The Monist 62 (1):43-53 (1979)

The purpose of this paper is less ambitious than its title might suggest, since it does not deal with everything that Plato has said on time and on eternity. Rather, it attempts to clarify some issues which have arisen in the controversy as to whether Parmenides or Plato was the first Western philosopher to grasp the notion of atemporal eternity. It is particularly concerned with some publications on the subject that have appeared within the last twelve years or so. G. E. L. Owen, in a paper published in this journal, has defended his earlier interpretation that Parmenides discovered the notion of atemporal eternity. J. Whittaker for his part has contended that both Parmenides and Plato failed to grasp it, and would ascribe its discovery to some later thinker. Yet another scholar, G. Reale, believes that there is no essential difference between the position of Parmenides as reconstructed by Owen and others and that of Melissus. For Reale maintains that Melissus’ formula “it is and always was and always will be” does not exclude atemporality, that it means the same thing as the alleged tenseless ‘is’ predicated of Parmenides’ Being.
Keywords Analytic Philosophy  Contemporary Philosophy  General Interest  Philosophy of Mind  Philosophy of Science
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ISBN(s) 0026-9662
DOI 10.5840/monist19796214
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Melissus, Time and Eternity.Massimo Pulpito - 2017 - Peitho 8 (1):107-124.
Melissus as a Critic of Parmenides: A Mimetic Rivalry.Massimo Pulpito - 2017 - Archai: Revista de Estudos Sobre as Origens Do Pensamento Ocidental 21:17-40.

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