The concept of “absolute reality” is a complex one, and one that philosophers, theologians and even some scientists have weighed in on from New York to Delhi. But what is absolute reality in regards to philosophy? As with most things in the field of philosophy, a lot of it really does boil down to personal opinions. People have presented proof from sources ranging from ancient traditions to more modern interpretations.
At its most basic, the absolute is the term for the most real being or pattern that underlies all things in reality. Anything dubbed an absolute in philosophy or spirituality, as well as certain other contexts, is seen as the most absolutely real element reality itself. Hence the name “absolute reality“.
However, the exact nature of this absolute varies from culture to culture. While many modern philosophers have come up with complex and multifaceted ideas about the absolute nature of reality, the concept predates modern civilization and reaches as far back as human civilization itself. While many recent philosophers may disagree, most ancient philosophers saw the world as driven by an absolute reality wherein a divine source that was underlying in all things. It didn’t matter if it was good or bad. This explained things across the human experience and indeed all of reality itself.
The complexities of these beings and their specific natures were among the first philosophical discussions, dating all the way back to the Maxims of Ptahhotep, the single oldest philosophical tracts in human history.
The exact nature of divinity and its order, as well as where all things form in this order, created the first philosophers. The problem of evil originates from balancing out such ideas of order alongside the frailties of human nature. Some philosophers have even managed to place value inside the absolute on things that would seem to have no place in the nature of reality.
Saint Augustine found value in the concept of “monster” as being closely related both philosophically as well as linguistically to the idea of demonstration. Confucius managed to create a philosophical center for the concept of the family name, similar somewhat to other ideas about the value of a person’s name.
Inside the idea of the absolute reality, the exact nature of something so absolute and unfathomable varies from culture to culture. It sometimes even varies from person to person. Sometimes even the right words for such a reality can change the nature of a person’s ideas about the absolute. Though many westerners are vaguely familiar with the “Great Spirit” of the Sioux and Algonquian nations, some translators of the term for such a higher entity say is better translated as “Great Mystery”.
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