to exist ontologically

noun: ontological existence; verb: to exist ontologically;

See term definition in Google search | Wikipedia

Proposed explanation/definition:

  • To exist ontologically is to exist as a fundamental (non-divisible) entity.

Objections to the term

Linguistic objections

Constituent terms and their meanings are following:

  • exist - have objective reality or being;
  • ontologically - relating to or based upon being or existence;

So if we substitute constituent terms we get:

  • to exist ontologically is to have objective being in relation to being.

This sentence is tautological - it circularly references itself and word ontologically doesn't add any new information. For this reason adjective "ontologically" is not needed.

Logical objections

Ontology is study of existence. It deals with various forms of existence - ordinary objects, ideas, etc. See Ontological categories for reference. So to classify ontological existence as one of the existence forms would do a disservice to the whole field of ontology and confuse readers.

Better alternatives

Definition would be less confusing if some less problematic adjective would be selected. In philosophy there is a concept of Simple - any thing that has no proper parts, or in other words cannot be divided in smaller parts. So what was meant to say is - to exist as a simple is to exist as a fundamental (non-divisible) entity.

  1. Wikipedia article Simple (philosophy). Retrieved on 12/8/2021.
  2. "Do Chairs Exist?". YouTube. Retrieved on 12/8/2021.

Last updated on 12/11/2021


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