20 Philosophical Questions Most People Struggle to Understand

Philosophy invites us to explore the nature of existence encouraging contemplation on life’s most profound inquiries. Here we delve into a range of 20 questions that challenge our understanding and often leave us in deep thought.

What is the true essence of reality?

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The article titled ‘What Is the True Nature of Reality?’, published on the Curious Matrix website, explains how throughout history countless philosophers and scientists have grappled with the mysteries of reality. Their exploration encompasses both the realm encompassing matter and particles as well as the intangible aspects of existence. This philosophical dualism has sparked an array of probing questions; What truly constitutes the essence of the mind? How does it relate to the body? Do they exist independently? When we ponder the nature of the reality we inevitably question our perceptions. Contemplate the very core of existence.

Is there a truth?

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This inquiry challenges the concept of truths, versus realities prompting introspection on the nature of knowledge and certainty. Many philosophers consider truth to be a concept that cannot be fully explained in terms, than truth itself. The accepted perspective is that truth relates to how well our language or thoughts align, with a world that exists independently of our minds. This theory is known as the correspondence theory of truth.

How do we define good and evil?

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The intricacies of ethical standards vary across cultures and contexts adding complexity to this ever-debated subject. This debate has been published on the Medium website: The Philosophical Debate on the Nature of Good and Evil: Exploring the Boundaries of Morality offering various definitions and viewpoints, on what qualifies as good or evil conduct as well as the reasons and repercussions behind such behavior. The terms “good” and “evil” are often employed to discuss ethical actions. “Good” generally denotes behaviors that are considered upright such, as aiding others in speaking the truth, and avoiding harm. On the other hand, “evil” pertains to actions that are seen as incorrect like lying, cheating, or causing harm.

Are we truly free to make choices?

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The eternal debate between determinism and free will continues to captivate philosophers as they explore the boundaries and implications of the agency. The philosophical dilemma surrounding will and determinism revolves around the existence of will in the context of determinism. Therefore, it is essential to establish an understanding of what we mean by ” will” and “determinism.” There are generally two schools of thought, among philosophers when it comes to the concept of will. Compatibilists argue that free will simply means being able to do what we want without any form of coercion – in other words, actions. Incompatibilists believe our desires can be manipulated and argue that true free will requires having a choice. They believe that a choice is genuine only if we could have chosen differently if allowed to make the choice again.

What constitutes consciousness?

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Unraveling the mysteries of consciousness entails delving into the workings of our minds and understanding its relationship with our sense of identity. Consciousness according to the Cambridge Dictionary refers to the state of comprehending and acknowledging something. The Oxford Living Dictionary defines consciousness as being alert and responsive, to one’s environment or an individual’s awareness and perception of something.

Does life persist beyond death?

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The concept of an afterlife carries spiritual and philosophical implications but lacks definitive answers that satisfy all inquiries. Many people believe in an afterlife, which is the idea that a person’s consciousness or identity carries on even after their physical body has died.

What gives life meaning?

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This timeless philosophical inquiry evokes a multitude of interpretations ranging from perspectives to those rooted in spirituality or personal fulfillment. Meaning, in life as defined by researchers mentioned on this Greater Good Magazine website, generally encompasses three aspects. Firstly, it involves the conviction that your existence and the things you do hold significance, for both yourself and others. Secondly, it entails a sense of coherence, where your life feels meaningful and comprehensible. Lastly, it entails striving toward fulfilling objectives. 

How do we understand love?

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Exploring love encompasses examining its complexities from its forms to its impact, on relationships and human experiences. Love presents a challenge as we try to distinguish between forms of affection and understand their significance, in our lives. We often wonder about the influence of fate on our existence. To what extent are our lives predetermined versus shaped by the choices we make? Determining behavior is a task that requires careful consideration of societal norms, personal morals, and situational factors. 

Why are dreams important?

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Dreams play a role, in strengthening memory as supported by emerging research. It suggests that when new information is integrated into our dreams our ability to recall it after sleep becomes more robust. In this context, dreams can be seen as a way of revisiting and reinforcing what is significant and worth remembering. Dreams raise inquiries, about the mind, psychological processes, and their significance in our lives. 

Can we genuinely experience selflessness?

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Some people believe that a selfless act is one where no personal gain, whether material or otherwise is obtained through helping others and making sacrifices. The true intentions of someone who performs such an act are often unknown making it difficult to determine whether the action was genuinely selfless. This exploration investigates whether acts of altruism are truly free from gain or hidden motives. 

What is the essence of time?

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Grasping the concept of time involves exploring its measurement, perception, and role in the universe. To put it differently when we say “time is of the essence ” it means that the timing is crucial, for fulfilling the contract. For instance, in a contract involving the purchase of goods, a clause might emphasize that “timely fulfillment of all sellers’ obligations regarding the delivery of the purchased goods, to the buyer is essential.”

Do universal human rights exist?

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This subject delves into the debate between human rights and culturally relative norms. The concept of rights suggests that these rights are applicable, to all individuals solely based on their humanity. One notable objection, to the notion of universality arises from ” relativism,” which argues that universal human rights can be seen as imposing values and cultural dominance.

Is progress always beneficial?

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This reflection evaluates the effects of advancements societal changes and cultural developments on humanity and the environment. It varies based on the situation. The effects generated. Advancements can result in results, like enhanced standards of living, growth, and societal progress. Nevertheless, advancements can also bring about repercussions such, as deterioration, unequal social conditions, and moral quandaries.

How does language shape our thoughts?

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Examining the connection, between language and thought entails understanding how language influences our perception and comprehension of the world. The concept of relativity suggests that the language we use directly shapes our perception of the world. In terms, our ability to perceive aspects of reality is limited to what our language allows us to express with words.

Can we choose our emotions, or do they happen to us?

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There are times when we may feel like our moods are, beyond our control. It’s important to remember that moods aren’t something that simply occurs randomly. We have the power to influence and alter them. Being able to select the mood for a given situation is a skill associated with emotional intelligence. Choosing terms of our mood can greatly assist us in managing any circumstance we find ourselves in.

Is lying ever a good thing?

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Determining what constitutes a “lie is often subjective and reliant, on both the situation and the motives, behind the deception. There are instances where individuals may rationalize dishonesty as a means to spare someone’s emotions prevent harm or foster an outcome.

How does culture form?

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As more individuals embrace and incorporate concepts the culture expands. New Cultural Ideas Formation. When a cultural notion is articulated individuals generate concepts that either challenge or support existing ideas. Once these ideas are shared the cycle starts anew. With each iteration dominant cultural notions gain validation.

Is attractiveness a cultural construct?

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This abstract published on the National Library of Medicine website discusses the field of psychology beauty, as not being something that is shaped by culture. Instead, it is believed to be a part of biology and not something that is learned. Our preferences, for traits, are seen as adaptations for choosing potential mates because these traits can indicate qualities, in a partner.

Is there a difference between faith and superstition?

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A highly debatable topic mentioned in PubMed under the topics of ‘superstition, faith, delusion’ where is talks about superstition seen as a way, for individuals who lack self-confidence and feel threatened to try and compensate for their insecurities. Religious faith on the other hand can be described as a dedication, to finding purpose in life.

What does it mean to feel happy?

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Positive Psychology defines happiness as a state that encompasses more than experiencing emotions like joy and contentment. It also includes a sense of meaning and value, in life as described by Lyubomirsky (2001). Happiness is a source of energy and something we all strive for.

Read More: 17 Things Society Can No Longer Do Because Gen Z Said So

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Gen Z, our digital-native, trendsetting generation, is making waves in the cultural sea, steering the ship of societal norms in fresh and unexpected directions. As they charter new territories, there are certain practices they’d rather we say goodbye to. Curious? Let’s take a look at 17 things the rest of us can no longer do because Gen Z said so.

17 Things Society Can No Longer Do Because Gen Z Said So

18 Common Traits Found in Adults Who Had Unhappy Childhoods

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Being a parent is a hard job, so even those who are truly trying their best will often miss the mark on creating the best environment for their children. Unfortunately, this means that many of us grow up with far-from-perfect childhoods that affect us into adulthood. Here are 18 common traits found in adults who had unhappy childhoods.

18 Common Traits Found in Adults Who Had Unhappy Childhoods

18 Things Old People Just Can’t Get On Board with Today

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Over the past few decades, society has evolved, and with it, so have a few things that older generations find it uncomfortable to get the hang of. While younger generations are easily able to adapt to these changes, some of which are drastic, others may be struggling slightly. Here are 18 things the elderly may have difficulty learning.

18 Things Old People Just Can’t Get On Board with Today

19 Big Mistakes People Make After Losing a Spouse

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Losing a spouse is one of life’s most tragic experiences, and when we’re overwhelmed by grief, we might make some decisions that we’ll later regret. Here are 19 mistakes people make after losing their spouse.

19 Big Mistakes People Make After Losing a Spouse

20 Time-Honored Practices Our Grandparents Followed That We Should Bring Back

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Our grandparents had a far simpler life. There was no such thing as social media. Instead, there was more walking and meals were always fresh and homemade. With so many things keeping us busy nowadays, sometimes life would seem much easier if we lived the way our grandparents did.

20 Time-Honored Practices Our Grandparents Followed That We Should Bring Back