Daniel Dennett's Freedom Evolves is a wonderfully fun yet woefully frustrating book. The author's prose is delightful; he's a master musician-magician of metaphor. (I'm just an amateur alliterator.)

But many weeks after finishing DD's tome I'm still struggling to say something coherent about it. Maybe it's about "free will"? Maybe free will is intrinsically a complicated, messy, incoherent phenomenon? Maybe free will is the result of a large number of interacting factors, and for fundamental reasons can't be simplified into an easily synopsized argument? Maybe I'm just fuzzy-minded and need to drink more coffee?

In the spirit of my profound befuddlement, what follows is a basketful of pretty pebbles that have lodged under my mental mattress and kept me awake, or at least tossing (grenades) and turning (pages). Note that some are my own interpretative-impressionistic leaps inspired by Dennett, for which he obviously is not (much) responsible.

Toss into the stewpot:

Head swimming deep waters ...

(see also BitsPerLife (3 May 1999), MeanMeaners (3 Jul 1999), TheMysterians (2 Aug 1999), BitsOfConsciousness (21 Jan 2000), FreeAction (3 Apr 2000), ThoughtfulMetaphors (8 Nov 2000), ...)

TopicMind - TopicLiterature - TopicPhilosophy - 2003-07-03

(correlates: EsseQuamVideri, RemembranceDay, CaveThought, ...)