• Peter Kupisz

Physical Brain Produces Free-Will and Rational Thought?

Are free-will and rational thought an illusion? How do those, who reject the existence of the human soul, account for such phenomenon? How can a brain, which is solely subject to the laws of science (including the principle of cause and effect), produce thoughts and ideas that are logical in nature? Indeed, how can the greatest scientists of all time develop such profound and complex theories, if their brains are nothing more than chemical reactions?

It is this problem which the world-renowned scientist, George Ellis, draws attention to.

… if Einstein did not have free will in some meaningful sense, then he could not have been responsible for the theory of relativity – it would have been a product of lower level processes but not of an intelligent mind choosing between possible options.
I find it very hard to believe this to be the case – indeed it does not seem to make any sense. Physicists should pay attention to Aristotle’s four forms of causation – if they have the free will to decide what they are doing. If they don’t, then why waste time talking to them? They are then not responsible for what they say.


John Horgan, “Physicist George Ellis Knocks Physicists for Knocking Philosophy, Falsification, Free Will,” Scientific American Blog Network, July 22, 2014, https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/cross-check/physicist-george-ellis-knocks-physicists-for-knocking-philosophy-falsification-free-will/.

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