In the Timaeus, Plato explicitly defines time as “the moving image of eternity”. This proposition affirms actually that time reflects the eternal that embodies the rational and lawful principle – namely the logos of proportionality – in the motion and change of visible objects in the universe. In other words,time determines the principle that every mutable being must follow to participate in the rational and nomological order of existence; the absolute logos which is given by God is hence intrinsic to time. This idea of time is echoed by the theories of Augustine and Husserl. Both philosophers inherited some of Plato’s metaphysical views, and each of them developed a distinctive theory of the relations between Being, time, and the absolute logos. This paper attempts to compare their theories and to defend the following claim: Augustine fo-cuses on the immutable representation of time which is regarded as the image (Bild) or reflection (Abbild) of God’s absolute logos, and explains temporal phenomena in terms of the connection between images in the mind. In contrast, Husserl focuses on the variability of time which is regarded as the imaging (Bilden) of God’s absolute logos. He accounts for the genesis of temporal structures by appealing to the “stand-ing-flowing” nature of the absolute consciousness at the living present.
Comparative and Continental Philosophy, Vol.10, No.1, pp.50-61