sam: The question you are avoiding is, once you have given me control of your financial assets, are you free to do with them what you want? Or have you lost your freedom when you gave up control?
Cory: If you deprive a tree of sunlight and water, it will have less energy to convert into growth. Likewise, if I'm deprived of financial assests, I will have less energy to convert into growth.
I see you don't want to answer the question. Yet you do say you would have less energy. Less, energy, less freedom. It appears you like to disagree with me by subtlely agreeing. Have it your way.
sam: Then you are agreeing with me that control implies freedom.
Cory: No, I'm saying that there's a difference between being caused to value something, and being free to value something. The later is impossible.
Being free has a meaning. People would understand what you mean if you told them you are free to do what you want with your money. Pretending it has no meaning is like sticking your fingers in your ears and saying "Nah, nah, nah, I can't hear you." It's not a credible argument.
sam: You need to answer the question of whether you are still free to do what you want with your money once you have given up control of your financial assets. You seem to think there is a difference between a loss of power and a loss of freedom.
Cory: Whether or not I have more money or less, I'm still caused to do what I do. I define freedom as being uncaused. And since it's impossible for a self to be uncaused, then it's impossible for a self to be free.
Again, freedom has meaning. People understand it as being in control. You want to pretend it means something else. Your only argument appears to be semantics. Let me guess, Kevin is behind the curtain.
sam: So what perspective is it in which you are caused to be free?
Cory: I don't have any such perspective. It's nonsensical to say that freedom is caused.
sam: But I'm not saying that, you are! You have already said you are caused to control. I have shown how control and freedom go together.
Cory: Ok, so you define freedom as having control.
That is the experience of freedom, I'm not defining it in any sense other than how people experience it.
And I'm telling you that having control is only a useful illusion. The notion that I have control is only a practical tool. Such a notion, when scrutinized, doesn't really have any objective validity.
What is not objective about my being free to do what I want with my money? If that isn't freedom, what is it?
sam: But you just said you are caused to be free!
Cory: Where/when exactly did I say that?
sam: You agreed with me about what happens when you lose control of financial assets.
Cory: But it's no different when a tree is deprived of sunlight and water. It has less power to grow.
Do you really think you are being clever by equating trees with humans? Do you really think that helps your argument? In any event a tree doesn't make any effort, you do.
sam: Of course now you are trying to backpedal by saying a loss of power isn't a loss of freedom. If you lose your power to walk, are you still free to walk?
Cory: You are merely employing a figure of speech. For instance, if you give a plant lots of soil for it's roots to spread, the plant is free to grow as big as it can. But that doesn't mean it has any sort of essence which is inherently free. Humans are the same way.
A plant isn't trying to do anything, you are! Your analogies completely miss the point. They are totally outside the context of our discussion yet you strangely seem unable to comprehend that.
sam: Look, if you are going to make the "all is one" argument, there is nothing to talk about. Jumping between levels in an argument is bad form. We are talking about the human experience, not non-dualism. There is neither cause nor effect in non-dualism so why muddy the water with it?
Cory: It's impossible to realize oneness without understanding cause & effect. It's really not logical to emphasize one without emphasizing the other.
Why do you keep dragging in the irrelevant to our discussion? We aren't talking about oneness, we are talking about your need to frame causation in terms of free will. How many times do I have to remind you of that?
Cory: I'm only interested in having a truthful, rational discussion.
sam: Then why drag in non-dualism? Cause and effect IS DUALISM!
Cory: As I said above, cause & effect is the key to understanding oneness. And oneness is the key to understanding cause & effect.
The discussion isn't about oneness. Why is that so hard for you to understand?
sam: Wanting to be a cause IS free will.
Cory: Why? Please give me some reasoning, rather than just mere assertions.
sam: It's a matter of experience. Surely you've had some. You want to be in control of your life, do you not?
Cory: Do you honestly think that people choose to desire what they desire? For instance, does a girl choose to fall in love with who she falls in love with? Sam, did you choose to encounter Adya? And did you choose to be inspired or pleased by his message?
Choice as we are discussing it is a matter of experience, not an intellectualized concept. You have already admitted wanting to be in control of your life yet you reject the idea that such control reflects a belief in free will. So what would reflect a belief in free will? What beliefs and actions are based on free will?
sam: Do you not equate this control with the freedom to do what you want?
Cory: I don't see how it's rational to regard 'wants' as choices. I don't choose to want what I want. If you are honest with yourself sam, if you study your mind - you'll see that everything about life is involuntary. We do what we do because we are caused by something other than what we are.
Look, I'm not arguing about the existence of free will, how many times do I have to say that? I am talking about a BELIEF in free will. Do you understand the difference? A belief in free will does exist in most people. You need to acknowledge that and stop dragging the argument where it doesn't belong.
sam: You want to be a cause, not an effect, correct? If you were just an effect, could you be a cause?
Cory: It's impossible to be just an effect.
Consider bird droppings falling from the sky. Yes, from one perspective the bird droppings are an effect of the bird, but from another perspective the bird droppings are a cause of the soils nutrients.
Likewise, consider the oxygen released from trees. Yes, from one perspective the oxygen is an effect of the tree - but from another perspective, the oxygen is the cause of an animals breathing.
The argument is whether you yourself are a cause or an effect in any particular action. Oxygen is an effect of a tree, it is not the cause of a tree. Free agents seek to be causes of effects they desire. You have already admitted wanting to be a cause. How can you then turn around and say you are not acting as all free agents act?
sam: What gives rise to the belief in free agency? Is it not the ability to cause outcomes?
Cory: Lightening or wind as the ability to cause outcomes - but we have no reason to attribute free agency to such things.
Back to this nonsense. You seem to have a problem sticking with the context of human experience. Lightning and wind aren't trying to do anything, you are. Your irrelevant analogies aren't helping your argument.
Cory: Besides, it's logically impossible for something to only be an effect. Effects are causes, causes are effects.
sam: Hmm, it seems A does not equal A once again.
Cory: I explained to you how things are created by the perspective we take of them, and lack inherent existence.
Sam: But if A = (not A), you can prove anything you want which makes our discussion moot.
Cory: If you understand what I'm saying, then we no longer need to have a discussion.
If you aren't capable of understanding what I'm saying, then we also should no longer have a discussion.
If your ignorance is capable of transforming into consciousness - then the discussion might continue.
You made the argument that an effect is a cause. It isn't. An effect can become a cause but not in the same context in which it is an effect. Effect = effect, get it? Sheesh.
If you are capable of understanding that, we can continue. If you can't, why are you even talking to me?