By Sarah Broadie
Written over a interval of thirty-five years, those essays, first released in 2007, discover the subjects of causation, time, destiny, determinism, traditional teleology, various conceptions of the human soul, the assumption of the top solid and the human value of relaxation. whereas many of the essays take as their starting-point a few subject in old Greek philosophy, they're intended no longer as exegesis yet as unique and autonomous contributions to dwell philosophizing. Written with readability, precision with no technicality, and philosophical mind's eye, they are going to have interaction a variety of readers, together with students and scholars of old Greek philosophy and others engaged on extra modern analytical issues.
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Additional resources for Aristotle and Beyond: Essays on Metaphysics and Ethics
Now the analysis showed that we are justified in doing so only because the very same event can be taken as having continued from earlier before it caused the effect, to later when it did so. But would we still be justified in calling this ‘forwards causation’ if, instead of taking the event to have continued from the earlier to the later time, we take it to have extended between those times? In other words, can we say that the cause is earlier than its effect simply on the ground that, as well as coinciding in time with the effect (since otherwise it could not be its cause), it also extends pastwards beyond it?
This breaks into two questions: must their continuing ‘have a direction’ at all? and, if so, must it be forwards? As far as the first question is concerned, what has to be determined is whether, when an event is said to continue from an earlier to a later time, anything more is meant than that it extends between these two temporal limits. This would be to say that they mark off the interval during which it takes place and that at any point between them one would find the event occurring. And simply to say that an event extends through a time is not yet to say that it in any sense has a temporal direction.
The universal determinist, then, does ask us to believe that in this world it has always been inevitable that you would act as you do, and therefore always inevitable that you would decide or otherwise come to act in that way. And this may be a hard belief for common sense to take on board. But there is another proposition which is not merely hard to believe, but is repugnant, intolerable and outrageous, namely that in general the outcome of your action would have been just the same even if the world had been such that in it, you acted in the opposite way under the circumstances.