Volume 23, 2018
Apparent Motion and Ontology of Time
Introspectively, it appears that we can have experiences as of temporally extended phenomena such as change, motion, and the passage of time. A central question in the ontology of time is whether we can make sense of these experiences without assuming that the passage of time is real. The antireductionist argument against such a possibility maintains that if there is no passage of time, but only static time slices, then our experiences as of arguably temporally extended phenomena cannot be explained. Consequently, insofar as we can have such experiences, reductionists need to show that these experiences are in fact realized by static means. By drawing from cognitive sciences, this is exactly what Laurie A. Paul recently aimed to show. I will argue that Paul’s argumentation fails on two grounds. First, even if her argument for accounting apparent motion by static means is successful, it does not apply to other experiences of temporal phenomena. Second, there are reasons to doubt that even apparent motion is represented by static means. Accordingly, the antireductionist argument remains to be addressed.