Temporal Becoming: CAN WE DO WITHOUT IT?

Philosophical Writings 28 (1) (2005)

Elisa Paganini
Università degli Studi di Milano
Università degli Studi di Milano.I propose to consider the paradox of temporal becoming using conceptual instruments derived from Lewis’ definition of intrinsic change. I will show that there are two possible solutions to this paradox, that the two solutions are conceptually incompatible and that they both solve the paradox at the cost of doing without temporal becoming. The problem I want to raise is: how should we consider temporal becoming? I suppose that, given these premises, the most obvious answer is that temporal becoming is unreal: the paradox of temporal becoming is a demonstration of the impossibility of temporal becoming; there are, of course, two different and competing models of the nature of time , but they both exclude the reality of temporal change. I propose a different answer: temporal becoming is conceptually inaccessible, the paradox concerns our conceptual abilities, not reality in itself and the two possible solutions to the paradox of time reveal two possible conceptual attitudes towards a conceptually unattainable reality
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