one event and its arrival at another point would trigger an entirely different event. (See (or don't see) Schrödinger's cat.) Schrödingers Cat: When the nucleus (bottom left) decays, the Geiger counter (bottom centre) may sense it and trigger the release of the gas. ...


Even before the laws of quantum mechanics were fully developed, the phenomenon of radioactivity posed a challenge to determinism. A gram of uranium-238, a commonly occurring radioactive substance, contains some 2.5 x 1021 atoms. By all tests known to science these atoms are identical and indistinguishable. Yet about 12600 times a second one of the atoms in that gram will decay, giving off an alpha particle. This decay does not depend on external stimulus and no extant theory of physics predicts when any given atom will decay, with realistically obtainable knowledge. The uranium found on earth is thought to have been synthesized during a supernova explosion that occurred roughly 5 billion years ago. For determinism to hold, every uranium atom must contain some internal "clock" that specifies the exact time it will decay.[citation needed] And somehow the laws of physics must specify exactly how those clocks were set as each uranium atom was formed during the supernova collapse. Radioactivity may mean: Look up radioactivity in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... There are two objects with this name: Unterseeboot 238 Uranium-238, the most common isotope of uranium This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... An alpha particle is deflected by a magnetic field Alpha radiation consists of helium-4 nuclei and is readily stopped by a sheet of paper. ... For other uses, see Supernova (disambiguation). ...


Exposure to alpha radiation can cause cancer. For this to happen, at some point a specific alpha particle must alter some chemical reaction in a cell in a way that results in a mutation. Since molecules are in constant thermal motion, the exact timing of the radioactive decay that produced the fatal alpha particle matters. If probabilistically determined events do have an impact on the macro events -- such as when a person who could have been historically important dies in youth of a cancer caused by a random mutation -- then the course of history is not determined from the dawn of time.


The time dependent Schrödinger equation gives the first time derivative of the quantum state. That is, it explicitly and uniquely predicts the development of the wave function with time. This box:      For a non-technical introduction to the topic, please see Introduction to quantum mechanics. ... For other uses, see Derivative (disambiguation). ... Probability densities for the electron at different quantum numbers (l) In quantum mechanics, the quantum state of a system is a set of numbers that fully describe a quantum system. ... A wave function is a mathematical tool that quantum mechanics uses to describe any physical system. ...

 ihbarfrac{partialpsi(x,t)}{partial t} = - frac{hbar^2}{2m} frac{partial^2psi(x,t)}{partial x^2}+V(x)psi

So quantum mechanics is deterministic, provided that one accepts the wave function itself as reality (rather than as probability of classical coordinates). Since we have no practical way of knowing the exact magnitudes, and especially the phases, in a full quantum mechanical description of the causes of an observable event, this turns out to be philosophically similar to the "hidden variable" doctrine.


According to some, quantum mechanics is more strongly ordered than Classical Mechanics, because while Classical Mechanics is chaotic, quantum mechanics is not. For example, the classical problem of three bodies under a force such as gravity is not integrable, while the quantum mechanical three body problem is tractable and integrable, using the Faddeev Equations. That is, the quantum mechanical problem can always be solved to a given accuracy with a large enough computer of predetermined precision, while the classical problem may require arbitrarily high precision, depending on the details of the motion. This does not mean that quantum mechanics describes the world as more deterministic, unless one already considers the wave function to be the true reality. Even so, this does not get rid of the probabilities, because we can't do anything without using classical descriptions, but it assigns the probabilities to the classical approximation, rather than to the quantum reality. For other uses, see Chaos Theory (disambiguation). ... This article is about the problem in classical mechanics. ... Gravity is a force of attraction that acts between bodies that have mass. ... In mathematics, certain systems of partial differential equations are usefully formulated, from the point of view of their underlying geometric and algebraic structure, in terms of a system of differential forms. ... The Faddeev Equations are the most often used non-perturbation formulation of the quantum mechanical three body problem. ...


Asserting that quantum mechanics is deterministic by treating the wave function itself as reality implies a single wave function for the entire universe, starting at the big bang. Such a "wave function of everything" would carry the probabilities of not just the world we know, but every other possible world that could have evolved from the big bang. For example, large voids in the distributions of galaxies are believed by many cosmologists to have originated in quantum fluctuations during the big bang. (See cosmic inflation and primordial fluctuations.) If so, the "wave function of everything" would carry the possibility that the region where our Milky Way galaxy is located could have been a void and the Earth never existed at all. (See large-scale structure of the cosmos.) For other uses, see Galaxy (disambiguation). ... In physical cosmology, cosmic inflation is the idea that the nascent universe passed through a phase of exponential expansion that was driven by a negative-pressure vacuum energy density. ... Primordial fluctuations are density variations in the early universe which are considered the seeds of all structure in the universe. ... Astronomy and cosmology examine the universe to understand the large-scale structure of the cosmos. ...


First cause

Intrinsic to the debate concerning determinism is the issue of first cause. Deism, a philosophy articulated in the seventeenth century, holds that the universe has been deterministic since creation, but ascribes the creation to a metaphysical God or first cause outside of the chain of determinism. God may have begun the process, Deism argues, but God has not influenced its evolution. This perspective illustrates a puzzle underlying any conception of determinism: The cosmological argument is a metaphysical argument for the existence of God, or a first mover of the cosmos. ... For other uses, see Ceremonial Deism. ... For other uses, see Ceremonial Deism. ...


Assume: All events have causes, and their causes are all prior events. There is no cycle of events such that an event (possibly indirectly) causes itself.


The picture this gives us is that Event AN is preceded by AN-1, which is preceded by AN-2, and so forth.


Under these assumptions, two possibilities seem clear, and both of them question the validity of the original assumptions:

(1) There is an event A0 prior to which there was no other event that could serve as its cause.
(2) There is no event A0 prior to which there was no other event, which means that we are presented with an infinite series of causally related events, which is itself an event, and yet there is no cause for this infinite series of events.

Under this analysis the original assumption must have something wrong with it. It can be fixed by admitting one exception, a creation event (either the creation of the original event or events, or the creation of the infinite series of events) that is itself not a caused event in the sense of the word "caused" used in the formulation of the original assumption. Some agency, which many systems of thought call God, creates space, time, and the entities found in the universe by means of some process that is analogous to causation but is not causation as we know it. This solution to the original difficulty has led people to question whether there is any reason for there only being one divine quasi-causal act, whether there have not been a number of events that have occurred outside the ordinary sequence of events, events that may be called miracles. The extreme philosophical position in this line of development was held by Leibniz, who held in his monistic philosophy that all seemingly causal interactions between two (or more) entities, A ↔ B, are actually interactions mediated by God, A ↔ God ↔ B. Gottfried Leibniz Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz (July 1, 1646 in Leipzig - November 14, 1716 in Hannover) was a German philosopher, scientist, mathematician, diplomat, librarian, and lawyer of Sorb descent. ... For other uses, see Monist (disambiguation). ...


Another possibility is that the "last event" loops back to the "first event" causing an infinite loop. If you were to call the Big Bang the first event, you would see the end of the Universe as the "last event". In theory, the end of the Universe would be the cause of the beginning of the Universe. You would be left with an infinite loop of time with no real beginning or end. This theory eliminates the need for a first cause, but does not explain why there should be a loop in time.


Immanuel Kant carried forth this idea of Leibniz in his idea of transcendental relations, and as a result, this had profound effects on later philosophical attempts to sort these issues out. His most influential immediate successor, a strong critic whose ideas were yet strongly influenced by Kant, was Edmund Husserl, the developer of the school of philosophy called phenomenology. But the central concern of that school was to elucidate not physics but the grounding of information that physicists and others regard as empirical. In an indirect way, this train of investigation appears to have contributed much to the philosophy of science called logical positivism and particularly to the thought of members of the Vienna Circle, all of which have had much to say, at least indirectly, about ideas of determinism. Edmund Gustav Albrecht Husserl (IPA: ; April 8, 1859 – April 26, 1938) was a philosopher, known as the father of phenomenology. ... This article is about the philosophical movement. ... In philosophy generally, empiricism is a theory of knowledge emphasizing the role of experience, especially sensory perception, in the formation of ideas, while discounting the notion of innate ideas. ... Logical positivism grew from the discussions of Moritz Schlicks Vienna Circle and Hans Reichenbachs Berlin Circle in the 1920s and 1930s. ... Moritz Schlick around 1930 The Vienna Circle (in German: der Wiener Kreis) was a group of philosophers who gathered around Moritz Schlick when he was called to the Vienna University in 1922, organized in a philosophical association named Verein Ernst Mach (Ernst Mach Society). ...


See also

Amor fati is a Latin phrase, which loosely translates to Love of fate. It is used to describe the attitude that everything which occurs in ones life, including suffering and loss, is good. ... Block time is one way of approaching the problem of the nature of time. ... Categories: Biology stubs ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations Ecumenism · Relation to other religions Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas Luther · Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      Calvinism... For other uses, see Chaos Theory (disambiguation). ... Environmental determinism, also known as climatic determinism, is the view that the physical environment, rather than social conditions, determines culture. ... It has been suggested that Theological fatalism be merged into this article or section. ... The boundary of the Mandelbrot set is a famous example of a fractal. ... Game theory is a branch of applied mathematics that is often used in the context of economics. ... Genetic determinism is the belief that genes largely determine physical and behavioral phenotypes. ... Ilya Prigogine (January 25, 1917 – May 28, 2003) was a Belgian physicist and chemist noted for his work on dissipative structures, complex systems, and irreversibility. ... It has been suggested that Quantum mechanics, philosophy and controversy be merged into this article or section. ... Open theism, also known as free will theism, is a theological movement that has developed within Evangelical and post-evangelical Protestant Christianity as a response to certain ideas regarded by some as a synthesis of Greek philosophy and Christian theology. ... Classical Newtonian physics has, formally, been replaced by quantum mechanics on the small scale and relativity on the large scale. ... Predestination (also linked with foreknowledge) is a religious concept, which involves the relationship between the beginning of things and their destinies. ... Radical behaviorism is a philosophy that underlies the experimental analysis of behavior approach to psychology, developed by B. F. Skinner. ... Social determinism is the hypothesis that social interactions and constructs alone determine individual behavior (as opposed to biological or objective factors). ... Theological determinism is the religious view that all events in the world were pre-ordained by God. ... Technological determinism is a reductionist doctrine that a societys technology determines its cultural values, social structure, or history. ... Voluntarism (lat. ...

Notes

  1. ^ Van Inwagen, Peter, 1983, An Essay on Free Will, Oxford: Clarendon Press.
  2. ^ Chiesa, Mecca (2004) Radical Behaviorism: The Philosophy & The Science.
  3. ^ ibid
  4. ^ Ringen, J. D. (1993). Adaptation, teleology, and selection by consequences. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis. 60,3–15. [1]
  5. ^ Honderich, Ted (1993) How Free Are You? - The Determinism Problem page 6, Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-283139-9
  6. ^ Suppes, P., 1993, “The Transcendental Character of Determinism,” Midwest Studies in Philosophy, 18: 242–257.
  7. ^ Andrew, Sluyter (2003). "Neo-Environmental Determinism, Intellectual Damage Control, and Nature/Society Science". Antipode 4 (35): 813–817. 
  8. ^ Fischer, John Martin (1989) God, Foreknowledge and Freedom. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. ISBN 1-55786-857-3
  9. ^ Watt, Montgomery (1948) Free-Will and Predestination in Early Islam. London:Luzac & Co.
  10. ^ By 'soul' in the context of (1) is meant an autonomous immaterial agent that has the power to control the body but not to be controlled by the body (this theory of determinism thus conceives of conscious agents in dualistic terms). Therefore the soul stands to the activities of the individual agent's body as does the creator of the universe to the universe. The creator of the universe put in motion a deterministic system of material entities that would, if left to themselves, carry out the chain of events determined by ordinary causation. But the creator also provided for souls that could exert a causal force analogous to the primordial causal force and alter outcomes in the physical universe via the acts of their bodies. Thus, it emerges that no events in the physical universe are uncaused. Some are caused entirely by the original creative act and the way it plays itself out through time, and some are caused by the acts of created souls. But those created souls were not created by means of physical processes involving ordinary causation. They are another order of being entirely, gifted with the power to modify the original creation. However, determinism is not necessarily limited to matter; it can encompass energy as well. The question of how these immaterial entities can act upon material entities is deeply involved in what is generally known as the mind-body problem. It is a significant problem which philosophers have not reached agreement about
  11. ^ Free Will (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)
  12. ^ a b c d Kenrick, D. T., Li, N. P., & Butner, J. 2003; Nowak A., Vallacher R.R., Tesser A., Borkowski W., 2000;
  13. ^ a b c d Epstein J.M. and Axtell R. 1996; Epstein J.M. 1999
  14. ^ J. Glimm, D. Sharp, Stochastic Differential Equations: Selected Applications in Continuum Physics, in: R.A. Carmona, B. Rozovskii (ed.) Stochastic Partial Differential Equations: Six Perspectives, American Mathematical Society (October 1998) (ISBN 0821808060).

For other uses, see Dualism (disambiguation). ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article may require cleanup. ...

References and bibliography

  • Albert Messiah, Quantum Mechanics, English translation by G. M. Temmer of Mécanique Quantique, 1966, John Wiley and Sons, vol. I, chapter IV, section III.
  • A lecture to his statistical mechanics class at the University of California at Santa Barbara by Dr. Herbert P. Broida [3] (1920–1978) (a well known experimental physicist)
  • Dennett D. (2003) Freedom Evolves. Viking Penguin, NY, USA.
  • "Physics and the Real World" by George F. R. Ellis, Physics Today, July, 2005 — This article seems to make the common error of thinking quantum probability goes on in nature; but its explanation, in terms of homeostasis, of why life is understandable in terms so different from those of microscopic physics is relevant to the distinction between physical and moral determinism.
  • Kenrick, D. T., Li, N. P., & Butner, J. (2003). Dynamical evolutionary psychology: Individual

decision rules and emergent social norms. Psychological Review, 110, 3–28

  • Nowak A., Vallacher R.R., Tesser A., Borkowski W., (2000) Society of Self: The emergence of collective properties in self-structure. Psychological Review 107
  • Epstein J.M. and Axtell R. (1996) Growing Artificial Societies — Social Science from the Bottom. Cambridge MA, MIT Press.
  • Epstein J.M. (1999) Agent Based Models and Generative Social Science. Complexity, IV (5)

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Image File history File links Download high resolution version (800x697, 123 KB) fr:: Montre gousset cs:: Kapesní hodinky de: Deutsch: Taschenuhr en: English: Pocket watch it: Italiano: Orologio da taschino (cipolla) es: Español: Reloj de bolsillo Template:ગુજરાતી ગુજરાતી: ખિસ્સામાં રાખવાની ઘડિયાળ ja: 日本語: 懐中時計 pl: Polski: Zegarek kieszonkowy pt: Português: Relógio de bolso... Image File history File links Portal. ... Causality or causation denotes the relationship between one event (called cause) and another event (called effect) which is the consequence (result) of the first. ... A deterministic system is a conceptual model of the philosophical doctrine of determinism applied to a system for understanding everything that has and will occur in the system, based on the physical outcomes of causality. ... It has been suggested that Theological fatalism be merged into this article or section. ... Free-Will is a Japanese independent record label founded in 1986. ... 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