# A Justification of Time

What is a fininte, non-zero length, times infinity?

Infinity. Which is why you can't have an infinite past. The only way you can have an infinite number of states extending backwards is if you give them each a period of t = 0. Since this does not make sense, neither does an infinite past.

You confuse nothingness with stasis. I never mentioned nothingness in my post, and yet you kept using that concept to make strawman points, neatly knocking them down.

Stasis could exist with a huge variety of "things", as long as they are not changing internally, or moving in relation to each other. The singularity of the Standard Model could have been so dense that it was in stasis. Again, I'm not suggesting that this is the way that the universe got started, I'm personally of the opinion that we will never know. But don't confuse stasis (absence of time) with vacuum (absence of stuff).

And causality still isn't an axiom of our universe. You will be hard pressed to convince me that every action requires a previous action. While I agree that this mostly seems to be the case, that is not how proofs are made. Proofs show that this ALWAYS MUST be the case.

Swivel:

Infinity. Which is why you can't have an infinite past. The only way you can have an infinite number of states extending backwards is if you give them each a period of t = 0. Since this does not make sense, neither does an infinite past.

I would have you address my points I made in my original essay.

But a direct reply here: This is clearly wrong. An infinite number of states backwards can certainly be made with every time interval being infinitely small, or really, arbitrary.

You confuse nothingness with stasis. I never mentioned nothingness in my post, and yet you kept using that concept to make strawman points, neatly knocking them down.

"PJ, you are wrong to dismiss the possibility that everything sprang out of nothing (number 3 on your list). I think that this is the only case possible, whereas you dismiss it with no justification (except your own limited experiences with causality which all occur on a macro level)."

Stasis could exist with a huge variety of "things", as long as they are not changing internally, or moving in relation to each other. The singularity of the Standard Model could have been so dense that it was in stasis. Again, I'm not suggesting that this is the way that the universe got started, I'm personally of the opinion that we will never know. But don't confuse stasis (absence of time) with vacuum (absence of stuff).

If you have an absence of time, nothing can cause anything else. All causality requires action over time.

And causality still isn't an axiom of our universe. You will be hard pressed to convince me that every action requires a previous action. While I agree that this mostly seems to be the case, that is not how proofs are made. Proofs show that this ALWAYS MUST be the case.

Actually, I gave you one. But apparently you will not reply to my arguments at all?

Swivel:

I would have you address my points I made in my original essay.

But a direct reply here: This is clearly wrong. An infinite number of states backwards can certainly be made with every time interval being infinitely small, or really, arbitrary.

I don't care how small you make them, they will still be countable, and have some measurable period, so the combined period will be an eternity. From any time period an eternity away in the past, you can begin traversing your "small" states, and you will never reach the present.

Just as counting down a curve, towards some asymptote, will never get you to the limit. You are doing what most people do, considering the past as something that you reach back towards from the present, and in this manner, the paradox is hard to see. It is better to think about the present, and reach towards the eternal future, to see how it will never be reached.

You can not count an infinite number of things. This is an internal violation, it defies the meaning of the words that we are using. It is illogical. You keep pretending (just as all theists do, and most physicists) that the past stretches back forever. It can not.

And yes, I am not replying to all of your points, the style of posting that most people use on forums seems silly to me. Conversations get bogged down in proving individual sentences wrong, rather than employing reading comprehension, and tackling the gist of one's statements. I will continue to treat this as a conversation between two adults, and not as a pissing contest between schoolchildren, with a gaggle of yard-mates looking on. I have the utmost respect for you and your views, having shared them for most of my life. The view I hold now took many years to arrive at, and painfully replaced an inferior view only after long contemplation. So, if it seems as if I cling to it unthinkingly, the exact opposite is taking place. I cherish the overthrow of my ideas, because it takes a superior one in order to achieve this.

Peace,
swivel

Swivel:

I don't care how small you make them, they will still be countable, and have some measurable period, so the combined period will be an eternity. From any time period an eternity away in the past, you can begin traversing your "small" states, and you will never reach the present.

Indeed. I am quite aware of this. Unless of course...

Just as counting down a curve, towards some asymptote, will never get you to the limit. You are doing what most people do, considering the past as something that you reach back towards from the present, and in this manner, the paradox is hard to see. It is better to think about the present, and reach towards the eternal future, to see how it will never be reached.

You can not count an infinite number of things. This is an internal violation, it defies the meaning of the words that we are using. It is illogical. You keep pretending (just as all theists do, and most physicists) that the past stretches back forever. It can not.

As I mentioned in the OP:

All points in time are equally distant to the infinite past and infinite future. They only have finite distance in relation to eachother. The only exclusion to this rule is the infinite future, which is connected to the infinite past by an infinite distance, and the infinite past which is connected to the infinite future.

Accordingly, the only absolute distance of time one can have with either of the "end points", is infinite. Thus there are no non-infinite absolute pasts or absolute futures.

And yes, I am not replying to all of your points, the style of posting that most people use on forums seems silly to me. Conversations get bogged down in proving individual sentences wrong, rather than employing reading comprehension, and tackling the gist of one's statements. I will continue to treat this as a conversation between two adults, and not as a pissing contest between schoolchildren, with a gaggle of yard-mates looking on. I have the utmost respect for you and your views, having shared them for most of my life. The view I hold now took many years to arrive at, and painfully replaced an inferior view only after long contemplation. So, if it seems as if I cling to it unthinkingly, the exact opposite is taking place. I cherish the overthrow of my ideas, because it takes a superior one in order to achieve this.

I am sure our discussion shall be fruitful.

I am sure our discussion shall be fruitful.

I am equally optimistic.

I am going to derail our discussion for a bit, please forgive me. I am a much better student than teacher. I am too busy learning to pause long enough to explain my own ideas to others. Perhaps this is why I am poor at doing so. Again, forgive me. As I explain the following, it will not be smooth, and it may seem as if I am talking down to my audience. I am just struggling to explain something difficult in the simplest way possible.

There are some common problems and mistakes made when people conceptualize the finite and infinite in segments. Those segments could be time or length, for simplicity, I will stick with length.

All of the following regards the line segment from Zero to One, inclusive:

0----------1

What I am about to explain goes against the grain to say the least. My calculus instructor and I hammered this out over a decade ago. I was lucky to have her for three years of Calculus, and spent enough time in her office, that by the second year, I had finally convinced her that my account of the line segment is correct, and the one her profession espouses is wrong. I understand that most mathematicians disagree with what I think, but don't make the fallacy of ad veracundium. Mathematicians are wrong, and I am right. (said without hubris or ego, just an understanding of both sides)

Problem Number 1:

People make the mistake of equating a limitless supply of units of precision with an infinite number of each unit of precision.

What I mean:

The unit segment is of length -1-. Let us create a standard unit of length and call it a Dash. You will see that in my line segment, I have created it by using 10 Dashes. A Dash is of length -.1- There are 10 Dashes in the line segment.

Now, let us create a smaller unit of measurement, and call it a Dish. Let us say that there are 10 Dishes in a Dash. There are 100 Dishes in the line segment.

Let us create another standard unit of measurement called a Dosh. There are 10 Doshes in every Dish. There are 1,000 Doshes in the line segment.

As you can guess, we can do this for an Eternity. We can keep creating new D*shes, and for each one, there will be more of them in the line segment than the previous D*sh. Now, let us look at the problem again:

People make the mistake of equating a limitless supply of units of precision with an infinite number of each unit of precision.

Just because we can keep creating new D*shes, each with one more decimal place of precision, does not mean that any of them have an infinite supply in the line segment. For each D*sh, I can tell you how many of them are in the line segment. Imagine that we test this out:

You are in charge of making up the D*shes, I have a calculator with keeps multiplying my previous answer by -10-. Each day you and I wake up, you create a new D*sh by dividing yesterday's by -10-, I then use my calculator to multiply yesterday's number by 10, and tell you how many of your new D*shes there are in the line segment.

Each day, your D*sh will get closer to zero, and my answer will get closer to infinity, but we will never, ever, ever, ever get there. Neither of us. You are creating a fraction, whose denominator keeps increasing by a factor of ten, and I am creating a new fraction, whose numerator keeps increasing by a factor of ten, which will never get us to zero or an infinity. Every day, you will be wrong to say there is an infinite number of segments, and every day, I will be correct to say that there is a finite number of segments (and point to my calculator for proof). You will never be right, and I will never be wrong.

What confuses most people is that we can do this for an ETERNITY, which they confuse for INFINITY.

Problem Number 2:

People think that they can start counting in Dashes, and when they run out, move to Dishes, and again to Doshes.

What I mean:

It is generally thought that there is an infinite number of points in the line segment. The way our brain fools us into thinking this also relates to the next problem that I will bring up, but let me point out this half of the problem first. When we think of small segments of our line segment of length -1-, we tend to pick a small unit, and imagine that we can just create a smaller unit (as we just went over in the last problem). What we are doing, without usually knowing it, is counting in one D*sh, and when we run out of room, moving to a new D*sh, and counting some more. Here's what happens:

We count in Dishes (.01), and find that there are 100 of them in the segment. But WAIT, I can think of a smaller unit, a Dosh (.001), so we haven't really run out of room, I just count these smaller things and find that more of them fit in that last bit of room before we run out of space. And when they run out, we create another D*sh of size .0001, and so on. And our brains fool us into thinking that since we can create a new D*sh, there are an infinite number of Dishes!

This problem is closely related to the previous one, but it manifests itself differently when we start thinking about line segments. The important thing to learn here is that you must pick a unit of precision and stick to it. You can switch to a new D*sh just because you ran out of space. This is why I often speak of God brewing a cup of coffee. I don't want people to start talking about Grinding Beans as a unit of measurement. In this way, and by naming -.001- a Dosh, I demonstrate something very, very important. When you add a decimal place, those two things are both Numbers, but that is all they have in common. They are as different as Grinding Beans and Placing Filters. You can't keep switching from one to the other and think that you are proving anything about the prior one.

Problem Number 3:

Designations of POINTS on a line is not the same as measuring the LENGTH of a line.

What I mean:

Points on a line are designations of location, not length. They are a mystical thing of size Zero. Whether or not there is an infinite number of them in the line segment has no bearing on the length of the line segment. This is the toughest hurdle to overcome, and I don't expect anyone to make it in a day.

When someone points to one of these points, they are NOT actually placing their finger ON THE LINE. They aren't even pointing AT THE LINE. What they are doing is DIVIDING the line into two parts. Remember, the Point has no length, so it can not be a "part" of anything. It is a place of division. And we can, once the segment has been divided, talk about the lengths of these two segments. One will have a length from this division to the Zero, and the other from the division to the One. Both segments will be of finite length.

Now, the next problem made is that you can now divide the line segment a tad closer to the One, and further from the Zero. We are moving the Point to the right a little bit. How far to the right do you want to move it? Pick any length, and you have created a unit measurement again, a D*sh. The segment to the left has grown by a D*sh, and the segment to the right has decreased by a D*sh. You can move a smaller amount, if you like, and divide somewhere else, you have created another D*sh.

Again, the fact that we can do this for an ETERNITY, does not mean that the line segment has an INFINITE number of units of length.

Understanding all of this resolves many mathematical paradoxes, which is how I know it to be correct.

Peace,
swivel

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Sorry to double-post, but I got called back to work, and had to leave suddenly. The only other thing I wanted to do was move the discussion back to segments of time, where all of these lessons apply perfectly.

You can not have a unit of time of period Zero. This is not a unit of time, it is a designator of WHEN. It divides a segment of time just like a Point of length Zero divides a line segment. Just as you were not pointing to an actual piece of line with the Point, you are not pointing to any period of time with a Period of Zero, you are just designating a place that exists right before one thing and right after another.

The mistake you keep making is that you keep referring to a mystical "infinitesimal unit of time", which is nonsense. You can't have it be zero, so pick a number. Pick the vibration of a Cesium atom, or the half-life of Plutonium, or the time it takes for a photon to traverse the nucleus of a Carbon atom. It doesn't matter, it is all arbitrary. Make it as big or as small as you like, and let scientific notation take care of the rest. The point is, it must have SOME length, and you can't have an infinite number of them between us and any "early" moment in the universe.

God did not brew an infinite number of cups of coffee prior to creating the universe.

Swivel:

I am going to derail our discussion for a bit, please forgive me. I am a much better student than teacher. I am too busy learning to pause long enough to explain my own ideas to others. Perhaps this is why I am poor at doing so. Again, forgive me. As I explain the following, it will not be smooth, and it may seem as if I am talking down to my audience. I am just struggling to explain something difficult in the simplest way possible.

Certainly!

What I am about to explain goes against the grain to say the least. My calculus instructor and I hammered this out over a decade ago. I was lucky to have her for three years of Calculus, and spent enough time in her office, that by the second year, I had finally convinced her that my account of the line segment is correct, and the one her profession espouses is wrong. I understand that most mathematicians disagree with what I think, but don't make the fallacy of ad veracundium. Mathematicians are wrong, and I am right. (said without hubris or ego, just an understanding of both sides)

I like your confidance in this. I eagerly await.

Each day, your D*sh will get closer to zero, and my answer will get closer to infinity, but we will never, ever, ever, ever get there. Neither of us. You are creating a fraction, whose denominator keeps increasing by a factor of ten, and I am creating a new fraction, whose numerator keeps increasing by a factor of ten, which will never get us to zero or an infinity. Every day, you will be wrong to say there is an infinite number of segments, and every day, I will be correct to say that there is a finite number of segments (and point to my calculator for proof). You will never be right, and I will never be wrong.

What confuses most people is that we can do this for an ETERNITY, which they confuse for INFINITY.

Of course you are right that at any time in an infinite process that the line would be finite. However, you do not take into consideration that the process is itself infinite, and accordingly, one can say that the entire thing is infinite. In "Golder, Escher, and Bach" they discuss this in regards to "metagenie".

If you are familiar with the book I won't elaborate. But if not, I'll try to write out that part for you later. But what I said above is basically the argument: It is always finite, unless you take into consideration the process as a whole, which is itself infinite.

Moreover, eternity is indeed an infinite extent of time.

In regards to Argument 2:

I am not sure what your exact argument is here, rather than a clarification. But even then, I am not sure what clarification you are making. Perhaps clear up what you are trying to say?

As regards argument 3:

The process of division of any line of arbitrary length, as you even put forth, is obviously infinite. Accordingly, an infinite amount of line segments, divided by points, can be made that fit into any larger line segment that is originally divided. The ultimate ideally small point would be the infinitely small.

You can not have a unit of time of period Zero. This is not a unit of time, it is a designator of WHEN. It divides a segment of time just like a Point of length Zero divides a line segment. Just as you were not pointing to an actual piece of line with the Point, you are not pointing to any period of time with a Period of Zero, you are just designating a place that exists right before one thing and right after another.

The mistake you keep making is that you keep referring to a mystical "infinitesimal unit of time", which is nonsense. You can't have it be zero, so pick a number. Pick the vibration of a Cesium atom, or the half-life of Plutonium, or the time it takes for a photon to traverse the nucleus of a Carbon atom. It doesn't matter, it is all arbitrary. Make it as big or as small as you like, and let scientific notation take care of the rest. The point is, it must have SOME length, and you can't have an infinite number of them between us and any "early" moment in the universe.

I define the "infinitely small" as the "ideal smallest point which is the closest one can be to zero without being zero". In essence: .000...1

But as I've argued: There is actually no way for any point in time to be anything -but- an infinite distance, no matter what relation they might have to a finite point in time, from the infinite past or future. That is to say, the only time period possible is "infinite distance from the past and future". This is illustrated by the graph I made in the OP, where the meaningful relation is the finite distance between the points, where each point is infinitely away from the past and future absolutely.

I define the "infinitely small" as the "ideal smallest point which is the closest one can be to zero without being zero". In essence: .000...1

But as I've argued: There is actually no way for any point in time to be anything -but- an infinite distance, no matter what relation they might have to a finite point in time, from the infinite past or future. That is to say, the only time period possible is "infinite distance from the past and future". This is illustrated by the graph I made in the OP, where the meaningful relation is the finite distance between the points, where each point is infinitely away from the past and future absolutely.

The infinitely small thing you describe still has size, and it is worthless as a measuring device. You can't use it in any application except a philosophical one.

And the reason is contained in my last posts. You have to settle on a size, a D*sh, and use it. Your .000...1 is a constantly shifting thing, always in need of one more zero. You are changing a Dush to a Dysh to a Dzsh, and pretending to still have a tool to wield in any meaningful way.

It is ludicrous, and you are leading yourself astray. You will never understand the infinite and the infinitesimal if you believe that the .000...1 of your imagination is in any manner a useful construct. The sad thing is how common this trap is, and how every Calculus student falls into it for life.

And yes, I've read Godel, Escher, Bach. Nice book in very many ways, especially the story which can be read from both directions a'la a Bach Fugue, but the author's grasp of the infinite and time are just as lacking. I have an entire bookshelf in my library which holds my books regarding time and the infinite, and in none of them do I find a satisfactory treatment of either issue. So ad veracundium fallacies are especially muted for me.

Every day you decrease the size of your infinitesimal, and every day I tell you how many of them are in a finite segment of space or time. Every day you are wrong and every day I am right. The Eternity does not speak to your infinity, it speaks to my correctness. You will never get to zero, and you seem to not understand that you cannot keep changing your measuring tool, and still pretend to be measuring the infinite.

Just because your ruler keeps shrinking does not mean that the finite space you are measuring is expanding. You seem too smart a lad to not read over my posts in this thread and see how far you stray from reality.

Swivel:

The infinitely small thing you describe still has size, and it is worthless as a measuring device. You can't use it in any application except a philosophical one.

I never put it forth as a measuring device. I have no problem with the Imperial or Metric systems, nor our standard time system.

And the reason is contained in my last posts. You have to settle on a size, a D*sh, and use it. Your .000...1 is a constantly shifting thing, always in need of one more zero. You are changing a Dush to a Dysh to a Dzsh, and pretending to still have a tool to wield in any meaningful way.

Well no, I could never actually reach it. It is meaningless, you are quite correct, to measure anything. Measuring was never its intent, though. I am fully aware that d*sh is needed to be resorted to - and embrace that. After all, do I not make mention that the only meaningful measurement is between non-infinitely past or future points in time?

And yes, I've read Godel, Escher, Bach. Nice book in very many ways, especially the story which can be read from both directions a'la a Bach Fugue, but the author's grasp of the infinite and time are just as lacking. I have an entire bookshelf in my library which holds my books regarding time and the infinite, and in none of them do I find a satisfactory treatment of either issue. So ad veracundium fallacies are especially muted for me.

Yes. The Bach Fuge chapter was nice.

And I wasn't trying to resort to it as rock solid proof, only as the metagenie argument is quite good, I thought to reference it instead of making my own.

Every day you decrease the size of your infinitesimal, and every day I tell you how many of them are in a finite segment of space or time. Every day you are wrong and every day I am right. The Eternity does not speak to your infinity, it speaks to my correctness. You will never get to zero, and you seem to not understand that you cannot keep changing your measuring tool, and still pretend to be measuring the infinite.

Just because your ruler keeps shrinking does not mean that the finite space you are measuring is expanding. You seem too smart a lad to not read over my posts in this thread and see how far you stray from reality.

However, my metagenie says that overall, I am the one who is correct. I shall never, ever, ever be able to reach the infinitely small, nor use it for anything, but if I did progress eternally, the totality of such would be infinite.

OF course, it works quite well that I should never reach the infinitely small: If I did, it would not be infinitely small. The infinite is, after all, defined as unreachable.

I guess you will never understand my points as long as you persist in thinking that the construct: .000...1 has any use or validity. For one thing, it is a bounded infinity, which is worthless. You are putting a decimal on one side, and a 1 on the other, and pretending that the thing has an infinite number of Zero's in-between. Good luck with that.

Until you realize that this construct is as real as a Unicorn, it will keep leading you astray as you contemplate the nature of time and space. The infinitesimal does not exist. We use it in math because it is useful, the way non-Euclidean geometry has had surprising uses in a Euclidean universe. You are making the mistake that most mathematicians and physicists make, you play with the abstract tools so long that you begin to believe that they are real, or that they describe reality.

That's why most physicists pretend that time travel is possible, they have fallen in love with their little 't', and watched it do amazing things in formula, and they forget what the little 't' even stands for. You need to learn these tools, like -1^-2, but you should also devote some time understanding reality as best you can. And the Unicorn will get you nowhere.

I wish you luck, and this conversation has been very fruitful for me.

-swivel

I guess you will never understand my points as long as you persist in thinking that the construct: .000...1 has any use or validity. For one thing, it is a bounded infinity, which is worthless. You are putting a decimal on one side, and a 1 on the other, and pretending that the thing has an infinite number of Zero's in-between. Good luck with that.

Do not you agree that an infinite thing must have a value? Though not a finite one, a value nonetheless?

Until you realize that this construct is as real as a Unicorn, it will keep leading you astray as you contemplate the nature of time and space. The infinitesimal does not exist. We use it in math because it is useful, the way non-Euclidean geometry has had surprising uses in a Euclidean universe. You are making the mistake that most mathematicians and physicists make, you play with the abstract tools so long that you begin to believe that they are real, or that they describe reality.

If the abstract in question is not the foundation for the real, then it has no place whatsoever.

Moreover, I think you would be hard pressed to present a proof which would show infinity is not possible. For one, mathematically it certainly is. Secondly, spatially it is and I believe I have put forth this argument here, have I not?

I'd also ask if not the infintesimal, then what else could be the smallest unit of space or time? Any other answer is arbitrary and clearly not the case, as it is fundamentally divislbe in that it is measurable.

I'd also ask if not the infintesimal, then what else could be the smallest unit of space or time? Any other answer is arbitrary and clearly not the case, as it is fundamentally divislbe in that it is measurable.

There is no smallest unit of space and time. Like I've been saying, you have to pick a Dxsh and stick to it. If you want a smaller Dxsh, use scientific notation. What you can not have is a dynamic unit of measurement. It's shrinking or growing nature will fool you into thinking that the object being measured has properties that it does not.

Mathematicians like to use the hypothetical infinitesimal to stand for some value greater than, but close to zero. For this purpose, a few billion decimal places are overkill, much less than a google zeros, or a googleplex.

The point that I have made over and over is that it doesn't matter what unit you pick, it isn't zero, so there are a finite number of them in the segment being measured. Just because you can keep changing your D*sh, doesn't mean that you are ever changing the size of the thing being measured.

And if you keep inserting Zeros into the construct .000...1, you will never, ever, ever, ever place your One. You keep talking about the infinitesimal, but you are really talking about Zero, which is why you keep coming up with Infinities for answers.

And these mistakes are having dire consequences in your philosophy. Until you get them straightened out, you will continue to believe that the past can have infinite negative states, that a finite bit of string has infinite bits, and all of the other fallacies that I keep pointing out.

Since you are one of the most active posters, a moderator, and a teacher to so many other members, I very much want you to see and understand these errors, so you might help others down the road. I am not a very good teacher, so this exchange has helped me considerably. I kept being forced into re-phrasing the same ideas in a more intelligible manner, and it has given me better tools to use in the future. So, thanks.

-swivel

Swivel:

And if you keep inserting Zeros into the construct .000...1, you will never, ever, ever, ever place your One. You keep talking about the infinitesimal, but you are really talking about Zero, which is why you keep coming up with Infinities for answers.

No, I am quite explicitly not speaking of zero. Zero implies nothingness and nothingness cannot exist (to do so would be to not be nothing). Accordingly, it cannot be a part of anything, therefore, we are left with only one other option (that I have stressed throughout).

And these mistakes are having dire consequences in your philosophy. Until you get them straightened out, you will continue to believe that the past can have infinite negative states, that a finite bit of string has infinite bits, and all of the other fallacies that I keep pointing out.

These are not fallacies at all. That is the problem. Although I'm sure you'll disagree!

Ultimately, we are left with two options regarding time: Infinite time or nothingness being able to create somethingness. If nothingness can create, it cannot be nothingness. Therefore, we are logically obliged to speak of eternity.

Unless, of course, you can present us something which shows us otherwise?

Regarding the string, it is also quite obvious that one could never reach a divisible point through dividing it, no?

Since you are one of the most active posters, a moderator, and a teacher to so many other members, I very much want you to see and understand these errors, so you might help others down the road. I am not a very good teacher, so this exchange has helped me considerably. I kept being forced into re-phrasing the same ideas in a more intelligible manner, and it has given me better tools to use in the future. So, thanks.

I am not a moderator. I wish I was, but no.

Unless I was just made one out of no where.

But yes, this exchange is very fruitful so far. I am glad you've participated and hope you shall continue!

But of course, I am fully open for you to show me as wrong. Just at present, I do not agree with you on this matter.

Ultimately, we are left with two options regarding time: Infinite time or nothingness being able to create somethingness. If nothingness can create, it cannot be nothingness. Therefore, we are logically obliged to speak of eternity.

Sorry for the tangent, but I have to disagree with this.

People love to say that the universe must have had a causal agent, because everything within the universe seems rely on causality (debatable, I know). You can not apply the rules of a set to the set itself. The universe was not created inside of another universe. That ignores the concept of a universe. (if there are daughter "universes", they need to be called something different, and we are just moving the discussion up one level)

The point is that a universe could have been "created" from within this other set. A set of non-existence. You keep saying that if a Nothing can create a Something, then it isn't a Nothing. That only works within the set that you and I live in, when you apply those rules to the set as a whole, you are making another big mistake.

I don't even pretend to think that this is how it all got started, or that I have the answers, but I see logical contradictions in infinite negative states from within the rules of the set that contains those states, but I see no logical contradictions for something coming out of a void. Don't forget that this isn't a void of space-time. This isn't a vacuum within our universe or our set. We don't know what other properties a stasis or a vacuum would have. Because they do have properties, and this does not defy their lack of substance, or lack of changes in states.

I can make up hundreds of logical explanations for the creation of the universe as we now know it, and none of them defy logic in any way I can perceive. But the creation of the universe by a deity has huge, gaping holes in it. As does the eternal negative states that you believe in. Both are impossible, even if they are easier to describe with words, and make more intuitive sense to our macro-brains.

Sorry to derail,
swivel

Swivel:

I am afraid I find a discrepancy in your beliefs here, my good man.

You say two things:

if there are daughter "universes", they need to be called something different, and we are just moving the discussion up one level)

Don't forget that this isn't a void of space-time. This isn't a vacuum within our universe or our set. We don't know what other properties a stasis or a vacuum would have. Because they do have properties, and this does not defy their lack of substance, or lack of changes in states.

Yet these are clearly contradictory. As you claim in the first case that we cannot speak of anything outside the universe (lest the universe be not itself) and then speak of "differenecs of things outside the universe".

But actually, the very notion of a "property-filled nothingness" is absurd. In order to have properties, one cannot be nothing - which is essentially a null state.

Consider the result of this suggestion: Attempt to think of nothingness.

Also, if the universe is not eternal, its creation was arbitrary and not necessary. As there would be no reason why its creation began at that point and a not another. Moreover, it would seem that in order for the universe and time to be created, time would have to exist before it existed.

Here's another thing: In order to cause causality, causality must exist. Therefore, one cannot cause causality.

James Clarke Maxwell proposed: "Time is firstly an idea - the idea that an ordered sequence can be recognised in our states of consciousness."

If: Distance = speed of light x time

Since information cannot be conveyed to an observer instantaneously, whether two events can be conceived of as having occurred at the same time depends on where you are in the universe when you witness them.
This tallies with J.C. Maxwell's proposition.

My objections to 'time' are: the assumption of directionality (i.e. asymmetric time); and its decoupling from the natural cycles of the universe for the purposes of capitalist hegemony.

So you think that time can be bidirectional?

So you think that time can be bidirectional?
I'm open to learning something here...I am no physicist...rather a 'history and philosophy of science' approach which I hope is pertinent to the initial post:

'Process philosophers' see the flow of time as an important metaphysical fact; 'philosophers of the manifold' see the flow of time as an illusion. Each position has important consequences for free will and determinism: process philosophers think of the past as fixed and the future as malleable and indeterminate, philosophers of the manifold think it is as impossible to change the future as it is the past (although in this case the derminatedness of time should not be confused with determinism).

Generally the physical universe is seen as time-symmetric: if a process is physically possible so is the same process run backwards. The reason that time appears asymmetric (directional) is the movement from a chaotic to an ordered state (second law of thermodynamics)...but science posits that the universe was in a state of maximum entropy (thermal equilibrium) at the time of the Big Bang...somewhat of a paradox.

I'd really appreciate if someone could correct/enlighten me on this. Thanks.

'Process philosophers' see the flow of time as an important metaphysical fact; 'philosophers of the manifold' see the flow of time as an illusion. Each position has important consequences for free will and determinism: process philosophers think of the past as fixed and the future as malleable and indeterminate, philosophers of the manifold think it is as impossible to change the future as it is the past (although in this case the derminatedness of time should not be confused with determinism).

Where do you get these notions? I have never even heard "process philosophers" and "philosophers of the manifold". Moreover, determinism is the dominant metaphysical position in philosophy (but not popularly).

Generally the physical universe is seen as time-symmetric: if a process is physically possible so is the same process run backwards. The reason that time appears asymmetric (directional) is the movement from a chaotic to an ordered state (second law of thermodynamics)...but science posits that the universe was in a state of maximum entropy (thermal equilibrium) at the time of the Big Bang...somewhat of a paradox.

Do you mean that if one were to reverse time, that the process would return to what it was? Or do you mean that if one were to try to do the process forward in time but reversed, that such would occur?