Free will, God, entropy, and IQ

Illustration: María Elena (Mani) Hinojosa
  • But is ours not a deterministic universe ruled by inalterable laws of physics incompatible with free will? Still no problem, we’ve concocted something called “compatibilism” and kept our free will, thank you very much.
  • Do rationality, lack of evidence and science force us to abandon any notion of God or Gods? Yes, but no big deal: we can still find spiritual fulfillment in Bach, Michelangelo, and Dostoyevsky. We can still be inspired and awed by the majesty of gothic cathedrals, have cathartic experiences at the top of a mountain, and expand our consciousness and be one with the world through meditation. Nothing is missing without religion.
  • Do cosmologists envision various ways in which the universe will end, and give them suitably foreboding names like the Big Freeze, the Big Crunch, the Big Rip, and the Big Slurp? That’s of no concern to us. Just enjoy the ride and make up your own meaning along the way. Besides, the very fact that our life is finite is what gives it value and purpose.
  • Is the variability we observe in intelligence greatly influenced by genes, so that not everyone can become an astrophysicist? Yes, but that’s not important. Intelligence, however highly causally correlated it may be with achievement and success in life, has absolutely nothing to do with the worth we may ascribe to other people, with the admiration or disregard we may feel toward others.

Interested in natural selection, evolutionary psychology, neuroscience, science in general, human nature, consciousness, philosophy and ethics.

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