La Noción De Infinitud Aplicada Al Movimiento: La Tesis Cratiliana De La Total Inestabilidad (The Notion of Infinity Applied to Motion: The Cratylian Thesis of Total Instability)

15 Pages Posted: 4 Sep 2012 Last revised: 6 Sep 2012

Date Written: 2009

Abstract

The notion of infinity has been applied to very varied fields of study throughout the History of Greek Philosophy. Perhaps the least known among them continues to be its application to the phenomenon of motion. The question of Becoming occupied the better part of the philosophical inquiries of the 5th and 4th centuries BC, as they were greatly influenced by the thought of authors such as Heraclitus, Parmenides, Zenon, Democritus or Aristotle, among others. Yet perhaps the name to which we ought to relate the most extreme philosophical position based on motion is that of mysterious philosopher Cratylus, who is said to have reformulated and radicalized Heraclitus’ initial theses. Cratylus would have then applied the notion of infinity to that of change, thus building the so-called “Thesis of total instability”, which claims motion is not only constant, but also infinite and absolute, and therefore, the reality that is subjected to it cannot be determined. Even though we only know about this doctrine through its mere formulation and a few not very detailed descriptions, our intention would be precisely to demonstrate that, on the basis of the testimonies transmitted to us about his thought or indirectly about his philosophical position, we can sustain that Cratylus’s theory constitutes the first historical formulation of physical indeterminism.

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Suggested Citation

Pajón Leyra, Ignacio, La Noción De Infinitud Aplicada Al Movimiento: La Tesis Cratiliana De La Total Inestabilidad (The Notion of Infinity Applied to Motion: The Cratylian Thesis of Total Instability) (2009). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2140842 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2140842

Ignacio Pajón Leyra (Contact Author)

Universidad Complutense de Madrid ( email )

Carretera de Humera s/n
Madrid, Madrid 28223
Spain

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