An Essay on Metaphysics. Second Printing. by R G Collingwood

By R G Collingwood

One of many nice Oxford philosopher's best works, Essay on Metaphysics considers the character of philosophy, and places ahead Collingwood's unique and influential theories of causation, presuppositions, and the good judgment of query and resolution. This new version comprises 3 attention-grabbing unpublished items that light up and magnify the Essay.

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We want to obtain a set of observables such that the choice of the new coordinates is enough to characterize the dynamical evolution we should look for non conserved variables, and hence a new T-dependent transformation leading to a non null Hamiltonian should be defined. In other words, we need to perform a canonical transformation in the space of observables with a generator function which depends on T. A second canonical transformation will give additional -2 end point terms; because after the first transformation (qi,pi) -+ (Q ,Pi) we have already obtained a gauge-invariant action, the new boundary terms must be gauge invariant.

This does not ensure, however, that the amplitudes are equivalent; in fact, because when written as a functional of the original vari- Deparametrization and path integral quantization ables ($,pi) the gauge-invariant action S contains additional end point terms B, the paths would not be weighted in the path integral as they are by S. Then we demand that: (2) The end point terms B vanish on the constraint surface and in the gauge 2 = 0 defining T = r ( $ ) ,that is, Because the action S is gauge-invariant, this ensures that with any gauge choice the paths are weighted in the same way by S and S .

If we perform the functional integration on the lapse N enforcing the paths to lie on the constraint hypersurface PO= 0, we obtain where h r d f / d r is the true Hamiltonian of the reduced system. The path integral must give an amplitude between states characterized by the variables which make the action stationary when fixed at the boundaries. As S is stationary when the Qi are fixed, then we shall choose the gauge in the most general form giving Q0 as a function of the other coordinates Qp, r and constants c;, thus a choice of the boundary values of the physical Path integral coordinates and T 29 fixes the boundary values of QO.

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