Vladerag's Blog

{January 11, 2010}   Does the walker choose the path or the path the walker?

That is the question is it not?  Do you choose what you do everyday or is your DNA?  Does it even matter?  In short, do we have free will?

People who argue that we do have free will point out that DNA is hardly sentient, has only four coded letters, and only changes over generations anyway and so can hardly explain how quickly behaviors and attidtudes can change over generations.  Further, they point out that our decesions, our thoughts, are handled in the brain.

Or are they?  What built the brain?  That would be the DNA.  Your brain, which is to say the decesions and emotions that result from the proper or improper function of the brain, is a mix of chemicals and nuerotransmissions.  Both of which are regulated by your genetic code.  So you could say that base reactions and emotions are pre-programmed by DNA. 

This explains your nature, which is undeniably the product of DNA, but what about nurture?  What if I fear fire because I was burned by it, not because I am just afraid of it?  This is still DNA.  You DNA provides this base equation, pain=fear, granted anger can come out of there too, but that is beside the point.  In short, if it hurt me, I will fear it.

Even complex decesions, like what book to read, are decided by you genetics.  Your bodies chemicals, whose portions are determined by DNA give you a mood, which makes you choose one thing over another.  DNA wins again.

As to DNA’s response over generations, while the chromosomes themselves change very slowly, the epigenome can change inside of a single generation.  The epigenome controls the expression of genes.  Think of it like an on/off switch and a brightness control, it can respond to stimuli in a generation and turn off, on, or adjust the intensity of genes accordingly.

So in other words, you are controlled by your DNA.  But that doesnt matter, because you are your DNA, or more accurately, it is you.  It is making the decesions you would have anyway, becuase it is the “you” in the situation.

So the walker has chosen the path, which happens to be the walker…


christianclarityreview says:

I’m beginning to think that a lot of these types of posts are from one Big Control Center pumping out scientific fatalism on the internet. There is at least one blog doing so for every demographic and two or three for those deceived they are a minority and weak-er than another comparative group.

No one is so naive as to not see that what you are basically saying is that some people will get saddled with the ‘subservient gene’ and other people will get the ‘I get to be king’ gene and when anyone ask Why, they will only be told that they have free will –and that’s why -yet, ‘that’s just how things are. The gods gave us free will and we can’t get out of it’.

The more these types of posts profligate, the more it seems impossible to me –if people had free will– that people would advocate for their own subservience to others who are supposedly more genetically appropriate to be Rulers ..as a result of having free will.

You have just advocated for absolute fatalism. But fatalism is a deceit used to kill people and/or rule over them.

It’s a form of the robot accusation against Calvinism. Supposedly, Calvinism makes everyone a robot and is fatalism.

But no one can actually be a robot. You cannot do any set of ideal behaviors perfectly no matter what they are. That failure is the source of the guilt –the failure to be a robot. The fatalism is a by-product of being deceived somebody somewhere did the ideal behaviors perfectly ( and there is a great deal of theater/deceit to cause people to think that ) and the notion that if the behaviors are done, some great thing will happen. Thereafter, those deceived by that WANT to be robots and are crying over the failure to be robots.

You’ve just said that you are basically a living robot doing what your DNA supposedly ‘forces’. That concept is essential to eastern mysticism. The only way out of the sneaking suspicion that you have free will ( according to eastern mysticism ) is to change your being –to get out of self. So the religions center on such an escape from guilt by a change of self.

In the West, free will is ( falsely, because free will does not exist ) seen as a commodity that you can extract from some and give to others ( and is the sole effort of the public NGO’s/charity organizations –but you still can’t get out of believing you have it.

In the East they try to get out being itself to escape the guilt that comes from believing in free will. In the West they try to control it and simply live with the guilt of failing to do ideal behaviors yet supposedly having the ability to do them. But what they have in common is the fatalism that says you can’t escape it, –because they are deceived it actually exists.

Calvinism is new life in Christ –a non-metapahorical change of being. One of the results of that new being in Christ is a loss of the deception of free will as a whole –the very thing the Eastern religions seek for but not in Christ. But that new life is actually life and the actual change of being demonstrates that fatalism is a lie AND that we as beings are not our flesh/DNA but have had a change of being inside the house made of DNA.

In Christ, in being actually born again ( not just talking about being born again or pretending..) the fatalism is gone, the lie of free will is gone and you see the Truth.

It just upsets me to see people advocating for their own subservience to other men unknowningly ..or knowingly.

1Peter 1:23-25 being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the living and abiding word of God. Because all flesh is as grass, and all its glory as the flower of grass. The grass has withered and its flower has fallen; but the word of the Lord abides for eternity. But this is the word which in the glad tidings is preached to you.


In the Name of Jesus Christ, Amen

vladerag says:

subservience? where do you get suberveince out of that? Fatalist, perhaps. However, you advocate for that yourself. If there is no free will, everything must be fate. Whether that fate is determined by God, your DNA, God through your DNA or any other imaginable way is a moot point. As to the idea of a soul, that, as far as I am concerned, is nothing more than uneducated or ancient people attempting to explain the vast complexities of the brain. May I point out that if the soul is inccoruptable it should be impossible for baptised persons to do wrong? Their nature would rebel against it. I am baptised and am hardly a saint, I do wrong, I am human. The point is, if a soul exists, it is at the mercy of our flesh and its whims. The flesh is at the mercy of my DNA, ergo my soul is at the mercy of my DNA.

In any case, this shouldn’t matter. If we accept that we are part of a greater plan designed by a Divinity than our lives are already planned out. Further, if we assume that the divinity is both omnipotent and omniscient than our lives are doubly fixed. So if our futures are fixed, why not through DNA?

As to subservience, this explains why some people might have personalites that could be forced or coerced into subervience. However it does not say that it is right, in fact, as far as I’m concerned taking someones freedom is a crime that should be punnished by death, as death aptly seals the fate of those who would decide the fate of others. Anyway, your username suggests you are Christian and you certainly seem to be in your comment, so I would have thought you would have valued voluntarry subservience. Jesus Christ, Son of God, washed the feet of his Apostles who he sent out to serve the people as the pharasiess did not. Because, of course, religon is as much about the people as it is about God.

In the end, it doesnt much matter to me. I am an aetheist, not a millitant one by the way. (those people annoy me, aetheism should not be universalizing, people should be able to choose their beliefs) Simply put, I think that given the misery in the world, that an omnipotent God could easily fix, God doesnt exist, because it is too depressing to think that God either doesnt care or enjoys our misery.

christianclarityreview says:

there is a determinism that is false that claims to be derived from free will. It basically says that the free will of a population of like beings in an environment of limited resources forces its own rules ( “unseen hand” ) on that population because of the limitation in resources. The limitation is idealized to exist because new creation by Jesus Christ is denied either outright or implied. I.E. The best that life can be in that scenario is a fight for survival to live.

So they are going to say “BECAUSE you’ve free will, THEREFORE you are a slave to determinism.”

What you’re saying is that your DNA determines your fate rather than God AND that whatever you are now as a spiritual being is what you will always be. That sounds like a fine scheme as long as no one conspires to say you have the evil gene, the idiot gene, the ..can’t do good/correct behavior in their ideology gene. –as long as there is no such thing as lies and no one simply lies about on the premise of your own beliefs. You are setting yourself up for exactly that on the premise that it is simply fun to speculate about determinism and flesh. Racism and the like are specifically founded on the same philosophical roots as what you have said: everyone is supposed “born that way” and can’t ever change. You’ve linked DNA to ultimate destiny ( a thing specifically denied by God, ..He says we are not our flesh but that live in a house of flesh..).

what I’m saying is that all the philosophical possibilities have long ago been used to construct a maze that goes into a tunnel that is only going to end in your subservience to someone while making you think it was all your idea and you did it all on purpose, in free will ( “and” in the lack of it ) and so you’ll look at your self as foolish in comparison so that you will give a nod to the DNA based casted society. It’s fine thing to think you’ll turn out to have the ‘ruler’ gene. But in the meantime, you’ll be taxed into rags to fund ‘research’ to find non-existent genes like the ‘evil’ gene, the ‘disease’ gene, the ‘stupid’ gene and all other ‘genes’ that supposedly are reasons that no one can do an ideology that simply doesn’t work.

Look out.

Granted, you don’t believe in Jesus Christ. But that’s not up to me or you.
And if you cannot hear Jesus Christ, then you end up as a pawn and your own estimation of your worth as a soul will be nothing. God cares. But He cares about the things you deny exist and so His emotional common sense doesn’t make sense to you.

God bless


Romans 1:19,2 Because what is known of God is manifest among them, for God has manifested it to them,an –for from the world’s creation the invisible things of him are perceived, being apprehended by the mind through the things that are made, both his eternal power and divinity, –so as to render them inexcusable.

In the Name of Jesus Christ, Amen

vladerag says:

In some ways you have a point, however in some cases you are mistaken. There is no such thing as a “slave” gene or a “disease” gene. There are genes that might make a person be more humble or meek, although that is a far cry from being a slave. Further, a disease gene is a misnomer, a myth, there is no such thing. there are genes that when mutated can result in various maladies, for instance sickle cell anemea, which is a mutation in a single letter of the genetic code. The change modifies the way hemoglobin is made, resulting in the hemoglobin forming large strands that cause cells to be mishapen.

Also, genes to not dictate behavior to be bad or good. DNA’s ultimate goal is to survive and reproduce, so if too survive you must do “wrong” your DNA will respond. i.e. If I was starving I would begin to feel desperate, and eventually overcome my desire to be good and steal. I would do it to survive, I would bet that most people would. Anyway, that gene that makes me feel desperate in starvation is not “bad,” it is simply survival.

Now as to crime that does not involve desperation, a lot of times that is out of greed. Greed is an emotion that evolved to help survival as well. A woman might choose, all other things being equal, a rich person over a poor. Further, if you have much of something, it is less likely you will run out of it, so greedy people, once upon a time, might not have starved as much. Today, with technology outpacing evolution, greed has become bad for survival. Again the gene itself is not bad.

As for the rest of your comment, I have seriously no idea where you get subservience from. I am a person who abhors slavery, it is to me a crime worse than murder. Genes cannot be used to justify rulership over people, because in the end they respond to the enviorment, they do what they must to survive. In other words, if I raised a person in an enviorment where they must always be the leader and be right all the time or they would have horrid, extreme punishments, with just as extreme rewards for being correct, I might end up with an amazing leader. On the other hand, if i took the same person and beat them as they grew up, forcing them to obey my commands or suffer those horrid consequences, I would have a slave. Because to survive they must obey.

The reason I can say this for everyone is because our genes are extremely similar. As to God, if he exists he should care more about whether I live my life in a good way than whether or not I believe in him.

Also, even if there is a “stupid” gene, there is hope that we might be able to soon “cure” it. Gene therapy allows us to change the DNA of a paitent, although it is currently a very limited technology, however they have used the technology to cure one form of blindness so even with its limit its potential shows.

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