Sunday, September 18, 2005

A Question

Which of the following combinations of views are consistent*:

1. Objectivism about metric and relationism about time
2. Objectivism about metric and absolutism about time
3. Conventionalism about metric and relationism about time
4. Conventionalism about metric and absolutism about time

I am particularly interested in what you guys think about (4).

*Note: A combination of views is consistent if, and only if, supposing that both views are true does not commit you to a contradiction. An obvious example of an inconsistent combination of views would be if one held that atheism and theism are both correct. A combination of views might be consistent but very unattractive. It is consistent, but very unattractive, to hold that invisible sparkling monkeys cause lights to go on and off, for instance.


Blogger The Hulk said...

I think number 1 is the most consistent. Objectivism about metric and relationism about time. I think relationism about time is true because I strongly believe that temporal vacua don't exist and that is the basis of the absolutist argument. I just don't think it's plausible because it'd be impossible to tell if one ever happened because in a temporal vacua, nothing changes, so therefore, there was no passage of time. I think objectivism about metric is true because we can test the accuracy of timepieces against the laws of nature, and they are pretty accurate. I think choice 4 is way off.

4:55 PM  
Blogger Chris Tillman said...

Consistency is all-or-nothing; it is not a matter of degree. One might find one or other option more plausible but one option cannot be more consistent than any other. With respect to (4), what I was wondering is whether it even makes sense to endorse both Conventionalism and Absolutism.

5:52 AM  
Blogger frankd23 said...

My comment is just on the possibility of the existence of temporal vacua. I want to clarify that my argument will not be that they do exist, but they can exist. As we all know from that great book we read, a temporal vacuum is a period where there are no changes. My argument for the possibility of temporal vacua is that if we were to go through one, we would have no way of being able to tell. We could be stuck in a temporal vacuum for thousands of years but because there are no changes, not even changes in our minds that would allow us to know that we are in the vacuum, we would have no idea it was happening. As I am writing this sentence, we could hypothetically go through a temporal vacuum for 100 million years and I would never realize because it would be instantaneous for me and for everything else in the universe. This is why I dont accept relationism and think that time is independent of change. I also feel that absolutism about time is correct. Time is time no matter what convention you adopt. To say that one is correct just because its the one we use as convention is complete nonsense.

11:34 AM  
Blogger frankd23 said...

This is a question that I hope some people will answer...I can't figure out how to make my own post because I'm terrible with computers so i figured Id just make a comment on this question. A temporal vacuum is just an area where everything stops changing, and essentially stops moving. I argue in my paper that temporal vacua are just areas where at absolute zero. I feel that the argument is sound unless there is some way for an area to stop moving completely without it being at absolute zero. I have a possible explanation but i still think absolute zero wins in the end. Id' like to hear some of your ideas

8:24 PM  
Blogger Darron said...

I beleive that conventionalism about metric and relationism about time are consistent. Relationism about time describes time as a series of consistent changes. If we look at our standard of time, which is the basis of conventionalism ( conventionalism states that our metric of time is based on a "standard"), we would notice that our way of measuring time (our standard) is based upon change. Our standard of time involves changes in seconds, minutes, and hours.

6:50 PM  
Blogger aion said...

I just want to note that just because it is possible that there could be a temporal vaccuum does not mean that absolutism is true

7:39 PM  

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