Sunday, March 10, 2013

Time travel in the physical world

I've watched many movies and shows that deal with time travel and it always makes me cringe when they describe time travel like driving from their home to the store.  Time travel is possible, but not in this reality because of the physical body and our current belief system.  Because of this, the outcome of time travel won't be like the movies.  You're not going to be able to go backwards in the same timeline and expect the future on that same timeline to change.  I'll try to explain why this is not logical.

First of all, time is a concept that exists as a rule or law (as a result of the laws of physics for this reality) in the physical reality, and even then, really only in our minds (all concepts are of the mind first).  Time is a concept that we experience because of our inability in this reality to experience anything other than "now".  This is due to our physical bodies which can only perceive the immediate surrounding through its physical senses.  The moment you receive physical sensory data, your physical mind registers it as "now".  But right after your mind experiences "now", it becomes imprinted as an "experienced now" which we call memory or the "past".  The "future" is the sensory data we have yet to imprint in the memory of the body.  But the "future" already exists.  There's an infinite number of possible futures, of which only a subset has the highest probability of becoming a reality within our experience based on the state of "now" and what we choose next.  Because we experience life in a system with defined rules for reality, the probabilities tend towards experiences that promote linear progression of a logically possible outcome.  That means if you're walking down a street, you won't suddenly find yourself in another location because it would break the rules of physical reality that says space exists and that locations within space are contiguous.  This does not mean, however, that those other less likely probabilities cannot occur.  There have been anecdotes from people throughout history where the expected outcome does not occur or the unexpected does occur such as object appearing spontaneously.

If time is a product of the physical mind and body (our inner mind is not limited to the laws of time, but accept it as a condition for the physical experience, since it was our inner minds that created the concept of time to help us), then the historical timeline is also a product of the physical mind and body.  The historical timeline that we all accept only exists as the product of verbal and written communication (and more recently, recorded images and videos) of experienced memories.  Those memories, which I called "experienced now", tells those who have not experienced those memories that they existed.  Those who have not experienced those memories cannot validate the memories, but can only accept that they occurred.  For example, watching a video of an experience will not be the same as actually being a part of the experience.  You will not have the same emotions or thoughts.  The same is true when you read or hear about a historical event rather than being there.  The collective of all conscious minds together create the shared historical timeline.  If this is the case, then could there be other historical timelines with other conscious minds that are not of the same collective?  A critic may say "they are changing history", or "their memory of history is incorrect".  But historical memories, unlike personal memories which are actually experienced, are only accepted as fact through acceptance of other personal memories.  This isn't to say those personal memories did not occur or that some other historical timeline is incorrect.  I am merely explaining that memories require personal experience and without it, you cannot know for certain whether the facts are correct.  If you believe the world is objective and that our consciousness is a product of this universe, then what I am saying is going to sound incorrect.  So before you can accept that historical time is a product of consciousness, you must accept that the universe is the product of consciousness.  This requires considering how the universe can exist at all.

If you view the world as being objective and apart from your consciousness, then you believe that the world would continue to exist without your individual consciousness, and thus you believe time is outside of consciousness.  But if time is not acknowledged by consciousness, what does time represent?  Do we not recognize time because consciousness recognizes change?  Without conscious recognition of change, time would not be perceived.  The reason why the objective world can continue without any human involvement is because the physical world is also conscious in its own way, and thus it perceives its own change in its own way of perception.

What does this have to do with time travel?  If time does not exist except as a memory of personal experiences, then what are you going back to in a time machine?  In the physical world, you can go back to your own personal experienced memory (which you do when you relive your past in your mind), but you cannot go back to another person's memory, at least not in the body.  In order to travel in time, you must do it as consciousness.  Historical time no longer exists as a physical structure (physically perceivable data) anymore, but only as memories within the vast web of experiencers.  Even if the physical location hasn't changed to the naked eye, it is no longer exactly the same at the moment of experience compared to the moment before and especially against a moment further back in time because of how the physical universe is actually manifested.

In my understanding, most of the science behind the notion of time travel is related to space, physics and math (all concepts of mind), where the warping of space allows for "time travel" in terms of moving from point A to point B faster or slower than normal.  They speak of time in terms relative to the speed of light, which is not the same thing as traveling through experienced historical time.  To have any mechanical means to physically travel, say, backwards in time, you'd need a system that can not only record the entirety of the state of matter in the universe at each moment of time (not to mention that this machine must exist before you can go backwards in time, and even then, only to the moment the machine started recording), but also to reorganize the matter in the entire universe to the moment of time you wish to move back to.  Otherwise, you would not be going back to the same physical state of the universe.  This would be the only true physical time travel.  Anything less would be a non-physical kind of time travel.  In addition, the belief in physical time travel must assume that consciousness is associated with the physical body/brain, which means that matter created consciousness.  If matter creates consciousness (ie. we are not spiritual beings) and not the other way around, then physical time travel would raise other questions related to the state of the individuals.  Does consciousness, and thus free-will, really exist if conscious qualities are related to the state of matter?  In other words, does traveling backwards in time mean the individual consciousness in the past will reenact the same sequence of thoughts and actions, assuming we as time travelers are just unseen observers and not yet affecting choices?  If this is the case, then we are all incapable of making choices as the movements and thoughts are already recorded in time.  The past would simply be replaying what already occurred, which can only happen without free will or freedom of thought.  The future would already be determined if this physical time machine could just "rewind" to the past.  For a physically manifested consciousness to be true, this must be the case in order to rewrite history through the use of a time machine.  If individuals in the past did not behave as such, then matter does not create consciousness and a singular historical timeline does not exist, and thus physical time travel is not possible.  If free will and freedom of choice does exist, then it must exist at all times in the historical timeline, and thus if you could travel physically in time, the same sequence of events may not occur.

If we assume for the sake of argument that a machine existed that could travel through historical time, and assuming a singular historical timeline because of the desire to affect your present condition, you still could not go back in time and affect the past's relative future (aka your present).  The reason is because if such time travel could occur, the fact that a future visitor could come to some past moment in a singular timeline means it already occurred at that past moment to allow the future visitor to visit (it would be an infinite loop of future going to past allowing the future to travel to the past).  In other words, if a person in the year 2100 had such a time machine and went back to the year 1900, the future after that moment in the 1900 would already reflect the change caused by the time traveler from the year 2100.  The person from the year 2100 could not change anything in its time since the year 2100 is the way it is because in the year 1900, a time traveler from the year 2100 came and affect the timeline, if we are in a one-historical timeline reality.  If there are multiple (infinite) historical timelines, you still could not affect the future as any changes to the past would mean a new historical timeline.  This theory has been premised many times, where the present creates a different future based on their choices, which means any time traveler would be unable to return to their timeline the moment they traveled through time.  In this case, if a time machine could physically go backwards to a past and forward to a future (which future?), how would you know which historical timeline you land at in an infinite historical timeline world?  How would someone even quantify historical time to create a control mechanism since time wouldn't exist in an infinite timeline world (each new moment would create a new "now", turning a probability into reality)?  The infinite probability paradigm is, in my view, the more accurate notion of experienced reality than the "time" concept.

Because time travel in the physical body is not a possibility due to the rules of matter, the physical senses and especially the mental aspect of time, it is a nice fantasy for those who wish to undo or change some event in the past, or to foretell the future.  But that person is only denying their power over themselves in the present by trying to affect the past or future for selfish gain (selfish motive is not necessarily a negative.  Anything that helps change current circumstance is for self-benefit).  Beyond that, to truly travel in time we'd have to leave the body to actually experience this, and it can be done if you want to.  Or do what you normally do, remember a past event or imagine a new future.  Both of these activities, believe it or not, is time travel and what you imagine changing in the past can and does have an effect.  If not for people imagining a specific future, we would not be where we are today.  Cars, space travel, computers: these were all imagined before they became reality.  We call it "imagine", but in reality, it is time travel, either by us seeing the future, or a probable future self showing us their future, as that probable self "imagines" changing the past (it's all really the same identity, but from our perspective within a moment in time, we see it that way).  We can only imagine these things because we have learned about them from the possible future since those imaginary things may not exist in the present.  In either case, using your mind you are traveling in time whether you know it or not.

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