Mereological nihilism: quantum atomism and the impossibility of material constitution

Axiomathes 16 (3):245-386 (2006)
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Abstract

Mereological nihilism is the philosophical position that there are no items that have parts. If there are no items with parts then the only items that exist are partless fundamental particles, such as the true atoms (also called philosophical atoms) theorized to exist by some ancient philosophers, some contemporary physicists, and some contemporary philosophers. With several novel arguments I show that mereological nihilism is the correct theory of reality. I will also discuss strong similarities that mereological nihilism has with empirical results in quantum physics. And I will discuss how mereological nihilism vindicates a few other theories, such as a very specific theory of philosophical atomism, which I will call quantum abstract atomism. I will show that mereological nihilism also is an interpretation of quantum mechanics that avoids the problems of other interpretations, such as the widely known, metaphysically generated, quantum paradoxes of quantum physics, which ironically are typically accepted as facts about reality. I will also show why it is very surprising that mereological nihilism is not a widely held theory, and not the premier theory in philosophy.

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Citations of this work

Mereology.Achille C. Varzi - 2016 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Ordinary Objects.Daniel Z. Korman - 2011 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Why compositional nihilism dissolves puzzles.Holly Kantin - 2020 - Synthese 197 (10):4319-4340.
Cognitive Instrumentalism About Mental Representations.Samuel D. Taylor - 2022 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 103 (3):518-550.

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References found in this work

Parts: A Study in Ontology.Peter Simons - 1987 - Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
Facing Up to the Problem of Consciousness.David Chalmers - 1995 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 2 (3):200-19.
Objects and Persons.Trenton Merricks - 2001 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Mental Reality.Galen Strawson - 1994 - MIT Press.

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