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  • Circular Chain of Movers

    This may or may not be a dumb request, but could someone articulate for me, why a circular chain of movers is insufficient. My inution tells me it doesn't work, but I am not sure how to put it in words.

  • #2
    Originally posted by ClassicalLiberal.Theist View Post
    This may or may not be a dumb request, but could someone articulate for me, why a circular chain of movers is insufficient. My inution tells me it doesn't work, but I am not sure how to put it in words.
    How do you think it would work?

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    • #3
      Briefly:

      A causes B, so B depends on A and could not exist if A did not exist.
      And of course, A can only cause B if A exists in the first place.
      But if we add that A is caused by B, then A can only cause B to exist if existing B causes A to exist. But obviously, B cannot cause A unless it is first caused by A.

      The reasoning is kinda similar to the case of self-causation. Something cannot cause itself to exist, because it would have to precede its existence in order to do so. A circle of causes cannot bring itself into existence, either, because A could only cause B (which is a necessary condition for A in the first place) if B were already present to ground A's existence.

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      • #4
        A loop of causes has the same problem as an infinite chain of causes: each cause in the chain has only as much causal power as the one before it, but this results in none of them having any actual power. Think what would happen if you tried to power your computer by plugging it into a power strip and them plugging that one into another power strip, and that one into another, and so on, until you had an infinite number of these things plugged into each other. obviously your computer will not get any power because there is no energy to flow through any of these cables. The same thing happens if you have these power strips plugged into each other in a big loop so that the one at the end plugs into the first one. Again there is no actual power to flow through any of these.

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