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Technically I am just a process, a journey the philosopher may say.
Nothing can contain me.
For men may come and men may go, I go on forever1
Take what you want or give what you want I remain just the same.
I have an opposite and it's not death.

What does this make me?

1 (Taken from the poem "The Brook")

Edit:- Edited the question to reduce the number of possible answers. Please let me know if I should edit anything else.

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  • $\begingroup$ Please do have a single answer in mind, or else your question could be closed as too broad. $\endgroup$
    – IAmInPLS
    Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 11:57
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for pointing it out. I'm new here. Will edit it in a jiffy. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 11:59

5 Answers 5

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Could it be the

infinity.

Technically I am just a process, a journey the philosopher may say.

Could refer to Zeno's paradoxes, most likely the one about Achilles and the Tortoise. Zeno is credited with introduction of the mathematical infinity.

Nothing can contain me.

It's infinite.

For men may come and men may go, I go on forever

The poem may refer to infinite cycle of life

Take what you want or give what you want I remain just the same.

Substract or add any finite number to infinity and you will still get the infinity.

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  • $\begingroup$ Technically, ∞ - 1 =/= ∞. Yes, you cannot measure it, and ∞ - 1 ≈ ∞, but it is not the same. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 14:06
  • $\begingroup$ Actually, in calculus it is. $\endgroup$
    – Massaraksh
    Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 14:22
  • $\begingroup$ The answer I was looking for. It is a counting process. (keep adding one to the largest number you can think of). $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 14:34
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May be Answer is

Time

Technically I am just a process, a journey the philosopher may say

TEchnically Time is just a process, and also journey.

Nothing can contain me.

Nothing can hold time

For men may come and men may go, I go on forever

Time running, whoever go or gone

Take what you want, I remain just the same

No one can change the time

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  • $\begingroup$ Do you mind if I edit the question?. I strictly didn't want this as an answer. I forgot to include it while posting the question. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 12:15
  • $\begingroup$ This is exactly what I was thinking lol $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 12:43
  • $\begingroup$ @AbhirathMahipal what's wrong with it though? it seems acceptable $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 12:45
  • $\begingroup$ Nothing wrong with the answer at all. It is very easy to guess and I didn't want people's attention to go towards this. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 12:47
  • $\begingroup$ @AbhirathMahipal well the question is relatively broad. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 12:52
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How about

LIFE?

Technically I am just a process, a journey the philosopher may say.

We journey through life, and a lifetime can be seen as a process.

Nothing can contain me.

You can't contain life, shut it up in a box: it can't be imprisoned or priced.

For men may come and men may go, I go on forever

Individual people come and go, but life itself goes on regardless.

Take what you want or give what you want I remain just the same.

No matter what we give and take in life, it still continues on.

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  • $\begingroup$ Acceptable answer but not what I had in mind :) $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 12:43
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It might be:

Learning.

Technically I'm just a process, a journey the philosopher would say

Learning IS a process, and the 'philosopher' bit may be of added significance.

Nothing can contain me

Learning has no boundaries.

For men may come and men may go, I go on forever

Many great thinkers come and go, only adding to the pool of things to be learned.

Take what you want or give what you want I remain just the same.

You can take away any lesson or give any insight, but the act of learning remains much the same across generations.

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  • $\begingroup$ Although I think this is a good answer, I want to point out that through time, people learn in different ways, and at some points in time, some people couldn't learn. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 14:22
  • $\begingroup$ Nice perspective. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 14:31
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Thinking / Imagination

Technically I am just a process, a journey the philosopher may say.

That's all philosophers do...think and imagine. They produce nothing. :)

Nothing can contain me.

There is a saying that there is no limit to the imagination or thought. (Except imagining a new color).

For men may come and men may go, I go on forever (Taken from the poem "The Brook")

Ideas can be passed from person to person and even when someone dies their thought can be continued by someone else.

You cannot see me. Yet you discuss and try to comprehend me.

Obviously you cannot see the imagination (unless you are on drugs or something) and the human brain (part of it at least) is still a puzzle for scientists.

Take what you want, I remain just the same.

There is no specific amount of thoughts or imagination.

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  • $\begingroup$ Awesome. It needn't necessarily go on forever. They can be abandoned before being passed on :) $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 12:04
  • $\begingroup$ Agree..But it still can go on forever. $\endgroup$
    – Marius
    Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 12:05
  • $\begingroup$ It can be "gone" if all the people are gone and there is noone to keep it alive, so it is not strictly speaking "forever" $\endgroup$
    – oleslaw
    Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 12:06
  • $\begingroup$ A nice answer nevertheless. I never expected this answer. Thought quite a lot about it before posting this riddle here. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 12:09

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