Knowledge is possible but it is always, without exception, imperfect and subjective. Any claim to perfect and objective knowledge is a fallacy.
Things do not have a function but are given a function. Whether an object is sentient or non-sentient, function is passively given. Except in the case of will where the object is the self.
I like rocks. I like rocks because they never have an agenda.
For a lack of a better term I am an eliminative ontologist. I am eliminative about processes, qualities and relations. Only matter exists. Atomic, or more precisely Byronic, matter, simple and complex, are the only things existential.
Processes, qualities and relations are properties of matter. Matter supervenes upon properties. Properties subvene upon matter.
Only matter has ontological status.
To remove or change the ontological status of properties allows us to deal with what matters (pun intended). Everything I do, everything I worry about involves matter, and only after that the properties of matter.
To worry about properties is to ignore instances of particular matter and its particular properties. Particulars are only what should deal with.
Reality is its own evidence. It is neither evidence of God nor of things metaphysical. A mind that believes in Platonic Forms is only evidence of a mind that believes in Platonic Forms, not of Platonic Forms as such. Reality is not evidence of God, of a Creator or creator.
I think about the soul a lot. Or rather for half of my life I have thought about what it means not to have a soul, and why we have the word and concept to begin with.
Certainly on defining difference between a rock and a dog is sentience. Awareness of other things separates a sentient thing to a non-sentient one. Being born brings about sentience. And being unconscious, in a coma or dead certainly changes a thing from being sentient to one that is no more sentient. At no time does a rock become conscious or dies (unless your believe in panpsychism).
So for me a rock has no more or less a soul than a dog has a soul. I am not saying a human or dog has a soul. I am saying the opposite —that a human or dog having a soul is an illusion by reason of being an animated object.
There are real, unreal and semi-real entities. Physical objects or things are real entities. Concepts are unreal entities. And word forms are semi-real entities.
Only real entities are ontologically real or existent. Unreal and semi-real entities are ontologically unreal or non-existent.
Objects that do conceptualization and word-formation exist. But concepts and words do not strictly “exist” in the same way that objects exist.