# Time

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I was just thinking, maybe time doesn't merely exist but there is only the present that exists, and yet through space & motion objects can continuously alter & change this one moment feels eternal and yet because we can change it thanks to space & motion we get an illusion that there is a sense of flowing time.

Time travel to the future is just speeding up your motion through space. But if you wanted to return to 2010, you can still somewhat do it, for 2010 was just a certain configuration of matter in space, and not an actual time so if you reconstructed the way everything was in 2010 down to the atomic scale, that would be the best way to time travel and strictly speaking you could consider it returning to 2010 for it was the exact same configuration and with no time, nothing truly separates that 2010 and the original 2010 amazingly.

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There would still be a duration of time between the two identical configurations. That duration of time is not more nothing or less something, than the distance of space that separates two exactly identical objects.

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But if you wanted to return to 2010, you can still somewhat do it, for 2010 was just a certain configuration of matter in space, and not an actual time so if you reconstructed the way everything was in 2010 down to the atomic scale, that would be the best way to time travel and strictly speaking you could consider it returning to 2010 for it was the exact same configuration and with no time, nothing truly separates that 2010 and the original 2010 amazingly.

In that case, our memories and experience would likely be part of the "state of the universe."

If we returned to a "2010 state", we wouldn't have a memory of 2011, but instead restore a memory of the past up to 2010.

So if as you conjecture it's possible to return to such a state, then imagine that time is, right now, running in reverse. As you suggest, time isn't something that "flows" but rather the experience of a changing state of the universe. As we go back in time and proceed from one state to a previous state, we restore previous memories of time moving forward. If we experience the universe only in its current state, then ... we could actually be moving backward in time right now and never realize it!

We're not experiencing moving through time, only a single state that encodes the experience of moving forward through time.

It may be a game for the mind to try ponder that, but I don't think it's a realistic idea at all. The laws of entropy say that returning to a former state is more difficult as time passes... if not impossible. Some new understanding of time might make that law work in reverse for "backward time", but without any reason to suggest that there is something or some process by which previous states are restored, there's no reason to think that it happens.

The idea of random quantum fluctuations coupled with the idea that any possible reality will be expressed as a reality, somewhere in the multiverse... may suggest that it's possible and thus certain that a universe "pops" into existence with a randomly configured state that is identical to any other given state, such as one where you exist with memories and a history. It could be that the universe exists only in random moments. It seems like you're existing "over time" but really that's just an illusion caused by the single instantaneous random universe happening to encode a memory of past experiences...

However I think that I'm just complicating an already overcomplicated idea. Maybe there's some value in thinking about these things, but I think that the true nature of time and the universe is a LOT simpler than all these ideas. It is basically a discussion about what color the scales of a dragon that lives past the edge of a flat Earth might be.

Edited by md65536
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How come at any moment in my life I could replace the word "time" with something like "per 100 swings of a pendulum"?

How come I can describe a system as matter needing more or less energy to cause the specific circumstances that appear as "time slowing down" instead of time? Unless time is just a logical description, which isn't reality, but is just describing a pattern in reality. Or better yet, its just a system to better see patterns.

Edited by steevey
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Creating matter as it was in past seems to be practically impossible thing. You are telling us to make another universe. You can't neglect time even if you think the theory can be practically implemented.

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Creating matter as it was in past seems to be practically impossible thing. You are telling us to make another universe. You can't neglect time even if you think the theory can be practically implemented.

Ok, here's a scenario where time doesn't need to apply:

Time dilation:

I take one watch, put it way high in the exosphere of Earth, and one on the surface. One watch ticks faster than the other. I can explain this as it takes less energy for the hands on the watches to complete a ticking motion further from the surface than away since gravity is stronger the closer you get to the source.

From what it seems, time is just a periodic and mathematical measurement to better establish patterns.

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In contemporary physics, is time suppose to exist as an actual thing, or is it just a system of periodically measuring things? Because all those equations with time only assume time is true, which hasn't been proven to be a thing that actually exists as something.

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In contemporary physics, is time suppose to exist as an actual thing, or is it just a system of periodically measuring things? Because all those equations with time only assume time is true, which hasn't been proven to be a thing that actually exists as something.

I am not an expert, but...

It is simply a measurement, exactly like distance is. It's not a "thing" with substance.

"Distance" is real but it's not a physical thing. You can say distances exist, but you intuitively think of them as properties of a system, or as aspects of other things in a system, ie as measurements. They are not "stuff". Similarly, space-time is not "stuff", like an aether.

Space-time doesn't exist independently of other things. In the sense that it's a measurement, it's a measurement between other things. It can also be a measurement between imaginary locations in space and time, where those locations are also not things.

Time is a physical property defined between any locations in spacetime.

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