One of the fundamental problems with all the various debates about free will, consciousness, etc. is that we assume a binary opposition: either one has X or one does not have X. In reality, we have partial X occasionally. We clearly don't have "free will" 100% of the time unless we redefine the concept so as to make it meaningless. We're clearly not conscious 100% of the time either. If we can begin to recognize that mostly we're sleepwalking through life, oblivious to 99% of everything around us, operating on autopilot most of the time, we could have more coherent discussions regarding those brief moments when we do attempt to become aware of ourselves and our choices. Instead, we seem doomed to remain at a level of untenable abstraction in which core assumptions are invalid.

Anyone who enjoys my articles here on Medium may be interested in my books Why Democracy Failed and The Praying Ape, both available from Amazon.

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