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Forum Philosophicum

Volume 12, Issue 1, Spring 2007

Miłosz Pawłowski
Pages 17-31

Traversing the Infinite and Proving the Existence of God

The aim of this paper is to present a proof to the conclusion that is impossible to traverse an infinite series (in particular, an infinite series of past moments). This may also show (given additional assumptions) that the series of past moments cannot be infinite. In the first section I formulate five theses conceming traversing, successive addition and successive subtraction and I present the idea of the argument: if it were possible to traverse an infinite past, it should be in principle possible to go back, which is, however, impossible. The main body of the paper is concemed with working out a simple mathematical representation of some structural features of processes like traversing and successive addition. I also make a crucial distinction between completion of a process at a particular time and its timeless „completion" in infinite time. In section V, I present the formal proof and defend it against a possible objection of question-begging. Finally, I suggest that my argument can contribute to constructing arguments for God's existence, and to solving the problem of the asymmetry of our attitudes towards death and prenatal non-existence.

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