about time


by Paul Davies

I finished reading this book. I think it had been suggested by Mary a while back.

I must confess I am now very confused about time than I was at the beginning. If you have read a little philosophy, you will know what they say about time and space and our cognition. Then you read Davies and there are questions of whether there are universes where time is reversed. Whether faster than light travel is possible. Wormholes. Black holes. White holes. And many holes in between.

The book is accessible to even anyone with an elementary understanding of physics and mathematics. He is such an engaging author, the book is almost conversational.

Something Davies mentioned in passing that I thought interesting is our lack for a “time organ” like say we have a sight, smell or even sensory (I mean touch) organs.

Do you think if we get to answer the question of what is the nature of time our understanding of the self will change? Or it will remain unaffected by this knowledge and discovery into the nature of time. Does time exist always? Did it have a beginning and will it have an end?

Can we conceive of time without events?


In other newsworthy stories, there is Sabisky in the UK and then this story on eugenics and Dawkins.

About makagutu

As Onyango Makagutu I am Kenyan, as far as I am a man, I am a citizen of the world

33 thoughts on “about time

  1. Looks like something I need to read.

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  2. maryplumbago says:

    Time is a fascinating subject. Here is a Utube you will both like.
    Closer to the Truth is a great Utube Channel with lots of interesting topics from scientists, especially theoretical physicists.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. maryplumbago says:

    https://bigthink.com/big-think-books/books-on-time

    Also found this list of 10 books about time. Several look good.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. renudepride says:

    I think that given our current concept of time and the importance that it is given within our lives and our world, all that we can do is to accept it and live our lives. The existence of other universes is an individual belief and if they have a different idea of time, it is relevant only to whatever forms of life that are in place there. 🙂 Naked hugs!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. judyt54 says:

    We need the idea of time, and there may be no reality of time as such. On a different planet, with different parameters, would our sense of time change? Disappear?
    An aborigine who knows nothing of “artificial” time (i.e. hours, minutes, days etc.) will still mark the passing of days and nights, as a way of keeping track of his own survival.
    If you isolate a human in a box, with only artificial light, he will gradually
    adapt to a different, slightly longer ‘day’–his sleeping, eating, functioning, is adapted to a different time frame.
    A lot of what we experience as the passage of time has to do with our age. The younger you are, the slower time moves. Remember how long the summers were when we were kids? How long the week–or even the day–before Christmas was?
    When my mother was 80, she said, how did I get here so fast? I’m 74; Christmas was twenty minutes ago, and any day now it will be September. I cannot believe we have lived in this house for nearly 50 years. My god, that’s a damn half a century.

    But that is my perception, no one else’s. Two people riding in a bus can have totally different sensations about the passage of time. If you’re looking foward to the destination, and your seatmate is dreading it, for one of you the bus is racing toward the end much too fast, and for the other it seems like the driver is riding the brake all the way.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. john zande says:

    I saw Davies in Coogee on my way to the pub.

    That’s all.

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  7. basenjibrian says:

    The only question to me is if I am going to swallow…THE RED PILLL….or THE BLUE PILL. We are all tied to machines and our bioenergy supports our A.I. masters, who do give us an amazing fantasy realm that includes time…..

    Errrr…. I have been watching too many THE MATRTIX clips lately. Carry on with your serious discussions!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. “Can we conceive of time without events?”

    I’m inclined to say no. For me, time seems more like an emergent property, rather than a thing. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emergence

    Liked by 1 person

  9. basenjibrian says:

    More seriously, though, the existence of DEATH makes questions about whether time “is real” somewhat useless. As does the observable decay resulting from entropy. The concept that there is no “real time” does not even make sense except in a very theoretical sense given that we…and all our creations…and even the rocks and rivers and 1000-year old trees around us….decay and “die”. How could there be, except in a particularly fervid fantasy novel, a universe in which these patterns and forces are somehow “reversed”? Is entropy a unique property of our universe?

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    • makagutu says:

      Your comment reminds me of the story about Diogenes the cynic when he met an Epicurean who insisted pain was illusion, he would tell them to hit their toes on a stone or something of that kind. The question of realness of time is irrelevant when decay is all around us and when we have an inbuilt clock that points towards a future where we are not

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      • basenjibrian says:

        Interesting and amusing song from a Greek carnivalesque “Black Metal” project (Hail Spirit Noir) titled “SATAN IS TIME.” They posit “Satan” as the destructive force in the universe that causes the decay of all creation.

        We float in space and follow the pace
        Of a clock designed by His Will
        Satan shall reap what God has sown
        Blackness comes, colors go
        You run, you hide but Satan can find the cowards
        That live by His side
        The needle rotates, a lie it creates
        But then it stands still and kills
        If heaven is here, it will stay here
        Hell is a place full of clocks
        Satan is time
        Ο διάβολος είναι ο χρόνος
        Ο χρόνος είναι ο διάβολος
        Irreversible time is smooth to the touch
        A reaper disguised as charm
        The pace Satan dictates, the much he creates
        A cycle of death and death
        You run, you hide but Satan can find
        The cowards that live by His side, eat from His hand…
        We float in space and follow the pace
        Of a clock designed by His Will
        Satan shall reap what God has sown
        Hell is a place full of clocks

        Liked by 1 person

  10. chrissblog11 says:

    Please read my most recent post, and if you like it, leave a like. If you don’t tell me why. thankyou

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  11. basenjibrian says:

    Drive by evangelism. Yawn.

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  12. Ubi Dubium says:

    I think we do have an organ to sense the passage of time; I think it’s part of our brain functioning. As an example, when you wake up from a night’s sleep, you have an awareness that some time has passed. But when you are fully anesthetized for surgery you don’t, it’s as if you closed your eyes before surgery, and then opened them the next moment in the recovery room. And recently I had a very bad reaction to a sedative, and it totally jangled my neurotransmitters. One of the effects was that I was awake, but I had no ability to sense the passage of time. I could not tell how long this lasted, or much about “before” and “after”, it was just one long “now”. So the brain is definitely a “time organ”.

    Liked by 1 person

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