Daily Update #14: You Were Always Going To Read This

Hello. This is the Daily Update corner. You know, usually I talk about the game. How things are going with it. What's been added. But today, I feel like talking about something completely separate. Is that okay with you? You don't have a problem with it? Good, that's nice to hear.

So reader, let me ask you something of a personal question. Do you believe in the existence of 'destiny'?

"Huh? Where did that come from?" I hear you ask. Just humor me. Answer the question. Do you think that destiny exists?

"Uh, I guess that depends on what you mean."

I guess I really am asking this in a pretty unorthodox way, huh? Perhaps I should ask in be a bit clearer in what I'm asking. Do you believe that your future is fated, bound to happen no matter what?

"Of course not! The only one in charge of my life is me and me alone!" would be the typical response. Nothing wrong with that. But you know, many intelligent people would disagree. It's even been said that the belief that we have any control over what will happen is simply the arrogance of humans. A little intense that opinion, no? It's okay, most with that opinion wouldn't phrase it that extremely.

Those people are typically labeled ‘predeterminists.' Oh, you're not familiar with the term? Basically, it’s the belief that since everything in the past already exists, and everything in the world moves on a cause-and-effect basis, everything in the future has to happen. To put it poetically, it means that the world’s deck is shuffled, as it were, and all that’s left is to deal out the cards, one by one. To put it bleakly, it means that any semblance of ‘free will’ that we have, well, it’s more of a coping mechanism than anything else. To put it really bleakly, it means that your genes and history were decided without your input, and like it or not, those two factors really make the decisions.

I suspect that some of you reading that take would think it's an overly pessimistic way of thinking about things. You know, some people actually think of it as a good thing. Whether or not someone's 'in control’ of themself doesn’t really matter to them. On the other hand, the theory of 'predetermination actually has some benefits. 

And now you're naturally wondering what those 'benefits' could possibly be.

Another question for you dear reader. Have you ever heard of Laplace’s Demon?

I'm sure a fair number of you have. You're the type to be reading something like this, after all. However, I'd also wager a fair few of you haven't. Those who haven't heard of 'predetermination' certainly haven't.

Well, to sum it up quickly, Laplace’s Demon is a hypothetical created by  Pierre-Simon Laplace in 1814. This Demon of his is quite the clever creature: it knows the precise location and momentum of every single atom in the whole wide universe. As if that wasn’t enough, this demon’s so clever that based on the information it has, it can predict where those atoms were and where they’ll go. If this Demon really existed, it could accurately recount every single historic event, regardless of location or time period. And, if it existed, it could predict every single thing that was yet to come with 100%% accuracy."

I'm sure some of you aren't seeing how this connects to the 'benefits' I was talking about. Well, Laplace's Demon is an extreme example. But there are many who follow in that Demon's footsteps. And those are the ones you really have to watch out for.

Until next time,