William of Ockham on Future Contingency

In: KronoScope

Abstract

In his philosophy, William of Ockham (1285-1347) offered an important and detailed response to the classical argument from the truth of a statement regarding the future to the necessity (unpreventability) of the statement. In this paper, Ockham’s solution and the possible formalisation of it are discussed in terms of modern tense and modal logic. In particular, the famous branching time formalisation suggested by A. N. Prior (1914-19) is discussed. Weaknesses and problems with this suggestion are pointed out, and an alternative formalisation of Ockham’s solution without the use of branching time is presented.

  • AdamsM. M. and N. Kretzmann. William Ockham: Predestination God’s Foreknowledge and Future Contingency. Translated with introduction notes and appendices. Second Edition. Indianapolis/Cambridge: Hackett Publishing Company1983.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • BoehnerPhilotheus. The Tractatus de praedestinatione et de praescientia Dei et de futuris contingentibus of William Ockham edited with a study on the mediaeval problem of a three-valued logic. Franciscan Institute publications no. 2. The Franciscan Institute, St. Bonaventure CollegeSt. Bonaventure, N. Y.1945.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • CraigW. L. The Problem of Divine Foreknowledge and Future Contingents from Aristotle to Suarez. Leiden: Brill1988.

  • CresswellM. J. “The Prior Future,” Logique et Analyse 199 (2007): 289-302.

  • DekkerE. “Does Duns Scotus Need Molina?” In John Duns Scotus: Renewal of Philosophy: Acts of the Third Symposium Organization by the Dutch Society for Medieval Philosophy. Medium Aevum edited by Egbert P. Bos. Atlanta, GA: Rodopi1998101-111.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • FredossoA. and D. M. Louis. On Divine Foreknowledge. Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press1988.

  • HaskerW. God Time and Knowledge. Ithaca: Cornell University Press1998.

  • JakobsenD.ØhrstrømP. and P. Hasle. “In Celebration of Past, Present and Future.” In Logic and Philosophy of Time: Themes from Prior edited by Per HaslePatrick Blackburn and Peter Øhrstrøm. Aalborg: Aalborg University Press20179-27.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • PlantingaA. “On Ockham’s Way Out.” Faith and Philosophy 3no. 3 (1986): 235-269.

  • PlougT. and P. Øhrstrøm. “Branching Time, Indeterminism and Tense Logic—Unveiling the Prior-Kripke Letters.” Synthese 188 (2012): 367-379.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • PriorA. N. “Three-Valued Logic and Future Contingents.” The Philosophical Quarterly 3no. 13 (Oct.1953): 317-326.

  • PriorA. N. Time and Modality. Oxford: the Clarendon Press1957.

  • PriorA. N. “Postulates for Tense-Logic.” American Philosophical Quarterly 3no. 2 (1966): 153-161.

  • PriorA. N. Past Present and Future. Oxford: Oxford University Press1967.

  • ØhrstrømP. and P. Hasle. “A. N. Prior’s Rediscovery of Tense Logic.” Erkenntnis 39 (1993): 23-50.

  • ØhrstrømP. and P. Hasle. “Future Contingents,” The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Winter Edition2015) edited by Edward N. Zalta. https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/future-contingents/ (Accessed Feb. 27 2018.)

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation

Content Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 170 157 9
Full Text Views 100 96 2
PDF Downloads 15 13 2