Questions tagged [existence]

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

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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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4answers
314 views

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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1answer
49 views

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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2answers
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Does the Universe make sense? [on hold]

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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5answers
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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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12answers
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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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1answer
95 views

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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2answers
101 views

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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1answer
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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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1answer
108 views

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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2answers
258 views

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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1answer
85 views

How is 'existence' defined? [closed]

How would you define 'existence'? Is it a requisite for an entity to be able to interact with other entities to be considered as 'existent'? What if there are real objects in the universe which ...
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4answers
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What are the counterexamples to Kant's argument that existence is not a predicate?

Kant argued that considering existence as a predicate is wrong. A predicate is a feature or characteristic of an object. But logically, existence adds nothing to the characteristics of that object, ...
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6answers
964 views

Why isn't existence a predicate?

According to SEP There are two sets of reasons for denying that existence is a property of individuals. The first is Hume and Kant's puzzlement over what existence would add to an object. What is ...
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1answer
126 views

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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3answers
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How do moral skeptics respond to the concept of permissible heinous acts

The Problem Let's say I am debating my friend Jake who believes that morality exists. But I am a hard determinist who believes that all actions are predetermined by some act or event beforehand. Jake ...
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Some examples of philosophies that consider nonexistence the same as existence?

Can you give me some examples of philosophies that consider nonexistence the same as existence? I thought that maybe some paraconsistent systems (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paraconsistent_logic) ...
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1answer
46 views

Existence: Pain and Pleasure [closed]

Sometimes, I swear, I think the only two things in all of existence which have any real meaning whatsoever are "pleasure" and "pain" ... What does it mean to exist, if that existence is mired in pain?...
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6answers
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Does the whole universe end when an individual dies? [closed]

Is it valid to think that from a "perspective" of a dead individue,universe has come to an end? I based this argument on my premise that from the start of the universe (~14 billion years ago) until ...
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3answers
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What is the meaning of “predicate” in this definition?

I have trouble understanding the article on existence in this Philosophy dictionary. Instantiation in reality, or actual being. Kant pointed out that existence is not a predicate. What is the ...
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2answers
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What is existence and how far does it extend?

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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3answers
95 views

Do Heidegger and some of his readers know why there is something rather than nothing?

Do Heidegger and some of his readers know why there is something rather than nothing? There seems to the suggestion in the SEP that he may explain why, but it's unclear in what way the argument can be ...
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4answers
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Is there another state besides existence and nonexistence?

Today I told someone who said that there is no objective truth the next thing: "For example, we, as humans, cannot know if God exists or he does not but we can know for sure that one of these two ...
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Why is there something instead of nothing?

A simple but fundamental question. The "something" means the whole Universe (known and unknown), it could be represented as the reality version of the set of all sets, which is itself debated. It ...
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0answers
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Understanding 'existence' and 'being' in debates about ordinary objects

Quine has brought forward his definition of existence: 'To be is to be the value of a bound variable.' But has also taught us that the sciences ultimately determine what actually exists contrary to ...
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12answers
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How can one differentiate nonexistent entities?

How is it possible for things that do not exist to not be the same? How can one differentiate nonexistent entities? How can I know the difference between ghosts and werewolves if neither exist?
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11answers
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Death: A finite ending?

From the viewpoint of an atheist, when you die, you cease to exist. Your brain has grown old, and can no longer sustain the trillions of electrical signals that constituted who you once were. ...
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1answer
112 views

Philosophies that suggest that thoughts have an existence beyond their physical realization

I'm a beginner at Philosophy, and I'm trying to categorize this metaphysical belief: "Thoughts are thought by humans, but continue to exist, interact with other ideas, and exert power in some sort ...
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2answers
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Is everything that exists an actual entity?

My professor asked us to think about this question as we go through the unit but I am not sure what the question means. I would greatly appreciate could help me understand the question or give me a ...
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Was Heidegger in some way influenced by Kierkegaard?

There are seemingly common ideas in the philosophy of kierkegaard and hiedegger on the self. I thought came into my mind, was Hiedegger in some way influenced by kierkegaard's self-actualization as ...
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2answers
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We do everything for pleasure

I have been in debate for a while now with me friend. I come here looking for feedback and possible outlooks to related sources. The question we posed a long time ago is interesting one: why do we ...
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What are some differences between Avicenna and Descartes in regards to being unable to doubt one's own existence

Given Descartes' Cogito and Avicenna's Floating Man arguments, what are some differences between them? It appears to me that they are both arriving to the same conclusion but the process by which they ...
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5answers
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How can we be certain that we cannot be certain?

I read a lot about people saying that it is impossible to be certain about anything with 100% certainty, but that means that this rule in and of itself must be true 100%. I mean the rule that "we ...
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1answer
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If turtles see everything, and nothing seen can see, does it follow that non-turtles exist?

Consider the following argument: Turtles see everything. Seeing is asymmetric (for the sake of argument). Therefore, something is not a turtle. I have problems symbolizing these statements. My ...
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4answers
684 views

Is the universe just a mathematical construct?

Consider some continuous mathematical function. You can define it as a set of initial conditions and a set of rules to extend it to the rest of its domain. For instance, for a linear function, y = mx +...
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4answers
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Would philosophy still exist if there was no life? [closed]

Would philosophy still exist without life? For example, for us humans, philosophy answers big questions and sort of governs society. But is philosophy something that would exist without life? On this ...
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6answers
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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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If you place a pencil in an opaque box and close the box, does the pencil exist? [closed]

I’m trying to explain to my friends about things existing. I gave them this question: if you place a pencil in an opaque box and close the box, does the pencil exist? They say yes and I ask how do ...
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1answer
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What if the Evil Genius in Descartes' “I think therefore I am” put into our minds the action of doubting?

I am briefly aware of Descartes' argument that even if an Evil Genius made us believe that the world is real the fact that we can doubt this shows that we are thinking and that through thought we can ...
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Is willful ignorance about one's own mortality escapism?

I don't mean if someone is dying of cancer and they refuse treatment or something -- I'm saying if a healthy person who is unhappy obsessing over his own inevitable death one day chooses to ignore ...
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8answers
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Consciousness without thoughts or feelings?

I have noticed that I can sit in a room around people and be consciously aware ... but have no thoughts at all. People often say that your "mind is always thinking", but I can literally stare at a ...
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1answer
85 views

Is there a philosophy of what we can't know?

Is there a philosophy of what we can't know? I'd guess that some things we can't know may exist, and have properties. But is that the same as things that we can't know exist?
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5answers
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Has the instinct of survival a philosophical equivalent?

Descartes' fundamental truth (cogito, ergo sum) would help me accept without any doubt that I do exist. So, I accept that I do exist without any doubt. But there's another truth that --for me-- seem ...
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12answers
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What arguments would support a secular pro-life position?

I've been thinking about the pro-life position (by "pro-life" I mean the position that abortion should be illegal. I.e. on par with murder) for awhile, and it is normally presented as a religious ...
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4answers
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What does Descartes mean by thinking?

He says, that he cannot think that he is thinking while actually not thinking. So, the fact that he thinks that he is thinking already guarantees that he thinks. But what kind of thinking is it? Does ...
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2answers
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Can the existence of something be proven by logic alone [duplicate]

I want to know if proving the existence of something by using only logic is possible.