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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How have philosophers from Descartes to Kant understood the soul?

Modern philosophy, beginning with Descartes, raises issues of mind-body dualism, rationalism and empiricism, idealism and materialism. Yet most modern philosophers at least through Kant continued to ...
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Might The Observer Effect be a result of simplification in a computer-simulated universe?

For the past few years, I've contemplated the idea of the Universe being a computer simulation. This unsolved quantum physics phenomenon where objects act differently when observed is what sparked ...
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Is it possible to enumerate metaphysical hypotheses?

Recently, I had an argument with someone who stated that the chance of experiencing nothing after death is extremely low. Their reasoning was that one can think of many more metaphysical realities in ...
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301 views

How are beliefs restricted by an objective reality?

Consider the following belief A human can survive if they don't drink water for 1000 days We knew from biology that this is practically improbable as there are very few people who can survive for ...
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Where can I study this in more detail?

I am finding al-Farabi's Philosophy of Plato and Aristotle on pages 13-17, paragraphs 1-9, (pages 11-13 in the pdf file linked below), very interesting: http://traditionalhikma.com/wp-content/uploads/...
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What would happen to the soul as the form of the body under massive changes to the body?

Aristotle (and later the Scholastics) considered the soul to be the form of the body. But back then, though many changes of the living body could obviously be observed (considered to be “accidental ...
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Can kantian categories only be applicated to objects given by the senses?

The question is inspired by the comments of this answer by @PédeLeão and I think it deserves a question of its own to have room for clarifying this. Possible candidates Kant, in German, has pretty (...
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Is Mathematical Platonism a meaningful thing? [closed]

How can we be sure that asking If Mathematics is Platonic or If it is Our Own Construction is a meaningful thing to ask, and not just abuse of natural language? Can somebody provide a convincing ...
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Understanding the simulation argument

I came across Nick Bostrom's paper called Are You Living in a Computer Simulation?. The paper argues that at least one of the following propositions is true: The human species is likely to go extinct ...
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How is 'metaphysics' 'theories of the connections between what we see and what we can't see' and connected with 'ladder rungs'?

Source: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Literary Theory and Criticism (2013 1 ed). p. (between 21 and 90, but I can't remember). One of the most significant influences in this regard was the third- ...
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Follow Up Question: Van Inwagen and free Variables

This is a follow up question to this question. If this violates the idea of S.E, I will remove it. In the last question I asked what free variables are and what sentences containing free variables ...
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What are the best arguments against the existence of change?

I know that essential to Aristotle's existence of matter and form is the existence of change and that the best contender for his view was Parmenides. But I wonder which are some other arguments ...
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What is the similarity and difference in the way Aristotle and Tomas Aquinas defining the concept of “Analogy of Being”?

As is well known to us all, "Analogy of Being" is a very important term created by the Scholasticism of St. Thomas Aquinas. While this term cannot be found in Aristotle' original book,and the similiar ...
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Is there a limit on the intelligence of created beings

I'm looking for arguments/theories regarding this question: How far can a created being advance intellectually relative to the creator/environment. Let me elaborate: suppose there are some very ...
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379 views

Kant and the Categorical Imperatives

Did Immanuel Kant intend for the Categorical Imperatives to be used together, or separately, when trying to determine an actions ethicality or morality If you answer yes, individually, then how does ...
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How can our actions be regarded as free if they are causally determined?

After all, soft determinists are determinists, so they believe that our actions are causally determined. How can our actions be regarded as free if they are causally determined?
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Are there real paradoxes?

Paradoxes arise in mathematics; a famous one being Russells; usually its taken as a sign that the theoretical ediface needs to change. The difficult question is how; for example Russell developed his ...
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Can sheaf-theory help interpret Quantum Mechanics?

The Copenhagen interpretation posits a boundary in the World between the observer and the non-observer (that is the rest of the World). There is knowledge (Observables measured) associated with each ...
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Is metaphysics completely subjective?

A little bit of background: As some of you may have noticed, my main interest in philosophy is of metaphysics. I've studied philosophy in a very postmodern environment; but contra to the people ...
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How is Last Thursdayism explained from a physics perspective?

Last Thursdayism is the idea that the universe was created last Thursday. This would imply that the laws of physics were created last Thursday too. Doesn't that mean anything could have happened ...
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The Soil of Being and Time

In Being and Time, Heidegger claims that an analysis of Dasein is preparatory in that it is guided by the task of working out the question of being. In particular, its purpose is to "uncover the soil" ...
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How can philosophy deal with the nonphysical in light of scientific limitations? [duplicate]

Logically, if the only proof of existence we have is what we can see, hear, smell, touch, taste, and feel the movement of, why do many philosophies deal with issues outside the physical? Due to these ...
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Is complete isolation possible?

Imagine an ideal box, whose contents are perfectly isolated. Whatever is inside it, it has not, has had or will have any relations with the rest of the universe. We could say that its content does not ...
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Can the Void have Being?

On the face of it no; and affirmed by Parmenides as that what is not, is not. However, consider a particle in spacetime with no forces acting on it: thus it moves in a straight line (geodesic) when ...
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How are “causal” loops avoided in Aristotelian-Thomistic metaphysics?

If we take Aquinas' first way, for example, the inference that a chain of movers exist, is readily made, but no defense for this assumption is given. Usually the argument is interpreted so, that all ...
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Can a priori principles be applied to deduce 'Principal Bundles' as principles in Modern Physics?

Kant supplied a priori arguments for Newtonian Physics in his Metaphysics of Natural Science Has something similar been done for Modern Physics; which in its geometrical intepretation are concieved ...
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What created the universe?

If nothing can come from nothing and the universe, and therefore all matter and energy, cannot be eternal according to the second law of thermodynamics, does this necessitate the existence of a non ...
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Is there an accepted term for the idea that: “an idea's validity is increased by the number of proponents”

Is there a field or term which can be used to describe conjecture on the notion that: The validity of an idea is related to the number of proponents/opponents of the idea. Such a field would ...
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375 views

What are numbers?what are they, really — [closed]

We use numbers every day, but taking a step back, what are they, really — and why do they do such a damn good job of helping us explain the universe (such as Newtonian laws)? Mathematical structures ...
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What's the difference between “emergence” and “reductionism”?

Isn't a system, which emerged from simpler system also reducible to the simpler system? More general, is emergence the reverse term to reducitionism?
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Is the Universe real or complex? [closed]

A.R. Estakhr says that in the real world nothing can move faster than the speed of light. Well, he is not alone in this regard, and Einstein had similar views. But he goes on to say, "If something ...
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Philosophy - If both the Rebound Universe and Block Universe theories are true would that mean Nietzsche's Eternal Return theory true?

If the Block Universe is true, and if the Rebound Universe is also true where the universe goes from Big Crunch to Big bang then doesn't that mean that the Block Universe is shaped like a circle where ...
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What is the essential something that Heidegger suggests that philosophers can learn from poetry?

In this transcript of a conversation between Simon Critchley & Badiou on Badiou's book Being and Event, Badiou states: And after that, I have also to understand why there is in modern times a ...
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The Queerness Argument [closed]

I am looking for the best way to counter the Argument from Queerness by Mackie. Does anyone have a "standard" way to counter Mackie's argument? Is there an example which
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Epistemology and definition of Theory in Science

Which branch of philosophy is the authority and thus has the capacity to define what IS theory in science? I have linked to the definition of Theory by Simon Blackburn in Oxford Dictionary of ...
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Life is illogical [closed]

The only porpose of life that I see is to feel good. Some try to achieve it by earning money, some try to achieve it by earning fame and respect, and there are still others who try to achieve it by ...