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Author Topic:   The Ultimate Question - Why is there something rather than nothing?
Suspended Member (Idle past 1554 days)
Posts: 15
From: Fort Lee, NJ, USA
Joined: 11-27-2010

Message 294 of 366 (628640)
08-11-2011 4:49 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Dr Adequate
07-20-2011 1:58 AM

You wrote:

"Why is there something rather than nothing?
Some initial thoughts:

* God would not constitute an explanation, since God counts as something.

* Indeed, if anything constituted an explanation then the existence of everything was contingent on that thing, then that thing would stand in need of an explanation, and so wouldn't be the answer we were looking for.

* This last consideration makes the question look unanswerable. To explain my thinking, consider that a question beginning "Why ..." invites an answer describing some thing which is an antecedent cause, or at least something with a sort of family resemblance to an antecedent cause.

* Any attempt to prove a priori that there should be something rather than nothing would necessarily involve proving that a state of affairs in which nothing existed would be self-inconsistent. Which it isn't.

My own opinion is that the question is unanswerable, and indeed can only be asked because the English language allows us to talk nonsense. This view does not satisfy me in the slightest, but as I am in the habit of saying, being hungry does not prove that we have bread."


Yes, a language does allow us to formulate nonsensical questions. What you are probably asking is "does God exist or not." This question is not nonsensical, provided the word "exist" is clearly defined. God does not exist as a material entity. But God does exist as a spiritual entity.

Ludwik Kowalski (see Wikipedia)

Ludwik Kowalski, a retired nuclear scientist and the author of a free ON-LINE book entitled “Diary of a Former Communist: Thoughts, Feelings, Reality.”


It is an autobiography illustrating my evolution from one extreme to another--from a devoted Stalinist to an active anti-communist. This testimony is based on a diary I kept between 1946 and 2004 (in the USSR, Poland, France and the USA).

Why am I distributing these books on-line, instead of selling them for profit? Because I want to share what I know and think about communism. The more people know about proletarian dictatorship less likely will they experience is. Please share the above link with those who might be interested, especially with young people, and with potential reviewers. Thank you in advance.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Dr Adequate, posted 07-20-2011 1:58 AM Dr Adequate has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 295 by Dr Adequate, posted 08-11-2011 6:53 PM kowalskil has not yet responded

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