Quora – Do humans have agency?

Do humans have agency?

[ 9/3/20 ]

If the idea of agency has any meaning at all – then yes.

And it gets deeply complex, because it only really makes sense if reality works on the basis of probabilities and influence rather than hard determinism.

Quantum mechanics seems to indicate that reality is such a mix of the bounded chaos – that can give us both weather and computers, and also life.

And the degree of agency available in particular contexts can be highly variable between individuals and contexts.

Agency seems to be an extremely complex and often very subtle notion.

There must be a degree to which systems can function within rules to a high degree of reliability, and there also needs to be ways in which systems can develop degrees of isolation from external influences and thus develop “agency”.

And I have argued this point at length with many people, and if someone has a firm belief in hard determinism then they are unlikely to change their views (in my experience such beliefs can be just as dogmatic as some of the extremes of religious views).

About Ted Howard NZ

Seems like I might be a cancer survivor. Thinking about the systemic incentives within the world we find ourselves in, and how we might adjust them to provide an environment that supports everyone (no exceptions) - see www.tedhowardnz.com/money
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