Do we have free will? We certainly make mistakes (the Master of the Key made that clear when he burst into Whitley’s hotel room in Toronto in 1998 and told him about climate change (The NEW, revised edition of The Key, with a foreword that talks about how many of his statements later turned out to be true, will be in bookstores May 12). This is a question that philosophers have asked themselves from time immemorial. If we can’t change our lives, we have problems, because in a pre-determined universe, a person couldn’t be held accountable for his actions.
Experimental philosopher Shaun Nichols set out to determine how people feel about a crime like cheating on your taxes in a deterministic universe. Could the person doing this have made another choice? (And perhaps, in another parallel universe, he DOES). Most of the people he polled pointed out that regardless of whether or not free will exists, our society depends on believing it does, and psychologists have learned that when people doubt free will, they do worse at their jobs and are less honest. In the March 22nd edition of the New York Times, John Tierney quotes Nichols’ colleagues Kathleen Vohs and Jonathan Schooler as saying, "Doubting one’s free will may undermine the sense of self as agent. Or, perhaps, denying free will simply provides the ultimate excuse to behave as one likes."
Anne Strieber thinks that the so-called "Visitors" are actually time travelers, who are coming back from the future (which is their present) to try to get us to clean up climate change and our fondness for nuclear weapons (and power plants that can turn into bombs?) We now know that time does not flow in a simple manner from the past through the present and into the future. Quantum physics (NOTE: Subscribers can still listen to this show) tells us that the present and future are "entangled," meaning that future events may have an influence on what’s happening right now.
In the Huffington Post, Robert Lanza quotes physicist John Wheeler as saying that the universe is filled with "huge clouds of uncertainty" that haven’t yet interacted either with a conscious observer or even with some lump of inanimate matter. In all these places, he says, the cosmos is "a vast arena containing realms where the past is not yet the past." Whether or not the past really is the past, you’ll create some GREAT memories at the Dreamland Festival, where amazing things can happen! And no matter what you think, you DO have the free will to and support this site (like you KNOW you should)!