Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Chance and free will

To defend free will was not, of course, to insist on the operation of pure chance. Most thinkers still saw objective chance as virtually impossible, and few were prepared to identify the rational will with it. But at least the connotations of chance had changed. Previously it had seemed impiuous to allow chance a role in the world, as if God did not attend to every sparrow. Now chance stood for the incompleteness of mechanical law, for the possibility of non-material causation.
Gerd Gigerenzer et al., The Empire of Chance, section 2.6. This joins the defense of free will laid down by K. Popper as I noticed in this post and this note. See also this post as well as the work on incompleteness by Gregory Chaitlin.