The Beginning of Existence

Abstract
Central to recent debate over the Kalam Cosmological Argument, and over the origin of the universe in general, has been the issue of whether the universe began to exist and, if so, how this is to be understood. Adolf Grünbaum has used two cosmological models as a basis for arguing that the universe did not begin to exist according to either of them. Concentrating in this paper on the second (“open interval”) model, I argue that he is wrong on both counts. I give metaphysical considerations for rejecting Grünbaum’s interpretation of the second model and offer a definition of the beginning of existence of an object that improves on prior formulations and that is adequate to show how the universe can indeed be seen to have begun to exist. I conclude with a more general metaphysical discussion of the beginning of the universe and of the Kalam Cosmological Argument.
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