But what does it mean to say that Alpha is necessary through itself (per seipsum necessarium)? It means that Alpha—that is, whatever ultimately explains the present continuing of S (the beginningless series of generating causes and their effects)—must itself exist independently as well as immutably, beginninglessly, and endlessly. The possibility of Alpha's depending on something for having come into existence can't arise, because Alpha's having in any way begun to exist has been shown to be impossible. And Alpha considered simply in its explanatory relationship to S can't depend on anything else for its existing, because it has been identified as the requisite first cause in the essentially ordered series of causes that explains Sn's existing and thus S's going on right now. Such a first cause was shown to be required by the nature of an essentially ordered series of causes and PSR2. Invoking PSR2 in order to get to end p.110
Kretzmann, Norman , (deceased) formerly Susan Linn Sage Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, Cornell University, New York
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