Wednesday, 16 April 2008

Leff on Future Contingents

Gordon Leff's Gregory of Rimini: Tradition and Innovation in Fourteenth Century Thought (1961) might be expected to shed light on Rimini's nickname Tortor Infantium, but I'm afraid it doesn't.

I was pleased to read of Auriol's position as ‘somewhat anachronistically described by Michalski as 'three-value logic'’; Leff's wariness is echoed by Schabel in Theology at Paris, p. 3. But the following raised an eyebrow:

‘These two postulates [omniscience and bivalence] are the foundation of Gregory's view of the future; and they constitute an uncompromising repudiation of the two leading ideas among many of Gregory's confrères: that God cannot know future contingents necessarily, and that, as the future is itself undetermined, propositions about it are neutral.’ (p. 115)

Auriol is the only example Leff gives of the "many of Gregory's confrères" who think that propositions about future contingents are neither true nor false. Whether or not a Franciscan and an Augustinian can be said to be confrères, who are the others?

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