What Is Essential?


What Is Essential?

Property in the real world is what gets with or comes attached to something, whether as a feature or as an element of that thing. We could say that properties are the elements that make something a “thing” or to use an old and popular phrase, we could call them the stuff that makes things go together. Now this brings us to the question, which properties are essential and which are non-essential? Are properties non-essential just because they don’t add anything to the object they’re attached to?

The answer is no. For example, in physics, energy cannot be destroyed, only altered. Therefore, in order for energy to be transferred from a feature to something else, it needs to be done with something that can be destroyed. So while a property of a system can be something non-essential in and of itself, it’s essential as something that helps it to transfer from point A to point B. In other words, without property, nothing is possible. But let’s take a slightly more complex example to make our point.

Take a pair of shoes. One shoe has a property of its own. That is, it can roll over and so on. The other shoe does not have that property. Thus, if you take something apart you would notice that the non-essential property (rollover) is essential to the system (shoes).

So when we say that something is essential, we mean that it has some definite, universal value independent of whatever it’s attached to. Now let’s apply this the other way around. If a feature is essential, then it doesn’t matter what that feature happens to be when it’s taken apart. It will continue to have the value it had before the feature was put together. Now this leads us to one of the biggest problems with the property. Property often gets tied up in notions such as:

Individual property is essential. A pair of legs is essential to get down. A dress is essential to get clothes on. But if something is considered non-essential by these standards, then when it’s put back together it loses its value! In other words, someone could sell a house for one hundred pounds and then add on a caravan for two hundred pounds and claim they’ve made improvements to the property thus making it worth one thousand pounds. But two cars (and two beds) will still not add up to a suitable home – unless, of course, the property has been refurbished!

Essential is something that has a definite, identifiable quality that makes it uniquely yours. That means it has a quality that can’t be duplicated elsewhere. But it also has to have some utilitarian value. It doesn’t necessarily have to increase the value of the property.