Creation and Eternity in Medieval Philosophy

In Heather Dyke & Adrian Bardon (eds.), A Companion to the Philosophy of Time. Chichester, UK: Wiley. pp. 73–86 (2013)
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This chapter on creation and eternity in medieval philosophy focuses on arguments for the world's age drawn from the nature of time. To this end, there are four main sections. The first covers proofs for the eternity of the world taken from the nature of time, with an emphasis on Aristotle's original argument for that thesis and then Avicenna's modal version of the proof. The second deals with rejoinders, based upon non‐Aristotelian conceptions of time, to proofs for the eternity of the world with a focus on Augustine's idealist conception of time. The third section takes up positive arguments for the temporal finitude of the cosmos and the difficulties surrounding the idea of infinite past time. The final section canvasses the “agnostic position” of Ibn Tufayl, Moses Maimonides, and Thomas Aquinas concerning the question of the cosmos's age.



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Jon McGinnis
University of Missouri, St. Louis

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Arabic and islamic metaphysics.Amos Bertolacci - forthcoming - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

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References found in this work

Avicenna.Jon McGinnis - 2010 - New York: Oxford University Press.
The guide for the perplexed.Moses Maimonides & Salomon Pines - 1904 - New York,: E. P. Dutton & co.. Edited by M. Friedländer.
Infinity and continuity.John E. Murdoch - 1982 - In Norman Kretzmann, Anthony Kenny & Jan Pinborg (eds.), Cambridge History of Later Medieval Philosophy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 564--91.
Against Aristotle, on the eternity of the world.John Philoponus - 1987 - Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press. Edited by Christian Wildberg.

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