Results for 'existence'

999 found
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  1. Existence as a Real Property: The Ontology of Meinongianism.Francesco Berto - 2012 - Synthèse Library, Springer.
    This book is both an introduction to and a research work on Meinongianism. “Meinongianism” is taken here, in accordance with the common philosophical jargon, as a general label for a set of theories of existence – probably the most basic notion of ontology. As an introduction, the book provides the first comprehensive survey and guide to Meinongianism and non-standard theories of existence in all their main forms. As a research work, the book exposes and develops the most up-to-date (...)
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  2.  80
    The Existence of Numbers (Or: What is the Status of Arithmetic?).Andrew Boucher - manuscript
    I begin with a personal confession. Philosophical discussions of existence have always bored me. When they occur, my eyes glaze over and my attention falters. Basically ontological questions often seem best decided by banging on the table--rocks exist, fairies do not. Argument can appear long-winded and miss the point. Sometimes a quick distinction resolves any apparent difficulty. Does a falling tree in an earless forest make noise, ie does the noise exist? Well, if noise means that an ear must (...)
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  3.  40
    Irreducibly Collective Existence and Bottomless Nihilism.Jonas Werner - 2022 - Synthese 200 (2):1-16.
    This paper develops the metaphysical hypothesis that there are irreducibly collective pluralities, pluralities of objects that do not have a singular object among them. A way to formulate this hypothesis using plural quantification will be proposed and the coherence of irreducibly collective existence will be defended. Furthermore, irreducibly collective existence will be shown to allow for bottomless scenarios that do not involve things standing in relations of parthood. This will create logical space for an anti-atomistic form of mereological (...)
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  4. Existence Predicates.Friederike Moltmann - 2020 - Synthese 197 (1):311-335.
    Natural languages generally distinguishes among different existence predicates for different types of entities, such as English 'exist', 'occur', and 'obtain'. The paper gives an in-depth discussion and analysis of a range of existence predicates in natural language within the general project of descriptive metaphysics, or more specifically ‘natural language ontology’.
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  5. Engineering Existence?Lukas Skiba - forthcoming - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy.
    This paper investigates the connection between two recent trends in philosophy: higher-orderism and conceptual engineering. Higher-orderists use higher-order quantifiers (in particular quantifiers binding variables that occupy the syntactic positions of predicates) to express certain key metaphysical doctrines, such as the claim that there are properties. I argue that, on a natural construal, the higher-orderist approach involves an engineering project concerning, among others, the concept of existence. I distinguish between a modest construal of this project, on which it aims at (...)
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  6. Contingent Existence and the Reduction of Modality to Essence.Trevor Teitel - 2019 - Mind 128 (509):39-68.
    This paper first argues that we can bring out a tension between the following three popular doctrines: (i) the canonical reduction of metaphysical modality to essence, due to Fine, (ii) contingentism, which says that possibly something could have failed to be something, and (iii) the doctrine that metaphysical modality obeys the modal logic S5. After presenting two such arguments (one from the theorems of S4 and another from the theorems of B), I turn to exploring various conclusions we might draw (...)
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  7. Must Existence-Questions Have Answers?Stephen Yablo - 2009 - In David Chalmers, David Manley & Ryan Wasserman (eds.), Metametaphysics: New Essays on the Foundations of Ontology. Oxford University Press. pp. 507-525.
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  8. Existence and Quantification Reconsidered.Tim Crane - 2012 - In Tuomas Tahko (ed.), Contemporary Aristotelian Metaphysics. Cambridge: pp. 44-65.
    The currently standard philosophical conception of existence makes a connection between three things: certain ways of talking about existence and being in natural language; certain natural language idioms of quantification; and the formal representation of these in logical languages. Thus a claim like ‘Prime numbers exist’ is treated as equivalent to ‘There is at least one prime number’ and this is in turn equivalent to ‘Some thing is a prime number’. The verb ‘exist’, the verb phrase ‘there is’ (...)
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  9. Existence and Modality in Kant: Lessons From Barcan.Andrew Stephenson - forthcoming - Philosophical Review.
    This essay considers Kant’s theory of modality in light of a debate in contemporary modal metaphysics and modal logic concerning the Barcan formulas. The comparison provides a new and fruitful perspective on Kant’s complex and sometimes confusing claims about possibility and necessity. Two central Kantian principles provide the starting point for the comparison: that the possible must be grounded in the actual and that existence is not a real predicate. Both are shown to be intimately connected to the Barcan (...)
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  10. Non-Existent Objects and Epistemological Ontology.William J. Rapaport - 1985 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 25 (1):61-95.
    This essay examines the role of non-existent objects in "epistemological ontology" — the study of the entities that make thinking possible. An earlier revision of Meinong's Theory of Objects is reviewed, Meinong's notions of Quasisein and Außersein are discussed, and a theory of Meinongian objects as "combinatorially possible" entities is presented.
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  11. The Existence (and Non-Existence) of Abstract Objects.Richard Heck - 2011 - In Frege's Theorem. Oxford University Press.
    This paper is concerned with neo-Fregean accounts of reference to abstract objects. It develops an objection to the most familiar such accounts, due to Bob Hale and Crispin Wright, based upon what I call the 'proliferation problem': Hale and Wright's account makes reference to abstract objects seem too easy, as is shown by the fact that any equivalence relation seems as good as any other. The paper then develops a response to this objection, and offers an account of what it (...)
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  12. Collective Obligations: Their Existence, Their Explanatory Power, and Their Supervenience on the Obligations of Individuals.Bill Wringe - 2016 - European Journal of Philosophy 24 (2):472-497.
    In this paper I discuss a number of different relationships between two kinds of obligation: those which have individuals as their subject, and those which have groups of individuals as their subject. I use the name collective obligations to refer to obligations of the second sort. I argue that there are collective obligations, in this sense; that such obligations can give rise to and explain obligations which fall on individuals; that because of these facts collective obligations are not simply reducible (...)
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  13. Unnecessary Existents.Joshua Spencer - 2013 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 43 (5-6):766-775.
    Timothy Williamson has argued for the radical conclusion that everything necessarily exists. In this paper, I assume that the conclusion of Williamson’s argument is more incredible than the denial of his premises. Under the assumption that Williamson is mistaken, I argue for the claim that there are some structured propositions which have constituents that might not have existed. If those constituents had not existed, then the propositions would have had an unfilled role; they would have been gappy. This gappy propositions (...)
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  14. Set Existence Principles and Closure Conditions: Unravelling the Standard View of Reverse Mathematics.Benedict Eastaugh - 2019 - Philosophia Mathematica 27 (2):153-176.
    It is a striking fact from reverse mathematics that almost all theorems of countable and countably representable mathematics are equivalent to just five subsystems of second order arithmetic. The standard view is that the significance of these equivalences lies in the set existence principles that are necessary and sufficient to prove those theorems. In this article I analyse the role of set existence principles in reverse mathematics, and argue that they are best understood as closure conditions on the (...)
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  15. The Semantics of Existence.Friederike Moltmann - 2013 - Linguistics and Philosophy 36 (1):31-63.
    The notion of existence is a very puzzling one philosophically. Often philosophers have appealed to linguistic properties of sentences stating existence. However, the appeal to linguistic intuitions has generally not been systematic and without serious regard of relevant issues in linguistic semantics. This paper has two aims. On the one hand, it will look at statements of existence from a systematic linguistic point of view, in order to try to clarify what the actual semantics of such statements (...)
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  16. Existence and Many-One Identity.Jason Turner - 2013 - Philosophical Quarterly 63 (250):313-329.
    C endorses the doctrine of Composition as Identity, which holds that a composite object is identical to its many parts, and entails that one object can be identical to several others. In this dialogue, N argues that many‐one identity, and thus composition as identity, is conceptually confused. In particular, N claims it violates two conceptual truths: that existence facts fix identity facts, and that identity is no addition to being. In response to pressure from C, N considers several candidate (...)
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  17. Existence Is Evidence of Immortality.Michael Huemer - manuscript
    Time may be infinite in both directions. If it is, then, if persons could live at most once in all of time, the probability that you would be alive now would be zero. But if persons can live more than once, the probability that you would be alive now would be nonzero. Since you are alive now, with certainty, either the past is finite, or persons can live more than once.
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  18. Music and Vague Existence.David Friedell - 2017 - Res Philosophica 94 (4):437-449.
    I explain a tension between musical creationism and the view that there is no vague existence. I then suggest ways to reconcile these views. My central conclusion is that, although some versions of musical creationism imply vague existence, others do not. I discuss versions of musical creationism held by Jerrold Levinson, Simon Evnine, and Kit Fine. I also present two new versions. I close by considering whether the tension is merely an instance of a general problem raised by (...)
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  19. Grounding and the Existence of God.Joshua R. Sijuwade - 2021 - Metaphysica (2):193-245.
    In this article, I seek to assess the extent to which Theism, the claim that there is a God, can provide a true fundamental explanation for the instantiation of the grounding relation that connects the various entities within the layered structure of reality. More precisely, I seek to utilise the explanatory framework of Richard Swinburne within a specific metaphysical context, a ground-theoretic context, which will enable me to develop a true fundamental explanation for the existence of grounding. And thus, (...)
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  20. To Exist and to Count: A Note on the Minimalist View.Francesco Berto & Massimiliano Carrara - 2009 - Dialectica 63 (3):343-356.
    Sometimes mereologists have problems with counting. We often don't want to count the parts of maximally connected objects as full-fledged objects themselves, and we don't want to count discontinuous objects as parts of further, full-fledged objects. But whatever one takes "full-fledged object" to mean, the axioms and theorems of classical, extensional mereology commit us to the existence both of parts and of wholes – all on a par, included in the domain of quantification – and this makes mereology look (...)
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  21.  37
    Existence Value, Preference Satisfaction, and the Ethics of Species Extinction.Espen Dyrnes Stabell - 2019 - Environmental Ethics 41 (2):165-180.
    Existence value refers to the value humans ascribe to the existence of something, regard­less of whether it is or will be of any particular use to them. This existence value based on preference satisfaction should be taken into account in evaluating activities that come with a risk of species extinction. There are two main objections. The first is that on the preference satisfaction interpretation, the concept lacks moral importance because satisfying people’s preferences may involve no good or (...)
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  22. The Sense of Existence.Billon Alexandre - forthcoming - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy.
    If I see, hear, or touch a sparrow, the sparrow seems real to me. Unlike Bigfoot or Santa Claus, it seems to exist; I will therefore judge that it does indeed exist. The “sense of existence” refers to the kind of awareness that typically grounds such ordinary judgments of existence or “reality.” The sense of existence has been invoked by Humeans, Kantians, Ideologists, and the phenomenological tradition to make substantial philosophical claims. However, it is extremely controversial; its (...)
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  23. Existence Assumptions and Logical Principles: Choice Operators in Intuitionistic Logic.Corey Edward Mulvihill - 2015 - Dissertation, University of Waterloo
    Hilbert’s choice operators τ and ε, when added to intuitionistic logic, strengthen it. In the presence of certain extensionality axioms they produce classical logic, while in the presence of weaker decidability conditions for terms they produce various superintuitionistic intermediate logics. In this thesis, I argue that there are important philosophical lessons to be learned from these results. To make the case, I begin with a historical discussion situating the development of Hilbert’s operators in relation to his evolving program in the (...)
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  24. Existence Problems in Philosophy and Science.Peter W. Ross & Dale Turner - 2013 - Synthese 190 (18):4239-4259.
    We initially characterize what we’ll call existence problems as problems where there is evidence that a putative entity exists and this evidence is not easily dismissed; however, the evidence is not adequate to justify the claim that the entity exists, and in particular the entity hasn’t been detected. The putative entity is elusive. We then offer a strategy for determining whether an existence problem is philosophical or scientific. According to this strategy (1) existence problems are characterized in (...)
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  25.  28
    Group Duties: Their Existence and Their Implications for Individuals.Stephanie Collins - 2019 - Oxford University Press.
    Moral duties are regularly attributed to groups. Does this make conceptual sense or is this merely political rhetoric? And what are the implications for these individuals within groups? Collins outlines a Tripartite Model of group duties that can target political demands at the right entities, in the right way and for the right reasons.
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  26. Kant's Argument That Existence is Not a Determination.Nicholas F. Stang - 2015 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 91 (1):583-626.
    In this paper, I examine Kant's famous objection to the ontological argument: existence is not a determination. Previous commentators have not adequately explained what this claim means, how it undermines the ontological argument, or how Kant argues for it. I argue that the claim that existence is not a determination means that it is not possible for there to be non-existent objects; necessarily, there are only existent objects. I argue further that Kant's target is not merely ontological arguments (...)
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  27.  13
    Establishing the Existence of Things in Themselves.Banafsheh Beizaei - forthcoming - History of Philosophy of Quarterly.
    In the Critique of Pure Reason, Kant draws a distinction between appearances and things in themselves, characterizing the latter as uncognizable. While arguing that all we can cognize are appearances, Kant nevertheless maintains that there are thing in themselves. This has struck many as questionable: how can we be in a position to affirm, of things stipulated to be uncognizable, that they exist? In this paper, I take up the challenge of establishing the existence of things in themselves. I (...)
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  28.  12
    What If Light Doesn't Exist?Mario Hubert - 2022 - The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science.
    This is the BJPS Short Read version of the article When Fields Are Not Degrees of Freedom. In our article, Vera Hartenstein and I show that the world of classical electromagnetism might differ radically from the one we see in physics textbooks and experience day-to-day. First, light may not exist; second, the laws of electromagnetism are either incomplete or completely different; and, third, the mathematics needed to make exact calculations with these novel laws is in early development and not part (...)
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  29.  17
    Gibt es einen therapeutischen Imperativ zum genome editing in der menschlichen Keimbahn? [Is there a therapeutic imperative for editing the human germline genome? / Existe-t-il un impératif thérapeutique à l'édition du génome dans la lignée germinale humaine].Karla Alex & Christoph Rehmann-Sutter - 2022 - URPP Human Reproduction Reloaded | H2R (University of Zurich), Working Paper Series, 05/2022. Zurich and Geneva: Seismo 1 (5):1-21.
    Abstract: This working paper focuses on the question whether there is a therapeutic imperative that, in specific situations, would oblige us to perform genome editing at the germline level in the context of assisted reproduction. The answer to this central question is discussed primarily with reference to specific scenarios where preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) does not represent an acceptable alternative to germline genome editing based on either medical, or ethical, or – from the perspective of the potential parents – moral (...)
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  30. Existence and Free Logic.Dolf Rami - manuscript
    In this paper I aim to defend a first‐order non‐discriminating property view concerning existence. The version of this view that I prefer is based on negative (or a specific neutral) free logic that treats the existence predicate as first‐order logical predicate. I will provide reasons why such a view is more plausible than a second‐order discriminating property view concerning existence and I will also discuss four challenges for the proposed view and provide solutions to them.
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  31. Time and Simple Existence.Giuliano Torrengo - 2012 - Metaphysica 13 (2):125-130.
    Sceptics about substantial disputes in ontology often argue that when two philosophers seem to disagree on a quantified claim, they are actually equivocating on the notion of existence that they are using. When temporal elements play a central role, as in the debate between presentists and eternalists, the hypothesis of an equivocation with respect to existence acquires more plausibility. However, the anti-sceptic can still argue that this hypothesis is unjustified.
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  32. Existence Predicate.Reinhard Muskens - 1993 - In R. E. Asher & J. M. Y. Simpson (eds.), The Encyclopedia of Language and Linguistics. Oxford: Pergamon. pp. 1191.
    Kant said that existence is not a predicate and Russell agreed, arguing that a sentence such as ‘The king of France exists’, which seems to attribute existence to the king of France, really has a logical form that is not reflected in the surface structure of the sentence at all. While the surface form of the sentence consists of a subject and a predicate, the underlying logical form, according to Russell, is the formula given in. This formula obviously (...)
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  33. Vague Composition Without Vague Existence.Chad Carmichael - 2011 - Noûs 45 (2):315-327.
    David Lewis (1986) criticizes moderate views of composition on the grounds that a restriction on composition must be vague, and vague composition leads, via a precisificational theory of vagueness, to an absurd vagueness of existence. I show how to resist this argument. Unlike the usual resistance, however, I do not jettison precisificational views of vagueness. Instead, I blur the connection between composition and existence that Lewis assumes. On the resulting view, in troublesome cases of vague composition, there is (...)
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  34. Existence, Fundamentality, and the Scope of Ontology.Uriah Kriegel - 2015 - Argumenta 1 (1):97-109.
    A traditional conception of ontology takes existence to be its proprietary subject matter—ontology is the study of what exists (§ 1). Recently, Jonathan Schaffer has argued that ontology is better thought of rather as the study of what is basic or fundamental in reality (§ 2). My goal here is twofold. First, I want to argue that while Schaffer’s characterization is quite plausible for some ontological questions, for others it is not (§ 3). More importantly, I want to offer (...)
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  35. A Priority and Existence.Stephen Yablo - 2000 - In Paul Boghossian & Christopher Peacocke (eds.), New Essays on the a Priori. Oxford University Press. pp. 197.
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  36. Science as Social Existence: Heidegger and the Sociology of Scientific Knowledge.Jeff Kochan - 2017 - Cambridge, UK: Open Book Publishers.
    REVIEW (1): "Jeff Kochan’s book offers both an original reading of Martin Heidegger’s early writings on science and a powerful defense of the sociology of scientific knowledge (SSK) research program. Science as Social Existence weaves together a compelling argument for the thesis that SSK and Heidegger’s existential phenomenology should be thought of as mutually supporting research programs." (Julian Kiverstein, in Isis) ---- REVIEW (2): "I cannot in the space of this review do justice to the richness and range of (...)
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  37. All the Existences That There Are.Alberto Voltolini - 2012 - Disputatio 4 (32):361-383.
    In this paper, I will defend the claim that there are three existence properties: the second-order property of being instantiated, a substantive first-order property (or better a group of such properties) and a formal, hence universal, first-order property. I will first try to show what these properties are and why we need all of them for ontological purposes. Moreover, I will try to show why a Meinong-like option that positively endorses both the former and the latter first-order property is (...)
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  38. Complexity, Existence and Infinite Analysis.Giovanni Merlo - 2012 - The Leibniz Review 22:9-36.
    According to Leibniz’s infinite-analysis account of contingency, any derivative truth is contingent if and only if it does not admit of a finite proof. Following a tradition that goes back at least as far as Bertrand Russell, several interpreters have been tempted to explain this biconditional in terms of two other principles: first, that a derivative truth is contingent if and only if it contains infinitely complex concepts and, second, that a derivative truth contains infinitely complex concepts if and only (...)
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  39. Spinoza's Deification of Existence.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2013 - Oxford Studies in Early Modern Philosophy 6:75-104.
    The aim of this paper is to clarify Spinoza’s views on some of the most fundamental issues of his metaphysics: the nature of God’s attributes, the nature of existence and eternity, and the relation between essence and existence in God. While there is an extensive literature on each of these topics, it seems that the following question was hardly raised so far: What is, for Spinoza, the relation between God’s existence and the divine attributes? Given Spinoza’s claims (...)
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  40. Aquinas, Geach, and Existence.Damiano Costa - 2019 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 11 (3):175-195.
    Aquinas’ theory of being has received a growing amount of attention from contemporary scholars, both from a historic and a philosophical point of view. An important source of this attention is Geach’s seminal Form and Existence. In it, Geach argues that Aquinas subscribes to a tensed notion of existence and a theory of time according to which past and future entities do not exist in act. Subsequent commentators, such as Kenny in his Aquinas on Being, have agreed with (...)
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  41.  92
    Existence, Really? Tacit Disagreements About “Existence” in Disputes About Group Minds and Corporate Agents.Johannes Himmelreich - 2019 - Synthese 198 (5):4939-4953.
    A central dispute in social ontology concerns the existence of group minds and actions. I argue that some authors in this dispute rely on rival views of existence without sufficiently acknowledging this divergence. I proceed in three steps in arguing for this claim. First, I define the phenomenon as an implicit higher-order disagreement by drawing on an analysis of verbal disputes. Second, I distinguish two theories of existence—the theory-commitments view and the truthmaker view—in both their eliminativist and (...)
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  42. I Exist.Cosmin Visan - 2015 - Journal of Consciousness Exploration & Research 6 (3):185-193.
    Why is there something rather than nothing? This is probably the most profound question that can be asked. In this paper, a rather unexpected simple solution is provided. The solution comes from analysing the truth value of the proposition “I exist.” It will be shown that this proposition is always true, so our existence is a logical necessity. Speculations about the implications over the universe as a whole are then provided.
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  43. Why Does God Exist?C. A. Mcintosh - 2022 - Religious Studies 58 (1):236-257.
    Many philosophers have appealed to the PSR in arguments for a being that exists a se, a being whose explanation is in itself. But what does it mean, exactly, for something to have its explanation ‘in itself’? Contemporary philosophers have said next to nothing about this, relying instead on phrases plucked from the accounts of various historical figures. In this article, I analyse five such accounts – those of Anselm, Aquinas, Descartes, Spinoza, and Leibniz – and argue that none are (...)
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  44. In Defence of Existence Questions.Chris Daly & David Liggins - 2014 - Monist 97 (7):460–478.
    Do numbers exist? Do properties? Do possible worlds? Do fictional characters? Many metaphysicians spend time and effort trying to answer these and other questions about the existence of various entities. These inquiries have recently encountered opposition: a group of philosophers, drawing inspiration from Aristotle, have argued that many or all of the existence questions debated by metaphysicians can be answered trivially, and so are not worth debating. Our task is to defend existence questions from the neo-Aristotelians' attacks.
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  45.  65
    EXISTENCE(s) – Short Deep-Forage Chapters.István Király V. - 2017 - Saarbrucken, Germany: Lambert Academic Publishing.
    The chapters of the book are seemingly short, but deep explorations on the various fields and possibilities of human being and existence. Such explorations of course reorder and reformulate the timely and essential possibilities of philosophy and philosophizing. These together convey the true weight and stakes of things. For it is indeed so that: „Philosophy is destined to deal with the Deepest and most disturbing questions. It would hardly survive, if they were definitively solved.”.
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  46. De L’Existence À L’Existant.Emmanuel Lévinas - 1947 - Vrin.
    Une négation qui se voudrait absolue, mais niant tout existant -jusqu’à l’existant qu’est la pensée effectuant cette négation même- ne saurait mettre fin à la « scène » toujours ouverte de l’être, de l’être au sens verbal : être anonyme qu’aucun étant ne revendique, être sans étants ou sans êtres, incessant « remue-ménage », pour reprendre une métaphore de Blanchot, il y a impersonnel, comme un « il pleut » ou un « il fait nuit ». Terme foncièrement distinct du (...)
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  47. The Existence of Forms : Plato's Argument From the Possibility of Knowledge.Jurgis Brakas - 2011 - In Michael Bruce & Steven Barbone (eds.), Just the Arguments: 100 of the Most Important Arguments in Western Philosophy. Wiley-Blackwell.
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  48. Contingent Existence and Iterated Modality.Cian Dorr - 2017 - Analysis 77 (1):155-165.
    A discussion of a view, defended by Robert Adams and Boris Kment, according to which contingent existence requires rejecting many standard principles of propositional modal logic involving iterated modal operators.
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  49. Does Colour Constancy Exist?David H. Foster - 2003 - Trends in Cognitive Sciences 7 (10):439-443.
    For a stable visual world, the colours of objects should appear the same under different lights. This property of colour constancy has been assumed to be fundamental to vision, and many experimental attempts have been made to quantify it. I contend here, however, that the usual methods of measurement are either too coarse or concentrate not on colour constancy itself, but on other, complementary aspects of scene perception. Whether colour constancy exists other than in nominal terms remains unclear.
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  50. Why Should Syntactic Islands Exist?Eran Asoulin - 2020 - Mind and Language (1):114-131.
    Sentences that are ungrammatical and yet intelligible are instances of what I call perfectly thinkable thoughts. I argue that the existence of perfectly thinkable thoughts is revealing in regard to the question of why syntactic islands should exist. If language is an instrument of thought as understood in the biolinguistics tradition, then a uniquely human subset of thoughts is generated in narrow syntax, which suggests that island constraints cannot be rooted in narrow syntax alone and thus must reflect interface (...)
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