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Zeno's Paradox of Achilles and the Tortoise - Essay Example

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These brilliant series of arguments on time and space have remained complex intellectual puzzles to this day, however upon closer inspection of a paradox one can…
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Zenos Paradox of Achilles and the Tortoise
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Zeno's Paradox of Achilles and the Tortoise

By our perception of motion, we know that Achilles is faster than the tortoise and thus he can easily overcome the tortoise in any race. We can physically prove our initial hypothesis that Achilles can beat the tortoise in a race and see that Achilles will at some point outrun the tortoise by the distance he has covered in leaps and bounds. Space or distance has always been measured by our senses; our eyes can visibly see that the distance traveled by Achilles is indeed greater than that of the tortoise. But this is what Zeno intends to postulate in the first place: our senses should be discredited as they are illusory and motion is logically impossible.
Zeno’s paradox about the footrace of the tortoise and Achilles is built on one basic assumption: that the race between these two has no goal or each runner cannot reach their goal. In that case, the tortoise and Achilles’ course of movement extends to infinity and this is where the absurdity lies; there is no race that extends to infinity else the tortoise and Achilles would forever be moving forward and there would be no race at all.
This dialectic reasoning of Zeno implies that Achilles will never catch the tortoise in a footrace, but the deeper implication of this paradox lies in the conclusion that no thing, for example a tortoise, or no one, in general, has a limit. As grandiose as this profound and philosophical conclusion is, Zeno’s paradox suggests that man’s abilities are limitless, very great in amount and degree, or boundless, having no apparent end. This paradox about man then puts forward a notion that his actions extend through an infinite amount of time and space. Our actions cover far greater than our senses can perceive; they extend to the end of time and the end of the universe. This claim becomes practically absurd because we know that time and the universe has no end to begin with while man has through his own death.
Going back to Zeno’s paradox, his conclusion ... Read More
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