If there is evidence of the possibility that an event will occur, is there a finite probability that the event will occur?

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    Hi, welcome to Philosophy SE. Your question is a little vague, and lacks context for us to answer. Where is it coming from? What counts as "evidence of the possibility that an event will occur"? Presumably "evidence" for something is supposed to increase the probability of the something occurring, but without specifics of your context it is hard to say if that would guarantee positive probability (which I assume "finite probability" refers to).
    – Conifold
    Nov 16 '16 at 1:31
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    I am unsure whether to give the specific problem I am dealing with, but to answer your points, the evidence in this case is that the event has in fact occurred. However, my problem is with assessing the importance of the possibility of the event before the event occurs. For example, if I am able to talk, does that mean I will talk? I have the potential to talk; it is possible that I will talk; does that ability, or possibility, give a finite probability (between 0 and 1) that I will talk?
    – ngeo
    Nov 16 '16 at 3:20
  • It would help a lot if you could share what is practically motivating the question. As worded it's quite abstract. Do you mean, is there a calculable probability for everything that is a possibility (a question about metaphysics) or do you mean can we assign a probability to any possibility that someone can think of (a question of epistemology and metaphysics) or do you mean something else?
    – virmaior
    Nov 16 '16 at 7:00
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    The question is whether there is a calculable probability for everything that is a real physical possibility rather than an imaginary one. I noted in a comment to the answer below that I solved it to my own satisfaction, but whether this would satisfy everyone I don't know.
    – ngeo
    Nov 16 '16 at 23:17

I think you are assuming the answer straight from your question- if there is the possibility that an event will occur, then that exact possibility holds some probability of the event occurring- because how else would you know it is possible?

For example, the converse- if you said there is no possibility for something, then there's no probability of it happening. It's just a vague formulation for the same thing.

  • Thank you for your answer, which is the same one that I came up with after I posted the question here! I solved the problem to my own satisfaction by taking the negatives -- zero possibility equals zero probability -- and then made those negative, coming up with a non-zero possibility and a non-zero probability. I believe that meets some rule of logic, it satisfies me, would it satisfy a "professional"?
    – ngeo
    Nov 16 '16 at 23:14

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