An Idle Question?
Why is there something rather than nothing?
One might next wonder whether there could have been nothing? Even if there were actually nothing, would there not always be the possibility of something? Is that not a real potency? Even if there were no actual possibility, might there not have been the possibility of the possibility?
Can there be both something and nothing? Is there any actual instance of nothingness? Or does the slightest something, or even the possibility of something, forever banish nothingness? Is there still the real possibility of nothing?
Is there nothing between worlds or between possible worlds? What is there between you and me, baby?
Could an objective emptiness or absence ever be as real as the its subjective counterpart? Is there such a thing as an objective absence? Nothing is conceivable only as absence. Ergo, true nothingness is inconceivable. There can be no nothing, unless there is a true know nothing. Ain't that something?
If nothing were possible, how many nothings could there be, in addition to something? Would the identity of indiscernibles allow there to be two nothings? Can one person be absent in two different places at the same time? But would it make sense for there to be just one nothing. There could only be no nothings, which is what I have been trying unsuccessfully to say.
And what of the Monster group? Might that not have existed? Is there any world were it does not or could not possibly exist?
Might I never have existed? Might I never have possibly existed? If I could possibly exist, then I would have to actually exist in a possible world, but would that not also have to be my actual world, and is that not also this world? But supposedly God is the only necessary being, so God and I must be the same being, QED. (At least that must be true in my actually possible world.) Just your basic mystical insight.
What is the smallest world that could exist? Well, if nothing could exist, the smallest world would be only infinitesimally larger. The possible absurdity of that notion indicates there must be a lower limit of some kind on what it means to be a world. Any world has to be big enough to contain the abstraction of the Monster group which is about the size of Jupiter.
Is there an upper limit on a world? A world might possibly be infinite, but that could not be known and it would be inconceivable. If the world is relational, and how could it not be, an objective infinity is not relationally possible. Only a subjective infinity is possible.
Among the finite possible worlds, there is one that is best by all measures. All other worlds serve no conceivable function.[*] If the principle of sufficient reason is possible, non-optimal worlds are impossible.
[*later on 6/13] [Functionalism was once popular as an explanation of mind. Taken literally, functionalism would confer reality only upon functions. As such I can see no logical distinction between functionalism and Leibniz' PSR, which by the same token is not distinct from basic pragmatism, frequently noted for its for its supervenience upon idealism.]
<-- Prev. Next -->