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Absolute time and the speed of light

Use this forum to discuss the philosophy of science. Philosophy of science deals with the assumptions, foundations, and implications of science.
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Present awareness
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Re: Absolute time and the speed of light

Post by Present awareness » January 28th, 2019, 8:25 am

You are absolutely right Steve3007! The “now” is indivisible, not even a fraction of a second away. The light from the Sun is shinning “now” in an unbroken stream and depending on your location in space, the light you see may have left the Sun’s surface minutes ago or light years ago. The point I’m trying to make is that it is “now” everywhere in the universe, always has been and always will be. It may be noon on one side of the Earth and in the middle of the night on the other side, but it is still “now” no matter where you are.

If I’m walking toward a stop sign, I’m not there yet, but will be there in the future. For me, my position at the stop sign exist in the future, but I can see it “now”. The truth is, I’m not walking from the past to the present to the future, even though I may say that, there I was, here I am and I’ll be at the stop sign soon. I am walking in the “now” and since everything else in the universe is also in the “now”, I never leave the present moment.
Even though you can see me, I might not be here.

Fdesilva
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Re: Absolute time and the speed of light

Post by Fdesilva » January 28th, 2019, 7:15 pm

Steve3007 wrote:
January 28th, 2019, 6:31 am
Present awareness wrote:Yes, it all seems obvious to me Steve 3007 but fdesilva was asking: “ The universe that is going to be in a say a billionth of a second from now. Does it exist now?” I believe that it does and was trying to point out why I think that way.
OK, that's interesting because to me that sounds like saying you believe 2 + 2 = 5. According to my understanding of the English language, the word "now" means "zero seconds away" and "a billionth of a second from now" means "a billionth of a second away", so, to me, it would be a simple self-contradiction to say that the universe at some future time is the universe now. A bit like saying the place 2 feet to my right is the place 2 feet to my left. Or like saying Edinburgh is London. Or like saying 9pm is 10pm. Stuff like that.
No what I am asking is when you are in London do you believe Edinburg exist. Is it proper English to ask such a question? If it is how would you ask an equivalent question in regards to time?

Steve3007
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Re: Absolute time and the speed of light

Post by Steve3007 » February 25th, 2019, 10:33 am

Fdesilva wrote:No what I am asking is when you are in London do you believe Edinburg exist. Is it proper English to ask such a question? If it is how would you ask an equivalent question in regards to time?
Sorry for the extravagantly late reply.

Yes, when I am in London I believe that Edinburgh exists. Yes, I think it is proper English to ask that question. That question is equivalent to: Are there two points in space (London and Edinburgh) that correspond to a single point in time? So the corresponding question for time would be: Are there two points in time that correspond to a single point in space? I'd say yes, there are.

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