Behavioral paradigm for a psychological resolution of the free will issue

Journal of Mind and Behavior 93 (1):93-114 (1991)
This study provides data for a behavioral paradigm to resolve the free will issue in psychological terms. As predicted, college students selecting among many alternative responses consistently selected according to experimental set, environmental conditions, past experiences and other unknown factors. These explained and unexplained causal factors supplement one another and make varying relative contributions to different behaviors - the Principle of Behavioral Supplementarity. The more psychologically remote the causal factors, the greater proportion of unexplained ones relative to explained ones - the Principle of Remote Antecedence. Both the causal categories can be conceptualized in the incompatible terms of reductionism or intentionality, depending upon the dissociated belief state of the observer - the Principle of Behavioral Complementarity. Ordinarily, on utilitarian grounds, behaviors with psychologically contiguous antecedents are best conceptualized in a reductionistic belief state, and behaviors with remote antecedents are best conceptualized in an intentional belief state
Keywords Behavior  Free Will  Paradigm  Psychology  Science
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