(redirected from Absense)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal.



a synonym for being—the being of matter and of consciousness—in dialectical materialist philosophy. Throughout the history of philosophy, the concept of existence has usually been applied to a thing’s external being, which, in contrast to a thing’s essence, is comprehended by experience rather than by thought. Scholasticism perceived the duality of essence and existence as reflecting a fundamental dichotomy in the natural, or created, universe—a dichotomy sublated only in god: the existence of a thing is not deducible from its essence but is ultimately determined by the creative will of god.

The British empiricists of the 17th and 18th centuries, such as Locke and Hume, recognized the reality of isolated facts, whose existence cannot be deduced in any way and which are determined by sense experience, the source of all knowledge. Modern rationalism, as taught by Descartes, Spinoza, Fichte, and Hegel, bases its interpretation of existence on the unity of thought and being. Essentially, these philosophers regard existence as something reasonable, or rational. Leibniz and Kant attempted to reconcile these two viewpoints.

Leibniz recognizes two kinds of truth: the eternal truths of reason and the truths of fact. According to Leibniz, however, the distinction between the two exists only within human reason, which is finite; in divine reason the distinction is sublated. Kant recognizes the ontological significance of the existence of the unknowable “thing-in-itself”: such existence, in principle, is not logically deducible, since it is impossible logically to deduce the existence of any sense phenomenon. Reason provides formal connections only, while the senses furnish the material for reason.

With Kierkegaard, the category of existence acquires a basically new meaning. In contraposition to rationalism—Hegel’s, in particular—Kierkegaard proposes that existence be understood as that human reality which is apprehended directly. Existence, according to Kierkegaard, is unique, personal, and finite. Finite existence has its own destiny and is historical in nature, for in Kierkegaard’s view history is inseparable from the finiteness of existence, from its nonrepeatability—that is, from destiny.

In the 20th century, Kierkegaard’s concept of existence has been revived and plays a central role in the existentialism of K. Jaspers, M. Heidegger, J.-P. Sartre, and G. Marcel. In this school of thought, existence (from which the term “existentialism” derives) is correlated, as it were, with transcendence—that is, with man’s extension beyond his own limits. According to existentialism, both the link between existence and transcendence, which is inaccessible to thought, and the finiteness of existence are revealed by the very fact of existence. On the other hand, the finiteness of existence, or mortality, is not merely the empirical fact of the end of life; rather, it is a principle determining the structure of existence and permeating all human life. Hence the existentialists’ characteristic interest in “borderline” situations, such as suffering, dread, guilt, or anxiety, which throw light on the nature of existence.

Marxist philosophy, opposing all forms of idealism, regards existence as the objective reality of matter in its diverse forms and as that being—in the sociohistorical sense—which determines man’s position in society.


References in periodicals archive ?
In spite of considerable theory underlying teaching methodology (Mezirow, 1981; Felder & Silverman, 1988), there is a conspicuous absense of generic testing methods for evaluating the theory.
But even if you're a supreme wordsmith and love to read about comma splices and the like, Gilad tries to make it all extra scintillating when it's really not, and her jokes fall very, very flat: never absense or abcense, or someone may suspect you of having too much absinthe.
In a separate series of experiments to test the effects of AR blockade on cell growth, control and CAsE-PE cells were grown in steroid-depleted media for 48 hr then fed fresh steroid-depleted media with or without the antiandrogen flutamide (5 [micro]g/mL; Sigma) in the absense or presence of DHT (0.
With temperatures still scorching, practices haven't been easier despite the absense of head coach Harry Welsh.
But in the absense of hard information on that point, clearly it's my duty to keep pressing to get these things on the record, and I am going to do that.
Stewart Clanachan marked his 300th appearance and took a right midfield role in the absense of winger Barry Curran, with Ian McCoosh dropping back to defence.
The absense of training more than doubled the percentage of companies that fell short of productivity targets.
In the absense of ongoing studies, some Love Canal refugees have been keeping track of the former residents on their own.
Benefits, including sick leaves and other leaves of absense, personal days and holidays, disability and other insurance, pensions, educational opportunities, FICA and unemployment compensation, and any available dicounts, saving programs, or service awards
Two of the biggest factors currently constraining growth are lack of interoperability, and the absense of a common standard for digital rights management (DRM).
Making up for his absense in the first three periods were ace guard Ceasar Java, center Arnold Arguelles, Ricardo Sotto and Ibrahim Naif who keyed an 8-1 run midway of the second quarter to build an 11 point lead, 64-53, 4:19 minutes left.
Since then the 33-year-old has featured in just four minutes of top flight football but given his lengthy absense the dependable Scouser did not let his manager down in a fixture that means so much to him.