Now

Discussion in 'General Philosophy' started by Bowser, Mar 10, 2018.

  1. Bowser Life is Fatal. Valued Senior Member

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    Is Now infinite? We are always in the present. Would that suggest that the present is eternal?
     
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  3. Bowser Life is Fatal. Valued Senior Member

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    Is a novel a book or the pages within?
     
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  5. Michael 345 Bali in Nov closer Valued Senior Member

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    You do not live in the past

    You never get to live in the future

    NOW is all you have

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  7. Bowser Life is Fatal. Valued Senior Member

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    But what are the implications of always being in the Now? The world around us changes, but we remain the same.
     
  8. Michael 345 Bali in Nov closer Valued Senior Member

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    No implications

    Everything changes you included

    It is what it is - no more no less

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  9. Musika Last in Space Valued Senior Member

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    Do you refer to yourself, from 10 years ago, in 3rd person?
     
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  10. goose Registered Senior Member

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    We exist as ourselves for only an instant, that instant having no passage of time. Yes, we can only exist as time passes, but every instance that we change we are no longer who we once were. 'You' reading this part of the sentence, is not the same person as the 'You' reading this part.

    The now is zero, and the time between every now is infinitely small.
     
  11. Musika Last in Space Valued Senior Member

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    So why do we continue to engage in a back and forth conversation with the same person on discussion forums?
    Is there any sense to me posing this question in response to you since, by your own admission, you are a different person to the one who posted the original content?
     
  12. Michael 345 Bali in Nov closer Valued Senior Member

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    No such animal as infinitely small

    There is NO time between NOWs

    There is a single continuous NOW

    If you designate a particular moment as a marker and then designate another marker you can introduce a artificial measurement called time

    But TIME is non existent

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  13. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

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    Well, that's certainly one metaphysical view.

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    Although to say that "There is a single continuous NOW" suggests that everything happens simultaneously, right? However, if one holds with Einstein's E=Mc^2 and that information can not travel faster than the speed of light, then this surely runs counter to the notion that everything happens simultaneously, does it not?

    Personally I'm with the physicists... time exists but it is not itself an absolute quantity, and is united with space to form spacetime etc.
     
  14. Bowser Life is Fatal. Valued Senior Member

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    The idea is that you are the continuous now. Everything is moving within your experience of Now.
     
  15. C C Consular Corps - "the backbone of diplomacy" Valued Senior Member

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    "Present" is just another invented category -- which, while itself remains abstract and static, nevertheless has countless varying, distinct examples plugged into its slot. Or we might ask: Which specious duration designated as "now" is the standard for everything? The milliseconds-long goliath of human awareness / experience or some rationalized "now" for the staggering rate that the subatomic level can change over that period, or a computer performing operations?

    Copernicus: "[One] should not attribute to the heavens what is in the observer."​

    Things don't "happen". The ultimate world, as if some reoccurring element in a magical process, isn't obliterated / replaced every yoctosecond by a slightly altered copy. Consciousness doesn't even "move" as Weyl depicted the illusion and earlier 19th-century scientists likewise ventured. (Consciousness is not some substance running through the 4D pipelines of a higher dimensional version of the brain/body any more than "time" would incoherently be the framework and yet also be flowing.)

    It's rather just the nature of cognition and the chunk sequences of brain-states it corresponds to, to discriminate one's life into an orderly chain of ontic parts that are construed by commonsense to instead be events, moments or temporal components. The same faulty commonsense realism that took the Earth to be flat and the mind-independent version of leaves to actually be green and cookies to be sweet. People will inevitably be intellectually inconsistent, regardless of their education. We're subconscious or "in the closet" panpsychists who project both our sensory and our conceptual representations of the cosmos upon an inferred version of it that is ironically supposed to be devoid of such mental and subjective affairs.


    Parmenides: [Reality] is uncreated and indestructible; for it is complete, immovable, and without end. Nor was it ever, now will it be; for now it is, all at once, a continuous one.

    Robert Geroch: "There is no dynamics within space-time itself: nothing ever moves therein; nothing happens; nothing changes. [...] In particular, one does not think of particles as 'moving through' space-time, or as 'following along' their world-lines. Rather, particles are just 'in' space-time, once and for all, and the world-line represents, all at once the complete life history of the particle." (General Relativity from A to B)

    Paul Davies: "Peter Lynds's reasonable and widely accepted assertion that the flow of time is an illusion (25 October, p 33) does not imply that time itself is an illusion. It is perfectly meaningful to state that two events may be separated by a certain duration, while denying that time mysteriously flows from one event to the other. Crick compares our perception of time to that of space. Quite right. Space does not flow either, but it's still 'there'." (New Scientist, 6 December 2003, Sec. Letters)

    Paul Davies: "But what meaning can be attached to the movement of time itself? Relative to what does it move? Whereas other types of motion relate one physical process to another, the putative flow of time relates time to itself. Posing the simple question “How fast does time pass?” exposes the absurdity of the very idea. [...] After all, we do not really observe the passage of time. What we actually observe is that later states of the world differ from earlier states that we still remember. The fact that we remember the past, rather than the future, is an observation not of the passage of time but of the asymmetry of time. Nothing other than a conscious observer registers the flow of time. A clock measures durations between events much as a measuring tape measures distances between places; it does not measure the “speed” with which one moment succeeds another. Therefore, it appears that the flow of time is subjective, not objective." (That Mysterious Flow ... Scientific American, Sep 2002)

    "On the Two Aspects of Time: The Distinction and Its Implications“ in Foundations of Physics (1988): It seems that Einstein's view of the life of an individual was as follows. If the difference between past, present, and the future is an illusion, i.e., the four-dimensional spacetime is a 'block Universe' without motion or change, then each individual is a collection of a myriad of selves, distributed along his history, each occurrence persisting on the world line, experiencing indefinitely the particular event of that moment. Each of these momentary persons, according to our experience, would possess memory of the previous ones, and would therefore believe himself identical with them; yet they would all exist separately, as single pictures in a film. (Horowitz, Arshansky, & Elitzur)

    Hermann Weyl: "The objective world simply IS, it does not HAPPEN. Only to the gaze of my consciousness, crawling upward along the life line [worldline] of my body, does a certain section of this world come to life as a fleeting image in space which continuously changes in time." (Philosophy of Mathematics and Natural Science)

    Corey S Powell: Other late-19th-century mathematicians began to imagine the fourth dimension as something far more familiar: the passage of time. The pages of *Nature* and other scientific journals featured speculations about a four-dimensional amalgam of the three-dimensions of space along with an additional dimension of time. These notions eventually received a concrete mathematical treatment in Einstein’s general theory of relativity, which enabled physicists to reclaim higher dimensions from the spiritualists. Long before then, though, they left their own imprint on popular culture. H G Wells took note of the idea of a temporal fourth dimension when setting the stage for the Time Traveller’s journey in his novella *The Time Machine* (1895). Before setting off on his voyage into the distant future, the Time Traveller explains to his friends that time is simply another dimension. As he elucidates: "There are really four dimensions, three which we call the three planes of Space, and a fourth, Time. There is, however, a tendency to draw an unreal distinction between the former three dimensions and the latter, because it happens that our consciousness moves intermittently in one direction along the latter from the beginning to the end of our lives." (The Occult Roots Of Higher Dimensional Research In Physics)

    Paul Davies: Our senses tell us that time flows: namely, that the past is fixed, the future undetermined, and reality lived in the present. Yet various physical and philosophical arguments suggest otherwise. The passage of time is probably an illusion. Consciousness may involve thermodynamic or quantum processes that lend the impression of living moment by moment.

    [...] In daily life we divide time into three parts: past, present and future. The grammatical structure of language revolves around this fundamental distinction. Reality is associated with the present moment. The past we think of as having slipped out of existence, whereas the future is even more shadowy, its details still unformed. In this simple picture, the “now” of our conscious awareness glides steadily onward, transforming events that were once in the unformed future into the concrete but fleeting reality of the present, and thence relegating them to the fixed past.

    Obvious though this commonsense description may seem, it is seriously at odds with modern physics. Albert Einstein famously expressed this point when he wrote to a friend, “The past, present and future are only illusions, even if stubborn ones.” Einstein’s startling conclusion stems directly from his special theory of relativity, which denies any absolute, universal significance to the present moment. According to the theory, simultaneity is relative. Two events that occur at the same moment if observed from one reference frame may occur at different moments if viewed from another.

    [...] The most straightforward conclusion is that both past and future are fixed. For this reason, physicists prefer to think of time as laid out in its entirety — a timescape, analogous to a landscape — with all past and future events located there together. It is a notion sometimes referred to as block time. Completely absent from this description of nature is anything that singles out a privileged special moment as the present or any process that would systematically turn future events into present, then past, events. In short, the time of the physicist does not pass or flow.

    [...] After all, we do not really observe the passage of time. What we actually observe is that later states of the world differ from earlier states that we still remember. The fact that we remember the past, rather than the future, is an observation not of the passage of time but of the asymmetry of time. Nothing other than a conscious observer registers the flow of time. A clock measures durations between events much as a measuring tape measures distances between places; it does not measure the “speed” with which one moment succeeds another. Therefore, it appears that the flow of time is subjective, not objective. (That Mysterious Flow ... Scientific American, Sep 2002)​

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    Last edited: Mar 11, 2018
  16. Bowser Life is Fatal. Valued Senior Member

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    Words are abstractions, but we do the best we can.
     
  17. C C Consular Corps - "the backbone of diplomacy" Valued Senior Member

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    Some words signify distinct, concrete objects of experience. Others are generalizations, function words, etc (abstract). Reifying the latter is where we potentially get into trouble. Principles and concepts becoming so useful that it seems they must be "real" objects of reason in a Platonic realm or residing in the programming language of a Matrix scenario (whatever speculative vehicle of a particular era is most applicable for that generation's thought experiments to ride around in).

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  18. goose Registered Senior Member

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    Well sure... the difference between me then and me now is extremely small. It is all we have to work with... we're only talking technicalities on a philosophical subject.
     
  19. goose Registered Senior Member

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    I agree with this.
    Personally, I think time is an effect, not a cause. It is an effect of another dimension constantly permeating through our 3 dimensions giving us a feeling of 'time'. It is just how we perceive that 4th dimension. It isn't time, but another spatial dimension that gives a 'feeling' of 'time' as we 'pass' through it.

    It is an illusion that we use in order to make since of the universe around us.
     
  20. Bowser Life is Fatal. Valued Senior Member

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    I'm curious, do you consider your self to be a collection of experiences?
     
  21. goose Registered Senior Member

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    Kind of tough to answer.

    I would say that I consider the story of me to be a massive collection of individual experiences, but if that were true then the number would be infinite unless time (or the illusion of time) doesn't flow continuously.
    The trouble in the question is in order to answer it I would have to assume a single portrayal of my self could be nailed down, but I don't think it can. Best way I could describe it is, my life is basically explained by the infinite series from [0,1] with 0 being life, and 1 being death.

    For instance, the original sentences above were not what I originally wrote. I wrote something, went back and changed some things. Did I change it because I wrote my original thoughts wrong, or because the new me decided there was a better way to say it?
     
  22. Bowser Life is Fatal. Valued Senior Member

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    Kind of a vague response on my part, but I'll throw it out there should it possibly make sense: Can a knife cut itself?
     
  23. goose Registered Senior Member

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    Only if the knife is made of some type of rubber or bendy steel that can bend around to cut itself

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    Once you separate, it is no longer the same knife (In my mind, the ship Paradox applies here. IMO, neither the new nor the recreated is the same)
    Once it goes back in time (if it was possible), it is already different than what it once was. and is therefore a different knife
     

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