Philoponus, Kant, and Russell on the Beginning of Time
Couvalis, Spyridon George
Modern Greek Studies Association of Australia and New Zealand
© 2019 the author
Bertrand Russell presented an influential critique of Philoponus’s traversal argument for a beginning of time in its Kantian form. I consider his criticisms and point out that they rely on metaphysical claims about the nature of time, causation, and the scope of non-contradiction. They are not merely logical criticisms. Russell relies on a Platonic atomist metaphysics to defend those claims. Yet, as I also point out, that metaphysics is not obviously true and Russell’s arguments for it are weak. Russell often talks as if his metaphysics arises out of merely logical considerations. However, his metaphysics cannot be justified by logic alone. I conclude that the traversal argument survives Russellian criticism.
© 2019 the author.
Ioannis Philoponos, Metaphysics, Logic
Couvalis G 2019, Philoponus, Kant, and Russell on the Beginning of Time', Journal of Modern Greek Studies (Australia and New Zealand) — Special Issue, pp. 36-52.