Time Can 't Be Real

761 Words4 Pages
Final Paper

To follow J.M.E. McTaggart’s main argument proposing that time can’t be real, his two

forms with which he feels all events can be ordered throughout time, the “A-series” and the “B-

series” must first be understood. There is a “moving now” in the A-series. With this, the past

present and future, are all properties events can gain or lose, with really no concrete relation to

each other as to allow for change, whereas, the B-series, is static.

It is comparable to what we normally think of as a timeline with temporal ordering

among events. Thus, the B-series does not allow change in McTaggart’s view, and since time

certainly seems to involve change, then it couldn’t possibly involve the B-series. And any

change that seems to be in the B-series is actually just different parts of the whole, a special-

temporal worm. Within McTaggart study of times only other possible foundational leg, the A-

series, he is off put by what he feels, is a crippling contradiction.

He explains that in the A-series all events are, or have the property of, past, present, and

future. But McTaggart strongly believes that these properties cannot all be had. It is not just

improbable but impossible, just like a soccer ball cannot have the two properties of being

completely green AND completely red. Hence McTaggart concludes, time must not only

involve the B-series but couldn’t possibly involve the A-series with the aforementioned

contradiction, therefore,
Open Document