February 23rd, 2007

stonehenge

What time is it? What time is. What time.... What?

It was occurring to me last night, while watching The Seventh Seal at the Castro in the wake of reading Orson Scott Card's "Ender Quartet", that free will is an illusion in the same way the Buddhists describe phenomenal existence as an illusion—not that it doesn't exist, but more that it doesn't exist the way that we think it does. In the end, however, we can never do anything other than exactly what we do. Where's the choice? It simply looks like a choice because we perceive things linearly, in time. Once you collapse the time illusion, choice, cause and effect, and therefore karma, all become meaningless, in a way. And yet, here we are, stuck in time, trying to figure out what choice will let us escape, and what to have for dinner.

(EDIT) Note that "free will" above is intended in the philosophical sense, and is to be distinguished from True Will.