- Can different material objects have the same parts at all times at which they exist?
- This paper defends the possibility of such coincidence against the main argument to the contrary, the ‘Indiscernibility Argument’. According to this argument, the modal1 supervenes2 on the non-modal3, since, after all, the non-modal4 is what grounds the modal5; hence, it would be utterly mysterious if two objects sharing all parts had different essential properties.
- The weakness of the argument becomes apparent once we understand how the modal6 is grounded in the non-modal7. By extending the ideas of combinatorialism so that we recombine haecceities8 as well as fundamental properties, we see how modal9 properties can be grounded in non-modal10 properties in a way that allows coincidence and yet also explains why there are differences in the modal11 properties of coinciding objects.
- Despite this, some de re modal12 facts are not grounded in the non-modal13 but instead are brute. However, although we cannot explain why a particular object has the basic modal14 properties it has, we can explain a closely related, semantic fact and, comparing the facts we can’t explain to more familiar brute facts, we understand why there should be no better explanation.
- As a result, we can see how coincidence is, after all, possible.
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- Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2018
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