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Pertaining to a branch of philosophy, existentialism, concerned with the search for the meaning of one's own existence, that has been extended into existential psychotherapy.
[L. existentia, existence]


(ĕg′zĭ-stĕn′shəl, ĕk′sĭ-)
1. Of, relating to, or dealing with existence.
2. Based on experience; empirical.
3. Of or as conceived by existentialism or existentialists: an existential moment of choice.
4. Linguistics Of or relating to a construction or part of a construction that indicates existence, as the words there is in the sentence There is a cat on the mat.
n. Linguistics
An existential word or construction.

ex′is·ten′tial·ly adv.
References in periodicals archive ?
The unnamed narrator gradually discovers that he is, existentially, the sum total of the choices he makes, or, in Sartre's words, "nothing other than what he makes of himself" (18).
The environment becomes the 'invironment', something we are existentially linked with.
From the total sample (N = 3.034), 80.7% were classified as experiencing meaningfulness (n = 2.450), 9.6% as being existentially indifferent (n = 292), 5.7% as having a crisis of meaning (n = 172), and 4.0% as experiencing existential conflict (n = 120).
"Everybody says, 'Oh it's the best - it's the best thing ever!' "You don't know what to expect because it's just completely, existentially out of anything that you've ever experienced before and it's quite indescribable.
O'Neill's work has been compared to Seinfeld (yep, nothing much happens, very existentially), Joshua Ferris's Then We Came to the End, and even Herman Melville's "Bartleby the Scrivener." Readers who pick up this chimera of a book will either love it or throw it against the wall.
Archibald Snatcher (a deliciously snarling Ben Kingsley), having promised to rid the town of the Boxtrolls, hunts them with his existentially confused henchmen (Richard Ayoade, Nick Frost), who -- in the movie's cleverest bit -- are in a quandary over whether they've unwittingly become bad guys.
Whatever the sources of their dedication, it seems existentially admirable and magnificently efficacious.
In the sex act even though two bodies are separate, it is as if they become one existentially. The writer sums up that point thus:
In recent years, Reo has become a master of the vocoder, her voice on 2013's Olive Juice harmonized until her singing seems to come from an army of existentially despairing dolls.
Existentially ghosts lie between fact and fiction, between the orbits of believer and nonbeliever, and provide bounteous fodder for storytelling, literature, and film.
Bultmann's approach relied on his concept of demythology, and interpreted the mythological elements in the New Testament existentially. Bultmann contended that only faith in the kerygma, or proclamation, of the New Testament was necessary for Christian faith, not any particular facts regarding the historical Jesus.
Being popular without knowing how you got there or how long it will last is an existentially troubling idea.