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Temporal Experience

Journal of Philosophy 107 (7):333-359 (2010)

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  1. Is Our Naïve Theory of Time Dynamical?Andrew J. Latham, Kristie Miller & James Norton - 2021 - Synthese 198 (5):4251-4271.
    We investigated, experimentally, the contention that the folk view, or naïve theory, of time, amongst the population we investigated is dynamical. We found that amongst that population, ~ 70% have an extant theory of time that is more similar to a dynamical than a non-dynamical theory, and ~ 70% of those who deploy a naïve theory of time deploy a naïve theory that is more similar to a dynamical than a non-dynamical theory. Interestingly, while we found stable results across our (...)
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  • Relational Passage of Time.Matias Slavov - 2022 - New York: Routledge.
    This book defends a relational theory of the passage of time. The realist view of passage developed in this book differs from the robust, substantivalist position. According to relationism, passage is nothing over and above the succession of events, one thing coming after another. Causally related events are temporally arranged as they happen one after another along observers’ worldlines. There is no unique global passage but a multiplicity of local passages of time. After setting out this positive argument for relationism, (...)
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  • Temporal Naturalism: Reconciling the “4Ms” and Points of View Within a Robust Liberal Naturalism.Jack Reynolds - 2020 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 19 (1):1-21.
    In the past generation, various philosophers have been concerned with the so-called “placement problem” for naturalism. The problem has taken on the shorthand alliteration of the 4Ms, since Mind/Mentality, Meaning, Morality, and Modality/Mathematics are four important phenomena that are difficult to place within orthodox construals of naturalism, typified by physicalism and a methodological preference for ways of knowing associated with the natural sciences. In this paper I highlight the importance of temporality to this ostensibly forced choice between naturalism and the (...)
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  • Can Sinners Really Change? Understanding Personal Salvation in the Block Universe.Emily Qureshi-Hurst - 2022 - Zygon 57 (3).
    Zygon®, Volume 57, Issue 3, Page 691-709, September 2022.
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  • On Whether B-Theoretic Atheists Should Fear Death.Natalja Deng - 2015 - Philosophia 43 (4):1011-1021.
    In this paper I revisit a dispute between Mikel Burley and Robin Le Poidevin about whether or not the B-theory of time can give its adherents any reason to be less afraid of death. In ‘Should a B-theoretic atheist fear death?’, Burley argues that even on Le Poidevin’s understanding of the B-theory, atheists shouldn’t be comforted. His reason is that the prevalent B-theoretic account of our attitudes towards the past and future precludes treating our fear of death as unwarranted. I (...)
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  • Accounting for Experiences as of Passage: Why Topology Isn’T Enough.Graeme A. Forbes - 2014 - Topoi 34 (1):187-194.
    Time appears to us to pass. Some philosophers think that we should account for these experiences by appeal to change in what there unrestrictedly is . I argue that such an appeal can only be the beginning of an account of passage. To show this, I consider a minimal type of view—a purely topological view—that attempts to account for experiences as of passage by an appeal to ontological change and topological features of the present. I argue that, if ontological change (...)
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  • The Elusive Appearance of Time.Rögnvaldur Ingthorsson - 2013 - In Christer Svennerlind, Jan Almäng & Rognvaldur Ingthorsson (eds.), Johanssonian Investigations. Essays in Honour of Ingvar Johansson on His Seventieth Birthday. Ontos Verlag. pp. 5--304.
    It is widely assumed that time appears to be tensed, i.e. divided into a future, present and past, and transitory, i.e. involving some kind of ‘flow’ or ‘passage’ of times or events from the future into the present and away into the distant past. In this paper I provide some reasons to doubt that time appears to be tensed and transitory, or at least that philosophers who have suggested that time appears to be that way have included in ‘appearance’ everything (...)
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  • Time, Physics, and Philosophy: It’s All Relative.Sam Baron - 2018 - Philosophy Compass 13 (1):e12466.
    This article provides a non-technical overview of the conflict between the special theory of relativity and the dynamic theories of time. The chief argument against dynamic theories of time from relativistic mechanics is presented. The space of current responses to that argument is subsequently mapped.
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  • Passing Time.Nicky Kroll - 2020 - Erkenntnis 85 (1):255-268.
    I offer a novel account of temporal passage. According to this account, time passes in virtue of there being events in progress. I argue that such an account of temporal passage can explain the direction and whoosh of temporal passage. I also consider two prominent accounts of temporal passage and argue that they amount to special versions of the thesis that time passes in virtue of there being events in progress.
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  • The Sense of Temporal Flow: A Higher-Order Account.Thomas Sattig - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (11):3041-3059.
    We seem to experience time as flowing. Yet according to the leading metaphysical picture of time, the block-universe theory, time in fact does not flow. Block-lovers typically react to this apparent tension by unhitching the sense of flow in our temporal experience from temporal reality, holding that temporal experience is systematically illusory. I shall develop a new block-friendly account of the sense of flow, which preserves a match of temporal experience and temporal reality. According to this account, the sense of (...)
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  • Agents of Change: Temporal Flow and Feeling Oneself Act.Nick Young - 2022 - Philosophical Studies 179 (8):2619-2637.
    Here, I put forward a new account of how experience gives rise to the belief that time passes. While there is considerable disagreement amongst metaphysicians as to whether time really does pass, it has struck many as a default, ‘common sense’ way of thinking about the world. A popular way of explaining how such a belief arises is to say that it seems perceptually as though time passes. Here I outline some difficulties for this approach, and propose instead that the (...)
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  • Perceiving Direction in Directionless Time.Matt Farr - 2022 - In Kasia M. Jaszczolt (ed.), Understanding Human Time. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    Modern physics has provided a range of motivations for holding time to be fundamentally undirected. But how does a temporally adirectional metaphysics, or ‘C-theory’ of time, fit with the time of experience? In this chapter, I look at what kind of problem human time poses for C-theories. First, I ask whether there is a ‘hard problem’ of human time: whether it is in principle impossible to have the kinds of experience we do in a temporally adirectional world. Second I consider (...)
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  • Debunking Arguments.Dan Korman - 2019 - Philosophy Compass 14 (12).
    Debunking arguments—also known as etiological arguments, genealogical arguments, access problems, isolation objec- tions, and reliability challenges—arise in philosophical debates about a diverse range of topics, including causation, chance, color, consciousness, epistemic reasons, free will, grounding, laws of nature, logic, mathematics, modality, morality, natural kinds, ordinary objects, religion, and time. What unifies the arguments is the transition from a premise about what does or doesn't explain why we have certain mental states to a negative assessment of their epistemic status. I examine (...)
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  • Time.Ned Markosian - 2010 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Discussions of the nature of time, and of various issues related to time, have always featured prominently in philosophy, but they have been especially important since the beginning of the 20th Century. This article contains a brief overview of some of the main topics in the philosophy of time — Fatalism; Reductionism and Platonism with respect to time; the topology of time; McTaggart's arguments; The A Theory and The B Theory; Presentism, Eternalism, and The Growing Universe Theory; time travel; and (...)
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  • The Experience and Perception of Time.Robin Le Poidevin - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  • Meaning in Life and the Nature of Time.Ned Markosian - forthcoming - In The Oxford Handbook of Meaning in Life. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    Many of the leading accounts of what makes a life meaningful are goal-based theories, according to which it is the pursuit of some specific goal (such as love for things that are worthy of love) that gives meaning to our lives. In this chapter I consider how these goal-based theories of meaning in life interact with the two main theories of the nature of time that have been defended in the recent metaphysics literature, namely, The Dynamic Theory of Time and (...)
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  • Relief, time-bias, and the metaphysics of tense.Julian Bacharach - 2022 - Synthese 200 (3):1-22.
    Our emotional lives are full of temporal asymmetries. Salient among these is that we tend to feel differently about painful or unpleasant events depending on their temporal location: we feel anxiety or trepidation about painful events we anticipate in the future, and relief when they are over. One question, then, is whether temporally asymmetric emotions such as relief have any ramifications for the metaphysics of time. On what has become the standard way of finessing this question, the asymmetry of relief (...)
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  • The Delusive Illusion of Passage.Emiliano Boccardi & Federico Perelda - 2018 - Analysis 78 (3):387-396.
    We argue that the view that we misperceive time as passing is self-undermining.
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  • Robust Passage Phenomenology Probably Does Not Explain Future-Bias.Andrew J. Latham, Kristie Miller, Christian Tarsney & Hannah Tierney - 2022 - Synthese 200 (1):1-23.
    People are ‘biased toward the future’: all else being equal, we typically prefer to have positive experiences in the future, and negative experiences in the past. Several explanations have been suggested for this pattern of preferences. Adjudicating among these explanations can, among other things, shed light on the rationality of future-bias: For instance, if our preferences are explained by unjustified beliefs or an illusory phenomenology, we might conclude that they are irrational. This paper investigates one hypothesis, according to which future-bias (...)
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  • The Evolutionary Origins of Tensed Language and Belief.Heather Dyke - 2011 - Biology and Philosophy 26 (3):401-418.
    I outline the debate in metaphysics between those who believe time is tensed and those who believe it is tenseless. I describe the terms in which this debate has been carried out, and the significance to it of ordinary tensed language and widespread common sense beliefs that time is tensed. I then outline a case for thinking that our intuitive beliefs about tense constitute an Adaptive Imaginary Representation (Wilson, in Biol Philos 5:37–62, 1990; Wilson, in Biol Philos 10:77–97, 1995). I (...)
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  • Space Emergence in Contemporary Physics: Why We Do Not Need Fundamentality, Layers of Reality and Emergence.Baptiste Le Bihan - 2018 - Disputatio 10 (49):71-95.
    ‘Space does not exist fundamentally: it emerges from a more fundamental non-spatial structure.’ This intriguing claim appears in various research programs in contemporary physics. Philosophers of physics tend to believe that this claim entails either that spacetime does not exist, or that it is derivatively real. In this article, I introduce and defend a third metaphysical interpretation of the claim: reductionism about space. I argue that, as a result, there is no need to subscribe to fundamentality, layers of reality and (...)
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  • String Theory, Loop Quantum Gravity and Eternalism.Baptiste Le Bihan - 2020 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 10:17.
    Eternalism, the view that what we regard locally as being located in the past, the present and the future equally exists, is the best ontological account of temporal existence in line with special and general relativity. However, special and general relativity are not fundamental theories and several research programs aim at finding a more fundamental theory of quantum gravity weaving together all we know from relativistic physics and quantum physics. Interestingly, some of these approaches assert that time is not fundamental. (...)
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  • The Moving Spotlight.Giuseppe Spolaore & Giuliano Torrengo - 2021 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 64 (7):754-771.
    The moving spotlight account (MS) is a view that combines an eternalist ontology and an A-theoretic metaphysics. The intuition underlying MS is that the present time is somehow privileged and experientially vivid, as if it were illuminated by a moving spotlight. According to MS-theorists, a key reason to prefer MS to B-theoretic eternalism is that our experience of time supports it. We argue that this is false. To this end, we formulate a new family of positions in the philosophy of (...)
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  • Flow and Presentness in Experience.Giuliano Torrengo & Daniele Cassaghi - forthcoming - Analytic Philosophy.
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  • Temporal Experience Workshop Question One.Kevin Connolly, Mike Arsenault, Akiko Frischhut, David Gray & Enrico Grube - manuscript
    This is an excerpt from a report on the Temporal Experience Workshop at the University of Toronto in May of 2013. This portion of the report explores the question: What can we learn about the nature of time from the nature of ordinary experience?
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  • Knowledge and Tracking Revisited.Fernando Broncano-Berrocal - 2018 - Analysis 78 (3):396-405.
    An explanatorily powerful approach to the modal dimension of knowledge is Robert Nozick’s idea that knowledge stands in a tracking relation to the world. However, pinning down a specific modal condition has proved elusive. In this paper, I offer a diagnosis and a positive proposal. The root of the problem, I argue, is the unquestioned assumption that tracking is a matter of directly preserving conformity between what is believed and what is the case in certain possible worlds. My proposal is (...)
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  • Temporal Experience Workshop Full Report.Kevin Connolly, Mike Arsenault, Akiko Frischhut, David Gray & Enrico Grube - manuscript
    This report highlights and explores four questions that arose from the workshop on temporal experience at the University of Toronto, May 20th and 21st, 2013.
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  • Modal Arguments, Possible Evidence and Contingent Metaphysics.Michael Traynor - 2017 - Dissertation, St Andrews
    The present work explores various ways in which contingent evidence can impact metaphysics, while advocating that, just as a scientific realist allows for ampliative inferences to the unobservable, ampliative inferences from possible evidence can warrant possibility claims that lie beyond the reach of sensorial imagination. In slogan form: possible evidence is a guide to possibility. Drawing on Shoemaker’s (1969) argument for the possibility of time without change, I advocate the following principle: If there is a possible world at which the (...)
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  • Temporal Experience as Metaphysically Lightweight.Daniel Morgan - forthcoming - European Journal of Philosophy.
    European Journal of Philosophy, EarlyView.
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  • Frightening Times.Davide Bordini & Giuliano Torrengo - 2022 - European Journal of Philosophy 30 (1):293-306.
    In this paper, we discuss the inherent temporal orientation of fear, a matter on which philosophers seem to have contrasting opinions. According to some, fear is inherently present-oriented; others instead maintain that it is inherently future-oriented or that it has no inherent temporal orientation at all. Despite the differences, however, all these views seem to understand fear’s temporal orientation as one-dimensional—that is, as uniquely determined by the represented temporal location of the intentional object of fear. By contrast, we present a (...)
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  • On Explaining Why Time Seems to Pass.Natalja Deng - 2013 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 51 (3):367-382.
    Usually, the B-theory of time is taken to involve the claim that time does not, in reality, pass; after all, on the B-theory, nothing really becomes present and then more and more past, times do not come into existence successively, and which facts obtain does not change. For this reason, many B-theorists have recently tried to explain away one or more aspect(s) of experience that they and their opponents take to constitute an experience of time as passing. In this paper, (...)
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  • De Se Preferences and Empathy for Future Selves.L. A. Paul - 2017 - Philosophical Perspectives 31 (1):7-39.
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  • Physical Time Within Human Time.Ronald P. Gruber, Richard A. Block & Carlos Montemayor - 2022 - Frontiers in Psychology 13.
    A possible solution is offered to help resolve the “two times problem” regarding the veridical and illusory nature of time. First it is recognized that the flow of time is part of a wider array of temporal experiences referred to as manifest time, all of which need to be reconciled. Then, an information gathering and utilizing system model is used as a basis for a view of manifest time. The model IGUS robot of Hartle that solves the “unique present” debate (...)
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  • Straight to the Point: Experiential Punctivism and the Perception of Time.Henry Pollock - 2022 - Analysis 81 (4):674-683.
    The aim of this paper is to show that the A-theorist's argument from experience is undermined by a commitment to ‘experiential punctivism' - the view that instantaneous experiences are metaphysically prior to durative ones. The experiences to which the A-theorist's argument appeals are those of processual events. For these experiences to constitute perceptions of temporal passage it would be necessary to perceive such processes qua processes; but, if experiential punctivism were true, this would be impossible. We could only ever perceive (...)
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  • Presentism and the Specious Present: From Temporal Experience to Meta‐Metaphysics.Olla Solomyak - 2019 - Dialectica 73 (1-2):247-266.
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  • Phenomenal Feel as Process.L. A. Paul - 2017 - Philosophical Issues 27 (1):204-222.
    Phenomenal character is the what-it's-likeness of subjective experience. I develop an ontology of phenomenal feel as process. My being in some phenomenal state R is the process of my instantiating R’s neurological correlate. The ontology explains why we have asymmetric epistemic access to phenomenal characters: the ontological ground for the subjective or first-personal stance is different from the ontological ground for the objective or third-personal stance. I end by situating my account in debates about physicalism.
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  • Time, and Time Again.Sam Baron & Yi-Cheng Lin - 2022 - Philosophical Quarterly 72 (2):259-282.
    A number of philosophers uphold a metaphysical symmetry between time and hypertime, in this sense: in so far as hypertime exists, the nature of hypertime should agree with the nature of time. Others allow that we can mix and match the metaphysics of time and hypertime. Thus, it may be that time really passes, but hypertime does not or vice versa. In this paper, we provide a preliminary defense of the mix and match approach. We outline a number of arguments (...)
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  • Crane and the Mark of the Mental.Andrea Raimondi - 2022 - Analysis 81 (4):683-693.
    Brentano’s suggestion that intentionality is the mark of the mental is typically spelled out in terms of the thesis that all and only mental states are intentional. An influential objection is that intentionality is not necessary for mentality. What about the idea that only mental states are intentional? In his 2008 paper published in Analysis, Nes shows that on a popular characterization of intentionality, notably defended by Crane, some non-mental states come out as intentional. Crane replies that the concept of (...)
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  • Five New Arguments for The Dynamic Theory of Time.Ned Markosian - forthcoming - Philosophical Perspectives:1-43.
    According to The Static Theory of Time, time is like space in various ways, and there is no such thing as the passage of time. According to The Dynamic Theory of Time, on the other hand, time is very different from space, and the passage of time is an all-too-real phenomenon. This paper first offers some suggestions about how we should understand these two theories, and then introduces five new arguments for The Dynamic Theory of Time.
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  • Relativity, the Open Future, and the Passage of Time.Oliver Pooley - 2013 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 113 (3pt3):321-363.
    Is the objective passage of time compatible with relativistic physics? There are two easy routes to an affirmative answer: (1) provide a deflationary analysis of passage compatible with the block universe, or (2) argue that a privileged global present is compatible with relativity. (1) does not take passage seriously. (2) does not take relativity seriously. This paper is concerned with the viability of views that seek to take both passage and relativity seriously. The investigation proceeds by considering how traditional A-theoretic (...)
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  • A New Theory of Free Will.Marcus Arvan - 2013 - Philosophical Forum 44 (1):1-48.
    This paper shows that several live philosophical and scientific hypotheses – including the holographic principle and multiverse theory in quantum physics, and eternalism and mind-body dualism in philosophy – jointly imply an audacious new theory of free will. This new theory, "Libertarian Compatibilism", holds that the physical world is an eternally existing array of two-dimensional information – a vast number of possible pasts, presents, and futures – and the mind a nonphysical entity or set of properties that "read" that physical (...)
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  • A Quantum Theory of Felt Duration.Carla Merino-Rajme - 2014 - Analytic Philosophy 55 (3):239-275.
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  • Experience and the Passage of Time.Bradford Skow - 2011 - Philosophical Perspectives 25 (1):359-387.
    Some philosophers believe that the passage of time is a real phenomenon. And some of them find a reason to believe this when they attend to features of their conscious experience. In fact this “argument from experience” is supposed to be one of the main arguments for passage. What exactly does this argument look like? Is it any good?
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  • From Experience to Metaphysics: On Experience‐Based Intuitions and Their Role in Metaphysics.Jiri Benovsky - 2015 - Noûs 49 (3):684-697.
    Metaphysical theories are often counter-intuitive. But they also often are strongly supported and motivated by intuitions. One way or another, the link between intuitions and metaphysics is a strong and important one, and there is hardly any metaphysical discussion where intuitions do not play a crucial role. In this article, I will be interested in a particular kind of such intuitions, namely those that come, at least partly, from experience. There seems to be a route from experience to metaphysics, and (...)
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  • Skeptical Notes on a Physics of Passage.Nick Huggett - 2014 - Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 1326 (1):9-17.
    This paper investigates the mathematical representation of time in physics. In existing theories time is represented by the real numbers, hence their formal proper- ties represent properties of time: these are surveyed. The central question of the paper is whether the existing representation of time is adequate, or whether it can or should be supplemented: especially, do we need a physics incorporating some kind of ‘dynamical passage’ of time? The paper argues that the existing mathematical framework is resistant to such (...)
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  • Time and the Domain of Consciousness.Christoph Hoerl - 2014 - Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 1326:90-96.
    It is often thought that there is little that seems more obvious from experience than that time objectively passes, and that time is, in this respect, quite unlike space. Yet nothing in the physical picture of the world seems to correspond to the idea of such an objective passage of time. In this paper, I discuss some attempts to explain this apparent conflict between appearance and reality. I argue that existing attempts to explain the conflict as the result of a (...)
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  • Kant on Time and Change: A Series, B Series, or Both?Hope Sample - 2017 - In Per Hasle, Patrick Blackburn & Peter Ohrstrom (eds.), Logic and Philosophy of Time: Themes from Prior, Volume 1. Aalborg: Aalborg University Press. pp. 141-150.
    When interpreters orient Kant in relation to contemporary philosophy of time, they claim that the B series is dependent on the A series. However, I claim that the opposite direction of dependence is also supported, due to Kant’s position that change is both intelligible and involves incompatibility. This paper extends the contemporary description of Kant’s philosophy of time to show that Kant endorses the interdependence of A series and B series views on time.
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  • Experimental Philosophy on Time.James Norton - 2021 - Philosophy Compass (11).
    Appeals to the ‘common sense’, or ‘naïve’, or ‘folk’ concept of time, and the purported phenomenology as of time passing, play a substantial role in philosophical theorising about time. When making these appeals, philosophers have been content to draw upon their own assumptions about how non-philosophers think about time. This paper reviews a series of recent experiments bringing these assumptions into question. The results suggest that the way non-philosophers think about time is far less metaphysically demanding than philosophers have assumed.
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  • On Believing That Time Does Not Flow, but Thinking That It Seems To.Kristie Miller, Alex Holcombe & Andrew J. Latham - 2019 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 42.
    Hoerl & McCormack posit two systems – the temporal updating system and the temporal reasoning system – and suggest that they explain an inherent contradiction in people's naïve theory of time. We suggest there is no contradiction. Something does, however, require explanation: the tension between certain sophisticated beliefs about time, and certain phenomenological states or beliefs about those phenomenological states. The temporal updating mechanism posited by H&M may contribute to this tension.
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  • Perceptual Illusionism.Brian Cutter - 2021 - Analytic Philosophy 62 (4):396-417.
    Perceptual illusionism is the view that perceptual experience is, in general, radically illusory. That is, perceptual experience presents objects as having certain sensible properties and standing in certain sensible relations, but nothing in the subject’s environment has those properties or stands in those relations. This paper makes the case for perceptual illusionism by showing how a broad set of philosophical and scientific considerations converge to support illusionism about the full range of sensible properties and relations. After clarifying the illusionist thesis, (...)
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