The mathematical concept of a function expresses the intuitive idea that one quantity (the argument of the function, also known as the input) completely determines another quantity (the value, or the output). A function assigns a unique value to each input of a specified type. from the wikipedia
Is Being a Function of Time?
At a given moment in Time (t) Being = x.
There certainly must be other inputs into "being" than time (I prefer temporality).
Of course I think there is a growing recognition in Western religion, science and philosophy that reality is more about "becoming"(process,change,flux) than about "being"(static, essence). Process requires temporality.
In the East "being" has always been understood as "illusion" and impermanence as "reality".
what is the essence of the function of time though ?
---------- Post added 05-13-2010 at 11:28 PM ----------
the mathematical definition of a function is ;
a quantity whose value is dependent on the value of some other quantity
what a lode of mathematical non-sense this thread is
I don;t see anything wrong with using mathematics as a metaphor. I mean, the metaphor did lead to mathematics; why not vice versa?
What metaphor lead to mathematics ?
no , accounting
as in finance
Maybe matter is an additional variable in the equation... but what of the other possible substances? We run up immediately against the next big question of metaphysics after the question of Being and Time. How many substances are there? Is there just one?
Right, I was hoping someone would bring up Becoming. Now I don't think Becoming is all that different from change. If there is some important difference please point it out. I think Aristotle pointed out that there is no Time without Change just as there is no Change without Time.
Oh come on now, I'm just throwing this out there. I'm completely open to refutations of this mathematical approach.
Well it is true mathematics probably has its roots in some Egyptian or Summerian accounting but I think it has evolved beyond that. Language itself may have began as a tool within the context of some activity like hunting.. i.e. "You go that way and I'll go this way" but language has evolved beyond that I think... though perhaps we are still hunting for things when we speak.
Some of the first markings that have been recognized as writing were those Summerian tablets which turned out to be some kind of accounting table or receipt of purchase. The very first symbolic markings were likely just a replacement for territorial pissings. Though I think it is more likely that the first word meant something like "Watch out Sabertooth!" or "Help!" but I think the word "Mine!" probably arrived soon after... as is the case with two year olds.
But I'm not sure if you are talking about the origins of mathematics or mathematics itself. Do you consider all mathematics to be a mere extension of accounting... as in finance? That say Einstein and Newton were really just accountants... as in finance?
What metaphor lead to mathematics ?
Well of course I am a process philosophy person so process is primary. Time or temporality and being are both secondary to process.
I am going to say that process is more than just change. That process is the actualization from the realm of possiblities. I am going to say that being is sustained by process not the other way around. The notion of static being of an unchanging realm of eternal actual entities where no change occurred and no time passed is not possible.
What we perceive as being is the incorporation of elements of the past into the present through process. Static being, permanence is an illusion albeit a persistant one.
While spinoza would say there are infinite substances of which only mind and matter are directly perceived by man. Descartes would say there are two primary substances mind and matter, which interact through the intervention of god (maybe that makes three, a trinity?). Plato had three categories (that which is generated, that which it is generated in and that in the likeness of which that which is generated is made (the Receptacle). I am a neutral monist so there is one ultimate principle creativity and one ultimate reality process (of which mind and matter are both manifestations).
Well for me both time and substance are generated by process. Process is how time is perceived and how the illusion of substance is sustained. Now there has to be some realm of possibility, some ground of being, some essence of existence on which process proceeds to create time and substance (some call that God).
This is just a theory, but isn't the number one quite similar precisely to the concept of a thing or a being? And then one just invents a glyph system to iterate this strange root abstraction of pure quantity.