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Author Topic: Free Will  (Read 8893 times)

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ned

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #20 on: August 03, 2006, 09:25:36 AM »

II PETER 2:4 FOR IF GOD DID NOT SPARE THE ANGELS WHO SINNED, BUT CAST THEM INTO HELL AND DELIVERED THEM INTO CHAINS OF DARKNESS, TO BE RESERVED FOR JUDGEMENT.                                  ABOUT THIS FREE WILL QUESTION. IF GOD DID NOT SPARE HIS ANGELS. THIS ANGELS MUCH HAVE BEEN CREATED WITH THERE OWN FREE WILL TO CHOOSE TO SIN . WHY WOULD A ANGEL SIN THAT IS SPIRIT?  I DIDNT THINK ANGELS WHERE CREATED TO THINK . JUST AS SATAN WAS A SPIRIT. TO ME IT SOUNDED LIGHT ANGELS WAS ABLE TO MAKE THERE OWN CHOICES APART FROM GOD. WHAT DO YOU ALL THINK ABOUT THIS SCRIPTURE? ~KAREN~

Hi Karen, I don't know that they had their own choices apart from God. But it sure seems they were definitely subject to err:

Job 4:18 "Behold, He put no trust in his servants; nor in His angels, in whom he put light."

Jude 1:6  "And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgement of the great day."

1 Cor 6:3 "Know ye not that we shall judge angels?"


Blessings,
Marie
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hillsbororiver

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #21 on: August 03, 2006, 10:07:29 AM »

Good point Bobby, I found some interesting quotes on "Free will" from the philosophy/science  view of the matter;

Baruch Spinoza compared man's belief in free will to a stone thinking it chose the path it traveled through the air and the spot it landed. In Ethics he wrote, "The decisions of the mind are nothing save desires, which vary according to various dispositions." "There is in the mind no absolute or free will, but the mind is determined in willing this or that by a cause which is determined in its turn by another cause, and this by another and so on to infinity." "Men think themselves free because they are conscious of their volitions and desires, but are ignorant of the causes by which they are led to wish and desire." [4] [5]

Arthur Schopenhauer, concurring with Spinoza, wrote, "Everyone believes himself à priori to be perfectly free, even in his individual actions, and thinks that at every moment he can commence another manner of life... . But à posteriori, through experience, he finds to his astonishment that he is not free, but subjected to necessity, that in spite of all his resolutions and reflections he does not change his conduct, and that from the beginning of his life to the end of it, he must carry out the very character which he himself condemns... ."[6]

You can do what you will, but in any given moment of your life you can will only one definite thing and absolutely nothing other than that one thing.

— Schopenhauer, On the Freedom of the Will, Ch. II

I can do what I will: I can, if I will, give everything I have to the poor and thus become poor myself — if I will! But I cannot will this, because the opposing motives have much too much power over me for me to be able to. On the other hand, if I had a different character, even to the extent that I were a saint, then I would be able to will it. But then I could not keep from willing it, and hence I would have to do so... [A]s little as a ball on a billiard table can move before receiving an impact, so little can a man get up from his chair before being drawn or driven by a motive. But then his getting up is as necessary and inevitable as the rolling of a ball after the impact. And to expect that anyone will do something to which absolutely no interest impels him is the same as to expect that a piece of wood shall move toward me without being pulled by a string.

— Ibid., Ch. III

Schopenhauer's saying, that a human can very well do what he wants, but can not will what he wants, accompanies me in all of life's circumstances and reconciles me with the actions of humans, even when they are truly distressing.

— Albert Einstein, Address to the German League for Human Rights, November 1928. Credo

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orion77

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #22 on: August 03, 2006, 10:53:13 AM »

Joe, that was an interesting post.

I wonder if the proponents of free-will believe they willed themselves to exist.  The idol of freewill is hard for many to let go. 

I liked the quote from, Ibid, chap. III.  Straight to the point and simple to understand.

God bless,

Gary
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Craig

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #23 on: August 03, 2006, 11:02:12 AM »

The beast is within us all.

The lifeblood of the beast is the idea of free will.

That is why it is so hard for us to accept and let go of, I know I still struggle with it.
The beast does not want to die.

Craig
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snorky

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #24 on: August 03, 2006, 01:48:49 PM »

Another helpful topic!

I was at a camp meeting last night (we still have these in West Texas), and, amazingly, the preacher quoted "The Sermon on the Mount" verbatum! Anyway, regarding the section Matthew 7:21 about only those doing the will of the Father will be in heaven:

Isn't it true that ultimately ALL (including those in Lake of Fire) will do God's will? So doesn't that mean ALL will eventually be in heaven?

snorky
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MG

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #25 on: August 03, 2006, 03:44:36 PM »

I really feel that God showed me that our future is set in cement just like our past. The only difference for us is that we can't look ahead and see our future like we can look back and see our past. If God is not confined to our time line he can look at all of it at the same time. To him it is finished.

Ecclesiastes 1:9
The thing that hath been [God's view], it is that which shall be [our view]; and that which is done[God's view] is that which shall be done [our view]: and there is no new thing under the sun.



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Patrick

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #26 on: August 03, 2006, 05:49:09 PM »

Another helpful topic!

I was at a camp meeting last night (we still have these in West Texas), and, amazingly, the preacher quoted "The Sermon on the Mount" verbatum! Anyway, regarding the section Matthew 7:21 about only those doing the will of the Father will be in heaven:

Isn't it true that ultimately ALL (including those in Lake of Fire) will do God's will? So doesn't that mean ALL will eventually be in heaven?

snorky

Not trying to get off the topic, but where in West TX? I was born in Big Spring, lived in Coahoma.

No one can escape Gods will.

When the "free will" issue comes up in a conversation, it seems like the "free willers" throw negative stuff/evil at you trying to dispute your views. At that point I just have to take a deep breath and back away.

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orion77

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #27 on: August 03, 2006, 07:06:38 PM »

(Exo 3:14)  And God said to Moses, I AM THAT I AM; and He said, You shall say this to the sons of Israel, I AM has sent me to you.

(Exo 16:4)  And Jehovah said to Moses, Behold, I AM! Bread will rain from the heavens for you. And the people shall go out and gather the matter of a day in its day, so that I may test them, whether they will walk in My Law or not.

(Mat 26:26)  And as they ate, taking the bread and blessing it, Jesus broke and gave to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is My body.

(Joh 6:32)  Then Jesus said to them, Truly, truly, I say to you, Moses has not given you the bread out of Heaven, but My Father gives you the true bread out of Heaven.

(Joh 6:33)  For the bread of God is He coming down out of Heaven and giving life to the world.


He is the great I AM, and He is the One who comes down out of Heaven to give us life.  All the glory goes to Him, we can not boast or take credit for it.


(Joh 1:12)  But as many as received Him, to them He gave authority to become children of God, to the ones believing into His name,

(Joh 1:13)  who were born not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but were born of God.


We who have received Him, which is Christ in us, were BORN of God.  Not of our will, but His.

God bless,

Gary
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Joey Porter

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #28 on: August 03, 2006, 10:40:10 PM »

I am currently involved in another "Free will" topic on mainstream Christian site, and here are a couple of the points I posted:

We do have a choice whether to be vessels of honor or of wrath, but our choices are only within the confines of God's will. It is God who has chosen who will choose to be vessels of honor and who will choose to be vessels of wrath.  For example:

Saul "chose" to repent, but only by way of Christ's divine intervention.  He was not willing to repent.  It was not Sauls "will" to repent. 

What was Saul's will?  This was Saul's will:

Acts 9
1And Saul, yet breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord


Saul was no different than any other pharisee that was persecuting the disciples.  In fact, Paul confessed to being the chief of sinners. But God chose to bring about a divine circumstance in Saul's life that would cause Saul to choose to repent.  Saul was unwilling to repent until God changed his will by divine circumstance.


A person, a seemingly very honest seeker, also brought up the idea that if we have no "free will" in this life and everything happens according to how God has planned it, and has planned who will "go to heaven in the afterlife," then she would find it hard to be motivated or see any reason to serve him.  So I replied with this:

What about heaven in the afterlife?  Do you think we will have "free will" to choose whether or not to obey in the afterlife?  Almost everyone says no.

 If not, then what is your motivation to be there?  If you think there would be no reason to be motivated to serve God in this life if there's no free will, what makes you think you'll be motivated to serve Him in the afterlife with no free will? 



« Last Edit: August 03, 2006, 10:40:59 PM by Joey Porter »
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hillsbororiver

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #29 on: August 03, 2006, 10:59:55 PM »

"Free will" is a bogus term in and of itself. Are we free to choose our race? Our parents? Our height? What country we were born in? Our intelligence or our talents? Can our "free will" make any of us an NBA caliber basketball player?

If we were walking down a road and came to a 20 foot tall brick wall can our "free will" allow us to pass through that wall or must we turn back? Even secular philosophers recognized that although we make choices we do not make uncaused choices, that is a christian hoax.

We can choose to drive to work or take a bus or even walk, but our "free will" does not allow us to flap our arms and fly there or even allow us the "free will" not to go to work, that is if we want a roof over our heads and food on the table. Yes, food, does our "free will" give us the opportunity not to have to eat? Sure, if we want to die, doesn't sound like an uncaused choice to me.

We have limitations all around us in our lives, we can make a choice within the confines of our circumstances (who determines our circumstances?) but we do not have nearly enough power to defeat the laws of physics or gravity by our "free will" nor do we have the power to do anything outside the bounds which He has placed us in.

Joe   
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ned

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #30 on: August 04, 2006, 01:17:13 AM »

"We have limitations all around us in our lives, we can make a choice within the confines of our circumstances (who determines our circumstances?) but we do not have nearly enough power to defeat the laws of physics or gravity by our "free will" nor do we have the power to do anything outside the bounds which He has placed us in.

Hi Joe,
Well put. It brought to mind:
Act 17:24-26 "God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men's hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed , and the bounds of their habitation.."

It's not for all to see.  I praise God that he has shown us....His will is much better than my "free"-will!
Marie
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hillsbororiver

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #31 on: August 04, 2006, 09:28:47 AM »

Marie,

A big Amen! To your post.

It is amazing once our eyes have been opened to this to see how elementary it really is. Where is it written where man has this power that is reserved for God the Father only? Even our Lord did not and does not have "free will."

The point is that there are no examples in the physical world of any free will by either animate or inanimate objects, all of creation is bound by laws, both biologically and/or by the laws of physics (who is the Author of these laws?), compounding that are the unique circumstances (who sets up these "circumstances") in each and every one of our lives.

Yes, we can make choices within certain parameters but we have about as much "free will" as a ball of clay in a potter's hands.

Joe     
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gmik

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #32 on: August 04, 2006, 01:06:16 PM »

Good Stuff everyone.  love it.

Now, I believe all this, and study it, but, like the other night trying to explain it to a friend--well I just get all tongue tied and can't remember the scripture etc etc....They get stuck on the Choose this day....my friend didn't get argumentative but I did remember Ray's article on witnessing and I sort of backed off...

Sorry to get off topic....but the more I learn about mythical "free will" the better.

Thanks all.
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joeshrink

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #33 on: August 05, 2006, 12:06:43 AM »

Quote
Hey Jeremy,

Thanks for the scripture- I looked it up and looked at the conext from which you quote and once again it does not seem to have anything to do with pre-determination. If anything the flavor of the context seems to say that salvation is through righteousness - because those who do not have the spirit are not sons of God and the path to gaining life is by putimg to death the misdeeds of the body. See Romans chptr 8: 1-17

I have a problem with quoting scripture one verse at a time. If I remember my Bible history class correctly dividing scripture into verse and chapter is a relatively new phenomenon- and the verse and chapter divisions are under continual scrutiny by most theologians and is believed by many to convolute the original intention of the author. Another issue I have about single verse quotation is that in that format we can really make scripture say whatever we want it to.

That being said I can see your logic- In a way the process of our salvation began with God's promise to Abraham- a man God apparently chose- and has had a ripple effect from there to here.

I wonder if in our efforts to simplify we have not made things more complex- could it be that both freewill and predetermination are at work in the same system and they perhaps are not as paradoxical as we think?

Blessings and Realness!!!

Hey guys- I think I got a bit off topic in the spiritual body seperate from flesh discussion- so I am pasting my last responce here... still getting the hang of this forum  :)

Now I really have to get off here as I have a paper to write on the 'problem of evil' grrrrrr >:(
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MG

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #34 on: August 05, 2006, 02:36:02 AM »

Hi joeshrink

I know I've put about 10 years into studying free will so when I post a scripture out of context I'm doing it with the understanding that others already believe the same as I do. If there are scriptures posted in areas I'm still struggling with then I will continue to ask God and do my own research until he gives me a clear understanding.

My thought is that you would have to post the entire bible to keep everything in context, but I would encourage anyone reading to read it and study and seek God's wisdom.

Quote
could it be that both freewill and predetermination are at work in the same system and they perhaps are not as paradoxical as we think?

No
« Last Edit: August 05, 2006, 04:05:36 AM by MG »
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jerry

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #35 on: August 08, 2006, 02:57:19 AM »

I think about the freewill thing a lot,Its a real brain frier,somtimes I can feel the electrical currents short sercute in my mind,though I beleave that God is in control of his creation it still boggles my mind at times,but we are the clay and he is the potter,the clay does'nt say to the potter<hey I dont want to be a pot or a jar,we are just clay......jerry
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Harryfeat

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #36 on: August 08, 2006, 11:01:07 AM »



Yes, we can make choices within certain parameters but we have about as much "free will" as a ball of clay in a potter's hands.

Joe     

Hello Joe,

The concept of "free will in a box" is something that I have been struggling with for some time.  I recognize that God is the cause of all things but how much freedom of choice within parameters do we have? 

In Genesis 1:28 man is given "dominion" over the earth.  I took that to mean all things physical.  In Gen 2:16 Adam was given the freedom to choose to eat from everything but the tree of knowledge. 

My perspective on  man's choice has always been that I wonder whether God does not interfere with any choices or limit the choices in any way with respect to our lives here on earth.  In other words.  If you are a drunk, it is not God's will or His doing but your own choices within the framework of the earth.  The argument that a person is born predisposed to act in a certain way has always been an elusive concept to me since much of who we become depends, as you said before, on the parents and environment were born to. So much of our choices are also determined by the framework that our parents have created. Our choices are limited by what their prior choices.  I have always wondered how much or detailed is the control without interference that mankind has.

I guess ultimately,  the question I have is can anyone define what are the parameters of choice God has given mankind?

feat
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hillsbororiver

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #37 on: August 08, 2006, 12:01:11 PM »

"Free will" is a bogus term in and of itself. Are we free to choose our race? Our parents? Our height? What country we were born in? Our intelligence or our talents? Can our "free will" make any of us an NBA caliber basketball player?

If we were walking down a road and came to a 20 foot tall brick wall can our "free will" allow us to pass through that wall or must we turn back? Even secular philosophers recognized that although we make choices we do not make uncaused choices, that is a christian hoax.

We can choose to drive to work or take a bus or even walk, but our "free will" does not allow us to flap our arms and fly there or even allow us the "free will" not to go to work, that is if we want a roof over our heads and food on the table. Yes, food, does our "free will" give us the opportunity not to have to eat? Sure, if we want to die, doesn't sound like an uncaused choice to me.

We have limitations all around us in our lives, we can make a choice within the confines of our circumstances (who determines our circumstances?) but we do not have nearly enough power to defeat the laws of physics or gravity by our "free will" nor do we have the power to do anything outside the bounds which He has placed us in.

Joe   

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hillsbororiver

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #38 on: August 08, 2006, 12:06:45 PM »

From Ray's "Myth of Free Will" Part A (LOF 15):

The Myth of Free-Will Exposed

There was a time when I too was hoodwinked into believing that man has a "free will." I believed free will to be man’s ability to make choices, change his mind, learn from experiences, etc. And since it is a fact that man can indeed do these things, it seemed evident to me that man has free will. But then I learned that these are not the definition of free will at all.

Free will does not actually and literally mean that one can make choices, create, change his mind, or reformulate ideas and data, etc., but that those choices and thought processes must themselves be free thoughts and free choices. "Free will" is only true if our choices are also free. But free from what? Why, free from being forced upon us against our will, or free from being caused by anyone or anything except our OWN will. And so, yes, man can think, process data, make choices, change his choices, etc. But none of these activities are free from internal or external CAUSES.

That man has a will, there is no debate. It is the teaching that man himself determines his own will, FREELY, without anything causing his will or his choices to be what they are. The idea of free will or free moral agency is that man can by himself unaided by anything else, originate his own choices of his will.

But does man actually possess such a power? And if he does, where is the proof? Now for all who have no confidence in the Scriptures, let me say that there is absolutely no scientific proof that man has a "free will" or the ability to make "uncaused choices." If such a freedom of the will existed, it should be possible to demonstrate it. But there is no such scientific demonstration that man can formulate thoughts and actions to which absolutely no cause whatsoever can be attributed.

And for all who do have confidence in the Scriptures, let me say equally dogmatically that there is absolutely no Scriptural proof for man having a "free will" or the ability to make "uncaused choices." In every case Scripture shows that it is God Who is behind the scene of all circumstances that influence and cause a man to make the one and only choice possible under any given circumstance. This law of "cause and effect" is stated and demonstrated time and again in Scripture. Ignorance of these behind the scenes causes does not disprove the fact that they are the actual and literal cause of our choices

There are laws of science that men do not wish to carry over into his private and spiritual life. Why? Well, because he doesn’t like the ramifications of these laws. He does not want to admit that he is bound and controlled by laws. He wants to be "free"—free to be his own god, free to determine his own destiny, free to override the rule and dominance of God, free to rebel or free to obey, but freedom of the will at all cost.

I will admit that it is a real shock when we first come to understand that of ourselves we cannot make one "free" choice to do good. Something must cause that choice, but the carnal mind hates to be "caused" to do anything. "God gave all men free will," he shouts. God gave man no such thing. Free will is a phantom illusion that has deceived the whole world.

But how could most of the population of the entire world for the whole history of the world believe something as fundamental as "free will," if such a thing does not even exist? Well, that’s a fair question, and before I get into dozens and dozens of specific proofs that free will does not exist, let me just show you two very broad and Scriptural statements that would certainly be indicators that maybe what is popularly believed and taught is generally not true:



http://bible-truths.com/lake15.html
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hillsbororiver

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Re: Free Will
« Reply #39 on: August 08, 2006, 12:09:47 PM »

Good point Bobby, I found some interesting quotes on "Free will" from the philosophy/science  view of the matter;

Baruch Spinoza compared man's belief in free will to a stone thinking it chose the path it traveled through the air and the spot it landed. In Ethics he wrote, "The decisions of the mind are nothing save desires, which vary according to various dispositions." "There is in the mind no absolute or free will, but the mind is determined in willing this or that by a cause which is determined in its turn by another cause, and this by another and so on to infinity." "Men think themselves free because they are conscious of their volitions and desires, but are ignorant of the causes by which they are led to wish and desire." [4] [5]

Arthur Schopenhauer, concurring with Spinoza, wrote, "Everyone believes himself à priori to be perfectly free, even in his individual actions, and thinks that at every moment he can commence another manner of life... . But à posteriori, through experience, he finds to his astonishment that he is not free, but subjected to necessity, that in spite of all his resolutions and reflections he does not change his conduct, and that from the beginning of his life to the end of it, he must carry out the very character which he himself condemns... ."[6]

You can do what you will, but in any given moment of your life you can will only one definite thing and absolutely nothing other than that one thing.

— Schopenhauer, On the Freedom of the Will, Ch. II

I can do what I will: I can, if I will, give everything I have to the poor and thus become poor myself — if I will! But I cannot will this, because the opposing motives have much too much power over me for me to be able to. On the other hand, if I had a different character, even to the extent that I were a saint, then I would be able to will it. But then I could not keep from willing it, and hence I would have to do so... [A]s little as a ball on a billiard table can move before receiving an impact, so little can a man get up from his chair before being drawn or driven by a motive. But then his getting up is as necessary and inevitable as the rolling of a ball after the impact. And to expect that anyone will do something to which absolutely no interest impels him is the same as to expect that a piece of wood shall move toward me without being pulled by a string.

— Ibid., Ch. III

Schopenhauer's saying, that a human can very well do what he wants, but can not will what he wants, accompanies me in all of life's circumstances and reconciles me with the actions of humans, even when they are truly distressing.

— Albert Einstein, Address to the German League for Human Rights, November 1928. Credo



I also posted this earlier in the thread, a secular point of view on the subject.

His Peace to all,

Joe
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