Date: Dec 4, 2013 1:17 PM
Subject: Infinity and Theology (44)

The fact of the act. infinitely large numbers is so little a reason for the possibility of an a parte ante infinite duration of the world that, on the contrary, by means of the theory of transfinite numbers the necessity of a beginning of motion and time in finite distance from the present can be proven.
The detailled grounds of this theorem I will postpone to another opportunity because I would not like to weigh down the merry beginning of your holidays with mathematical and metaphysical considerations.
[Cantor to Aloys Schmid, 5 Aug. 1887, from C. Tapp: "Kardinalität und Kardinäle: Wissenschaftshistorische Aufarbeitung der Korrespondenz zwischen Georg Cantor und katholischen Theologen seiner Zeit." Boethius Vol. 53, Franz Steiner Verlag (2005) p. 517]

Regards, WM