Does Time Exist?
Posted 24 April 2012 - 05:37 AM
We humans have created the concept known as Time long ago, and have used it as a fundamentally way of telling when something happens, or when to do something. But someone said something the other day that got me thinking, "Time doesn't Exist, it's just a concept we created to allude ourselves that it does."
When you go deeper into thinking, we use time almost...well all the time. Seconds, Minutes, Hours, Days, Months, & Years. We created these in order to keep a sense of how things progress in life and when to expect them.
But let's ask this, for a minute, just pretend time doesn't exist. Think about the sun and moon and Earth revolving around it. We conceive this as days,months, and years. But going into a deeper thought, it's just the Earth rotating around the Sun. That's it. No 12 hours till Daytime or anything, it's just nature. Without time, it would just be "The sun is coming up, now it's gone." No day or night, just...that.
Half of you probably know what I'm talking about while the other half are probably still confused, so let me put it somewhat easier. Humans aging. We say "Oh look he's 3 years old!" or "He's going to die in 5 months." But where did months and years come from? Couldn't it just be the fact that our bodies are being worn out and simply changing our molecular process to the point of where our physical appearance have caused us to look older. Then we simply die because our body cannot function anymore.
Still confused? Yeah me too. Just bear with me though,
So what if time is a concept of just clocks and numbers? Would we be able to function without it? Answer is no. We've strived on Time for far too many centuries in order to just abandon it and come within a new way of life. Time controls us, even if it isn't real.
But that does bring up the question, who created Time? Nobody will ever know, but it's even more mysterious when you wonder just how life would be like if he never did create time.
Like I said, no seconds, minutes, hours, or calendars. It would just....happen.
What's your two cents on this? Is Time a concept, or am I just a nut-job for thinking this way?
Posted 24 April 2012 - 05:42 AM
And who's to say those few weeks you spend in space won't equal out to a year or two on earth?
Posted 24 April 2012 - 05:53 AM
But I suppose if you think about it on the most general level possible, time cannot be proven to exist. Though it gets pretty complicated when you think about it too much. For example, why do we get tired? Because we haven't had enough sleep for too long. "Too long" is just a non-definable unit of time. Stuff like that kinda throws a whole bunch of questions into the mix. Questions I don't have time to answer.
Posted 24 April 2012 - 05:56 AM
Posted 24 April 2012 - 05:59 AM
Posted 24 April 2012 - 07:15 AM
I do find it extremely interesting, but I find it almost like one of those things that's a waste of time (ironically).
To add, I guess you can start looking into the 4th dimension maybe. That has to deal with x, y, z and duration as well. Maybe you can speculate more from there? Even then, I guess dimensions are a man-given idea such as time, so go figure. It all depends how much you want to bar everything to a "human concept" XD.
Posted 24 April 2012 - 07:30 AM
It's just like other things. Where did the idea of the afterlife come from, the idea of gravity which you could speculate on (kind of), the idea of space? We give rules to our everyday lives and define things so that we can feel like there is some purpose in life, that nothing is random or unexplained. We want to create a reality because humanity doesn't like not knowing things.
Posted 24 April 2012 - 08:39 AM
Edited by SuperStingray, 24 April 2012 - 08:40 AM.
Posted 24 April 2012 - 10:54 AM
Posted 24 April 2012 - 11:01 AM
Not like it matters to me - I'm absolutely terrible at telling time.
Easter Break, felt like I was home for a long while, despite being only 10 days. Last week? Felt really short.
Posted 24 April 2012 - 11:36 AM
Posted 24 April 2012 - 11:48 AM
So time does exist - it is definitely a dimension as some others have said, and is, I think, quite a natural dimension when you come to think of space-time. I like to think of time in a 3-d graph, where say one axis is x, one is both y and z (in some combination, doesn't matter), and the other is time. No matter how stationary we think we are, we aren't - we're on a spinning sphere, orbiting a sun, orbiting a galaxy, orbiting in a local cluster etc...so in essence, time can be used to define the location of an object, at any time.
With regards to the time standards we have defined, they are arbitrary - we simply use a unit of time we can conceive - for example there would be no point in measuring the time it takes to boil a kettle in units of the life of a star (millions of billions of years) as it's not something to conceptualise easily.
In my work I use some odd units like Mega-electronVolts (MeV - about 10 trillionth of a volt) and Angstroms (10 billionth of a meter) - these are microscopic values, but because I work on the nuclear level, it's easier to say "the atomic radius is about 5 angstroms" than say "it's 0.0000000005m".
As with most of physics "It's all relative".
Here's some other questions I think about:
Is time linear?
I.e. is time a straight line? Does it speed up or slow down in ways we can't observe because we live in one of the dimensions of time? We observe perception of time vary in special relativity, so is our perception of time affected by our motion? Could it be circular?
Is time smooth or quantified?
What i mean by this is, does time smoothly change, or are there "packets of time" (quanta if you will), so you could effectively break time down into small steps, like you can with energy (look up Planck's constant).
Can time move backwards?
The legendary hypothesised particle the Tachyon apparently moves backwards through time - what would a universe look like that is moving backwards in time?
How is time different in parallel universes?
If the multiverse theory is correct, then it could be possible for time to be fundamentally changed in other universes i.e. it moves faster, it could change rate (see above with "is time linear?").
Got to love Physics =3
Posted 24 April 2012 - 12:29 PM
Well, of course time exists. I'm pretty bad at math and physics and what not, but time has to exist or else there wouldn't be new life or we couldn't look back in our lives. Humans just came up with the way to calculate it.
Basically this is my opinion, though it entertains me because we measure it with numbers.
Numbers are also things that... technically don't exist, lol.
Edited by JezMM, 24 April 2012 - 12:29 PM.
Posted 24 April 2012 - 12:48 PM
Posted 24 April 2012 - 01:14 PM
Posted 24 April 2012 - 03:37 PM
Posted 24 April 2012 - 03:50 PM
Time is just another dimension. The farther you look, the farther into the past you're seeing. Look up at the stars. You're looking into the distant past, seeing stars as they appeared hundreds, thousands, even millions of years ago. Maybe that star over there went burned out centuries ago? Until its final rays of light reach Earth moving at the speed of light, it'll still be there for us to see.
But because time and distance are intertwined, here's a really fun question:
"If it's now right here, is it also now a million light-years away, and will it be the same now in a million years when the light from that place reaches Earth?"
Posted 24 April 2012 - 08:31 PM
The animaniacs sum up most of my feelings about time. It's a concept made by humans to put the passing of the sun and moon into a universal set of words and concepts. It's a big mess when you think of it, but I try not to because it obviously doesn't exist.
Edited by VisionaryBlur, 24 April 2012 - 08:54 PM.
Posted 24 April 2012 - 09:34 PM
Simply time does exist, and is relative. Try removing time based measurements from physics. Everything we know about physics is gone.
Breaking the light barriers has some pretty complex problems. Einstein's General Theory of Relativity goes right out the window. Is everything beyond the speed of light in a quantum of state in which we cannot perceive it? According to Relativity, Time, Gravity, and Light are always working hand in hand.
Say you are riding a train going around the world at the speed of light. Theoretically you in the cabin will go slower while everything outside of the train will continue on normally. After a certain length of time your train will arrive in the future. Yes time travel to the future is theoretically possible. Now unless we can test actual Tacyons (forgive my spelling), we are not going back in time anytime soon.
Time is affected by Gravity as well. In different gravitational fields, time actually moves slower/faster. So lets say we have two stop watches one on my desk and one inescapably locked past the event horizon of a black hole. My watch would count off a second like normal. But the closer it gets to the center of the black hole the slower my second stop watch will tick. So a minute here on earth could be several hours in the event horizon of a black hole (Don't quote me on the measurements I'm just using general ideas to express what is happening.). Now say you are with the second stop watch moving slowly to your doom. You perceive time as you would on earth. (Also you wouldn't even be able to see the watch since light begins to red shift the closer it gets to a black hole.)
So we perceive time based on our own measurements, but time may not actually be moving at that speed.
Posted 25 April 2012 - 12:18 AM
I used to think about the philosophical stuff, like what's my purpose for living and what is the meaning of life...but ever since I learned the answer to both of those questions, I don't bother with the other stuff...
Plus the answer is usually the most obvious one..."Does Time exist?" Yes. "Did the moon landing happen?" Yes. Is Elvis really dead? Yes, you f****** moron!!
Anyway, into the serious stuff, I do genuinely believe it's much safer for ones mind to not think about such things...it can only end in brain pain...although sometimes it can't be helped...
The topic did remind me of a story mentioned on QI about a person who would "sell" time, back when clocks where first appearing in the bowels of history. I just can't remember the names of the person or persons...dammit, this looks like a job for google...
In a related note, as I was making this reply, I suddenly asked myself, "Would Maths still exist if the concept of Time didn't?" Since a large number of math problems can involve time in some way. I'd be willing to sacrifice time to get rid of maths...it makes my brain itch.
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