Grand rising, dear Alchemist:

Today we'll be exploring the idea of free will vs determinism.

To begin, let's conduct a thought experiment:

Imagine if you will, a supercomputer capable of analyzing every detail of reality, while also being able to quantify that information flawlessly in order to predict the future with perfect precision.

This means that any action you consider taking, no matter how minor, has been calculated based on a previous set of circumstances that led you to take said actions. Would this prove that you have no free will? This is a simplified version of the dilemma that philosophers have been struggling with since time immemorial.

Taking a position on either side can pose major ethical and spiritual problems. If all life is determined, then all of our actions both good and bad have always been out of our control. This leads us to question the point of our existence in the first place, not to mention having no way to justify our experiences. 

Knowing we have free will helps us be at ease with our place in the Universe. It allows us to feel as though we are not simply an embedded occurrence among all the randomness that goes on. Choosing this line of thinking, of course, means we must also take responsibility for our actions. It is entirely on us to wake up in the morning and go about our days knowing full well that we are the masters of our own lives.

The prospect of free will has not yet been forsaken.

Take the example we started with:

If one were to see their own future, then all that would need to happen in order to deviate from it would be to simply change the course of events that lead to it. The ability to know one's future could, in fact, change it. This could mean that our example can hold no weight in actuality.

Perhaps the only thing that is determined in our reality is that nothing actually is, and any sense of control we have might be a fleeting, third-dimensional illusion. 

Alchemist, in our journey through this life, we may have learned that it is best to let go of the need for certainty, and this past year has really hammered that point in. Discovering who is writing the never-ending scenes of life is not what's important. Our role in the play is what matters most, to make every moment memorable, and to watch the story unfold together.

We are the actors, the writers, and the audience. Now, enjoy the show.​​

With love and sincerity,

The Alchemy by LA Council
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