time
The nature of time has been one of the major problems of philosophy since antiquity. Is time well thought of as flowing? If so, does it flow from future to past with us stuck like boats in the middle of the river, or does it flow from past to future, bearing us with it? And might it flow faster or slower? These questions seem hard (or absurd) enough to encourage us to reject the metaphor of time's flow. But if we do not think of time as flowing, how do we conceive of its passage? What distinguishes the present from the past and future, or is there no objective distinction (see a-series )? What gives time its direction—what accounts for the asymmetry between past and future? Can we make sense of timeless existence, or can we only make sense of existence in time? Is time infinitely divisible, or might it have a granular structure, with there being a smallest quantum or chunk of time? Many of these problems are first posed in Aristotle's Physics, in the form of paradoxes or problems about the very existence of time. One problem is that time cannot exist, for none of its parts exist (the present instant, having no duration, cannot count as a part of time). Again, if we ask when the present instant ceases to exist, every answer involves a contradiction: not at the present, for while it exists it exists; not at the next moment, for in the continuum there is no next moment (any more than there is such a thing as the next fraction to any given fraction); not at any subsequent moment, for then it is already gone. But we cannot think of the present instant as continuously existing, for then things that happened ten thousand years ago would be simultaneous with things that have happened today. Aristotle's puzzles, and Zeno's paradoxes of time and space, encouraged atomistic solutions, in which the structure of time is made granular. Partisans of atomism included Diodorus Cronus (fl. c. 300 BC) and Epicurus, but they were opposed by the Stoics ; the countervailing arguments on each side were marshalled by Sextus Empiricus as grist to the sceptical mill. A fundamentally idealist solution, allowing different times to exist in the sense of being simultaneous objects of contemplation, is propounded by Augustine, in the Confessions, Bk. 11, and is visible in Leibniz, Berkeley, Kant, and Bergson . Other perplexing problems include the question of whether time may have a beginning, and whether there can be eventless time. See also space-time, relativity theory.

Philosophy dictionary. . 2011.

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  • Time — Time, n.; pl. {Times}. [OE. time, AS. t[=i]ma, akin to t[=i]d time, and to Icel. t[=i]mi, Dan. time an hour, Sw. timme. [root]58. See {Tide}, n.] 1. Duration, considered independently of any system of measurement or any employment of terms which… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • TIME — (magazine) Pour les articles homonymes, voir Time.  Time Magazine {{{nomorigine}}} …   Wikipédia en Français

  • TIME — Erstausgabe 1923 Beschreibung Nachrichtenmagazi …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Time — Time …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Time — (t[imac]m), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Timed} (t[imac]md); p. pr. & vb. n. {Timing}.] 1. To appoint the time for; to bring, begin, or perform at the proper season or time; as, he timed his appearance rightly. [1913 Webster] There is no greater wisdom… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Time — Time, v. i. 1. To keep or beat time; to proceed or move in time. [1913 Webster] With oar strokes timing to their song. Whittier. [1913 Webster] 2. To pass time; to delay. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Time — This article is about the measurement. For the magazine, see Time (magazine). For other uses, see Time (disambiguation). The flow of sand in an hourglass can be used to keep track of elapsed time. It also concretely represents the present as… …   Wikipedia

  • time — See: ABOUT TIME, AGAINST TIME, AT A TIME, AT ONE TIME, AT THE SAME TIME, AT TIMES, BEHIND THE TIMES, BEHIND TIME, BIDE ONE S TIME, BIG TIME, EVERY TIME ONE TURNS AROUND, FOR THE TIME BEING, FROM TIME TO TIME, GIVE A HARD TIME, HAVE A TIME, HIGH… …   Dictionary of American idioms

  • time — See: ABOUT TIME, AGAINST TIME, AT A TIME, AT ONE TIME, AT THE SAME TIME, AT TIMES, BEHIND THE TIMES, BEHIND TIME, BIDE ONE S TIME, BIG TIME, EVERY TIME ONE TURNS AROUND, FOR THE TIME BEING, FROM TIME TO TIME, GIVE A HARD TIME, HAVE A TIME, HIGH… …   Dictionary of American idioms

  • time — I. noun Etymology: Middle English, from Old English tīma; akin to Old Norse tīmi time, Old English tīd more at tide Date: before 12th century 1. a. the measured or measurable period during which an action, process, or condition exists or… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Time — У этого термина существуют и другие значения, см. Time (значения). TIME …   Википедия

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