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Does "nothingness" exist?

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posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 08:11 PM
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I've been involved in an on-going discussion involving the existence of "nothingness". It started out as a discussion involving the(IMO) established scientific dogma that the burden of proof is only on a positive claim.

It goes a little something like this:

Me: "The burden of proof cannot ONLY be placed on an affirmative claim because "negative" claims do not exist. "Negative" claims are simply claims implying the lack of an "affirmative" ie darkness is the lack of light."

Several other individuals: "We cannot prove that countless things do not exist, leprechaun's, fairies, gods, etc. It is a true claim to claim that those things do not exist outside of ones mind as of right now and as far as scientific evidence is concerned."

Me: Concerning physics, NOTHING is actually SOMETHING ie the "nothingness" of space is classified as a "vacuum". Therefore, in relation, your claim of "nothing" is actually a claim of "something".

Same individuals +/- 1: You are confused. Non-belief is not a belief. Its the lack and absence of belief. Simple logic here.

Me: If non-existence is true, then it EXISTS as "non-existence". Therefore your "non-belief" is a BELIEF in "non-belief".
To elaborate: non-existence is defined as the condition of not existing and therefore it must EXIST in that condition.


After some time, I've begun to tie myself in a knot, figuratively speaking.

Any help here?

Does "non-existence" or "nothingness" exist?

-AND-

Does "nothingness" apply to polarity? ie does "nothingness" equate to a "negative" claim?

Is a "negative" claim actually a "positive" claim in the same sense that "nothing" is actually "something"...?

A2D

[edit on 22-12-2009 by Agree2Disagree]




posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 08:27 PM
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Why of course nothingness exists.

The importance of nothingness cannot be underestimated.

1) the mere contemplation of nothingness brings it to reality.

2)Nothing is a very important value in the solving of quadratic equations, or a fancy loophole to divide by zero.

3) Nothing can get your children to eat broccoli!

and finally,


4) nothing always seems to be the matter when you ask your spouse/sig-other. ie:"what is the matter hon?"
the answer is 87.6% of the time "nothing"

so you see, in these few examples, Nothing plays a very significant role in the reality we call our lives.


soooo....whats the matter with nothing?



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 08:36 PM
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reply to post by Zeptepi
 


So we agree that "nothingness" is actually "something". That's a very good start from where I left off on the other discussion. They could not even agree with that statement.

Now, this may be where it gets a little tricky.

Does "nothingness" apply to polarity? ie does "nothingness" equate to a "negative" claim?

Is a "negative" claim actually a "positive" claim in the same sense that "nothing" is actually "something"...?



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 08:41 PM
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Well, recently I learned that 'nothingness' exists, as I regard 'nothingness', anyway

Lying in bed, still quite awake -- and then 'nothingness'

It only lasted a second or so, I guess

Never experienced anything like it before

It was as if everything had been turned-off -- suddenly

Then, a moment later, it was over

Shook me to my core and I lay there wondering if I'd been turned-off by mistake by the Grim Reaper's squad -- the way there can be a momentary ceasation of electrical power

I'm not afraid of death, but the 'nothingness' incident did disturb me

It wasn't like being in a totally blacked-out room. Wasn't like being unconscious. Wasn't like being asleep. That's why it shook me and continues to intrigue

It was total .. total .. nothingness. Even to say it was an 'impersonal nothing' would be an overstatement, because even with impersonal nothingness there's still room for the possibility of other, unseen, uncaring presences or at least something behind the nothingness.

The nothingness I experienced was as the word implies -- nothing


So yes, per my brief experience, I tend to the belief that 'nothingness' .. total absence of anything/everything .. does 'exist'

--- the horrible element being that apparently (as my experience demonstrated) we can be conscious of nothingness. And it's not enjoyable, imo

[edit on 22-12-2009 by Dock9]



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 08:43 PM
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reply to post by Dock9
 


Again, maybe my actual question wasn't as clear as I'd like it to have been. I'll ask you what I asked the above poster...

Does "nothingness" apply to polarity? ie does "nothingness" equate to a "negative" claim?

Is a "negative" claim actually a "positive" claim in the same sense that "nothing" is actually "something"...?



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 09:01 PM
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reply to post by Agree2Disagree
 


Too abstract for me, I'm afraid

Not evading your question deliberately, other than to say, I choose not to complicate things unnecessarily. Life's short enough

The 'nothing' I experienced was cold, final, total 'nothing'. It was damn powerful. If my systems hadn't been 'turned on' again a second later, I wouldn't have had the opportunity to reflect on it .. to 'savour' the experience

Because, during that brief period of 'nothingness', I was without thought. It was like a sledgehammer blow. Bang. Cold nothingness.

It was only when things returned to normal (lying there in a blackened room) that I was able to remember the nothingness a moment after it had occurred. That's how I'm able to describe (oxymoronic claim I realise) the 'nothingness'.

Ever been unconscious? Well, unconsciousness is 'warm' compared to the 'nothingness' I so briefly experienced. And being asleep (which most of us regard as a 'sort of' experience of nothingness) is positively cheerful and balmy in comparison to real nothingness

As I say, I've never experienced anything like it before. I've had some interesting experiences, all spontaneous, similiar in a way to a 'sampler' box of chocolates. I'm always grateful for these, despite that some have been scary

The nothingness incident was beyond 'scary'. It was and is sobering, very.

' Is nothing actually something' ? Well ... is the inside of a vacuum 'something' ? No doubt there are those who would claim so, although it's not a topic that much grabs me

There's no adequate means of describing nothingness, as experienced personally, other than to repeat it is unlike any form of nothingness imaginable

It's extremely powerful and leaves the experiencer in no doubt at all as to how unimportant and powerless they are. Imagine a heavy bank-vault door crushing your head in an instant. Then multiply by something to the order of 1,000



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 09:06 PM
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reply to post by Dock9
 


AWWW


I am disappointed that you find this too abstract of a concept. However, thank you for your contribution.

It's interesting to think that one could experience nothing...

I would think if it is subject to being experienced then it MUST be SOMETHING...

Thank you again.



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 09:06 PM
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It can be said that all sets contain the empty set, which is the most abstract mathematical "proof" of the notion that nothing is inextricably connected to everything. There is no distilling the two apart.

Because of this 0 can be said to be similar to all numbers.

edit: no reason to provide a proof since this is a very commonly accepted mathematical statement and the details seem to cause more confusion than it resolves. If you have any doubt about the above statement simply go to Wolfram | Alpha and type:

Solve[a + b = a - b, 3]

[edit on 22-12-2009 by Xtraeme]



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 09:06 PM
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Nothing is neither negative nor positive, as something is neither negative or positive. It simply is a state. State of Consciousness, of Being, of Existence.

Nothing only seems negative due to the implications of such a word. The conditioned idea that nothing id worse than something.

i dont know if what im saying is making any sense. When i reread it it sounds absurd.

But anyway, nothing is something.

Love and Peace



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 09:08 PM
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reply to post by Agree2Disagree
 


Your Question brings me to mind an apparent inhabitant
of nothingness (by virtue of his deceased existence).

George Carlin was a great folk philosopher and comedian.
Now from his current perspective, would he consider our recollection of him to be merely "nothing"? Or would his current state of nothingness reflect on us a manifestation of the state of his nonexistence?

Same as your question as far as the state of polarity.
The perspective of the observer is always of prime consideration here. There are, in fact, sub-atomic particles that only manifest themselves if an observer predisposes him/herself to be in a position to observe them. So do they really exist? yes. Are they also a part of nothingness? Yes.

The duality of somthing vs. nothing cannot be examined in the same philosophical way as, for example, light and dark. I know that you understand that concept. Just brining it to fore in the anticipation of some future poster that currently resides in the realm of nothingness.....see?



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 09:08 PM
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reply to post by Xtraeme
 




Maths...I hate them.

Your post just made me do the ultimate facepalm. Perhaps you can put this in layman's terms for me?



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 09:17 PM
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Originally posted by M157yD4wn
Nothing is neither negative nor positive, as something is neither negative or positive. It simply is a state. State of Consciousness, of Being, of Existence.

Nothing only seems negative due to the implications of such a word. The conditioned idea that nothing id worse than something.

i dont know if what im saying is making any sense. When i reread it it sounds absurd.

But anyway, nothing is something.

Thank you for your reply. And just so you know, it does make sense.

Now...what really interests me is that you say it is "SIMPLY A STATE", neither negative or positive.

In the same respect, are negative claims and positive claims both SIMPLY CLAIMS? Therefore, both subjectible to the burden of proof?



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 09:17 PM
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I think the idea as used by certain evangellical neo-atheists of "non-belief" is nothing more than a nonsense semantic loophole they use to attempt to hide a negative belief and they believe this sets themselves set above in their mind those they choose as opponent. If they had never encountered or considered the concepts they rail against, then yes that would be a "non-belief" but they obviously have.


 
Posted Via ATS Mobile: m.abovetopsecret.com
 



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 09:19 PM
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reply to post by Watcher-In-The-Shadows
 


Thank you for your reply Watcher. I completely agree...semantic loopholes and established dogma....however I'm trying to keep my own opinion out of this thread for a little bit longer.


A2D



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 09:19 PM
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Originally posted by Agree2Disagree
reply to post by Xtraeme
 


Maths...I hate them.


Be still my broken heart.



Your post just made me do the ultimate facepalm. Perhaps you can put this in layman's terms for me?


Made it simpler! No more proof necessary.


[edit on 22-12-2009 by Xtraeme]



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 09:22 PM
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reply to post by Xtraeme
 


Okay. Thank you for that elaboration.


Seems easy enough, I don't know why I couldn't grasp it the first time.

Perhaps my thinker has just been on over-drive for too long.



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 09:24 PM
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Originally posted by Agree2Disagree
Me: Concerning physics, NOTHING is actually SOMETHING ie the "nothingness" of space is classified as a "vacuum". Therefore, in relation, your claim of "nothing" is actually a claim of "something".

That's right. Nothing is impossible. For it to be, it would have to be definable, I mean, WHAT would nothing be .. and THAT right there would still be something, the definition of nothing is what prevents nothing from being possible. It is for the same reason ZERO is not a real number. ZERO, nothing, is impossible without inferring what that isn't .. it's not one .. two .. three .... and so on. It's the same reason the matrix, the multiverse, always was, is, and will be. Nothing, zero, is simply impossible.



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 09:30 PM
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If we Start with “Nothing” we soon discover that Nothing is in Fact “Something”, which of Course
is “Nothing”, and yet in a strange way is “Something”…. LOL.

For an example a “Void” is said to Contain “Nothing”!

And if we look at a Void it is defined as having Two Components!

a. Its Boundaries of the location in question, even if it is just Conceptual.
b. What is contained, in this location in question, in this case “Nothing”.

Often people use the Word “Nothing”, saying for example, “There is “Nothing” out there.”
Or there is Nothing in there.”
Or he/she said Nothing.

So as you can see the component we refer to as “Nothing” is in fact Identifiable and therefore is Something. Therefore “Nothing” can and does exist.

If we ask a very young child, what is in an empty cup or glass presented to the child, in most cases
this is the result.

(Yes I know that the cup has air in it but let us exclude the air for a second.)

Ask the Child,

“What is in the cup?”

The Child in most cases will answer,

“Nothing”

And if you ask the Child,

“What shape is it?” (Referring to the Nothing)

I can guarantee the Child will say,

“Round!”

Now isn’t that the strangest thing to say?

Hmmmmm….

Looks like the Child can Identify this “Nothing”. And even stranger, understands it has Shape!

Again if you ask the Child,

“How Deep is it?”

The Child will always show you, by pointing at the Top of the cup then the Bottom.

So now let’s take another Look at this very, very peculiar thing, called “Nothing”.

If I go to my professor and say I want to talk about Nothing, I can see those people in white coats coming to take me away … LOL

Before Nothing/Something can be understood or explored, Awareness had to exist first!

And that is of Course is “Consciousness”.

Before anything can exist there first must be Awareness otherwise Nothing at all can manifest or even exist.

OK what is “Awareness”?



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 09:31 PM
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Most posters have confirmed that nothing is actually something.

Now, I would like to discuss existence and nonexistence.

Does "nonexistence" exist? If it does, wouldn't that create a paradox in which it EXISTS and therefore would no longer be "nonexistence"?



posted on Dec, 22 2009 @ 09:34 PM
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reply to post by awakened sleeper
 


Thank you for that A.S. Very insightful and it made me chuckle as well.

I'm a little frightened of those guys in lab coats as well. I'm a tad-bit claustrophobic.



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