If a tree falls in the forest and nothing is around to hear it, does it make a sound?

  • Yes it does

    It definitely makes a sound because trees existed before man did, and man didnt invent trees so just because a tree fell and no one heard it duh it makes a sound its not just going to say, "oh, theres no human around. Let me gently fall onto the ground"

  • Why would you ever think otherwise?

    If a deaf person farts in a Forest and nobody is around to hear it? Even if it was silent, vibrations would be made, thus, sound would be made. A sound is a mechanical wave made by vibrating matter, thus if matter vibrates, a sound is made. It's really very simple.

  • Yes of course

    We don't need an audience to validate the existence of sound. JUST LIKE THE RADIO WOULD CONTINUE TO TRANSIT WAVES IN THE SAME ROOM AS A DEAF PERSON. This is the most simple question and I don't get why people need to make it so complicating. Not being present to see or hear anything doesn't make it irrelevant, then you might as well go on living and arguing the fact that history before you were born never happened cause you were never there to hear/see/touch/experience it.

  • Of Course It does!

    Sound is not dependent on human, or animal ear drums. When the tree hits the ground, the vibration is sent through the air, but no one is to hear it. But, it still made a sound otherwise sound waves would not have been made. Like some noise's are too high for humans to hear, but that does not mean there is not a sound. Also if a recorder was there, it wouldve recorded the sound.

  • Duh! Course it does!

    Dude, the universe doesn't revolve around people. Say you have a crowd of people and a tree falls. It makes a (very loud) noise. Say you have nobody around and the tree falls. It makes a (very loud) noise because the variables haven't changed for the sound. Get a job philosophers.

  • Man is not the centre of creation or reality

    The term sound does not simply refer to the audible phenomena detected by the ear. Physics attributes the human ear with the ability to transduce a signal from "sound waves", that is to convert the vibrations of certain frequencies that we call sound into an electronic signal the brain can interpret. Thus the acknowledgement that sound itself stands apart from the ability to "hear" something. The vibrations will still be created by the tree falling thus "sound waves" will still be generated. Man does not have to exist for this to be true.

    This could well be likened to trying to explain to someone who has been blind from birth what the colour blue is. How do you describe something that exists in one pure form that the other person cannot perceive? Just because the blind person cannot see the colour blue does not mean that it ceases to exist, that is a function of the physical properties of certain pigments on the wavelength of light.

  • Duh! Course it does!

    Dude, the universe doesn't revolve around people. Say you have a crowd of people and a tree falls. It makes a (very loud) noise. Say you have nobody around and the tree falls. It makes a (very loud) noise because the variables haven't changed for the sound. Get a job philosophers.

  • Yes but no if the term "sound" used in the sentence is meant to be perceived as "heard"

    Sound is what is heard by mater which is made through vibration waves which will still occur if none picks up the sound so the question could be rephrased to be more specific because its sounding like the question is asking if someone will hear it fall when no one is around. But if thats the case then ,no. But i don't believe material things depend on matter for their existence. Sorry if this doesn't make sense I'm 15 and studying this topic for a discursive/persuassive essay
    also check out the limerick by ronald knox that was inspired by a philosopher on materialism that also got an anonymous reply.

  • Yes, it does

    Just because nobody is around to observe it doesn't mean that one of the basic principles of how things work stops existing. There's a lot of stuff that goes on in the forest that nobody witnesses, doesn't mean none of it happened. It's an analogy, not a question to be taken seriously.

  • The outside world is NOT dependent on human hearing

    It obviously makes a noise, just a noise that nobody was there to hear. If I make a pizza and no one eats it, did the pizza taste good? Yes, because I know the ingredients and how I cooked it, that it tastes really good. Shame that nobody ate it, but the pizza is still good. Wake up, people!

  • In order to create a sound, you need something to hear it.

    A sound exists because an ear reacts to the waves that it created. The waves "shake" the ear which creates a sound. If there were no ear, the waves would just move around but wouldn't "hit" anything resulting in an absence of sound. Things only exist because people witness it.

  • No, it doesn't.

    While it may seem logical to assume it does, we must understand that there is no reality without man. If a person doesn't see, hear, or feel, the fallen tree, it remains in a state of being covered. This can be shown empirically with quantum mechanics, if you wish. This not only includes the tree, but everything. Truth, in this way, is formed by uncovering. It is neither true nor untrue that the tree has fallen, it is essentially in both states and in a state of nothing. Now, whether or not animals' consciousness has the uncovering of existence, I do not know. Once it has been observed, it collapses into a state in which it becomes either/or.

  • Witness to the fallen tree?

    If no one is around to witness the tree fall and create a noise how do we know the tree actually fell in the first place , and if we don't know the tree fell how could it possibly make a noise, as far as we know it's still standing!

  • No it does not

    George Orwell, the author of 1984 has the quote "everything exists through human consciousness" and i think it is quite a good point to make. So if nothing is there to hear the tree, who is to say it ever happened. If nothing can ever prove its existence, it never occured

  • Sound is heard, vibration is felt

    The potential energy of a standing tree must be translated as it falls. When it hits, part of that translation will be to vibrations. Even microbes will feel those vibrations eg through a disturbance in Brownian motion (unless they are attached to fixed surfaces), but they will not hear them, because they have no ears to hear. The energy change happens as an immutable part of physics but sound only happens based on human definition.

  • It's called Copenhagen interpretation

    Schrödinger's cat is the best known example of this. Reality does not happen unless there is an observer. Only then does the outcome get calculated and presented. So for a tree falling without an observer there would be no sound... The tree would effectively exist in something of a limbo state until an observer came along to see the outcode.

    It's easiest to think of this like how a video game on your monitor works. There are no pixels that invisibly exist just off the side of the screen. Yet things still "happen" - a tank moves, boulder starts rolling, or ... A tree falls. It isn't until that object is within the confines of your monitor that it is actually rendered. Before that point it's simply calculations running in the background.

  • No, it does not

    Sound must be heard to truly exist, who knows if the tree fell so slowly it made no sound. Yes we kow that when we watch trees fall they are loud but with the definition of noise being something that is heard, with not a person to hear this tree fall, there truly is no sound.

  • No ear, no sound.

    Without an ear to hear or an eye to see there is no "sound" as we know it, or "color/shapes/sizes" as we know them. There is only math. Our perceptions are not reality, but representations of it created by our brain. A nervous system attached to something sensitive to molecular vibrations is required to extract "sound" from the world.

  • Sound is an illusion of the brain

    Our brains register waves and vibrations traveling through the air. So if a tree falls, vibrations are caused, but if there's nothing to hear them there is no actual SOUND.
    However, if there was something nearby to collect the vibrations given off, then yes it would indeed make sound.


  • No it doesn't

    Sound has to have a receiver to be able yo be called sound. When the tree falls there will be sound waves in the air, but no receiver which doesn't make it a sound to be heard. If there were something that would here it then yes because there would be a creator and a receiver. The tree producing the sound would make sound waves in the air to be heard of by something or someone.

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tytecypha says2015-10-20T23:35:39.757
Uh.... Yeah it is bud
tytecypha says2015-10-20T23:40:00.937
If your clapping your hands in your house but i cant hear it how do i know i makes a sound .