Saturday, December 19, 2009

The nonexisting post

What does it mean to not exist? Philosophers have debated for centuries the nature of existence, but have any ever thought about nonexistence? I'm sure some have but I'm not a philosopher student so I know none off the top of my head.

Some people want to believe that to die is to slip into nonexistence. But they do still exist don't they? The body still exists in some form or another until nature finishes recycling it. Memories and records of their life would still exist for a while too. Is that enough to still be in existences? How exclusive is this nonexistence? What does it take to get passed the bouncer at the door?

Because if all it takes is a single thought in a single mind to say that something exists, then for something to not exist every mind in the universe would have to not think about it for all eternity.

And if existence means physically being there, then my thoughts don't exist. And if my thoughts don't exist do I? Does the disruption of physical matter by nonphysical sources, such as thought, count as physically existing? Prime example of what I mean: Sound is just the disruption of air molecules. Is that disruption then a physical existence? Because if it is not than spoken language doesn't exist right along with my thoughts.


  1. That is a good question. Nonexistence would depend on you define it I suppose. And nonexistence would also depend on how you define existence as you talk about. One question that could be asked perhaps: If something can be conceived, would that not in fact be an existence? Another thing that might be considered might be to what capacity something exists or does not exist: as physical, as metaphsyical, as conceptual.

  2. don't forget the reactions thoughts have on the human body (prime example is the male erection, but it also includes the desire to kick somebody in the face or simply say hello)... these are thoughts directly influencing the physical world and thus proving their own existence even if they can't be observed themselves (much like the wind :-p)