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Playing With the Concept of Time


I’ve recently been thinking a bit about the idea of time and trying to imagine a world where it’s not linear (if you ever wondered where writers get their ideas, it’s because they spend their time thinking about this kind of nonsense). So, what might that world look like?

Let’s start with the assumption that linear time is a construct adopted because we live on this earth for a finite period and then die. In other words, it fits the paradigm of birth, life, and death. Seems logical, no?

But what if we took the constraints of a finite life span out of the equation? What if we lived forever? What if everything has already happened? If there was no linear time, what if everything was/is happening all at once? (You can see that tense no longer seems relevant—or, rather, it’s only relevant to whatever one is experiencing at this moment).

Now, if everything is happening all at once, perhaps we could simply choose where we want to exist on this spectrum at any given moment? But if the future has already happened, there can’t be free will, can there? That’s no fun…

Wait a minute: What if the past is fixed (we can’t go back and change what’s already happened), and in the present, we get to make choices as to how we move forward? Wouldn’t that mean that the future (based on wherever we are at the moment) might exist as an infinite number of permutations—after all, every possible outcome has already occurred—so the real future is still (somewhat) under our control?

Ok, my head is starting to hurt, so I’m shutting this down and going to the gym.

See what writers do?