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Old 03-17-2004, 04:42 PM   #1
Happy Monkey
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Is there free will in heaven?

It seems to me that for heaven to be perfectly peaceful, some restrictions on free will would be necessary. But that seems to diminish the attractiveness of heaven. And if it is possible to have free will and peace in heaven, then why would it not work on Earth?
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Old 03-17-2004, 04:50 PM   #2
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there is no heaven....not like that, anyway.
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Old 03-17-2004, 04:51 PM   #3
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then why would it not work on Earth?

Because the "Earth" you speak of is actually hell.
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Old 03-17-2004, 04:53 PM   #4
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Re: Is there free will in heaven?

Quote:
Originally posted by Happy Monkey
It seems to me that for heaven to be perfectly peaceful, some restrictions on free will would be necessary. But that seems to diminish the attractiveness of heaven. And if it is possible to have free will and peace in heaven, then why would it not work on Earth?
So maybe we all have our own personal heavens and while what I do in my personal heaven may appear (to me) to impinge on your freedoms, it doesn't actually impact on your heaven at all? Not that I think there is a heaven (or heavens)
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Old 03-17-2004, 05:46 PM   #5
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Our actions are the constructs of belief/desire sets. We desire something, we believe that something will fulfill that desire, we believe that our actions will obtain that something, we act.

We desire personal security. We believe that money will provide that. We believe that working hard will earn us money. We work hard.

The problem is that we suffer from broken belief/desire sets. We desire things that are harmful to ourselves or others, and we have ill-conceived beliefs about how to gain those things.

We desire to be valued by another. We believe that a relationship provides that. We believe that being passive and codependent is the best way to maintain that relationship. We act in ways that are codependent.

We desire to not be threatened by anyone. We believe that the only way to achieve this is through holding more power than anyone else. We believe that by manipulation and deception we can gain more power than anyone else. We manipulate and deceive.

We act with free will, but we do so along lines of faulty desires and faulty beliefs. Perhaps in heaven, community exists in such a way that we still operate with free will, but we do so without desiring harmful things, and without holding corrupted beliefs about how to achieve them.

We desire personal security. We believe that mutual respect is the best way to achieve this. We believe that humility and compassion are the best ways to achieve mutual respect. We act with humility and compassion.

Sounds good to me. Im in. Whos with me?

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Old 03-17-2004, 05:49 PM   #6
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Then why wouldn't God fix our belief/desire sets here, and decrease the suffering?
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Old 03-17-2004, 06:07 PM   #7
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in my humble opinion, the idea of heaven that most of us are familiar with (regardless of one's belief/disbelief) came from a religious society that had little at all to do with free will. if you believed/did everything the church said that you should you would go to heaven, otherwise hell awaits. thankfully most modern religion has moved from this ideology, but i think it's still valid in terms of examing the progression of the heaven concept. just a side thought on my part.

perhaps there is no need for a heaven in the sense that i am familiar with, i.e. some kind of utopian afterlife. aristotle believed that a just man delights in acting justly (loosely paraphrased, i think i got the idea across). maybe heaven is exercising free will and choosing good for the sake of good, as opposed to choosing good for some reward (in this life or the afterlife) or being otherwised coerced. just my 2 pesos...
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Old 03-17-2004, 06:13 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by Happy Monkey
Then why wouldn't God fix our belief/desire sets here, and decrease the suffering?
Who says he doesn't

If you're talking about a mass overhaul of the human race, maybe God isn't into tinkering with people's inner workings without permission. If you're talking about an individual basis, that seems to be the most basic tenet of every world religion - that you become transformed by the working of God and begin to act in accordance with proper b/d sets (in so many words).

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Old 03-17-2004, 06:34 PM   #9
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As God gave us free will, maybe God is telling each and every one of us how to do it, it is just up to us to implement the ideas. The question is, are we listening to what God has to say?
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Old 03-17-2004, 06:52 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by smoothmoniker
If you're talking about a mass overhaul of the human race, maybe God isn't into tinkering with people's inner workings without permission.
So to get into heaven, you would need to give permission for Him to alter your desires? And if you choose to keep your free will, you would be denied heaven?
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Old 03-17-2004, 06:53 PM   #11
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And if we are listening, how do we know it's God talking?

Happy Monkey, you said that a lack of free will would diminish the "attractiveness" of Heaven. So what? If you're going to do the whole heaven/hell concept, it's not like you're going to the mall and you get to decide which restaurant to get dinner from at the food court. Isn't the lack of eternal damnation attractive enough? Presumably, for those who are in heaven, their wills and the will of God would coincide--can you imagine being in heaven and wanting to do something God didn't want you to do? Would that lead to separation between you & God, aka Hell?

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Old 03-17-2004, 06:57 PM   #12
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And in a semi-Socratic vein...

If God, in his infinite capacity, makes Heaven so damn spiffy that there is a complete and overwhelming desire to stay there, wouldn't that, in a sense, abrogate the very free will that is in question?
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Old 03-17-2004, 07:00 PM   #13
Happy Monkey
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Quote:
Originally posted by SteveDallas
Happy Monkey, you said that a lack of free will would diminish the "attractiveness" of Heaven. So what?
Well, obviously the Christian heaven is better than the Christian hell. But I find that it seems to be a choice between creepy and painful, rather than bliss and torment.
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Old 03-17-2004, 07:00 PM   #14
xoxoxoBruce
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Heaven is wonderful....just don't step on the ducks.
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Old 03-17-2004, 07:20 PM   #15
smoothmoniker
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Quote:
Originally posted by Troubleshooter
And in a semi-Socratic vein...

If God, in his infinite capacity, makes Heaven so damn

nice

Quote:
spiffy that there is a complete and overwhelming desire to stay there, wouldn't that, in a sense, abrogate the very free will that is in question?
Only if you think free-will is purely deterministic. In other words, if you think a free-will decision is solely based on the circumstances that the person finds himself in. Given X set of circumstances [capacity for reason, personal history, present surroundings, everything], every person will make the same decision.

I don't limit free-will that way. A person is still a free agent, able to make decisions that are not solely determined by their circumstances. So, just because you make a place that is so wonderful that every person would likely want to stay forever, you haven't vacated their capacity to actually make that decision.

Put bread in front of an ordinary starving man, and he will eat it. But he still decides to do so. He is still the agent of his own free-will.

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