Review of Metaphysics 69 (3):495-518 (2016)

Nathanael Stein
Florida State University
Aristotle opens his discussion of time in Physics 4.10-14 with a puzzle, an argument which purports to show that time does not exist, since its only parts – the past and future – do not exist. He does not discuss the puzzle again, and so we are left with the question of how he would or could solve it. A full solution would involve not only a justification of realism about time, but also an account of why the puzzle arises, what must be corrected to prevent it from arising, and how much of our pre-theoretical picture of time survives these adjustments. This paper argues that we can provide such a solution by (i) distinguishing between two ways of being committed to the reality of past, present, and future, and (ii) examining Aristotle’s remarks in Physics 4.12 on the notions of being in time and being surrounded by time.
Keywords Aristotle  time  Aristotle's Physics
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