“‘What on Earth Was I Thinking?’ How Anticipating Plan’s End Places an Intention in Time”

In Roman Altshuler Michael J. Sigrist (ed.), Time and the Philosophy of Action. New York: Routledge. pp. 87-107 (2016)
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How must you think about time when you form an intention? Obviously, you must think about the time of action. Must you frame the action in any broader prospect or retrospect? In this essay I argue that you must: you thereby commit yourself to a specific prospect of a future retrospect – a retrospect, indeed, on that very prospect. In forming an intention you project a future from which you will not ask regretfully, referring back to your follow-through on that intention, “What on earth was I thinking?” I argue that this broader attitude expresses the self-accountability necessary for practical commitment.
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