Wednesday, July 16, 2014

138. Fate versus Free Will. Part Five.


Hypothesis Two. Free Will. It states that Humans are masters of their own fate. They have free will. Future is not pre-ordained. It is not written in stars. It is not decreed by God. All events, without exception, happen by the interaction between free will, nature and chance (chance is actually one of the manifestations of nature)

The two tier system proposed by religion and mystics ( such as Ramakrishna ), according to which some events, such as birth, death and some other major events in one’s life, are decreed by God, while the rest are in the hands of the individual through his exercise of free will, is rejected by hypothesis two. Let us read what the great saint Sri Ramakrishna said (1):


“Is there anyone who has free will or anything like that? It is by God’s will alone that everything has always happened and shall happen……man understands it in the long run.

Just as, when a cow is tied to a post with long tether, it can go to a distance of one cubit, or it can go up to the full length of the tether according to its choice, so too is the free will of the man….God has given man some power and freedom to utilize it as he likes.

That is why the man feels himself free……

And mark this: if anyone prays to Him in all humility. He may remove him to another place and tie him there; or he may lengthen the tether or even remove it completely from the neck.”


We asked, “Does the man have no duty or responsibility?”

“………………..He does not give one more power, if the little that is given is not properly used. This is why individual effort and perseverance are necessary. Don’t you see, everyone has to make some effort? however small, before he gets God’s grace?”


But this mote rejects that. All events, since the creation of universe have been happening without the intervention of God. They have been the result of natural events, as explained in blogs 97-99.


Everything happens according to the law of cause and effect. Let me repeat what I had already written in blog 102:

According to the law of cause and effect, an action takes place because a preceding action caused it. The first action is called the cause, while the second action, which is the result of the first action, is the effect. For instance, a ball is climbing up the sky. It is climbing up because somebody threw it. Throwing the ball is the cause of the ball climbing up.

It is a fundamental law of nature that the cause precedes the effect. When we will discuss time travel, a well known paradox is mentioned, called the ‘grandfather paradox’. If it was possible to travel in the past, one could kill one’s grandfather before one’s father was born. But then one could not be born to kill the grandfather. The solution to the paradox is that his existence (the cause) has to precede the killing (the effect). So it cannot happen. Time travel in the past is not possible.

Sorry for this digress.

If that is true then nobody should be able to tell future, because it does not exist. It does not exist because it has not been made yet.

But I have narrated in previous blogs (blogs 102-3) thirteen prophecies. We will tackle this contradiction sometimes later.

When I talk of forecasting future, I mean the part of future which cannot be told by any scientific means. Weather is predicted fairly accurately by meteorologists. If somebody has boarded a nonstop train going to London, there are fairly good chances of him being in London sometimes later (barring some unforeseen event). Scientists can predict solar and lunar eclipses very accurately. Doctors are fairly accurate in predicting the approximate date or week of a baby’s birth. We know that Halley’s Comet last appeared in the inner Solar System in 1986 and will next appear in mid-2061.


What cannot be told are the seven numbers in exact sequence which would be the winning numbers in the live drawing of a lottery at some future date?
( mentioned above in blog 135)


Now, let us quote again the objections to hypothesis one (blog 135) and see if hypothesis two can explain them:


1. It does not explain evil

2. It does not explain injustice

3. Makes God, indifferent, cruel and unjust

4. Why is God hidden?

5. If everything is preordained by God, then what is the purpose of creation by God?

6. It flies against our daily experience of events happening due to free will.

7. Does not explain the cruelty of predator animals to prey.

8. All human effort is completely useless.


Objection 1-3 are regarding evil, injustice, and cruelty. Hypothesis two easily dismisses them, because they were not created by God. All these are man made. As regards to why God is hidden, is because God had to be hidden, for mankind to reach their full potential. If a Father figure of God was always hovering around, who mankind could consult, the growth of human race would be stunted, like that of a child who refuses to grow up.

Statements 5-6 do not apply in hypothesis two.

Predators and preys in animal kingdom are the result of the race for the survival of the fittest and other aspects of evolution, as explained in Blog 99. Statement 8 does not apply in hypothesis two.


To be continued


(1) Sri Ramakrishna, the great master, Volume one By Swami Saradananda, page 94



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