more from Ned Markosian

Single Idea 13993

[catalogued under 27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 1. Nature of Time / h. Presentism]

Full Idea

The objection to Presentism from Special Relativity is this: 1) Relativity is true, 2) so there is no absolute simultaneity, 3) so there is no absolute presentness, but 4) Presentism entails absolute presentness, so 5) Presentism is false.

Gist of Idea

Special Relativity denies the absolute present which Presentism needs


Ned Markosian (A Defense of Presentism [2004], 3.9)

Book Reference

'Persistence: contemporary readings', ed/tr. Haslanger,S/|Kurtz,RM [MIT 2006], p.326

A Reaction

I don't accept this objection. There may be accounts that can give Relativity one present (Idea 12689-90). Maybe Einstein was too instrumentalist in his account. Maybe we can have Presentism with multiple present moments.

Related Ideas

Idea 12689 Simultaneity can be temporal equidistance from the Big Bang [Ellis]

Idea 12690 The present is the collapse of the light wavefront from the Big Bang [Ellis]

Idea 7621 Special relativity, unlike general relativity, was operationalist in spirit [Putnam on Einstein]

Idea 14013 Special Relativity allows an absolute past, future, elsewhere and simultaneity [Bourne]

Idea 14016 The idea of simultaneity in Special Relativity is full of verificationist assumptions [Bourne]