20210315

What is “Now”?

PSI Blog 20210315 What is “Now”?

 

A question from George Coyne:

 

“The past refers to motion that has occurred, and the future represents motion that has not yet occurred. If "now" is considered in terms of nuclear rotations in an atom, then how many, if any, transpire in the period that is considered now. There are 5 billion trillion nuclear rotations per second. Some presentists would argue that there are no nuclear rotations in the now because the present has a duration of zero. That requires the absence of motion because time is the motion of matter. Without motion there can be no matter. Thus, this leads to the conclusion that in the present there is no matter. Without matter there is no universe. So, for the present to be a reality, there can be no universe and no reality, which means there is no possibility of a present that exists or occurs. My question is: Does the concept of “now” have any reality apart from our thought? If it does, how would you define it?”

 

[GB: Thanks George. You raise a philosophical question easily answered by Infinite Universe Theory. You guessed right that there is no possibility of a present that exists. “Now” does not exist. Only XYZ portions of the universe have existence and time does not exist, it occurs. All portions have motion, however, and that is why we have existence. Philosophers have struggled with this for centuries without a satisfactory conclusion. That is because most of them were religious and assumed immaterialism. That is the  indeterministic opposite of the scientific assumption of materialism, which assumes the universe has only two fundamental phenomena: matter and the motion of matter.

 

The Infinite Universe has an infinity of microcosms in motion, with each motion having a beginning and an end with respect to all others. In other words, we can define the “now” of the universe as the motion of all things with respect to all other things. This must forever be an assumption, for we cannot prove it with any experiment whatsoever as Einstein and other positivists have pointed out. One cannot even prove the Sun exists now, because it takes 8 minutes for the light that creates its image to arrive on Earth. Thus, if I should ask you to come to my house now, I would not expect you to be here instantaneously. That would take a while.

 

Now for the resolution of the paradox you present in this statement:

 

“Some presentists would argue that there are no nuclear rotations in the now because the present has a duration of zero. That requires the absence of motion because time is the motion of matter. Without motion there can be no matter. Thus, this leads to the conclusion that in the present there is no matter. Without matter there is no universe. … and no reality.”

 

As with all paradoxes, this one has a false assumption. It is the belief that there could be a duration of zero. Math is wonderful in many ways, but this is one of its many failures as I pointed out in my first philosophically oriented comment on a scientific paper.[1] 


Catastrophe theorists were essentially proclaiming extinction could occur in zero time. Shortly after publishing that, I also became extremely skeptical of the Big Bang Theory. Something about things popping out of nothing in zero time… Now, I think I will get back to work.]

 

 



[1] Borchardt, Glenn, 1978, Catastrophe theory: Application to the Permian mass extinction: Comments and reply: COMMENT: Geology, v. 6, no. 8, p. 453. [https://go.glennborchardt.com/catheory].

 

3 comments:

George Coyne said...

Thanks, Glenn, for your excellent response to the question. I agree with your statement: “As with all paradoxes, this one has a false assumption. It is the belief that there could be a duration of zero.” Duration refers to time, and as you maintain time is correctly defined as the motion of matter. Thus, to believe that this motion can have zero value is an absurd concept because if motion were not occurring then it would not be motion. For this reason, I support your view of defining the now of the universe in terms of relative motion of all things. However, I think it is necessary to clarify the statement that “we can define the ‘now’ of the universe as the motion of all things with respect to all other things.” What is being compared in the statement. How is it possible for “all other things” to have existence apart from “all things”? Logically, there are no “other things’ that exist separately from “all things.”

Glenn Borchardt said...

You are correct in using the 10th assumption of science (interconnection) in recognizing the dual nature of reality. No "thing" ever exists by itself. Each "thing" exists within a macrocosm that includes all other "things." Of course, for a thing to be able to have motion, it must have characteristics that allow for motion. Per relativism, a portion of the universe must be bigger and/or faster than the microcosms it must overcome for it to be able to move. Absolutists dream up various ways that this would not occur (e.g., solid matter, block universe, etc.).

Glenn Borchardt said...

George:

Thanks for the pertinent question. Your prize of a copy of Infinite Universe Theory color paperback is on the way.

Glenn