Hypothesis on temporal

Beings are temporal iff the possession of all their possible perfections involves contradiction.

We can’t have the energy of youth and the experience of age, the quiet of solitude and the excitement of company, the enjoyment of ice cream and mustard…

This temporality divides into temporality in substance and temporality only in accident.

In substance, temporality is based on matter, though it divides into the matter of the imperishable and the perishable. Imperishable matter used to be the supra-lunar bodies, but it’s now seen as more immanent – in one sense it’s all conserved quantities though more properly it’s all physical existence moving at c.

Temporality only in accident is thus peculiar to non-material entities whose operations cannot have all possible perfections, and so are intellects that cannot know all in one thought and consequently cannot love all that they love in one act of will. But their substance is fundamentally different from this, which is exactly what we need to focus on.

Temporality only by accident – the aevum – is a domain without history, narrative or development, since all these things are impoverishments of the aevum that can be conceptualized as introducing exclusions into it. To go from temporality to the aevum is to elevate to a domain where exclusions and contradictions fall away. This is true not just of the intrinsic perfections of the subject but the extrinsic perfections that can be evils to a subject, like its punishments. In time, for example, physical pain often distracts from the pain of loss in the same way that one can’t experience the pain of burning and the pain of freezing.

Seen from the temporal, the aevum is the domain of either unspeakable joy or unspeakable horror, since while goods and evils exclude each other, neither the totality of goods or the totality of evils for a subject exclude each other.

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