In general there are two opposite concepts with respect to free will. The first states that a person has an opportunity to make free decisions and thereby to direct his life, giving it a significant impact.
The second concept, on the contrary, attributes everything to fate or providence, depriving a person of any free will and declaring predetermination of events. So which one is correct?
My first profession was biocybernetics, which studies the systems of the human body that control it, ensure its vital functions, and lead it to a certain task and purpose. So, according to biocybernetics there is no free will whatsoever. After all, a body is a complex biological system with two types of parameters:
· Innate properties
· Qualities acquired from outside
Within this framework, an average person doesn’t have the slightest possibility to act according to his will. Some qualities he inherited from parents, some were received from educators, and others the environment. His development is defined by a combination of these factors.
Hence the question is: Does a person choose other factors through which he will be able to change? And if he chooses, what guides him? Isn’t he guided by what is already inherent in him inside and outside, meaning genes and his environment? And even if he is given something else, it also doesn’t depend on him, right?
A person predictably reacts to what is happening and continues on his way. We assume that he is able to make free decisions based on random circumstances. But in fact, that is not the case and there is no freedom in anything.
We simply don’t have enough knowledge about the unified system called nature or Elokim (God). It is divided into completely interconnected subsystems and there is nothing accidental in it. On the contrary, everything is strictly determined. Thus a person is a creature of inner and surrounding nature. He is unable to make free decisions that would depend on him.
So then how to treat it? Is it possible to evaluate his actions as good or bad? To tell the truth, the answer is no.
It is the same way that we don’t assess flaws of some device made by us. If some part in it is broken, we understand that this is caused either by an internal defect or by external factors with which it was in contact. There are simply no any other options.
And therefore if we understand and feel the system correctly, we would see that there is no reason to punish a person. It is no coincidence that there is no punishment in the modern sense in the Torah, but there are only corrections in it. A person should be placed in such systems where he will change through external factors and then his life would flow differently.
However, we are confused and scattered on a scale that extends from fatalism and belief in destiny to belief in blind chance. Some believe that everything is in hands of heaven; others leave just some events to the will of heaven.
Actually, heaven is an unknown component with which we try to establish some kind of relationship in order to improve our lives.
From KabTV’s “A New Life” 6/28/16