Everything comes from pre-existing materials. Not nothing. How can "creation" make sense if something comes from something, and not nothing? We would be giving pre-existing materials a different shape or form, right? At what point does something new come to exist?

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    any philosopher worth their salt in the 21st century should answer you "We dont know. Ask a physicist". Earlier philosophers have tried to tackle the problem with pure reason but only because they didn't have the technical means to reach a fact driven conclusion. All they had was speculation and, as far as physics goes, were all in way over their depth.
    – armand
    Commented Mar 21, 2022 at 3:55
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    @armand if I ask this question in a physics subreddit, they'll remove the post and claim it's philosophy not physics 😭
    – ActualCry
    Commented Mar 21, 2022 at 4:18
  • i understand your problem 🙂 any physicist worth their salt should also answer "we don't know" the thing is, modern philosophy does not deal with such speculation (at least, it shouldn't) and classic philosophy will provide you at best wild guesses from uneducated (by our modern standards) people. At least physicists can orient you toward the most recent state of knowledge. For exemple in quantum physics there seems to be no cause as to some effects, like why the electron leaves a dot here and not there in the double slit experiment. Also worth checking virtual particles.
    – armand
    Commented Mar 21, 2022 at 9:37

1 Answer 1


Philosophically, something begins when it fulfils the requirements of its definition, so a morphing thing can take on various forms until such time as it becomes whatever we’re interested in, such as a planet rather than a cloud of dust. The definition is a human construct and so it’s whatever we say it is.

  • An example to ponder here is the creation of a sculpture from a rock, by chipping away parts until the sculpture becomes visible.
    – tkruse
    Commented Mar 21, 2022 at 14:30

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