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Or would such interpretation of omnipotence logically entail that the being has free will? So if the being will choose to lose its free will it will with necessity lose its omnipotence too.

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    Omnipotence entails that the being can do anything logically possible. That includes power to will things, i.e. free will. If it chooses to take away any of its powers, free will or some other, then it will no longer be omnipotent. However, it may choose instead merely not to exercise some of its powers. So it may remain omnipotent but will nothing at all, and let something else determine its actions. That way it will behave as if it has no free will.
    – Conifold
    Commented Jul 17, 2021 at 14:17
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    I'm not very familiar with this area, but you might want to research Thomist discussions of God and potential. Aquinas argued that God has no potential; he is all actual, which is why he cannot change. I believe others have argued that having no potential means that you cannot act or that you cannot choose how to act because making a decision is the resolving of a potential. Commented Jul 17, 2021 at 19:09
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    Well, ability to do anything means free will, as doing something is the ability to convert will into action.
    – Anixx
    Commented Jul 20, 2021 at 19:29
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    It is not logically possible to will things. People want what they like, and don't choose what they like because their choices depend on what they like. Anyway, omnipotence is a totally bogus concept out of touch with reality, don't loose your time with it.
    – armand
    Commented Aug 25, 2021 at 11:23
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    Why are we accepting the assumption that an omnipotent being would only be able to exercise their power in a way that followed the rules of formal systems that we've created in order to make sense of the world?
    – philosodad
    Commented Oct 1, 2022 at 22:57

4 Answers 4

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No. If a being does not have the power to exercise freedom of choice it cannot be omnipotent, so the two properties are logically inconsistent.

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"Is the pious loved by the gods because it is pious, or is it pious because it is loved by the gods?" - Plato stating the Euthyphro dilemma.

Are a god's actions forced by it's character, to choose omnisciently the option that matches fixed values? If so then, yes we can at least imagine an omnipotent being with no free will.

Does what is good change, & develop? The Christian deity seems less vengeful these days than in Old Testament times..

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    I'd love a reason for the downvote, whoever made it.
    – CriglCragl
    Commented Jul 18, 2021 at 15:52
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Note--- I formulated a logical answer via omniscience not omnipotence, however the answer is still applicable, just substitute the term omnipotence with omniscience.

Yes, yes, yes, and yes. I've thought about this exact concept time and time again. I will first say I currently don't believe free will exists, i.e. all action is enslaved to perception via 'molecular neural computation' sculpted by perception.

Consciousness

I do computational neuroscience, so given a free-energy principle formulation of behavior and Anil Seth's nociceptive predictive coding model for conscious presence, I believe all conscious awareness to be the result of a prediction error arising hierarchically from within that neural computation, represented as information-theoretic free-energy, the gulf between what is expected and what actually is. Given you're omnipotent, I don't think you'd even be conscious, because the entity needs error to act and become aware of thoughts.

Causality & Time

Omnipotence would require a perfectly describable physical causality to exist directly tying effects to prior causes, presupposing a physics engine within an entity's brain so attune to predicting the world that even time is rendered obsolete.

Yes, choosing to lose its omnipotence practically speaking is like saying you lose an awareness of all physical variables in the universe that determine causality totally. Meaning you'd have to maximize model evidence by epistemic foraging to yet again reduce error that arises in the mind, because you won't know what steps to take to will something into reality, from a sandwich to a nuclear weapon, unless you interact with the world in ways that add to your internal physics engine.

Background

I loosely described a lot of the mechanics. I also went fast forming this answer. Most all my thinking on this topic stems from the movie Arrival, where aliens arrive that we try to communicate with. We later find out they don't perceive time as linear like we do, reflected in their non-linear language. If there are beings that see time as another spatial dimension, does that presuppose omnipotence? i.e. knowing enough variables to reduce universal causality to a series of neural equations, I certainly think so. It's such an extraordinary topic to think about. Please ask me questions. I'd love to discuss further.

Creating a "God"

Editing to allow a logical stipulation: currently we can't describe a complete universal causality with a series of equations. There are hidden variables existing outside our perception that hinder determining the causal mechanics, i.e. the quantum fluctuation of particles in a vaccuum, gravity being diluted because it's seeping into some hyperdimensional space. Given there exists no ceiling to uncovering hidden variables, then yes you can eventually create a mechanics of universal causality. What if this omnipotent being existed in such a way where it was completely aware of our reality's physical causality, yet had its own hidden variables, forever unreachable within its own plane of existence. i.e. an entity all knowing of our reality yet still has an unquenchable prediction error via the unreachable hidden variables within its own that allows it forever possess a consciousness and a cognition promoting action and the awareness of thought. It could manipulate our reality, essentially changing the determinable future, but still exist as a sentient entity with a "free will." I just both pat myself on the back and pinched myself. I'm happy with my novel formulation; however, it's one of an omnipotent being existing in the dimensional layers between our reality and the metaphysical realm we attempt to approximate with equations. God? Hopefully not.

Conclusion

I'll end with this. Knowing the mechanics from which your strings are pulled doesn't eliminate the existence of said strings, it just allows you to grab hold of one of them.

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Omnipotence is such an absurd concept that it leads to absurd conclusions.

An omnipotent being can and will do anything it needs to do, instantly without any uncertain attempts or intermediate steps. Whenever a need arises it is satisfied instantly.

Therefore an omnipotent being has no choice and no free will.

Free will is the ability to choose the method by which we satisfy our needs. An omnipotent being does not have to choose, it can make things right instantly.

One could even say that an omnipotent being has no needs at all, no reason to do anything at all.

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    Indeed, most monotheistic religions with an omnipotent God do indeed teach that God has no needs. That doesn't mean that God can't want and choose to do things that it doesn't need to. Commented Aug 25, 2021 at 12:17
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    There is no reason to do anything. There is nothing that an omnipotent being would have to do to achieve a goal. Anything it wants is instantly there, except that it does not want anything. Us mere mortals have goals to achieve, we have to carefully plan our actions to get what we want. Commented Aug 25, 2021 at 13:20
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    Well Christians would say that God, without needing to, decided to create the universe in order to share the love. Commented Aug 25, 2021 at 13:31
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    That looks like a need to share love. All decisions have a reason. Only random chances occur without a reason. Commented Feb 4, 2022 at 4:35
  • @PerttiRuismäki. I like this so much. It applies to my answer to this question; I don't know why you received so much hate. To extend on your conception of belief satisfaction, what's interesting is after becoming omnipotent the system would see it's death, i.e. an inevitable death by consequence of physical causality. It's ironic really. It could be tomorrow; it could be thousands of years. A system that understands causality completely, is still a slave to that very causality. Commented Jan 29, 2023 at 22:18

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