Why Is There Anything, Rather Than Nothing?

Discussion in 'General Philosophy' started by Patriot, Oct 14, 2004.

  1. duendy Registered Senior Member

    anroid>v.2...dont put me in a role of 'stifler of imagination'..hehe. that s jest NOT me
    want you to explore, and myself
    you say mortality is a dreadful thing--or words to that effect. so, you dream of immortality?
    also i stick by the 'you cant know nothingness'...i may not be talking my intergalactic pills but i sure nuff takin my reality pills

    tell me please how you can know nothingness. if you aren't there you aren't. if you ARE, then you can speak about it. maybe your very actions now, and mine are coming OUT of nothingness. it never went nowhere
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  3. an>roid.v2 Registered Senior Member

    Of course not, Duendy, otherwise you never would've bothered to pick this up. Besides, I've appreciated your approach: it encouraged me to decipher some of my own thoughts. Yet, you did seem to emphasize a certain contraband on knowing "nothingness".

    As a boy I first attempted to imagine what death would be like. I figured one would have to imagine being nowhere -- not unlike nothingness. Furthermore, the whole idea of selflessness seems related -- because one would have to dismiss one's limited self entirely in order to breath in an endless flow of self, no? Hence being nothing special rather than something destructible. But you're right: mortality feels... barbaric, small, and pointless.

    I don't tackle a problem by expecting to know it first, but to explore it first -- there's a difference on how one approaches knowledge: does one approach a problem? Or does one approach a method to knowledge? Similarly, how does one approach "nothing"? Shouldn't one first approach something?
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  5. duendy Registered Senior Member

    "how does one approach "nothing"? shouldn't one first approach SOMETHING?"

    exactly. because they always go togther like twins. cannot be parted
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  7. beyondtimeandspace Everlasting Student Registered Senior Member

    duendy, you're speaking from the vantage point of human knowledge and understanding. Perhaps, yes, in regards to human knowledge and understanding, the two arise together. However, in regards to actuality, reality, that which is, I do not believe that the two arise together. It seems to me that, actually speaking, that there is something, there cannot be nothing, nor can there ever have been nothing.
  8. duendy Registered Senior Member

    alright, good, you are talking about ACTUAL REALITY yeah? that is great. so am i. THAt is where its at

    now, looking at what we are talking about actually what do we actually know?...well speaking personally that we are using language to communicate. And from what i have learned i am very aware of the limitations of spoken language. it has a history of being trouble for many language-structures.
    What has happened is we abstract out. so for example, we are talking about "something" and "nothing"...if i asked you to bring me either a 'nothing' or a 'something' you'd be confused wouldn't you. for 'something' you'd say, "what?" and for 'nothing' you'd say 'what the fuck do you mean, 'bring me nothing'"...right? they are just abstract tags

    so what do we mean by nothing then? well say we look at a field with a few trees, and the sky with clouds. i could point to the trees, and the ground, and the sky, with clouds, and what ever is 'something' and try and point out that surrounding all of these somethings is space, which is 'nothing' right? isn't that actual?

    usually we ignore the space and focus on the somethings. but without apsace you would even SEE the somethinfgs. and the more clear the space is the more clear are the somethings. they both go togther.

    that is actual. if you want to go into space...'up there', we get the same. VAST seeming black space/nothing, with somethings/planets, stars, galaxies etc

    if you wanna go introspective, what we have. we have thoughts, feelings, happening withing the sapce of our inner being. in sleep we have busy dreaming interspersed with deep dreamless sleep/nothing

    so bring me your fictional nuthin-but-nuthin 'ACTUALLY'.....?
  9. Crunchy Cat F-in' *meow* baby!!! Valued Senior Member

    My take on this is that nothing is a concept that people created to
    describe states of their environment. For example, "there is nothing
    in the glass". Clearly, there would be air, dust, bacteria, x number of
    dimensions at the smallest point in the spacial structure within the
    glass, etc; however, from a human perspective we can use the word
    'nothing' to descibe what's in the glass.

    With this said, it may be the case that 'nothing' doesn't exist in
    any form but a label that people devised.
  10. beyondtimeandspace Everlasting Student Registered Senior Member

    Actually, duendy, space isn't 'nothing.' Space appears to be nothing, but we know that space is actually filled with stuff, simply too small to see with the naked eye. As has already been stated on this thread, a vaccuum isn't nothing. So, your logic of nothing arising with something in actuality is flawed in this regard. As far as the introspection goes, just because someone dreams, and then doesn't... doesn't mean that there is "nothing" when that person isn't dreaming. That is a presumption. You're applying an abstract concept to other abstracts: thought.... emotion. Thoughts and emotions don't have place, therefore there is nowhere that you can point to say that there is a lacking of emotion or thought, and in fact there is no place that you can point to say that there is actually emotion or thought. Abstracts don't have place, and therefore the concept of something doesn't have the normal implication of "thing" that would regularly be had. Ergo, to say that there is nothing where there is often something in regards to emotion or thought is very much different than speaking about things or no things within the space-time construct.
  11. orestes Strategos Registered Senior Member

    In this universe, isn't it impossible to have nothing, due to the presence of space/time that exists everywhere? Correct me if my presumption is wrong(or if this has already come up) but space/time is what you would call a 'something', is it not?
  12. Roman Banned Banned

    This is invalid logic. In this syllogism, you have a negative premise, but no negative in the conclusion. To have a valid argument, you must have a negative conclusion to agree with the negative premise. One may not logically describe something by describing what it is not.


    you have two negative premises, which is also invalid logic


    you create an existential fallacy by attempting to logically describe something that does not exist.

    Matter+antimatter=0, but that however does not equal no-thing, since we're still acknowledging that nothing exists, since we have given it value (0).

    The only nothing is ignorance; when something is undescribed and unobserved, it does not exist. A naive universe does not exist, since it cannot recognize itself.
    Nothing could never be found or described, since it would be such an antithesis to how we function (or possibly a very powerful 'non'), that it would fail to be nothing as soon as we saw it.
  13. philocrazy Banned Banned

    here is what i think of nothing


    nothing is nothing?


    nothing is nothing

    what is nothing? aha!!!!!! eurika!!!!!!

    you think nothing is eurika? aha!!!!!!!!

    eurika nothing you say!!!!!
    youre crazy i say!!!!!!!!!!! aha not convince?
    you want the contact details of my doctor? aha no you say!!!!
    i want nothing you say!!!!aha!!!!!
    here take nothing i say---> aha!!!!!!!!!!!smart move!!!!!!
    cause the doctor would have given pills not nothing!!!!! aha...blahbloom blah
  14. Roman Banned Banned


    May I recommend these two informational comics?
    The setting may be irrelevant, but the message holds true.
    Be sure to read the parts about exclamation marks.
    and here
  15. wesmorris Nerd Overlord - we(s):1 of N Valued Senior Member

    Jesus is dead.

    I would submit that something and nothing two parts of the whole.

    Maybe at some point there was nothing, now there's something. Perhaps it's because both are probable.

    I suppose we have to ask, what's beyond the universe? Would you call it "nothing" or something? What if it's nothing that will become something? How can the universe expand into nothing? Perhaps it's transition, nothing to something and something to nothing (as in infinite universal expansion - e.g., the "big freeze").

    M-theory surmises that the universe is the result of a collision of 5D branes in 11 dimensions. With that in mind, there is something more than the nothing of before our universe, and more universes to come. So something and nothing just depend on your perspective eh?

    Okay if there are 11 dimensions, why that particular something?

    Simply put: because it's possible. If something is possible and you wait long enough it will happen.

    Of course, that's pretty conventional thinking considering that the idea of time itself is tied to the collision (the arrow of time is set by the collision). I suppose that brings me to the final point: The idea of "something and nothing" probably don't really make sense on the grand scale of things, just as time itself doesn't make sense in the way we typically think of it.
  16. philocrazy Banned Banned

    Matter+antimatter=0, but that however does not equal no-thing, since we're still acknowledging that nothing exists, since we have given it value (0).
    value of zero exists
    what is, it represents
    no units
    no value
    no thing
    zero (0) is a symmmmmmmbolllllll
    two (2) is a symbol that represents units
    i quit i have no time to teach maths here
    you talk of a system, you yourself dont understand fully, whereas i have known of it just the instant you mentioned it thanks roman!!!!!


    value of 0,you talk of codes you silly nerd that actually represent something
    in machines and now thanks to you also in the universe

    hey roman
    find nothing
    good luck!!!!!!
  17. Roman Banned Banned

    Nothing happening is also probable. Would nothing eventually happen, or does nothing occur at every instance that something does not happen?
  18. Roman Banned Banned

    Zero can have units. If you are in a car, and you come to a stop, you are not going '0,' you are goin 0 miles per hour. Mph are in fact units.

    Zero has units all the time.

    Me having no time for crazies still has units, which are time units, that I have none of.
  19. wesmorris Nerd Overlord - we(s):1 of N Valued Senior Member

    Well, technically right now in our universe, very very very slowly from our perspective, something is becoming nothing (the big freeze). Right? As the universe continues to expand, it approaches absolute zero.

    Then again like I said, I don't think that the concept makes much sense on the grand scale of things. Something and nothing both imply perspective. The tao has no perspective. It's just what is.

    So take away perspective (like us discussing the matter), and the concepts lose all validity. There's just 'is', even if 'is', isn't.

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  20. Roman Banned Banned

    So existence is simply a symptom of observation?
  21. wesmorris Nerd Overlord - we(s):1 of N Valued Senior Member

    No, but without observation, it doesn't make much difference, because there is nothing to place value on differences.
  22. haphip-yoz Registered Member

    As close to non-existance as I can imagine, 10 billion years back before the big bang. Imagine the moment previous this as non-existance. I really liked an earlier idea in this forum of 'lack of movement being non-existance'. Before the big bang, let us suppose there was no movement. Two proofs I can think of which suggest the necessity of existance and non-existance. Hegel's thesis (non-existance), anti thesis (existance) and synthesis(infinity/eternity?). Neils bohr once said there are trivial truths and great truths. The great truths have contradictions. Something and nothing are great truths, just because they are complete contradictions, does not mean they cannot exist simultaneosly. Time is just an illusion whereby existance and non existance seem to be separate. Time only describes the relative movement between moving objects. It does not really exist. When movement ends so does time. So does existance. Existance and non-existance both exist constantly but seem seperate from each other through the illusion of time.
  23. Crunchy Cat F-in' *meow* baby!!! Valued Senior Member

    Right before the 'Big Bang' (which is a rapid inflation... not an explosion)
    we had a maximally deflated brane (this is 'something' and not 'nothing').
    Similarly there is a ton of stuff outside the brane (more 'something' and
    not 'nothing'). What reality seems to be suggesting is that 'nothing' doesn't

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