Evanescence and Persistence, an abstract
I think that persistence of existing things can occur without identity over time. Stage theory is a theory of persistence that tries to account for how there can be persistence without identity. However, stage theory so far articulated by its proponents lacks concreteness in one important respect. I think the Buddhist theory of radical impermanence (i.e. momentariness) will give us one concrete version of stage theory. If the Buddhist version of stage theory is viable, it will strengthen stage theory against rival theories of persistence that claim that persistence involves identity over time.
I try to address and solve an internal problem in the Buddhist theory. The problem is that it is incompatible with the empirical fact that many things that happen in the world require some sort of interaction among multiple causal factors. I will reject two Buddhist solutions to the problem, and advance my own, which I call fusion theory.
If we adopt fusion theory, the Buddhist version of stage theory can be internally unproblematic. Still, it does not mean that the theory is defensible against existing problems of stage theory. Therefore, further assessment of the theory in the latter line is necessary.
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