Two Fundamental Questions

  • Milič Čapek
Part of the Boston Studies in the Philosophy of Science book series (BSPS, volume 7)


Bergson himself was aware that the idea of different rhythms or different “tensions” of duration, or as he sometimes called it, “different degrees of elasticity of duration,” is difficult for us to comprehend precisely because of our natural tendency to attribute homogeneity and independence to time with respect to its concrete content. Not only was this belief strengthened by the three centuries of differential calculus and its successful applications to physics; not only was it strengthened by our perennial tendency to symbolize time by a geometrical line whose unlimited divisibility was naturally conferred to time itself, but nothing in physics prior to 1900 remotely suggested that this belief was merely an extrapolation of our limited macroscopic — or rather macrochronic — experience. But once we realize that this belief was an illusion — undoubtedly biologically well-founded and useful — the conditions are created for its removal.


Physical World Differential Calculus Time Quantum Temporal Segment Discrete Space Time 
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© D. Reidel Publishing Company, Dordrecht, Holland 1971

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  • Milič Čapek

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