Time as a Dimension?

A reader asks:

Dear Dr. Borchardt:

In TSW, you make it clear that we live in a three-dimensional universe. In fact, it is the only possible way we can exist in a universe which is infinite.
However, it has been brought to my attention in an article at THE PHYSICS arXiv BLOG site, that "a group of theoretical astrobods at the University of Salamanca in Spain" believe we live in a 4-dimensional "Lorentzian universe" in which the "signature" of our universe includes a "time-like" dimension. And, now they believe that it is going to "flip" and become Euclidean (as the article says, "Our dimension of time is about turn space-like."
They attribute this "flip" to dark energy and say that their evidence is that the appearance of this flip would make the universe appear as if it were "expanding and accelerating away from us."
My opinion is hardly worth a grain of salt, but I have a friend who puts some credence in this assessment. But, it doesn't explain what is meant by a "time-like dimension."
I agree with TSW, that time is a measurement of moving objects.
As this concept of time seems so apparent, why would theoreticians ever consider a "time-dimension" to our universe? What are they missing?


Frederic Frees


First of all, I don’t agree that your opinion is “hardly worth a grain of salt.” Everyone’s opinion counts in a completely deterministic world. Yours is especially important because you have demanded a more logical analysis of the universe than at least 99% of the people alive today. The group you are speaking about is assuming, like most modern physicists, that time is material. It is not. It is motion. It does not exist, it occurs. It is not a measurement, it is an action. It is not an object, it is what objects do. We measure time by measuring the locations of objects relative to one another. All of this is far from what the folks at Salamanca are doing. To be current, they have accepted the conventional assumption that time is a dimension and, bless their little hearts, are trying to return to sanity by flipping us back to Euclid and a 3-dimensional universe. They are far behind, however, in accepting the galactic redshift as evidence for universal expansion, which it is not. The “dark energy” idea is another trendy concept, but it is not especially “brilliant”—who ever said that all energy should be “light” and not “dark” anyway?

Why would theoreticians ever consider time to be a dimension? Simply because they do not believe in the Fourth Assumption of Science, INSEPARABILITY (Just as there is no motion without matter, so there is no matter without motion). Its indeterministic opposite, separability, proposes that matter is one thing and that matterless motion is still another. We know from common experience that matter has three dimensions. These folks simply take matterless motion for another dimension. Most have much experience with math, which allows them to consider time in this way. I frequently plot time in my own analyses, but I haven’t jumped to the conclusion that time is a thing. Nonetheless, the very act of plotting time on a piece of paper is akin to objectifying it. Those imbued with the concept of matterless motion via religion or some other indeterministic philosophy are most likely to be highly satisfied with this. Because at least 85% of the global population probably believes in matterless motion (souls, ghosts, gods, etc.), one could ask instead: “Why would anyone ever consider time not to be a dimension?”

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