Metaphysics: Theory of Everything

Reality is existence, and existence is everything. Every theory of everything must start there.

There’s existence, and there’s essence. These two things are separate but not separable.

In the language of Thomas Aquinas, esse (or essence) is identity: To be, in other words, is to be something.

The conclusion is inescapable because (as Aristotle noted) the only alternative to that which exists is that which does not exist. But that which does not exist doesn’t exist.

“There is no nothing,” said Victor Hugo.

Nothing, by definition, is not something.

The only alternative to reality, therefore, is unreality, which, as the very word implies, is not real — i.e. which isn’t.

These principles form the fundamental laws of metaphysics — metaphysics being the study of ultimate reality (meta for “beyond” and physics for “physical reality”).

New-Age pseudo-philosophy has unfortunately bastardized and perverted the term metaphysics, but please don’t be duped. Nothing is more important than metaphysics. It is the highest part of philosophy, the part from which all others derive, the science of “being as being.”

The universe (paraphrasing Thomas Aquinas) is the sum of everything that exists. That’s what the universe is. That’s not what it may be, and that’s not what some people might think. That’s what the universe actually is.

The universe is everything. There can thus not be “the possibility of many universes,” as many modern physicists would have us believe.

Nor is there anything “beyond the universe”:

If something exists, it is by definition part of the universe.

If it does not exist, it does not exist.

Metaphysically, the fact of existence is the peg upon which the entirety of human knowledge hangs.

Without it, knowledge degenerates into a buccal-fecal carnival of solipsism, skepticism, postmodernism, and relativism.

The proper defense of independent reality is as follows:

Any attempt to deny existence refutes itself at the outset, because even the barest, most laconic denial of existence implies some kind of existence.

Quoting the man Dante called “the master of him who knows”:

“Why a thing is itself” is a meaningless inquiry, for the fact or existence of the thing must already be evident … but the fact that a thing is itself is the single reason and the single cause to be given to all such questions as “why is man man” or “the musician musical” (Aristotle, Metaphysics 7.16.1041a15-18).

And again:

He who examines the most general features of existence, must investigate also the principles of reasoning. For he who gets the best grasp of his respective subject will be most able to discuss its basic principles. So that he who gets the best grasp of existing things qua existing must be able to discuss the basic principles of all existence; and he is the philosopher. And the most certain principle of all is that about which it is impossible to be mistaken… It is clear, then, that such a principle is the most certain of all and we can state it thus: “It is impossible for the same thing at the same time to belong and not belong to the same thing at the same time and in the same respect” (Aristotle, Metaphysics, 1005b12-20).

In support of which, his pupil, Thomas Aquinas, added this:

Nature is what we call everything that can in anyway be captured by the intellect, for a thing is not intelligible except through its definition and essence…. All around us are existing things. They are certainly different, but they all exist.

Metaphysically, then, the facts are these:

Existence is everything.

There is no nothing.

Existence is reality.

Reality is what’s real.

Nature is reality.

The universe is everything.

Nature is the universe.

There is no “super-nature.”

All else proceeds from that.

9 Comments

  • JA

    February 25, 2010

    Moon’s movement viewed from the Sun.
    A gigantic wave function of a particle, the Moon has done.
    Pouring metaphors and hypotheses… and the collisions.

    A probability…

    we make our final concessions.
    And a perfect stopline of human contemplation,rushing towards that unrealistic adaptability and conciliation.

    Fire…

  • BedazzledCrone

    February 25, 2010

    Take that BedazzledCrone!!!! Ray we know that I will have a lengthy response to this one in the future – stay tuned.

  • Denny

    February 26, 2010

    Ray,

    Interesting and with Truth! I would say that “perception” is what one takes of “Reality”. To perceive one has to be aware! For otherwise “Nothing” would encompass one’s idealogy. “Self-Realization” is a “key” factor towards belief in the Universe. True, it doesn’t change the fact the physical world is there is an experience thru one’s “senses”. Human’s desire to explore is His “self-preservation” towards Himself and the Species! Without this Human’s would not continue to exsist.

    Marshep, it’s good to know you’re still around, I miss your comments as well…

    Best of Regards My Friend,
    Denny

  • Christian Costa

    April 15, 2012

    Friend,

    “True” by what our senses intent to known as the “every” but will not be multiply universes one face of this unique reality?

    Best Regards!!

  • Jeff

    April 18, 2012

    Art Critic:

    Some people have made the mistake of seeing Shunt’s work as a load of rubbish about railway timetables, but clever people like me, who talk loudly in restaurants, see this as a deliberate ambiguity, a plea for understanding in a mechanized world. The points are frozen, the beast is dead. What is the difference? What indeed is the point? The point is frozen, the beast is late out of Paddington. The point is taken. If La Fontaine’s elk would spurn Tom Jones the engine must be our head, the dining car our oesophagus, the guard’s van our left lung, the cattle truck our shins, the first-class compartment the piece of skin at the nape of the neck and the level crossing an electric elk called Simon. The clarity is devastating. But where is the ambiguity? It’s over there in a box. Shunt is saying the 8.15 from Gillingham when in reality he means the 8.13 from Gillingham. The train is the same only the time is altered. Ecce homo, ergo elk. La Fontaine knew his sister and knew her bloody well. The point is taken, the beast is moulting, the fluff gets up your nose. The illusion is complete; it is reality, the reality is illusion and the ambiguity is the only truth. But is the truth, as Hitchcock observes, in the box? No there isn’t room, the ambiguity has put on weight. The point is taken, the elk is dead, the beast stops at Swindon, Chabrol stops at nothing, I’m having treatment and La Fontaine can get knotted.

    Sorry, I couldn’t resist.

    Well, I could but I didn’t which when it comes to reality is the same thing.

    Well, perhaps not the same thing, but close. At least you can see it from there.

    But like Hitchcock, it’s not a pretty sight.

  • Ray

    April 18, 2012

    Christ, friend, what was that little piece of magic inspired by?

    Thank you. And thank you for dropping by.

  • Jeff

    April 19, 2012

    Old Monty Python Flying Circus skit.

  • Lorne

    May 1, 2012

    Thats debatable

  • Ray

    May 3, 2012

    What is, Lorne?

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