Fate, as in... the way it's going to work out? In determinism, that's all there is to it. Some sequence of events will occur. And you want the ability to have some other sequence of events occur? But once you do that, then that's the sequence of events that occurred, and you never prevented it!
What you're asking for seems logically incoherent.
Denar wrote:A soul.
Is that an attempt to answer my question?
If so, what role does this soul play? Does it have a causal impact on anything I do? If so, how does the soul decide what to do? Once you break open that black box, there's nothing in it that wasn't in the brain.
OK, there seems to be a misunderstanding between what determinism/Fate would be in a literary work and what it entails in real life, and you're moving the problems from one into the other. Asking "what there is in non-determinism that enables free will?" is a loaded question, because there is nothing
in the universe that enables free will.
The truth is, that in real life
, we're entirely mechanical beings. Everything in the universe is mechanical. This is what is meant by having no free will, that there is absolutely nothing you or anybody else can
do except for what you will
So of course, the answer to the question would be that we have souls or something similar - something not bound by the same laws of the universe as the atoms in our brains - and that would influence our decisions based on matters of morality or whatever. I can't comment on how that process might work, because in its very nature we wouldn't comprehend it, and besides I'm not suggesting that I believe it. But anyway, there is no answer to the question other than something along those lines, because you're asking "What is outside the rules of the universe that enables free will?" If you're going to ask for the mechanics of that
, then you won't get any objective answers.
But Lipkin isn't talking about determinism and free will going together in our world - which I presume he's ok with (I hope he is). He's talking about it in a story. In a story, we do not assume that the characters have no control over their actions and are predetermined like we are. On top of that, he's saying that it seems silly to justify this whole discourse we've read so far about the importance of free will, if nothing the characters can do can change their Fate, even if they're given the privilege not afforded to us
, which is knowing it before it happens.
You see, the answer that sometimes gets thrown about here is the difference between compatabilism and incompatabilism, and that we should be compatabalist about erfworld, but both philosophies are determinist and using either undermines the "you can have both free will and determinism" crowd. They both apply to real life, and neither actually denies that we are mechanical beings anyway. Compatabilism just seeks to answer how we can punish people for their actions if "the universe" is responsible, and tries to come up with a morality system to justify that. Incompatabilists say that it is futile, and that the "freedom of choice" that compatabalists come up with isn't the same as "free will", which is true. There's a reason that they're called "soft determinists", and it's not a good reason.
I'm saying we shouldn't be determinist
about Erfworld at all (or any story really).
When we read stories, we like to imagine that the characters have free will, and not just freedom of choice. If you remember the cage analogy Lilwik made earlier, this was where he got confused between the two.
I don't like to know that Parson is going do X and Y, and that every action he and his enemies make don't challenge that, but are instead just the predetermined steps along a linear path that brings him to that end.
Even if we stretch out what Passive Fate could mean, and say "it's not determinism! It's just the end that's predetermined, not every action that's made leading up to it!" (which is paradoxical) "Parson's free to make all these decisions, as long as they also bring him closer to his Fate
." Well, yeah, again, that's mixing up free will with freedom of choice. Just because he has the freedom to choose from a set of predetermined paths that all lead to the same end (which in itself is story-ruining enough), doesn't mean he has free will.
Especially since the argument seems to be, that if he could
ever have considered doing something contrary to this, then the Summon Perfect Warlord spell wouldn't have picked him in the first place. The real cage analogy, of course, would be that in Passive Fate your mind is in a cage and can't move at all. Maybe you get to choose what meals you have during the day! Wow, what freedom of choice. What free will. But of course, the option "to get out of this cage" is never presented, so you can't ever make that decision, you can't even imagine it or wish it... that's where the lack of free will comes from. At the end of the day, you're still in the cage, like you were at the start, and it's impossible to have any other result.
Active Fate, on the other hand, has no cage at all. You are free to do whatever you want. Of course, there's a big angry slave driver somewhere around you, and he has planned your work schedule. If you don't do it, or try to fight it, then you get a whip/beam to the face. Maybe even your friend dies because they're overworked to cover your "laziness" (stealing numbers). But it's all free will as to what you can
do. There's no slave driver in your mind.
And of course, maybe one day you can outsmart the slave driver...