Thorough response Casper, thanks!
I appreciate you bringing me back to earth on our relative individual uniqueness, and how faith/belief impacts our tastes. A very good point. Today I was pondering what our mind’s connection to our brain meant for free will. Specifically, that something so out of our control as a tumor or infection can so radically change our personalities/tastes/sense of right and wrong.
It brought up the question of whether we can hold people accountable for actions taken under such situations (i.e. a man commits unthinkable acts on a child because of a tumor changed his otherwise “normal” personality/tastes/etc–this happened in real life). This, in turn, brought the further question–if we’re out of control in these situations, what makes us think we’re in control in a “normal” situation, where our brain is functioning properly? But, and this is a more Calvinsit (gasp!) route to take, I was reminded of what my theology teacher in high school said–man’s free will is limited to that which is within his nature: a cats can’t be dogs, goldfish can’t fly, men, without grace, can’t not sin–that was his illustrative purpose, obviously colored by his theology (total depravity was the specific doctrine he was talking about).
Currently, I don’t believe our lack of the ability to not sin is because of evolution, but perhaps there’s a case to be made that because our minds and brains are so intricately woven, we cannot have libertarian free will in the Enlightenment sense. But he have the freedom of will allowed to us by God–the freedom to be kind, to pay our taxes, to buy a new car, to choose or not choose to follow Christ (your tradition will influence at what point you think this choice comes, etc.). As a matter of faith, we can trust God’s guidance of evolution has given us the capacity to make these choices truly and freely and it’s not all illusory, contra Dennett and the like.
These are all thoughts probably better suited for clearer articulation and more rigid formulation, (and I thought all of them while being a little too tired). Sorry about the rambling/length; let me know if I can make it more clear!