By Bas C. Van Fraassen
An introductory, ancient survey of philosophical positions on area and time, throughout the distinct concept of relativity and the causal concept of time.
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Extra resources for An Introduction to the Philosophy of Time and Space
24 As a result, all statements made about fluxing things are on the same footing so far as truth is concerned: “the doctrine of Heraclitus, that all things are and are not, seems to make everything true” (Met. IV 7 1012a24 –26). The Platonists were right, then, to draw the conclusion that the objects of knowledge cannot be perceptibles, if these are in flux. For what is known to be F must be F and not also not-F. But no fluxing thing can have that feature—not even, as Aristotle perceptively notices, when F is the complex attribute G-and-not-G, since the opposite of it too must be true of them (XI 5 1062a31– b2).
The Third Man is thereby defused and One-over-many somewhat weakened. The cost, however, is commitment to the existence of self-subsistent abstract paradigms, 27 Fine, On Ideas, contains the Greek text of Peri Idˆeon, a translation (from which I quote), and a full philosophical commentary. 28 Fine, On Ideas, 229–231. 14 1 . 3 P RO B L E M S W I T H P L AT O N I C F O R M S and to explaining the resemblance that exists between them and perceptibles. But that is a cost one might simply be willing to pay.
Moreover, the reason that unqualifiedly necessary theorems are convertible has to do with their content: “If the coming-to-be of something is unqualifiedly necessary, it must come back in a circle and return on itself. . , if this comes-to-be necessarily, then the earlier, and again, if that, then the later comes to be necessarily. . , because the spatial movement above it is in a circle, the sun moves in this way, and since it moves in that way, the seasons, because of it, come-to-be in a circle and return upon themselves, and since these come to be in this way, the things affected by them do so in their turn” (338a4 –338b5).