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  1. #1
    Senior(ita) Member Cloudpatrol's Avatar
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    Jan 2016

    Question Block Theory? What is Time?

    Physicist Hrvoje Nikolic, published findings attempting to explain Black Holes using Block Universe theory. Here he discusses Block theory acceptance:

    FQXi Community

    Four-dimensionalism implies that the fundamental objects in the universe are four-dimensional rather than three. In Block Universe theory, time is treated like a 4th dimension of space (spacetime). With the ‘arrow of time’ standardly attributed to increasing entropy.

    The Rietdjik-Putnam argument of ‘simultaneity’ asserts that each point in the universe can have a different set of events that are in the present moment. “Eternalism” does not throw out the concepts of past or future but considers them directions - not states of being. So, whether some point in time occurs in the future or past would be dependent on what frame of reference one is using as a basis for observing it.

    Two vital arguments involved in Block theory are: 1) Relativity does not provide an accurate account of the spatiotemporal relations among events. 2) If there is some frame of reference in which two events are simultaneous, then if one of the events is real = so is the other.

    In an “Eternalist” picture, all beings that will ever exist do exist, just in a different part of spacetime. And that future events that we have not yet experienced also exist in a very real way. Future events are “already” but haven’t been encountered yet, and the past literally still exists “back there” in the same way as the ocean still exists after we drive away from it.

    Do you subscribe to this?

    Or do you take the view of “Presentism” that only present objects/ experiences can be said to truly exist, and things come into existence and then drop out of existence? Therefore, past events or entities, like the Civil War or Napoleon literally do not exist. And, because the future is indeterminate or merely potential, it cannot be said to exist either.

    Eternalism and Its Ethical Implications | Essays on Reducing Suffering

  2. #2
    Senior(ita) Member Cloudpatrol's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2016


    So, this really matters to me because it has implications for existence beyond one's lifespan.

    However, I humbly admit that while I can attack questions of chemistry or biology > Physics is well beyond my wheelhouse of abilities.

    I am hoping someone who is more naturally gifted will be able to enlighten me further... If my OP is difficult to understand it is because of my own lack of knowledge in the area

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