If you lose more disks than you have parity to protect you from data loss, then you’re array is gone. But, quite often you get a temporary failure of several disks at once (bad cable, or failed HBA); afterwards the RAID superblocks are out of sync and you can no longer start your RAID array. Here’s a couple ways to try to get it working again.
One of the advantages of software RAID is the flexibility it gives you, that would normally only be available from high end (expensive) RAID cards. This includes the ability to grow an existing array (only for certain RAID levels), which means if you run out of space you can easily plug in a new drive and keep going.