Zeno's paradoxes and temporal becoming in dialectical atomism

Studia Logica 43 (1-2):169 - 180 (1984)
The homogeneity of time (i.e. the fact that there are no privileged moments) underlies a fundamental symmetry relating to the energy conservation law. On the other hand the obvious asymmetry between past and future, expressed by the metaphor of the arrow of time or flow of time accounts for the irreversibility of what happens. One takes this for granted but the conceptual tension it creates against the background of time''s presumed homogeneity calls for an explanation of temporal becoming. Here, it is approached with the help of a claim to the effect that the instant (moment) itself has a structure isomorphic to that of time as a whole. Then the asymmetry of past and future in regard to temporal becoming is associated with the internal structure of the very moment, and not with external relations between different moments of time. In this paper ideas of ancient atomism and contemporary dialectics are brought together. It is for the sake of a contrast to what is known as logical atomism that I choose to call this view dialectical atomism. The latter admits dialectical contradictions and, so far as the logical status of contradictions is concerned, bears reference to paraconsistent logics. In the paper there is an outline of a method of converting any consistent axiomatic formal system into a paraconsistent theory.
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DOI 10.1007/BF00935748
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