Questions tagged [metaphysics]

Metaphysics is a branch of philosophy concerned with explaining the essence of things, of the fundamental nature of being and the world and the principles that organize the universe. Metaphysics is supposed to answer the question "What is the nature of reality?"

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Can god violate the laws of thought (i.e., the logical absolutes)? If so, can such a god be ruled out of existence?

**The Laws of Thought** Laws of Identity, Non-Contradiction, Excluded Middle Something is what it is, ...
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Is the Law of Identity a Logical Absolute? Can it be doubted, violated, or disproven (i.e., proven false)?

**The First Law of Thought: The Law of Identity** Something is what it is [L_1], and it is not what it is not [LI_2]: -| yields the logical conjunction: [LI_1 & LI_2], & = “and”; Therefore, ...
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Is the existence of all natural numbers equivalent to the existence of everything?

Imagine a static world, having no law of nature, hence no space and time and containing every natural number. So whatever model/concept of reality an existing being will ever create, it will be ...
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According to Kant, while thinking of empty concepts without intuitions, what do we synthesise?

(This will be my last question on this book, for those of you getting bored of my questions). Very briefly I will describe the method of Transcendental Deduction (TD) in an over-simplistic manner, and ...
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Can somebody explain the second argument of B-deduction in CPR?

For me, the Transcendental Deduction aims at proving two things: Categories or pure concepts of understanding must be applied to the manifold of intuitions, i.e, they are necessary for cognition. ...
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Who called death “the preoccupation of the wise”

Who called death "the preoccupation of the wise". It's something I read but can't find again. The idea was, I thought, that (the nature of) death was the unsolvable problem and the subject ...
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Problem with Refutation of Idealism

Can someone please defend Kant's refutation of idealism in the B-edition, because it seems untenable to me. First, he claims that 'I' am aware of myself being subjected to a specific temporal order ...
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What if the premise of CPR's Transcedental Deduction is wrong?

The transcendental unity of apperception is that unity through which all the manifold given in an intuition is united in a concept of the object. It is therefore entitled objective, and must be ...
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Why are concepts without intuitions blind?

I think at this point I understand all the transcendental arguments of CPR except this one - and probably this could considerably change my understanding of Kant as a whole. Here is my confusion. ...
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Did the physicist Erwin Schrödinger deny that reality existed?

I was having a conversation with a biographer of Schrödinger about the physicist's works and philosophy. I asked him if he eventually accepted that his "Cat (mental) experiment" could be actually real,...
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Does Kant justify the intuitions existing without concepts?

Objects can indeed appear to us without necessarily having to be related to functions of the understanding. (A89/B122) Appearances can certainly be given in intuition without functions of the ...
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What's Kant defense of a noumenal world actually existing?

There is a sharp distinction according to most commentaries between Berkeley and Kant - and perhaps it's purely due to the fact that Kant doesn't render experience in-itself enough to make sense of ...
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Is information the foundation of reality? [closed]

More and more philosophers and scientists speculate that the basis of reality could be information, however there is something that does not come back to me in this line of reasoning: information is a ...
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What is the difference between the spiritual and the metaphysical

According to this (old) page, metaphysics is the study of things beyond anything humans can perceive. Because of this fact, metaphysics is relatively faith-based discipline and, compared to science, ...
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Kant on triangles vs unicorns

In the critique of pure reason, according to my reading, Kant is positing that propositions of mathematics are true because they can be situated in space and time, i.e, they can be conceived in space ...
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Explaining to my 11 year old why the question “Will robots ever have feelings” is part of philosophy, not science?

My 11 year old is tasked with interpreting a Seneca quote. I started out by trying to explain to him what ethics is by contrasting 'Will robots ever have feelings?' as a question in Philosophy of Mind,...
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Why are mathematical judgments legitimate while metaphysical are not, according to Kant's CPR?

In my reading of Kant's CPR (I mention this because I don't want an answer according to his other critiques), I don't seem to understand on what basis is Kant distinguishing statements in math and ...
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Could there be a universe where the concept of order and logic and numbers and objects and space and time don't exist?

Could there be a universe where the concept of order and logic and numbers and objects and space and time don't exist ? This would preclude math as we know it. Maybe there is something better than ...
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How do concepts like “change” and “structure” fit with the object - property distinction?

I've been pondering about the distinction between the object/concrete/particular vs property/abstract/universal.... (side note: I used to think that properties are more "general" than objects, but ...
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Is the argument “Cogito ergo sum” compatible with metaphysical nihilism?

Metaphysical nihilism says that there might not be any objects at all. I'm not interested in whether there are potential problems with this viewpoint. One problem could be that "Cogito" can't come ...
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modal quasi-conventionalism (Ted Sider)

So, I've been reading a bit on Ted Sider's modal quasi-conventionalism (elsewhere he calls his view modal Humeanism), and I was wondering if anyone had commented directly on it in the literature. I ...
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What happened to ( aristotelian) substantial forms in cartesian ontology? On which ground ( metaphysical or physical) are they rejected?

In aristotelian philosophy, there are no bare particulars ( contrary to what is the case in Plato, according to P.V. Spade) but internally structured ( substantial) particulars in which 2 "parts"/...
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Time travel, free will and “could have done otherwise”

The phrase "could have done otherwise" is almost essential to all discussions concerning free will. Most philosophers, as I understand the literature, believe this phrase characterizes and validates ...
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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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Is it epistemically untenable to posit a total explanation of reality?

I am certainly not well-versed in metaphysics, so please correct the terminology I have employed throughout. When I speak of a total explanation of reality, I am describing an explanation that ...
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Math Universe Hypothesis

Can someone please explain in simpler terms what does this:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mathematical_universe_hypothesis, mean? Does this mean tegmark says for example: humans have corresponding math ...
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What is a logical ground?

I've been stumbling upon the expression and am now asking myself what it's meaning is. What does mentioning a logical ground refer to? Perhaps anyone could try to break down the possibly multilayered ...
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How can a soul have parts if it's the unifying principle of the person? (Aquinas)

Context: Aquinas The problem is something like this: for the parts of the human body to be 'one', they must have a form — this form is the principle of the body's unity. But if the soul itself has ...
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Are there any predecessors to the leveling concept of Kierkegaard?

What were the most likely sources of inspiration of Kierkegaard in creating the leveling concept?
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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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What is the Schillerian concept for sublime that at the same time means attraction and repulsion?

There is German word that Schiller uses to explain beauty, a word that at the same time means attraction and repulse. He uses that word instead of the Kantian "awe" for The Sublime. Does anyone ...
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An Idealistic account for Causal, Unperceived Objects without the invocation of God?

How would an idealist, without the use of god, make sense of something like a tumor which can go unperceived and sensationless while still causing bodily harm or anything which is unperceived, yet ...
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Refutation of a Nietzschanian Argument

Soon I will have to debate about Nietzsche and I have to contradict a thesis that he supported. The thesis is: The essence of a force is to be in relationship with other forces. I think this has to do ...
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What is the counter-argument against the argument of design? [closed]

The argument of design has several features, keying on relative complexity and tuning for use, from which one infers a designer. If we find a sand castle on a "simple" beach, which had an unusual ...
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According to Plato, can there be forms for a certain class of particulars?

In the beginning of Parmenides, Plato seems to think that most, or possibly all, particulars do not have corresponding forms; but he is not very explicit about why. My question is, does it not make ...
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Who were the key thinkers in classical metaphysics, and what were the main problems they were trying to solve? What can I read on this topic?

I'd like to read a history of classical metaphysics, but I am not even sure how to draw the boundaries of this topic to select a text for myself. I am specifically interested in system building, of a ...
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Is it reasonable to conflate being and truth?

Let x be something that exists unequivocally. Then "x exists" is true, but does it make sense to say x itself is true? And vice versa - the proposition "x exists" is true, but is there a sense in ...
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Why Socrates thinks there arent Forms of mud and hair?

In the dialogue Parmenides, when Parmenides asks Socrates whether he accepts the existance of Forms of things like Mud and Hair, he refuses it, but i dont get it, what makes those forms unable to be? ...
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Based on these 8 beliefs, which school of philosophy should I focus on?

I’m interested in world philosophy and have tried to make sense of what I have read thus far on my own, mainly as regards secure foundation, or central axis, upon which to gradually build some kind of ...
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What exactly makes something (an event) metaphysically (i.e. not epistemically, physically, logically, mathematically) possible?

I take it that, for instance, an epistemic possibility depends in some sense on the cognitive (`as far as one knows something could be the case then this suffices to desribe it as epistemically ...
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Given that we do not have the ability to time travel backwards, can we prove that there will never be backwards time travel? [closed]

I have heard that if there will exist backwards time travel in some reasonable form in the future, presumably they would send the technology back so that we have it earlier. Since we don't have it, ...
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Is the idea of a causal chain physical (or even scientific)?

I am aware that the idea is venerable, going back through Lucretius to the Stoics and Epicurus, and even to Aristotle with his prime mover argument. But isn't this a pre-scientific notion? The ...
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How does Karl Jaspers's term 'metaphysical guilt' relate to 'metaphysics'?

The following interpretations of 'metaphysical guilt', don't explain how 'metaphysical' in 'metaphysical guilt' connects with the meaning of 'metaphysics' as the fundamental nature of reality. Source:...
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Have philosophers identified what may cause something to be unknowable?

Have philosophers identified what may cause something to be unknowable? If such reasons have been identified, what are they called? If there's no exhaustive lists, what are the different causes or ...
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What do you call the idea that each universes have wholly different natural laws?

What do you call the idea that each universes have wholly different natural laws? Instead of, let's say, all universes sharing some common laws, I am talking about the idea that all universes have ...
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How does biological evolution work in the block universe/b-theory of time?

The b-theory of time is often described as a film reel where the whole reel exists, but we can only view one frame at a time. The problem I have with this analogy is that it starts to feel too ...
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Reductionism about universals

David Armstrong's theory of universals is sparse: it's "mass", "electric charge", etc. that are true universals, not e.g. "redness". In pre-modern times this might be vaguely comparable to the ...
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Jarrett’s Argument against an intuitive interpretation of P4, Part I of Spinoza’s Ethics

On first sight, an intuitive way of understanding proposition 4, part I, of Spinoza’s Ethics, is the following: For all x and for all y, if not x=y, then either (there is a z and a z' such that z ...
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Is Metaphysics intended as a creative starting point?

Is Metaphysics intended as a starting point for ideas or perhaps a sort of hypothetical brainstorming scratchpad, with the intention that you must find a way to test any idea before it is regarded as ...
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What are the criteria that makes metaphysics metaphysics? [duplicate]

What are the criteria that makes metaphysics metaphysics? In my understanding, metaphysics literally means beyond philosophy, but what are the criteria that makes something be metaphysical? Is the ...

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