On Freedom Regained

Gazzaniga is interested in how complexity provides a way of understanding how minds operate in ways that can’t be either predicted or understood by only studying brain processes. Mind and consciousness are ‘emergent properties’ which arise out of nothing more than brain processes, because the complex organization of these processes creates new properties which are not found at the fundamental physical level. This explains how it can be that beliefs, desires and intentions can actually change things, without us having to think that they are mysterious, non-physical things.... This is one of the most important scientific facts we need to bear in mind when thinking about free will. Too often it can seem that, if brains are the engines of thought, then thoughts themselves cannot change anything. Complexity theory shows us how this can be false, without the need to postulate any strange, weird, supernatural or non-physical will or soul. It shows that the idea that thoughts, beliefs and desires can cause things to happen is not outmoded metaphysics, but bang up-to-date science.

Julian Baggini "Freedom Regained," - http://wp.me/p4rWb7-jR