What is the nature of consciousness, he wondered.
Did he really have any such thing as “free will”, or were his actions predetermined by forces beyond his control? Did he simply delude himself that he was master of his own fate?
As he wondered this, he pushed the giant wheel. He pushed it 16 hours a day every day. He’d done this since he reached the age of labour, he‘d known no other way. He had no idea what the wheel did, or why he turned it. He simply pushed.
It gave him plenty of time to ponder such matters.