David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Review of Metaphysics 62 (4):803-818 (2009)
This paper considers various senses of the notion of identity and describes the strongest sense of the term—what it labels “absolute identity.” Absolute identity combines monistic identity of all in all as one substance with the absence of internal differentiation. The paper explores the possibility of absolute identity along three lines—linguistic, mental, and ontological. It determines that though there are serious difficulties, linguistic and mental, involved with positing absolute identity the possibility of its coming to be real cannot be ruled out. Finally, on grounds of its lack of coherence-functionality absolute identity is rejected as an adequate conception of the world. The paper closes with a discussion of the ramifications of the denial of absolute identity
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