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Smolin’s Time Reborn

May 8th, 2015 · 2 Comments

I never got around to discussing the key issues in Smolin’s book, Time reborn. I will try to get around to it soon.

But instead let me spin a few thoughts on the issue of time with respect to the model of J.G.Bennett, which goes back to the age of Flatland, the book, and its ‘cult’ in the nineteenth century.

Bennett audaciously tried to resolve this six-dimensional model with three dimensions of time: time, eternity, hyparxis.
To start, I think his model fails even though it offers some intriguing insights.

I don’t see how ‘eternity’ can be orthogonal to standard time. Unless they are simply labels for a three dimensional graph space for ‘time1,time2, time3…
But it makes a little sense in the way that an element moving out of the ‘temporal time1 dimension’ enters/exits from time1. But these three things aren’t homogenous, so I am confused.
And hyparxis is a discrete entity…???? Yet Bennett erects (a most fascinating) six/coordinate spacetime metric of the standard type.
It would make more sense to me if we thought of time as embedded in ‘eternity’, however we define that. But ‘eternity’ would be different in character.
Looking at multiverse theory I have to wonder why they have so much trouble here: they seem to be describing temporal entities inside a larger timeless or else orthogonal system. In such a system the issue of the big bang is par for the course, possible or marginal. And in such a system there would be no absolute time-frame. Somehow the ‘space’ of potential is let loose as ‘reality’ and the results seem cockeyed.

NK tells me I have the wrong book…

Tags: General

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 NK // May 19, 2015 at 1:50 pm

    The new book is well-worth it (haven’t finished it yet). I don’t know about Smolin’s previous book, but this one is definitely subversive to the proponents of scientism. Smolin’s discussion of mathematics, in particular, seems to me to be novel and profound.

  • 2 nemo // May 20, 2015 at 11:03 am

    I now have both books, but I will take another look at Time Reborn

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