Many interesting and at the same time important terms have been developed within the broad field of philosophy . One of them is aporia , a word that refers to all those propositions that are made but that do not have any kind of logical basis .

What is aporia?

The word aporia refers to a statement that does not have logic , that expresses some irrational fact or event that does not have any type of logic or solution. It is a word closely related to the field of philosophy and rhetoric .

  • Definition of aporia
  • Etymology
  • History
  • Current use of aporia
  • Examples of aporia

Definition of aporia

An aporia is basically a type of rationing that leads to reflection and at the same time to contradiction , ideas that make the person think of a series of contradictory paradoxes of which life is made. It is a word of Greek origin and can also be defined as a state of complete uncertainty that arises when an individual is exposed to two different or opposing arguments that are at the same time acceptable.

The key is found in posing a certain doubt , in being able to ask a rhetorical question and in this way get into the ambiguous part of the world, which is contradictory to life and the different conflicts related to meaning. and nonsense .

It is also considered as the wisdom of the contradiction that makes possible the formulation of important reflections on everything that surrounds us, but that at the same time does not lead us to any specific place. Today the term is used as a synonym for difficulty .

There are different types of aporias, among which we find the following:

  • Argument aporia : in this case, we always start from a question that has been thrown into the air, it is a question that serves to make others think even if there is not yet a clear and concise answer. Its main objective is to be able to favor and improve the ideas and arguments in a discussion.
  • Tonal aporia: this type of aporia is fundamentally based on a given opinion. It can be a bit aggressive or taxing. He does not try to seek dialogue, but on the contrary, he seeks a way to impose a truth.


The term aporia is born in the Greek language . It is formed by the word ἄπορον, which means “something that is very difficult” and which can also be translated as “aporima”, a word that refers to all the reasoning through which different contradictions or paradoxes can arise that do not they have no kind of solution.


The first aporias arose from the hand of Anaxagoras and Democritus who raised a series of questions related to the matter. In this way, these types of thoughts began to be used in order to find and draw conclusions and then to be able to establish truths. Another of the important representatives who made the aporia advance on the path of history was Socrates and by the end of the 18th century and the beginning of the 19th century , Friedrich Jacobi was in charge of continuing the work by raising questions related to the “transcendental self” .

Current use of aporia

The aporia is currently used to perform a series of exercises that are based mainly on reflection and reasoning and thanks to this it is possible to deconstruct many of the current realities to discover through it, a wide range of options, of new perspectives and realities. It is a mechanism that makes it possible to discover things and accept that opposing ideas may arise every day with bases which can be accepted.

It is widely used to represent a path that has no way out, a challenge that appears and that apparently does not have any type of rational solution . Through aporia, dialogue , the appropriate exchange of ideas , thoughts , approaches and theories of knowledge can be established.

It is common to observe aporias in many of the current fields, especially those that are related to politics , society and can even be observed in the field of advertising because all of them are full of paradoxes that in most cases they don’t make any sense.

Examples of aporia

Some examples of aporia are the following:

  • In the field of ethics we can find aporia questions such as: has freedom been created in order not to be free?
  • The idea about the nothing that generally raises an aporia related to the assumption of the existence of a thing that by definition does not exist.
  • The universes and the cosmos.
  • The belief that the universe cannot be the result of nothing and that for this reason, a creator was necessary.

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