Benjamin Libets experimenteller Beitrag zur Freiheitsfrage
As a result of his famous experiment, Benjamin Libet came to the conclusion that simple acts (e.g. a brief movement of the wrist) are not initiated through a person’s free will, but rather (unconsciously) through the brain. The reason for his conclusion is that the actual moment for the readiness potential of such actions consistently occurs before that point in time which the test subject reports as the beginning of his conscious intention to execute them. If this result is applied reflexively, i.e. to the conditions of the experiment, it will lead to an inherent contradiction: Libets’s result removes the basis of the very experiment through which it was obtained. A more rigorous interpretation of Libet’s experiments shows that the readiness potential, as well as other unconscious physiological processes, represent preconditions which ultimately enable freedom of action. Through these conditions, freedom of will is neither limited nor brought into question.