Singular, Nonlinear Time

J Diggins By J Diggins, 24th Feb 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>Columns & Opinions

If time travel were possible could we really change the past?

Theories of Time Travel

I often ponder the nature of time, if I had a time machine and could travel back and forth could I alter the past and shape the future? We have all had the thought that "if I could go back and talk to my younger self then maybe my life would be different". There are many theories about time travel, the grandfather paradox dictates that if you were to travel back and kill your grandfather then you would never have been born, therefore you wouldn't exist and couldn't go back to kill your grandfather creating a paradox that would cancel itself out. Other theories such as the multiverse theory states that any change would slip you into a new timeline that branches off of the original. Offshoots of the multiverse theory sat that every choice you make allows for another branch allowing for millions of alternate timelines for each individual. Most of these theories allow for individuals to be the proverbial "center of the universe" and I believe that to be arrogant. As there is no physical evidence to support any one of these theories or any opposing theories I do not claim that I am correct, I only offer an objective view.

Freedom of Choise and the Nature of Time

We all like to believe that we choose our own path, that freedom of choice is what makes us unique. Why are we so unique? Because we are not animals? Because we are civilized? The only thing that differentiates us from other animals is our ability to collect and share information. Who we are as individuals and how we make our decisions is no more than a culmination of life experience. If you come to a fork in the road and have the choice to go either left or right, in that moment, due to every previous choice and the repercussions that have come with them will dictate which way you will go. If you chose to go right, no matter how many times you were to be given that same choice in that exact moment, you would always go right. The brain is an organic computer and a computer is run by a set of parameters, those parameters will always make the same "choice" based on the given information. The decisions we make during the course of our lives are judged by our previous experiences and our environment. Chaos theory runs our lives, what seems random is just an overly complex series of events that could only have happened one way. We are slaves to the universe. That being said, if you could go back and alter the series of events that led to the fork in the road wouldn't you make a different choice? Most assuredly yes and that is where the theory of singular time comes in. If enough data was collected about the universe around us; people, climate, geography, cosmology, etc., we could potentially predict the future.

To Me Time Is....

If freedom of choice is taken out of the equation then humanity has no impact on the progression of time. Think of time as a movie on VHS. Unravel the tape and lay it on a table, what do you see? The tape has a past present and future that exist simultaneously, whichever frame you are looking at is at that point the present, yet the timelines of the individual characters don't have to follow the same path. The future can happen before the past, it's all about perception. Your past can be someone else's future. You can never alter anything, any alteration of the past is already history. Time is not linear, it warps and moves and winds, but it is singular. What was, is and will be... will always be. If twenty years from now you go back to ten years ago... then ten years ago you already made that leap and are now and have always been a part of your own history.

Just Breathe.... It's All Going to be OK

Many people think that if time can't be altered or shaped and the future is inevitable then what's the point? The point is that it's all new to you, like riding a roller coaster for the first time. You know where it starts and where it ends, doesn't mean you can't enjoy the ride.


Freedom Of Choice, Time Machine, Time Paradox, Time Theory, Time Travel, Time Traveller

Meet the author

author avatar J Diggins
I have traveled a fair bit in my time and have many thoughts and opinions on many matters of life, everyone has had good and bad experiences and I would like to share mine with the world.

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author avatar Mark Gordon Brown
24th Feb 2015 (#)

Time is a mystery for sure, while we often toy with the idea of going back we would undoubtedly change the future and not always as we imagine. The Butterfly Effect was a fun movie for this idea to be explored

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author avatar J Diggins
24th Feb 2015 (#)

Maybe it's already happened...

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author avatar Carol Roach
25th Feb 2015 (#)

excellent, though I am not sure that I buy into the determinist point of view, I believe there is fluidity but a sing line is is mutable, convoluted at times. Yes it is all perception.

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author avatar J Diggins
25th Feb 2015 (#)

Doctor who says it best, "wibely wobley, timey wimey.

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