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What is a Metaphysics?

  1. May 5, 2014 #1
    Hi!

    Can someone please explain me a metaphysics in detail?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. May 5, 2014 #2
  4. May 5, 2014 #3
    I tried,but it didn't work. I just need to know what it is in simple words with some general example.
     
  5. May 5, 2014 #4

    Evo

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    The explanation is in the wikipedia link provided.

    If you can't open it, do a search for metaphysics, you'll find the definition.
     
  6. May 5, 2014 #5
    "the branch of philosophy that deals with the first principles of things, including abstract concepts such as being, knowing, substance, cause, identity, time, and space."
     
  7. May 5, 2014 #6

    jim hardy

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    it's usually helpful to examine the roots of an unfamiliar term. Try a search on "metaphysical etymology" .

    Meta= beyond,
    so what's beyond physical ? Philosophy, i guess, and maybe the occult.
     
  8. May 6, 2014 #7
    Philosophy has three* principal parts, metaphysics being one of them broadly deals with the same topics as science but often without the focus on empiricism and scientific method, like Aristotelian hand-waving . The branch is IMO- a dead one.

    A note on the etymology (wiki):

    The editor of Aristotle's works, Andronicus of Rhodes, is thought to have placed the books on first philosophy right after another work, Physics, and called them τὰ μετὰ τὰ φυσικὰ βιβλία (ta meta ta physika biblia) or "the books that come after the [books on] physics". This was misread by Latin scholiasts, who thought it meant "the science of what is beyond the physical".

    The error is a frequent one and has made it almost synonymous to pseudoscience.

    Another on the definition in #5:

    "the branch of philosophy that deals with the first principles of things, including abstract concepts such as being, knowing, substance, cause, identity, time, and space."

    'knowing' largely falls into epistemology (the theory of knowledge and the second branch of philosophy, the third being ethics) and not metaphysics.

    (*Well, 5 if you count logic and aesthetics...)
    P.S. Er...why do we have a live philosophy thread? I would report it, but I love my post-count.
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2014
  9. May 6, 2014 #8

    jim hardy

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    Webster, as usual, has a concise and reasonable offering:

    http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/metaphysics

    From a long and erudite article on the subject:

    http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/metaphysics/#WorMetConMet

    So to original question, which was:
    I don't think so.
     
  10. May 6, 2014 #9

    Evo

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    This thread has been answered, thanks all.
     
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