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Questions tagged [existence]

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

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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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1answer
41 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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25answers
7k views

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
27 views

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
1k views

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
2k views

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
111 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 ...
3
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3answers
123 views

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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11answers
934 views

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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0answers
36 views

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
481 views

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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0answers
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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
205 views

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
403 views

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
636 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
130 views

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
2k views

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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17answers
18k views

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
77 views

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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14answers
6k views

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
5k views

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 ...
2
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1answer
83 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?
3
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5answers
382 views

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
4k views

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 ...
2
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4answers
199 views

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
77 views

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.
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1answer
349 views

If there is anything that could behave like a god, is it then a real god? [closed]

Let's assume that the our universe's physics allows time travel. This is my main assumption! Let's further assume that there is an quite intelligent, invulnerable being, that found a way to achieve ...
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7answers
2k views

Does the whole universe end when an individual dies?

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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1answer
104 views

Do humans have the comprehension of an ant regarding certain things?

The leading theory behind the anomaly that is human intelligence is that humans had the greatest diversity in selective pressures over the course of our evolutionary history which allowed only the ...
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2answers
131 views

Lack of meaning in life [closed]

Most of people probably associate depression only with sadness, but it is a big mistake, because often there is huge drowsiness, apathy, indifference, constant physical fatigue, derealization, ...
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3answers
149 views

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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2answers
286 views

How to disprove “I'm entitled to my opinion”

Background There is an article in The Conversation that attempts to disprove the notion that people are "entitled to their opinions." That is, people have a right to believe whatever they wish. I ...
3
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1answer
97 views

How does this anthropic principle argument from Schopenhauer make any sense?

According to a blog post This is what another universe looks like, "in Arthur Schopenhauer's 1844 work "Von der Nichtigkeit und dem Leiden des Lebens", he argues that our world must be the worst of ...
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2answers
65 views

Does a behavior/ideology need to be before it can be moral? [closed]

It seems that there are some characteristics that are dependent on other characteristics. For example: for a machine to be productive, it must first be functioning, so it must first be turned on, so ...
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2answers
148 views

Books/resources on non-existence

I believe that after we die there is nothing. The same that was before being born. So while I won’t care about not existing when it happens, the thought of it does bother me now, as I like being and ...
3
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2answers
571 views

Does existence precede quiddity? [closed]

Is there an undisputed argument for the existence of God as, for instance, Avicenna's and Mulla Sadra's metaphysical argument, which state that "existence is ontologically prior to essence"? Some of ...
5
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1answer
106 views

Does Valberg's “personal horizon” entail life after death?

The personal horizon is, Valberg contends, the subject matter whose center each of us occupies, and which for each of us ceases with death. This ceasing to be presents itself solipsistically not ...
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5answers
2k views

Nothingness cannot be. Does that imply something must be?

Nothingness doesn't be, that's the definition of nothingness (at least in this question) that what is not, does not exist. If there was no Universe, if there was nothing, nothingness would be, that ...
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19answers
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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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2answers
494 views

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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5answers
832 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
82 views

What does the term “ego” really mean?

According to different sources and authors, ego is referred to as one's self-perception by one's self concept. It is sometimes considered as selfishism. But what can a person do that will not refer to ...
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4answers
752 views

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 characteristics of that object , ...
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4answers
722 views

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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2answers
115 views

Update-How might we perceive our relations with the environment?

With an excessively growing population, human might be increasingly conflicting with the environment. How might we perceive our relations with the environment? Our advancement in civilization might ...
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5answers
359 views

Is there any reality or substance in matter and energy without God?

Substance {Gk. ουσια [ousia]; Lat. substantia} "What a thing is made of; hence, the underlying being that supports, exists independently of, and persists through time despite changes in, its ...
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4answers
359 views

'Thanks, but no thanks' - God and my existence

Problem: God (in an Abrahamic religion) created me without asking me if I would want this life. Now I don't want this life. If I commit suicide, I will burn in hell for eternity. I just want to cease ...
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1answer
2k views

Is This Proof of Existence and a Solution to P=NP Problem? [closed]

P =/= NP Proof (The Theory of Everything) Polynomial time problems are known to problems exist. Assume Existence exists. By definition everything in existence is in existence. This means nothing can’...
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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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0answers
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Are there any arguments for why something past-eternal must necessarily be future-eternal as well?

If we assume that something has always existed in the past, what reason is there to assume that it won't perish in the future? I pondered on it and I wondered whether the following argument works: ...