Can determinism generate randomness? Interesting question.
Randomness and Determinism.
How about this? Randomness is a human concept. We use the concept when we do not perceive regularity (predictable pattern). Randomness thus remains an inference, based upon observations that might well be imperfect. But not just observations; also inferences from incomplete observations.
I can understand randomness as a concept (as "infinity" as a concept). But I go beyond my observations when I invoke the concept of randomness (or infinity).
If events in nature are multiply and complexly determined (lots of bits and even more "lots" of complicated connections), and if I only glimpse part of the picture, I can invoke the idea of randomness. Its a moot point whether this is more than convenience. I might be dead wrong. (Won't be the first time.)
Mutations are supposed to occur "randomly". One needs to ask "random with respect to WHAT", and perhaps "to WHAT DEGREE" (which sounds silly, sort of like finite infinity). Might, for example, genes have a certain predisposition to mutate in certain directions. Might certain genes be more susceptible to some environmental disturbances than are other genes. (I'll leave out the question marks, for I bet each is true.)
If either of the above is true, then in principle one can investigate this "truth" in a deterministic way. We can look for patterns (non randomness). If patterns (non randomness) are found, the hypothesis of randomness can be discounted. But, if patterns are not found, it remains possible that the wrong patterns have been looked for. This is rather like David Bohm's idea of "hidden patterns". If hidden patterns, then randomness remains an imperfect concept.
In mathematics, randomness is a cool idea. In biology (or behavior) randomness might indeed play a role. But so might hidden patterns.
How does this relate to evolutionary psychology? I suspect that evolutionary psychology has the potential to uncover previously "hidden patterns" in human conduct. To the extent this is true, "randomness" in human affairs becomes less sufficient as an explanation. Hidden patterns ("roots of human behavior") can also make us question what we mean by "freedom of choice".
But there is the converse problem. A single table of random numbers might appear to contain a pattern. We can test this by applying our idea(s) of pattern to another table of random numbers. The assumption is that the pattern will not hold up. Pattern was perceived, where none existed, because of our limited observations. Freedom of choice, in some everyday living sense, certainly appears to work well. Evolution, by current thought, operates on what works well. If self-delusion works well, so be it. That would be a frustrating conclusion, but its a difficult one to discount.
So limited observations can lead to ideas of randomness where there is really (hidden) pattern, or the idea of pattern where there is really (hidden) randomness.
"Freedom", as in free will, seems to contradict the idea of simple determinism. I choose (or think "I" do). But there may be hidden reasons for my choice. Perhaps it was my upbringing, or perhaps its my genetic heritage (both, of course). And I do not expect my behavior to be "random", no matter how it may appear to you. I see patterns that may or may not be an accurate reflection of the events that "determined my choice" (now there is a good oxymoron). I can, for example, rationalize. Subjects of experiments in hypnosis can be shown to rationalize. ["Why did you open the window"? (command). "Because its stuffy in here" (rationalization).]
When I choose to do something I expect constraints in my choice. This is because I, as everyone else, have a "style". I do not expect my choices to be identical to the choices of someone else. They (other folk) are not me.
But is my choice really free (its hopefully not "random")? There may be a huge number of "determining events" that I remain unaware of. There might also be random ("noise") contributions. How can I decide between these possibilities? I can chug along with the ASSUMPTION of determinism, and see how far it gets me.
Part of the issue of randomness may be level dependent. If indeed basic physical events have "random" properties (still a matter of debate among theoretical physicists), we perceive their combinations as having rules. We construct a periodic table of elements. We do chemistry, and turn on light switches. We have expectations about our behavior, and the behavior of our friends. If we have expectations we are not expecting "randomness". If our expectations (of our friends, for example), and these are met, in what sense might our friends be expressing "freedom"?
There is a tangle of concepts here. None seems to work. "Finite freedom" in human affairs, as "wavicles" in the physics of light, appears paradoxical. Maybe nature IS paradoxical, at least as viewed from our current knowledge base. Or, maybe nature is "actually paradoxical". A weird thought. Weird thoughts can be true. They can also be just weird. They are often hard to test.
Weirdness at the deep level of nature may be hard (or impossible) for us to perceive because our nervous systems have not been designed to deal with such esoteric possibilities. What we know is that its "weird" not to hide or run from the lion. Here we have a fatalistic sense of determinism (even if statistical). Who cares whether the lion has a random element? Evolution of human brains probably put such esoteric queries on the shelf, in favor of practical solutions (even if these solutions come via "wrong" reasoning).
So, can determinism lead to randomness? Maybe part of the answer is that we do not have a good conceptual glue for these concepts. Each appears to have implications about the other, but these are not necessarily well specified. Maybe our evolutionary history has constrained us from attaining an (ultimate) answer.
Does this make any sense?