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What is something and what is nothing. They both need each other to exist. Why is there something but not nothing?

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  • "they both need each other" - quite the opposite, in fact: the two are mutually exclusive. "Nothing" means the lack of any "something".
    – NotThatGuy
    Commented Oct 21, 2023 at 8:17
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    Nothing came first, but as you say, something was missing.
    – Scott Rowe
    Commented Oct 21, 2023 at 12:48
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    @ScottRowe: Ontology? Or historically plato.stanford.edu/entries/substance There are lots of stances & schools on the nature of somethingness/es. Almost every major philosopher has distinct views, from extension, to noumena, to the world is all that is the case..
    – CriglCragl
    Commented Oct 22, 2023 at 0:49
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    Nothing is the mystical or ineffable experience of the empty field of awareness which we paradoxically think of as something. To speak of nothing is to evoke the distinction between nothing and something in the domain of arising concepts. In the domain of concepts there is what I call a distinction between nothing and something and in the empty field of awareness there is no arising distinction. The concept of mutually exclusive or dependent arises as another set of distinctions and consist of something. Commented Oct 22, 2023 at 1:21
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    @ScottRowe: "Your outside is in when your inside is out So come on (Woo!), come on (Woo!) Come on, it's such a joy, come on, it's such a joy Come on, let's make it easy, come on, let's make it easy Make it easy (Woo!) Make it easy (Woo!) Everybody's got something to hide Except for me and my monkey Hey! Yeah! Come on"
    – CriglCragl
    Commented Oct 22, 2023 at 22:19

3 Answers 3

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Something is an unspecified thing. Nothing is the absence of things. The two words do not depend on each other; they have a shared dependency on the idea of thing.

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  • In contrast to everything, which doesn't depend on anything.
    – Scott Rowe
    Commented Oct 21, 2023 at 12:47
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    @ScottRowe indeed, very succinctly put. Commented Oct 21, 2023 at 13:17
  • This is an excellent example of the etymological fallacy. Commented Oct 21, 2023 at 23:30
  • @ScottRowe: But it depends on every thing, so that includes anything..?
    – CriglCragl
    Commented Oct 22, 2023 at 0:46
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Nothing is what you can see of the unobservable universe. One assumes it's there. A case of nothing and something.

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There is something instead of nothing because there is a tiny, tiny asymmetry in the amount of matter and antimatter in the universe. After they annihilate, a tiny, tiny amount of ordinary matter is left over as surplus. This is why we are here.

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  • Imagine how full the universe would have been if that didn't happen? No one would be asking why there is something instead of nothing.
    – Scott Rowe
    Commented Oct 22, 2023 at 21:59
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    @ScottRowe, because we... uh... would be radiation instead of matter. You know what they say- You matter- unless you light. Den you energy. Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 3:33

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