Cecilia Vatera is an expression of ideas. I post my thoughts and inspirations here, in the expectation that those who read it will question and challenge it, pass it to trusted friends and family who will also challenge it, and then explain to me their contradictory thoughts. Please, let this compilation broaden your way of thinking.
Sunday, April 4, 2010
On "Time" as We Know it
I turned on the history channel this morning to find a commercial for “Life After Humans,” a series about how the world would crumble without our existence. I thought it was odd that a history channel program was based on the “If,” especially an if that hasn’t happened yet. At first I though it was dumb for putting the future on the History Channel, history is past, not future. Then I realized that we are already the past, and so the future is the past too, because all existence is a book being read by a god. A book that has already been written and so the future is already past. For example, I am in the past as I write this and you are in the past as you read this. When I started this, I wasn’t in the present because it is already in the past. As I type the first word of this sentence, time slips away so quickly that I cannot ever know exactly when I typed it, it happened so fast I could not ever have said “now is the present”. Before I could finish saying that, it would already be the past and if half of your action or three quarters of this action or any action is in the past, is any of it in the present? Then there is no living the moment because the moment is already the past and one cannot live in the past. But isn’t one’s life only in the past? Because the past is permanent and immoveable and if it has already happened, then that is one’s whole life, because one has not yet lived the future and one can never achieve the present. Then, if what seemed like the future five minutes ago is already the past, how was it ever the future. In a year, this will be the long past, it should just already be considered the past. Then the god will have an easier time of it because if he puts the book down, our lives won’t stop because they will already have been written and hence already finished and already in the past but simply pretending to be in the present when the book is being read. Because it is curious how millions of years have passed or billions or trillions but really infinite amount of time, not even years or life times or existences because everything has already existed and has always been existing. Even before life or before earth or before a god existed or was realized to exist. Before the redwoods and before the stars and before the elements and before matter. But “before” indicates time and so time has always existed. Yet we don’t even know what “always” means because our brains cannot yet fathom even the present, so we cannot fathom the furthest past. We cannot know how far exactly it goes, but it must have started sometime, we cannot have existed at its start but before the universe existed what was what and what was where? And if there was nothing to have seen or felt or known, or simply nothing to see or feel or know, then how can one be certain time existed to hold it in? If, then, we cannot fathom the past and we cannot experience the present, the future must too be unreal. Then nobody has jurisdiction over our timeline because a timeline cannot exist. Without such perception of nanoseconds and centuries, our lives would be immeasurably simpler. In a class I take called History of the Americas, we learned about the industrial revolutions and the induction of the technology of railroads into the lives of the lived. Because the railroads were vital to the development of the country, or the world for that matter, a schedule needed to be set to ensure the arrival of trains at their stations and the arrival of people and goods at the train. So the first modern-day, American time system, account of how numbers and the immeasurable should be accounted for on a minuscule, minute by minute, hour by second basis. And so it began, and so it caught on, and so it continues. And so it has been “minutes” since I started writing this and since you started reading this and since the clocks started ticking when the railroads started blowing off steam. And yet I cannot tell you when the clock started ticking for the very first time, for was time invented or discovered? Had the universe been keeping track since its beginning or did the human race or the sun invent it for us to use? If it is an invention, we may as well disregard it because it wasn’t intended to exist and it only messes us up. It messes up my concentration here as I am looking at the clock to ensure I leave and arrive at a place in the future or present or past by two o’clock pm. When I arrive at that place, when will I be? In the second or nanosecond of present, in the long and seemingly distant future, in the never ending, never starting past? Or will I never actually be there. Am I never actually here? Because future doesn’t exist, past never started and present is unfathomable. So when you and I die, will anything know we existed? Will paper and hard drives be enough to preserve our memories and knowledge for those ahead of us, or have those ahead of us already existed? They exist in the past, that means we exist in the past. That means future doesn’t exist and that means past never ends. With an un-ending past and a never occurring present, then every dream or aspiration has already happened or not happened and every prophecy has already been fulfilled or unfulfilled. And that means the earth has already existed without humans, ant that means the history channel should run their program about the future because it is already the past and already history. You and I are history, let’s leave our mark on it together.