Why Does the World Exist?: An Existential Detective Story - Chapter 12, The Last Word from All Souls, Epistolary Interlude, The Proof, Chapter 13, The World as a Bit of Light Verse Summary & Analysis

Jim Holt
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Chapter 12, The Last Word from All Souls, Epistolary Interlude, The Proof, Chapter 13, The World as a Bit of Light Verse Summary and Analysis

After Holt leaves Paris, he heads to Oxford, along the way stopping in a London Library, where he ran across an essay in the London Review of Books by English philosopher Derek Parfit called "Why Anything? Why This?" Holt was scheduled to meet with Parfit anyway, to discuss his question with him. He notes that one usually tackles the question by first asking why the world exists and then asking how. We might flip the order of explanation, which was Parfit's approach. Parfit first notes that there is a range of potential cosmic possibilities, representing ways the world could have turned out. Some...

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This section contains 700 words
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