Questions tagged [existence]

Ontological and metaphysical questions about the study of existence, being and the structure of reality.

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What are some examples of things that are ontologically parasitic

To be ontologically parasitic, a thing must exist only in reference to another thing. For example, in the excellent video "How Many Holes Does a Human Have?", holes are identified as ontologically ...
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Existence in logic [closed]

It seems so easy: Define a universe U := {x | "x" <=> x & we can't infer a contradiction from it}, then the existential quantifier is the existential predicate "there is/exists". Exist-x ...
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What is existence for existentialists?

As my current work leaded me to analyse existence from the systemic point of view, I've decided it's time to read Sartre and about existentialism, which I've long time postponed. So I've started with ...
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What is existence and what kinds of it can be distinguished?

Existence, for instance of a human being, need not be restricted to the material body. Also the influence exerted on the environment can be considered a part of their existence. A discussion with ...
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What is the most internally-consistent theory of forms?

I'm trying to construct a fictional reality out of the Socratic-era (ideally) theories of Forms, but every philosopher's attempt seems to have at least one fatal flaw (and most of them several big ...
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How would Leibniz respond to this objection to his argument for God's existence?

Leibniz argues for the existence of a necessary being using the Principle of Sufficient Reason (PSR). Any contingent fact about the world must have an explanation. (Principle of sufficient reason) ...
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Existence as a Predicate [duplicate]

Can I just create a predicate "Existence" defined as: E = {x|x was, is or will be}? I don't feel it would lead to anything weird, using logic. Take for example Sokrates: This guy existed, so he's ...
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Problem with defining existence and being conscious

First of all i know that there is no widely accepted definition of existence, the same with definition of being conscious. However i would like to know whether there are definitions which are not ...
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How should we understand the teletransportation thought experiment?

Please read the short story here:Beam me up First, I'd like to to know whether there is anything inherently inconsistent about this teletransportation idea? Is there fundamental reasons which say it'...
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Is it possible that I'm “God” or a special being/deity?

I know the first thing you may be thinking upon reading this, but there's more to this than you may have assumed. This is not one of those crazy questions where ego-driven maniacs simply call ...
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Arguments/premises to disprove God's omniscience

I was thinking about validity of God's omniscience and stumbled upon three statements, which can be summarized as - To be omniscient, a being would require to capture and store all the data in the ...
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What is it about the existence of some things that makes us right or wrong in describing their existence, while other things can change?

For example, if people used to believe the Earth was the center of the universe, and we discover it is not, we now say, "people used to falsely believe that the Earth was the center of the universe", ...
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Can we logically prove that anything exists?

Suppose I want to prove that negative numbers exist. Well, I could easily do that using a mathematical proof. However, all I would be doing is adding another logical object to a list of known logical ...
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Are “to exist” and “to have being” the same?

I recently read an introduction about ontology. A section was about the debate whether to exist and to have being is the same. One position says (attributed to Meinong), that some things exist and ...
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I could prove: Solipsism is wrong. Is my argument acceptable?

Solipsism is the idea that one cannot be sure of anyone's existence but only themself. I think that one can assume this idea to be right and then prove that this is wrong. This self-inconsistency ...
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Do things exist just because they exist OR they are given that existence?

We know that some phenomena do not exist, like Greek gods, but some exist, like an apple on a desk. I doubt anyone could have proposed an answer to it, but I wonder if there is something which lets ...
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If I think life has meaning, then does that mean life is not meaningless? [closed]

I see some people say that life/existence is meaningless. However, I assign existence with meaning, therefore it's NOT meaningless. Yes?
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Wanted references to the Phillip K Dick Total Recall (1990) paradox

The movie Total Recall 1990 was inspired by the book "We Can Remember It for You Wholesale" written by Philip K. Dick whose leading role was played by Arnold Schwarzenegger. The storyline is about a ...
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Explaining the existence of the cosmos

The following is a reference request, not an invitation for argument. However, I do welcome argument if that's what you feel like doing. By the "cosmos" I mean all that exists---not just physical ...
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Philosophy of dreams

According to some eastern teachings (Tantric, Buddhist, etc) it's a good thing to ponder and meditate on dreams: Dream 1 A person dreams of finding money or gold or any other luxuries. This ...
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Are the questions “Do I exist” and “Why do I exist” related to metaphysics, epistemology or another branch of philosophy?

Does the universe (or anything) exist? I assume that question would fall under metaphysics. But could it also touch on epistemology (e.g. how we define "universe" or "exist")? Do I exist? To me, ...
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Existential Import

How is it that universal propositions (from the Boolean standpoint) don't commit us to the existence of the subject term while particular propositions actually do? Also, why particularly take or focus ...
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Why was Descartes' Demon “Evil”?

Why did Descartes called his thought experiment "evil demon"? What if we lived in a simulation that turned out to be more pleasant than reality itself (eg. The matrix series) and it would be better ...
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Does a rock experience its existence?

By experience, I do not imply a subjective experience like that of an animal (with memory, decision making etc). Could a rock, for instance, have individuated experience of its existence like a ...
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Because nothing exists, nothing also does not exist

Because nothing exists, nothing also does not exist. If you look at nothing as the opposite of something. The existence of one requires the existence of the other. But since one explicitly says it ...
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Is it possible to know anything?

I am very sure this apple in front of me exists. I could be hallucinating however, so lets say: I am 98% certain the apple exists. I am confident that (1) is a fair assessment, but I can't really be ...
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Does the famous Descartes quote “dubito, ergo cogito, ergo sum” suggests secure knowledge of ones existence?

After a discussion about the "difficulties to distinguish knowledge from faith" someone replied to me that the quote implies faith because it uses the word "think". But as it is generally understood: ...
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In regard to Rene Descartes' Meditations, if there existed an all powerful evil demon, why couldn't it trick you into believing you exist?

If it is all powerful, why can't it trick you into thinking you exist and have thoughts? If the cogito is unbreakable, then how could the demon be all powerful if it is bounded by laws it cannot ...
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Descartes' Demon

This week I've been given to study from my highschool teacher Descartes' Demon argument but I have several doubts I fully understand it ,but let me put this in clear order : 1) I understand that ...
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Do whole numbers other than zero actually exist?

Think about counting up: you start from 0. There are many decimals in between 0 and 1, actually, an infinite amount of decimals are there. So in the same way that there is no last number there is no ...
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How to denote the idea of nothingness in formal terms?

I was thinking about the question "Why is there something rather than nothing?" , and have read about some theories that existence is the case because non-existence is logically impossible So, I ...
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Axioms of change and time?

Listening to the audio version of objectivism by L. Pekoff for the second time, and I am so distracted by one thought I am finding it impossible to proceed. Existence, consciousness and identity, ...
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Ontological status of variables

Background This question has its origin in this post. More specifically, in giving answers to the following questions, In what way does the collection of all sets consist of sets? What are ...
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Does the existential quantifier express existence?

Does the existential quantifier express existence? The existential quantifier is a symbol of symbolic logic which expresses that the statements within its scope are true for at least one ...
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How to make sense of minds of others? [closed]

I've asked a question about the criteria for existence, but here I want to focus on a particular aspect. What does it mean If I say: Bob has a mind - Bob's mind exists - Bob is not a philosophical ...
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Self contradictory things that can't really exist: can they be fully conceived of?

It seems like we can conceive of self contradictory things that can exist. e.g. the proposition expressed by "this sentence is false" is self contradictory but I don't seem to have any trouble ...
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Philosophic current in this excerpt of Ask the dust

I read Ask the dust by John Fante. The following is an excerpt from the book. It is right after Arturo went to Vera Rivken's place and feels guilty for having slept with her. My question is: what is ...
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why “I think therefore I am” not “I think therefore I am thinking”? [duplicate]

why "thinking" jumped into the conclusion of "existence" as things can exist without thinking too. and what are all the other method except this that could prove our existence?
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Could 'cogito ergo sum' possibly be false?

I've heard it postulated by some people that "we can't truly know anything". While that does seem to apply to the vast majority of things, I can't see how 'cogito ergo sum' can possibly be false. ...
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Proof Universe Came From Nothing?

Consider the following proof: (1) Let the Universe be defined as the set of all things. (2) It is impossible for a thing to come from itself. (You can't be your own parent) (3) 2 implies a set of ...
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Can our universe be a simulation without simulator?

I have a deviating understanding of the simulation hypothesis. If I look at our universe as simulation, then it seems to me irrelevant whether this simulation is actually executed or not. In my ...
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Does the real line mean that the start and end points of any line must exist?

In mathematics, a real number is a value of a continuous quantity that can represent a distance along a line https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Real_number We consider the set of real numbers, ...
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Does the Universe make sense? [closed]

When faced with a paradox, we say: well this can't be because it doesn't make sense. p = "x doesn't make sense" q = "x doesn't exist" The contrapositive preserves validity: p implies q (not q) ...
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If all of us are going to die one day why should we care about the feelings and emotions of others?

We are taught to care for others' feelings and emotions. We must exercise certain deeds hailed in holy texts. Why do such things matter when we all will die one day?
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Could an almighty Creator make something that existed for its own sake?

If someone sees their existence as an end in itself, yet also admits that they did not create themselves, then are they not saying that whatever created them had done so for their [the created thing's]...
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Are the laws of order and chaos in our universe unequal? How did that ratio come to be set? Can we scientifically measure that ratio/constant?

A few friends and I sat watching trash TV under the influence last night, and we inevitably started chatting to avoid the white noise facing us. Somehow this chat sparked off a chain of thoughts in me ...
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Can we create the Matrix?

Can we fully simulate the reality for a Brain in the Vat (BIV)? For example i clone myself and connect the clone's brain to a very sophisticated computer, which simulates a part of the universe (for ...
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Is existence essential to God?

Thomas Aquinas said that God was absolute perfect, God being pure actuality and had no potentiality. If there was a time where there wasn't an existence, then God would have a potentiality and not ...
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What is the purpose of the existence of the universe? [closed]

Why did the universe come into existence? Going through the timeline of the universe (Big Bang, separation of forces, symmetry breaking, particle formation...), everything that happened lead ...
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Are there philosophers who argue for a close connection between consciousness and existence?

(I'm not entirely satisfied with this question because I can't quite express it clearly, but a personal experience has moved me to ask it. I know it may be too vague or general.) The consciousness my ...

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