Eternity - Research Article from Encyclopedia of Philosophy

This encyclopedia article consists of approximately 10 pages of information about Eternity.
This section contains 2,780 words
(approx. 10 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Eternity Encyclopedia Article

The "Timeless Present" in Science

In English and other Indo-European languages there is a usage described by grammarians as the timeless present. When, for example, we say, "Seven is a prime number," we do not intend our use of the present tense to convey anything about the present as distinct from the past or the future. For this reason we find something very curious in the sentences "Seven was a prime number" and "Seven will be a prime number." Existential statements of a mathematical kind do not refer to the time of speaking. An assertion such as "There is a prime number between 5 and 10" could never be countered sensibly by the remark "You are out of date." For this reason the entities discussed in mathematics can properly be said to have a timeless existence. To say only that they have a sempiternal or omnitemporal existence (that is, an...

(read more)

This section contains 2,780 words
(approx. 10 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Eternity Encyclopedia Article
Copyrights
Encyclopedia of Philosophy
Eternity from Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
Follow Us on Facebook