Social Question

mary84's avatar

Do you believe it is possible to predict the future?

Asked by mary84 (570points) February 13th, 2010

If yes, does that mean your whole life is already planned and you can not change fate? For instance if someone tells me so and so is going to happen. Does that mean it WILL happen no matter what choices I make?

If no, how do you explain the phenomenon that some people actually seem to be able to predict the future (forecasts come true)?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

39 Answers

jaytkay's avatar

Who seems able to predict the future?

Parrappa's avatar

It is impossible. Their is always some catch to some people predicting things that come true. Something that these people aren’t alluding to is left untold.

tragiclikebowie's avatar

Time is not linear, which means the future is not linear.

The mere fact of someone predicting something will happen could change the fact that that thing will happen.

I believe it’s possible but I also believe that nothing is ever set in stone. It’s fluid, and can change at any time.

marinelife's avatar

There is no predicting of the future.

Marva's avatar

There is a sentence in the jewish Torah, that says : “Everything is predicted and permission is given”, it speaks just of that:
Yes, there are some people who can look into a person’s, or an entity’s, such as a country even, path, and tell things of what has been and what is coming.
However, this is what is going to come in the current path you are on. Any change of the path on you behalf, will lead to a change of the future (just like” back to the future” with Micheal J Fox).
So, one can say, you, whilst walking the path you do, and making the choices you intend to make now, will encounter these and these situations. However, there is always a way to change the turn of events, and you can ask the medium you spoke to, “what can I do to change this” and recieve your answer. Diffrent choices will bring you to a diffrent place in life. Very much like described in the movie “Sliding Doors”.

tragiclikebowie's avatar

@Marva that’s what I was trying to say. You say it so much better.

Berserker's avatar

I don’t believe so. I suppose it’s pretty easy to make assumptions and predictions based on the everyday familiarity of monotony, and something about probability.

wundayatta's avatar

Sure you can predict the future. Anyone can do that. It’s getting it right that makes the difference.

And yes, people predict the future all the time, and some of them make a great deal of money doing so. Predicting the future is not for the faint of heart, because it requires a great deal of knowledge and legwork and a damn good model of the behavior of whatever you are interested in predicting the future about.

Most importantly, though, you have to be willing to trust your predictions, or they are worthless. That’s where the men are separated from the boys.

Marva's avatar

@tragiclikebowie You’re welcome! I actually thought your answer was very good and I GA’d it.

Trillian's avatar

@tragiclikebowie I’d like to talk with you sometime about the time not being linear. I’ve stated that a few times here, and I think that where I originally heard it was Stephen Hawking. I’m fascinated with the thought of all times happening at once.

bobbinhood's avatar

@Marva You said, “There is a sentence in the jewish Torah, that says : ‘Everything is predicted and permission is given’...” Perhaps you could tell us where it says that? If I recall correctly, the Torah is rather opposed to mediums. You seem to be saying that it supports them.

evandad's avatar

Sure it is. I predict that Avatar will lose the box office record. Lets see if I’m right.

Trillian's avatar

@bobbinhood I see nothing in that statement to include a medium. It says “predicted and permission given.” Not “will be predicted by Miss Cleo”. I’m interested as well. I once had a copy of the Kabballah, but I lost it in a move. Some day I hope to have the time to really study that book.

AstroChuck's avatar

Of course you can predict the future. What else are you going to predict? But if you are talking about clairvoyance, I believe that that is a bunch of crap. So the real question should be Can anyone correctly predict the future?

tragiclikebowie's avatar

@Trillian Sure thing! I learned it in history class one day and it totally blew my mind. I’ve thought a lot about it since then.

bobbinhood's avatar

@Trillian I did not copy the entire post, because that would have been redundant. I simply copied the first sentence so I could ask where in the Torah @Marva got the quote. My larger question was in reference to the entire post, not simply that quote. Though not in the part I quoted, the post does refer to mediums (the explicit reference is in the third to last line). Due to the structure of the writing, @Marva seems to use the quote from the Torah as validation for his/her perspective on predictions and mediums.

HungryGuy's avatar

Theoretically, if you know the position and velocity of every subatomic particle in the universe to within a Plank length, you can predict the future infinitely into the future.

Unfortunately, the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle prevents you from knowing both the position and velocity of a given particle. Measuring its position alters its velocity. Measuring its velocity alters its position.

So predicting the future is impossible. Sorry…

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

There are far too many factors affecting the future to be able to predict it. Even with all the computing power that it is possible to have (limited by the available energy in the observable universe) it would be impossible to predict the future for more than a few hundred atoms in a closed system.

wundayatta's avatar

You guys are all thinking too much precision is needed. That’s just shooting yourselves in the foot.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

@wundayatta There comes a point where approximations can send you wide of the mark. Precision is required if an accurate and/or long term prediction is sought. Otherwise it is just a guess.

wundayatta's avatar

Yes, but no one has defined precision here, so really, no one knows what the fuck anyone else is talking about. We’re all blowing smoke here, but the big joke is that hardly anyone knows it.

And even the most precise of models is going to sent you astray far more often than you would expect.

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

Sure it is.

Just not with 100% accuracy.

njnyjobs's avatar

Certain things are predictable based on historical patterns or trends. Some examples of succesful predictions may include outcome of elections, races, tests and contests.

AlienBomber's avatar

I can predict the future. You are going to waste the next few moments of your life reading this pointless statement. Sex on broken egg shells.

babaji's avatar

your destiny changes and is cast with every step you take.
there definitely are indicators that you can see the info and say generally this particular thing will happen and be right. But there are no accidents, all is cause and effect and all changes with every thought and every action. So there are so many things that change with every thought and every action that it would be very hard to give an exact forecast or prediction of the future.
However that being said, if one can get beyond the ego, and can tune ones awareness into that place before thought comes into existence, then one can have a pretty clear view of past, present and future….

talljasperman's avatar

try looking in to the tenth dimension When the site it working try looking into it…

sky's avatar

yes it is fact that you can predict future, also with your free will you can change future if you dont like one you see , there are always many different roads to take is up to you to pick the best possible one and create your own destiny….

Dilettante's avatar

Yes, definitely; just tell a woman that her rear end looks to big in those pants, and you can absolutely predict what happens next: Big Trouble for you.

Cruiser's avatar

You are here for a reason….nothing you can do about it but acknowledge your existence and to not foolishly waste any of this short time you may have in this realm.

Marva's avatar

@bobbinhood :
NO, NO, No, you got me wrong..: the sentence speaks of the situation of how our future is both predicted and chosen anew each step we take.
I have no real and deep knoledege about the relation of the Torah to mediums, nor was I making an opinion about it.

The original expression is: הכל צפוי והרשות נתונה and you can find it (I had to look this up for you, for this is not my everyday reading) in the book of “fathers” , chapter c, 14th verse.

mary84's avatar

Wow amazing response I got, OK i get your point, I take it my question should’ve really been “Can you correctly predict the future” as anyone can spit out any bullshit about anything and claim it’s a forecast, but OK.

That’s what I meant; Can anyone correctly predict the future?

mattbrowne's avatar

Depends. Doesn’t work for chaotic systems like the solar system. We don’t know for sure whether it’s stable. Most most likely it is.

Trillian's avatar

@mattbrowne I knew you were gonna say that!~

bobbinhood's avatar

@Marva I appreciate your clarification. Even with the provided reference, I am unable to find it online. (Perhaps I am worse at searching than I thought I was.)

Marva's avatar

@bobbinhood, I guess the difficulty is because I have not quoted it correctly in English, I am a hebrew speaker, I know it from hebrew, and only translated it freely.
If you really care to dig this up you best ask any religious Jew, it is a rather well known phrase.

bobbinhood's avatar

@Marva Thank you again. I wasn’t trying to be nit-picky, I just tend to be overly curious.

Marva's avatar

@bobbinhood Oh, No! I didn’t mean it that way, you have to excuse me for sometimes I can pick the wrong phrase in English, I apologise if I was misunderstood.
I did some work for you: firstly, the books of “fathers” as I called them while translating, are actually called “Avot” (fathers in Hebrew) or “Avos”, the verse is 15, not 14 as I wrote earlier. There are a lot of links @ google, I couldn’t find the exact information, but just because I was impatient, this, as I said, is not my usuall reading.. so you’ll have to manage it from here on.
With pleasure..

mattbrowne's avatar

@Trillian – I like telepaths ;-)

Answer this question




to answer.
Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther