In Star Trek
IV (Voyage Home
(the one with the whale
s)) the question about someone's metaphysical
law. Turns out that 'someone' is supposed to be a Vulcan philosopher
Is this consistent with what we know of Vulcans?
There are three words, rather simple words at that. At first glance
it seems a simple obvious statement. There is a lot behind them.
Nothing: The complete lack of 'something'. The empty set
isn't even nothing, for it is a set. Nothing is the complete lack of
Unreal: Webster has three definitions for unreal:
- Not real or actual;
- imaginary; fanciful; [illusory; fantastic.
- lacking truth; not genuine; false; artificial.
Exists: What is existence and non-existence?
Plato held that Forms existed,
and much of his philosophy revolves around the form of Justice.
To Plato, these forms were real. Draw a circle. This is not a real
circle, there are imperfections in it; not all points are equally
distant from the center. Yet, when I say 'circle' you know what
I mean even though there can be no such thing on earth. What common
thing do you and I access when we talk of circles, triangles,
Plato held that these were forms and during certain parts of our
life we had perfect access to these concepts and remember them.
Webster defines 'exists' as "To have actual being; to have life or
animation; to continue to be". One example that is given is
'Belief in magic still exists'; thus something as insubstantial
as a belief in one person constitutes existence.
So, how could we prove that nothing unreal exists, show that the
inverse of the sentence is not consistent. Logically, one would
write 'Nothing unreal exists' as ~Ex(~Rx & Xx). There is not
something that is not real and exists. So, the inverse of this
would be Ex(~Rx & Xx) which translates to 'There is something
that is not real and exists'.
Is there anything that is 'unreal' that exists?
Lets take several things that potentially exist, and consider
if they are 'unreal'.
- a Circle
Do these things exist? Yes.
Are any of them considered to be unreal?
That is the crux of the matter.