Free Will - Why it's an illusion and why that's a good thing

October 23, 2015

Vaden Masrani

In this talk, I hope to try to convince you that there is no such thing as free will. Here I mean free will in the common, every day sense - the feeling we all have that although we chose chocolate, we could have chosen vanilla. Because the feeling of agency is so strong, the idea that we have free will (and that our brains are somehow exempt from the laws of physics and causality) is near universal despite being a scientifically incoherent hypothesis. This talk will outline the arguments against free will and close by arguing that seeing through the illusion of free will can lead to a greater understand of yourself and to a more compassionate world. **Coda** My thoughts on FW have been heavily influenced by scientists and writers such as Robert Sapolsky, Sam Harris, VS Ramachandran and Jerry Coyne. If you're unable to make the talk but are curious about topic, I would recommend the following lecture: here