Aruba sunset

Predetermination issues

The licence plate number on Franz Ferdinand’s car referring to the end date of World War I may indicate that history is predetermined. Other coincidences in history suggest the existence of a script too, for instance those surrounding the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001. Some people are haunted by time prompts. They look at the clock at specific times like 11:11. If this is not selective remembrance, which it may be, this indicates that their minds are controlled.

Perhaps this universe is a virtual reality created by an advanced civilisation. Perhaps everything is predetermined and we do not really have a free will. That may raise some questions. One deals with fate. For instance, you may ask yourself, “If I am going to die on a certain day then what point is there in going to see a doctor when I fall ill?” Alternatively, you could opt for a dangerous hobby like climbing the Mount Everest because you believe the date you meet the Grim Reaper is already set in stone.

Only, you don’t know that date. So if you go to the doctor and he or she cures you from an illness that would otherwise have been fatal, that could be predetermined, but if you choose not to go to the doctor and subsequently die, that would also be predetermined. The same can be said about getting killed while climbing the Mount Everest.

If someone knows the future, and everything is predetermined, this person can’t inform us in detail about the future. Exact predictions can influence the future in such a way that something else will happen. For example, if I know I am going to have a car accident tomorrow I will remain at home tomorrow and the accident wouldn’t happen. But such a person might leave signs like the license plate on Franz Ferdinand’s death car.

Predetermination makes it possible to do predictions that are more accurate than chance allows for. Most predictions of that kind aren’t accurate enough to be actionable because that could alter the future. The action taken may help to make the prediction come true. That requires actors being unaware of their role in the scheme. Some premonitions may be actionable, but it is not possible to know which ones on beforehand.

One specific type of premonition comes from people called prophets. Countless prophets have predicted that the end of times would come. That never happened, at least until now. But in 1979 an historian wrote a fictional story in which the Berlin Wall would fall in 1989. And on 11 September 2001 the BBC claimed that WTC building 7 had collapsed 26 minutes before it really happened.

If everything is predetermined then there is not really a battle between good and evil. The concepts of good and evil emerged as a result of evolution. Humans are social animals and their success as a species depends on cooperation. Actions that benefit the group, whether it is a family, community, nation or humanity, are considered good, while actions that harm the group are considered evil.

If the choices you make are predetermined, so are the consequences. It may therefore be a good idea to think of it as if there are two levels. On our level, free will appears to exist, but on the higher level there might be a script. For us the laws of probability seem to apply so that it may be a useful delusion to believe that doing something smart will more likely bring a favourable outcome than doing something stupid.

Featured image: Aruba sunset. English Wikipedia.