Free will and spiritual world

First of all, I’m an atheist but I have an open mind, thus any advice will be greatly appreciated. 10 years ago I used to be a really spiritual person and I believed that people had free will but when I finally understood how evolution works, couldn’t get past the idea that I’m just a piece of meat or a programmed robot. There’s no evidence that we have free will or that there’s a hidden spiritual world/an afterlife, despite having the so-called spiritual experiences. Each time I come “back to earth”, I think that it’s all in my head and no one actually knows what the heck is happening. So how can I find proof that there’s free will and that spirits exist? I’m tired to live my life in doubt… everything is becoming increasingly boring and I have no determination to do anything :triumph:

Every choice you make is your own choice. The fact you chose to make this post is proof of your free will.

As for proof that there’s a spiritual world, well we can’t supply tangible proof of that, but as you experience and things start to synchronize that doubt will lessen. That’s about all anyone can tell you on that idea.

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Thank you, I know that theoretically there’s free will and we are able to make choices, but then again I didn’t choose to be born this way, I didn’t choose my parents, education, environment or anything that I did in my life as I think I have been always influenced by other factors to do things. Besides this, I have some different ideas about time… to me the future is already settled and we’re nothing more but some kind of observers. I know this leads me to nowhere… I don’t even know what kind of thinking/belief system I should adopt.

Your development from baby to adult is influenced by three factors: genetics, environment and personality. These three factors influence each other.
In this case, personality means free will. Identical twins make different choices, even as children when their environment is still pretty much the same.

So yes, your decisions are influenced by genetics and environment, but you do have free will.

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(sorry if I am not sticking to the thread and getting messy, but…)

Do you have a spiritual resemblance to deers? I think you do tbh :slight_smile:

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In a way yes

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Beliefs should be formed by experiences. Many people adopt what a book tells them so their experiences are formed around that book instead of their beliefs being formed around their experiences.


How would you know that you didn’t choose to be born the way, You born

Dont go down that tunnel man… Trust me… You might just FUCK up your chances of living a fulfilled or happy life and it isn’t worth it… If you’ve realise that this system is a, joke… Then you better make your stay here worthwhile…enjoy every moment

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To me, personality is influenced by the brain, education, genes and life experiences. I don’t see it as being something distinct from the body (such as a soul or spirit). In cases of a brain injury, personality can be affected so how can I know if I have free will if my body/matter controls my senses, thoughts, feelings etc.? Then if we all have free will, we directly/indirectly influence the free will of others and there seems to be little space for free will to manifest. I would like to be wrong and stop feeling like a puppet because this kills all my motivation to do anything :expressionless:

I would be more concerned about why we are doing all this, i.e. evolving, seeking evidence, wondering what the truth is etc? I would be very, very curious about consciousness itself–because no matter which way you cut it, it’s only taking place in consciousness even when we deny that it is.

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It does not control, it influences.
Yes, brain injury and sickness can change your behaviour, but that counts as environment.

Another example for this: You grow up in a very poor environment, you are malnourished and your brain cannot develop properly because of this. This definitely influences the choices you make in life. But it doesnt mean you dont have free will.

As I said before: These three factors influence each other. It’s not always easy to determine why people act the way they do.

Heck, I act weird every week before my period. I get angry and annoyed easily. I know that, and sometimes I can stay calm and act normal. That is my free will and it shows that environment (in this case hormones) have an influence, but dont make me a puppet.


brain = genes + environment (the way it can develop, depending on nutrition, education and experiences, very complex)
education = environment
genes = well, genetics
life experiences = This is where it gets interesting. Because you can influence your life experiences yourself. That’s less the case when you are a child and it gets more when you grow older.
What kind of life experiences you have is a direct result of the combination of the three factors. Environment, genetics, aaaaand personality (free will). All your previous life experiences count to environment by the way.

But really, look into some identical twins studies. Free will does exist.

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I tend to be more of a panpsychist when it comes to consciousness. But for me consciousness has a different meaning, it is not limited to our human experiences. Evolving is just space and time in a continuous change. I don’t see human emotions as being sacred or special at all, they’re just traits of an evolved biological organism.

There are subtle processes happening inside our bodies and twins don’t see things through each others eyes. Their bodies are not in a perfect synchronization, although they look identical so the experiences/choices cannot be identical. But I hope there’s still a tiny bit of space for free will to manifest, otherwise we’re all doomed. The only thing that gives me hope is that we are still unique and our experiences will stay with us forever. So maybe that’s a soul, a frozen frame in space and time :roll_eyes:

I think your pessimistic outlook on this topic can only be the result of you feeling powerless and not in charge of how your life develops. (Your attitude towards it was influenced by your environment.)

However, what you should do is stop dwelling on this too much, as it will make you depressed someday, but rather do what you wanna do, change what you wanna change, and then when you had some success, think about this topic again. You could call it an experiment.


Yeah, you’re right, though I’m still striving with the idea that there’s a spiritual world beyond what’s here. :disappointed: I’ve seen many unusual things and had my experiences but cannot accept them as having anything to do with the supernatural. My rational mind always tells me there has to be an explanation and I’m so damn stubborn that I could see a ghost with my own eyes and I would still think there has to be some quantum anomaly :see_no_evil:

Where’s the contradiction?
There IS an explanation, we just dont fully understand it.

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Agree, there could be many explanations but I don’t know which path should I choose since I can’t really relate to anything. Even “atheism” doesn’t suit me anymore as I started thinking that anything is possible, just that I’m too stupid to understand what’s going on. Sorry if this sounds too depressing, I wonder if there are atheists who went through this and found any purpose.

Maybe you should break free from the belief that you have to put a label on yourself.
I never fit in anywhere either.