Existence: Philosophical Definition

philosophy existence

Philosophy and Existence

Without having been ignored or overshadowed by the thought of the Middle Ages or the reflection of the eighteenth century, the notion of existence finds its richest development in the nineteenth century (in Kierkegaard philosophy) and in modern times, with Merleau-Ponty and Sartre, who taught that  “existence precedes essence. ” From 1945 to 1960, the term of existence becomes widely used.

Existentia in Latin, the concept of existence commonly refers to all events of human life. Thought under the philosophy, the notion of existence refers to the act of actually being there. It is an emergence of man in the world.

Definitions of Philosophers:


“… by definition, existence is not the necessity. To exist is to be there, simply, the existing appear, let meet, but we can never claim it”

“By Existence, we do not mean a stable substance that sits in itself but a perpetual imbalance, a pullout itself throughout the body”


“The existence in the modern sense, is the movement by which man is the world enters into a situation becomes physical and social point of view on the world. ”

“Life is the continuous movement by which man takes up and takes a factual situation. ”

St. Thomas:

“It is clear that what I call existence is the act of acts and the perfection of perfections. ”


– “The best proof of the misery of existence is that which derives from the contemplation of its magnificence”

– “Life is the reef on which pure thought is wrecked”


– “Man is the only creature who refuses to be what it is”


– “The life of a man is a struggle for existence with the certainty of defeat”


Cite this article as: Tim, "Existence: Philosophical Definition, June 16, 2012, " in Philosophy & Philosophers, June 16, 2012, https://www.the-philosophy.com/existence-philosophical-definition.

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