Of Omnescience, Time, and Will
One of the key and central ideals of Christian morality, and most other religions that involve morality, is choice. Undoubtfully, it's almost always been argued that there is an omnescient being that is always watching, and always present. It's almost always established that free will is existent, and the means by which we exercise this will is imperative in the justification of our moral descisions. It is not only stated, but however, enforced in many religions that we exercise the right choices (in accordance to doctrine) or, the alternative, being eternal damnation. This damnation is set by an omnescient being, as a result of the individual failing to act in accordance to the rules set by said being.
The issue, in this case, is the overall omnesience of the almighty being. By being omnescient, this being has the ability to know all knowledge, knowledge of actions that have been done, and actions that are going to be. This being knows what we shall do, what choices we will make. This, at itself, almost neccesitates that, if this supreme being is within the boundaries of time, that free will is non existent.
Now, this point could easily be counter-argued that the entity may know of what is to happen, but he does not interfere, he is a mere observer and watches our choices come to existence. This is a nice claim, but this entity being omnesient still states that their is a timeline, that of which is actions and reactions are set. For, how could one know what is, if it is not? You can not know what a turkey is if you have never seen a turkey. You won't even know what the term turkey is. This being said, our actions and reactions are set, for they are, for if this supreme entity is to know, it must be.
This, however, is not a perfect argument. I have set this timeline into something linear, something without any branching possibilities. Perhaps, this omnescient being not only sees us, but our potential, and the results that yield out of our choices. But even this is debatable, as, to be fully omnescient, the entity still has to know what choices there are, and which one someone will pick.
For example, let's say there are 4 buttons in a room, with one person in it. He has the choice to chose one of the buttons, one giving a bunny, one giving a cat, one giving a dog, and one giving a bomb. A watchmen, watching this, from outside the room, sees the options, and knows the yielding results. However, he doesn't know what the person will chose. Therefore, he is not omnescient. In the case of an entity that is omnescient, even though the choices are seen as possibilities, the omnescient being already knows the guy will chose the bunny, and because this being is omnescient, there is no other choice the person could chose. If the person chose the cat, the entity is not omnescient, because he did not know he would chose the cat.
As it is seen, omnescience isn't compatible with free will, in this condition at least. It leads to the conclusion that, if an omnescient being and free will are to coincide, the omnescient being has to lie outside of the scope of time, as time is not subject to this being. The problem with this, is to exist outside of time, is to not exist.
This is seen through the meaning of existence. For sake of argument, let's assume existence is the state of being. In that case, what is being? When we are standing, on a ledge or a coast or whatever, we are present. We are manifested in a certain manner of time. Even species we don't know of, or things we don't know, still exist, for they are being; they are present. They are subject to time. Time is a law; a constant occurence that continues and subjigates actions to actualization.
Unfortunately, to exist out of time is impossible.
- Title: Of Omniscence and Time
- Artist: Clockwork Apples
- Description: Hey! This is just an essay I've been working on in my spare time. It addresses the possible problems of their being an Omniscent entity, in the span of time at least. If you're into this kind of stuff, criticism would be greatly accepted!
- Date: 12/09/2014
- Tags: omniscence time philosophy freewill porn