Basically it is compatibilism, that we are part of nature’s process of determination, which is not strictly “free” will. Considering that the very meaning of “will” is to affect, ie. determine, it doesn’t make sense to think of it outside this constant process of cause and effect. Just that every aspect of ourselves is also part of this process.
The flaw is “hard” determinism, that the entire course of time is set by the initial conditions. Which is the only reason there is a debate in the first place. Then the concept of “free will” is postulated as an alternative.
“This means that if one had enough information about the initial conditions of the universe (the Big Bang) and the laws themselves, plus an enormous capacity for accurate computation, one would, in theory, be able to predict the unfolding of every event, at any time. Including my decision a few minutes ago to write this essay. And yours to read it.”
Which is premised on the linear, dimensional notion of time. That this “fourth dimension” is somehow physically real. That the difference between past, present and future is an illusion. That we could time travel through wormholes in the fabric of spacetime. Hopefully not killing our grandfather.
The point I keep trying to make is this perception of time is based on the fact that as mobile organisms, we have a sequential process of perception and as humans, a narrative based culture. So this “flow” of time goes very deeply into our psyche.
The simple reality is that change turns future to past. There is no literal dimension of time, because the past is consumed by the present, to inform and drive it. Causality and conservation of energy. Cause becomes effect.
Energy is “conserved,” because it is the present. Its changing configuration creates the effect of time, as well as this activity creating temperature, pressure, color and sound. Aka, frequencies and amplitudes.
So time is asymmetric, because it is a measure of particular actions and action is inertial. The earth only turns one direction.
Different clocks can run at different rates simply because they are separate actions. Think metabolism.
Thus the energy, as process, goes past to future, while the patterns generated go future to past. (Consciousness goes past to future, while thoughts and emotions go future to past.)
Think of a wave; The energy is what drives it, while the patterns generated, the undulations and fluctuations, frequency and amplitude, rise and fall, future to past.
As these mobile organisms, we have the digestive, respiratory and circulatory systems processing the energy driving us on, while the central nervous system sorts through and organizes the forms, colors, sounds precipitating out.
So our thought process extracts these stable impressions from the dynamic producing them, like a movie camera takes a sequence of stills.
“ There can be two reasons for such “fuzziness” at the quantum level, as George knows very well. One possibility is that the fuzziness is only apparent, since after all the equations of quantum mechanics are deterministic. The other is that the fuzziness is real at the level of the phenomena. We don’t currently know.”
Maybe the energy can only be processed through our conceptual modeling as “fuzzy,” because it is inherently dynamic. For instance, a moving car doesn’t have an exact location, or it wouldn’t be moving. No matter how fast the shutter speed, it still has some duration, thus motion of not only the car, but the atoms expressing it and the light informing us of its existance. Otherwise imagine the picture, if the shutter speed is set at zero. Which would be a truly dimensionless point in time and presumably an exact location.
So there this distinction between energy and the forms it expresses. Since we only intellectually process form as a sequence, we equate it with causality. Though causality is the transformation of the energy, not necessarily the sequence derived from it. For instance, yesterday doesn’t cause today, the sun shining on a spinning planet creates this cycle of days and nights.
Similarly our cognitive flow/stream of consciousness really is a sequence of flashes of energy, coming from all directions, all across the spectrum of light, sound and physical interactions. To which we try applying some narrative order and sense.
Is the quantum the actual energy itself, or is it more like frequencies and amplitudes, the information extracted from the energy?
Yes, it’s information all the way down, but it’s also energy all the way up.
Or we could just postulate multiworlds, to sort out this relationship between probability and determination.
Not holding my breath for logic to intervene. Scientists are human and they will always come up with some explanation, trying to tie it all together, then build out from there. Nature of the beast.