That I can not say. I find the last question meaningless. Did time exist to enable a "before"? Yes, but probably not to your satisfaction (I don't mean that disparagingly). It would be in the same way that someone imagines any abstract notion. Whether the imagining is close to reality, however, is a different matter entirely. My imagining of nothing is the content of an empty set which is itself part of the contents. Postulations do not need to come from accurate imaginings. It is sufficient to conceptualise. Mathematically, logically, pictorially. However works. Aren't you presupposing that anything has "real purpose" other than what it might assign to itself (if capable)? Are you not merely begging the question? Concluding that there must be because you assume there is? Thankeee Have lurked for long time. Still don't post much. But some things draw the eye.