Is Time Just an Idea?

Discuss any topics related to metaphysics (the philosophical study of the principles of reality) or epistemology (the philosophical study of knowledge) in this forum.
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RJG
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Re: Is Time Just an Idea?

Post by RJG » January 17th, 2020, 2:04 pm

Terrapin Station wrote:No, that's not right at all. What you're suggesting is (ontological) idealism. I'm not an idealist. I rather hate idealism, I think idealism is stupid, and I think it's annoying that philosophy message boards, etc. are littered with so many idealists.
Yes, I was not very clear. I agree with your opinion on "idealism". I deleted my post, as it seemingly created more confusion than clarity.

So in your view "Time is NOT a dimension" (because dimensions are not real), ...correct?
So next question "Is Time real?"

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Re: Is Time Just an Idea?

Post by gater » January 17th, 2020, 4:29 pm

Dimensions are real, time is real, - im confused by your discussion. :)

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Re: Is Time Just an Idea?

Post by Terrapin Station » January 17th, 2020, 4:55 pm

RJG wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 2:04 pm
Terrapin Station wrote:No, that's not right at all. What you're suggesting is (ontological) idealism. I'm not an idealist. I rather hate idealism, I think idealism is stupid, and I think it's annoying that philosophy message boards, etc. are littered with so many idealists.
Yes, I was not very clear. I agree with your opinion on "idealism". I deleted my post, as it seemingly created more confusion than clarity.

So in your view "Time is NOT a dimension" (because dimensions are not real), ...correct?
So next question "Is Time real?"
Yes, time is simply motion or change. That is, it's identical to particular motions or changes. Motion and change are (objectively) real.

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Re: Is Time Just an Idea?

Post by RJG » January 17th, 2020, 4:56 pm

gater wrote:Dimensions are real, time is real, - im confused by your discussion.
Gater, I certainly agree with you. Dimensions and Time are real. ...but not everyone agrees.

The confusion that I am trying to clear up is that many claim that Time is a dimension, and then go on to say that Dimensions are not real, so logically this means Time (and the other 3 dimensions) are not real. But if this were so, then nothing is real (since everything, and all happenings, are constructed of dimensions).

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Re: Is Time Just an Idea?

Post by Terrapin Station » January 17th, 2020, 4:56 pm

gater wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 4:29 pm
Dimensions are real, time is real, - im confused by your discussion. :)
Are you familiar with the universal (or type) / particular distinction?

If so, would you say that dimensions are particulars?

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Re: Is Time Just an Idea?

Post by RJG » January 17th, 2020, 5:18 pm

Terrapin's view:
1. Time is NOT a dimension.
2. Dimensions are NOT real.
3. Time is motion/change. → Time is real.
4. Motion/change can happen without 3D objects (i.e. action without actors is possible)

RJG's view:
1. Time is a dimension.
2. Dimensions are real → Time is real.
3. Time is the Dimension, i.e. is the means, by which 3D objects move/change. Without a means to move, there can be no movement.
4. Motion/change cannot happen without 3D objects (i.e. action without actors is logically impossible).

Although we both agree that Time is real, we disagree on what Time is. Therefore any discussions based on Time, is just talking past each other.

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Re: Is Time Just an Idea?

Post by Steve3007 » January 17th, 2020, 7:01 pm

creation wrote:To me absolutely everything in Life is very simple and easy.
Ok. To me, some things are very hard, some things are very easy and most things are somewhere in between.
So, my interpretation of doing philosophy is to just remain inquisitive, open, and honest. All of the above will just fall into place naturally.
Obviously it hasn't fallen into place so far. Hence my reasons for setting out what I think seem to be reasonably sensible guidelines for discussions.

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Re: Is Time Just an Idea?

Post by Terrapin Station » January 17th, 2020, 7:28 pm

RJG wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 5:18 pm
Terrapin's view:
1. Time is NOT a dimension.
2. Dimensions are NOT real.
3. Time is motion/change. → Time is real.
4. Motion/change can happen without 3D objects (i.e. action without actors is possible)

RJG's view:
1. Time is a dimension.
2. Dimensions are real → Time is real.
3. Time is the Dimension, i.e. is the means, by which 3D objects move/change. Without a means to move, there can be no movement.
4. Motion/change cannot happen without 3D objects (i.e. action without actors is logically impossible).

Although we both agree that Time is real, we disagree on what Time is. Therefore any discussions based on Time, is just talking past each other.
I'd ask you the same thing (again): are you familiar with the distinction between universals or types and particulars? It would be much easier to understand my view if you understand that distinction. I'm a nominalist. I don't believe that any universals are real (that is, I don't believe that any universals exist extramentally or objectively).

So the question is whether you think that dimensions are universals or particulars. If you think they're particulars, we'd need to sort out just how that would work for you, as most would say that dimensions are universals (and abstracts). It would be unusual to think of dimensions as being particulars, and I'm not sure what that would amount to. If you think they're universals, then it's clear why I don't think that they're real--no universals are.

It's not that I believe that objects do not have extension (hopefully you're familiar with what extension is). But the extension that objects have is particular extension--the extension of that particular object.

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Re: Is Time Just an Idea?

Post by creation » January 17th, 2020, 10:01 pm

RJG wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 9:19 am
RJG wrote:It seems that you no longer believe Time is a dimension. -- Is Time a dimension? [YES/NO]
creation wrote:And, when did I ever even think that time is a dimension? Why did you assume such a thing as "I believe Time is a dimension" in the first place?
From this string in the discussion:
RJG wrote:Time does not "cause" motion, any more than Space causes matter. Motion is caused by interacting matter. Time is just the substrate; i.e. the place where motion occurs.
creation wrote:So, time, the dimension, is the place where motion occurs. But, if motion is caused by interacting matter, then the place where motion, or interacting matter, occurs is just the Universe, Itself, correct?
RJG wrote:Yes, the 4D universe. The 4D universe is where 3D objects interact (and motion occurs).
creation wrote:Does anyone here in this thread not know this, or dispute this?
It appears here (in this discussion string) that you agree "Time is a dimension" (the 4th dimension). -- And now it appears that you believe "Time is NOT a dimension". My apologies if I misinterpreted your words.
When I wrote; "So, time, the dimension, is the place where motion occurs", I was solely meaning that that is your interpretation, from your perspective only. I did not mean that it was my interpretation, as I thought I had made my interpretation clear already, this is; 'time', to me, is just a word that describes the measurements we make in relation to change, and nothing else. Which is why I wrote the next sentence after, in the quote above.

As for asking does anyone not know of the 4 dimensional Universe, or do they dispute this, then I was just asking anyone here in this forum if they do not know of the 4 dimensional Universe version, with 3 dimensions of space and 1 dimension of time, or if you know of anyone in this forum who does not know of this version, or dispute this?

As someone has already pointed out the word 'dimension' can just be a concept only, and I think most people in this forum if not all would have a concept of the Universe being of 3 dimensions spatially and 1 dimension temporally, thus would know of the version of a 4 dimensional Universe.

If anyone disputes this concept of the Universe, then I would be interested in why they do.
RJG wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 9:19 am
RJG wrote:Is Time a dimension? [YES/NO] ...2. If you say NO, then this is the root of our misunderstanding.
But why would it be the root of 'our' misunderstanding?

I think I know exactly what your understanding is, and even why you have your understanding.

I thought I already made it clear that we use the word 'time' from two different definitions and meanings.

To me, from what I have observed is there is 'change', and to some people this change is just what the 4th dimension of the 4 dimension model of the Universe is, which they see as and call "time". You call this 4th dimension "Time", and what I do not yet fully understand is why you use a capital 'T', I did ask you previously why? But either you did not clarify this, or, I missed your answer.

By the way for me to answer "Yes" or "No" to your question here, then I would need to have a full understanding of what you actually mean when you use the 'dimension' word here.

RJG wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 9:19 am

So then your answer appears to be "NO", ...correct?
Not really, YET. But at the moment I would currently suggest that might answer could more likely be a "No". But I still need to know your full understanding and definition of the word 'dimension' in regards to this topic before I provide an informed answer.
RJG wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 9:19 am
And if so, then we are talking about 'different' things. Hence the root of our misunderstanding.
But I have no misunderstanding, as far as I can see anyway.

What misunderstanding do you currently have? I can clear up any misunderstanding you have, if you just ask me some specific clarifying questions.
RJG wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 9:19 am
-- If we cannot agree that "Time is a dimension", then no need for us to further discuss anything based on this fact/non-fact.
If you say so.

But what you just wrote implies or more so infers that your "side" or perspective of things is the absolutely true, right, and correct version, and anyone's views are not worth even looking at, let alone discussing and understanding, correct?

Or, have I misunderstood you here now?
RJG wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 9:19 am

If dimensions are just figments of our imagination (i.e. "concepts we invented"), then those stationary and moving objects that we observe out in the world, are also just figments of our imagination. For only imaginary (non-real) objects can be constructed from 'imagination'. If dimensions are not real, then neither are its constructions.
There was a poster here who used to say something like that actually there is no 3 dimensional space, but what only existed is the dimension of 'time'. I do not know about others but for me, when that was first proposed it seemed completely absurd and contradictory. But, instead of just dismissing it I read what that poster had to say on the topic, and what they said made sense, eventually. When I thought about it in relation to my current views of things it made perfect sense, and even backed up and support my currently, at that time, views with more evidence and support. But when I proposed to that poster, who insisted that a 'person' was the body, then how could a 3 dimensional body exist if there was NO 3 dimensional space? I was provided the same sort of conclusion as you have made, that is; If we cannot agree, then there is no need for us to further discuss this.

As someone has already pointed out to you, to consider, just maybe 'dimensions' are just concepts, which help human beings make sense of the Universe in which they exist in. That is; If human beings did not have the capacity to separate, compartmentalize, and take measurements of the One Universe into apparent separate things, then they would might never be able to make sense of 'It'.

So, if you want to insist that 'Time' is a dimension and physical objects could not move without 'Time', then you are free to think or believe that is true, but if you are not open to looking at and discussing anything else, then so be it. End of discussion, and story.
RJG wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 9:19 am
If dimensions are not real, and Time is a dimension, then Time is not real.
This may well be very accurate and true.

Are you aware that some people say that 'time' and 'space' are real, some say that 'space' is real but not 'time', some say 'space' is not real but 'time' is real, and some say that 'space' and 'time' are both not real. Now, when some these things are 'not real' they might not be meaning that they are figments of imagination but rather the apparent 'dimension' itself is not an actual thing that exists, and that when ALL-OF-THIS is looked at from a particular perspective, then the truth of ALL-OF-THIS can be revealed. But one has to first be open things other than the ones that they currently think or believe is already what is true, right, and correct.

For all I know your view that 'time' is a dimension and objects cannot move without time may well be 100% absolutely true, right, AND correct, but until you are able to explain, logically and reasonably, HOW this could even possibly be true, then do not expect I, and some others, to see and understand the "logic" that you do. For one example, HOW could 'time' exist BEFORE objects even started moving?

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Re: Is Time Just an Idea?

Post by creation » January 17th, 2020, 10:35 pm

Terrapin Station wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 12:57 pm
creation wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 8:26 am


The Universe, Itself.
I was positing an example where the universe consists solely of the two different objects in question.
What were those two different objects in question?

You wrote:
It's possible for there to be x, an object, which disappears and is replaced by y, a different object. That's a change--there was x, now there's y. But there's no single thing that remains the same during the course of the change.

I then wrote:
This is not exactly true, because there is one single thing that remains the same during the course of the change, but this detracts from the main point of what you are getting at. (But I can clarify if interested).

I then clarified when you asked.

You wrote there is 'no' single thing that remains the same during the course of the change. I just expressed that there was 'one' thing that is an object x, which does 'not' disappear and is 'not' replaced by y, no matter what.

If you were positing that the Universe, by definition consists of solely just two objects, then that is fine. But, by the way, even if the Universe consists solely of just two different objects, then even when those two things change, the Universe will still be the same, as the Universe still consists solely of those two different objects, just in another way, shape, or form. But the Universe, Itself, will still remain the same during the course of the change, of those two different things.

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Re: Is Time Just an Idea?

Post by creation » January 17th, 2020, 10:42 pm

gater wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 4:29 pm
Dimensions are real, time is real, - im confused by your discussion. :)
The reason you are confused is because you believe that your views are absolutely true, right, and correct, correct?

See, what is happening people express their views as though those views are actually true, right, and correct, and when people do this, then they become confused. The reason they become confused is because the actual real Truth of things is usually somewhat different from what they, themselves, believe is true, right, and correct.

Also, even if what they view or believe is true, right, and correct, is actually true, right, and correct, then whatever that is usually does not fit in with other views and beliefs they have, and therefore, they are still somewhat confused.

Are you open to the fact that 'dimensions' and 'time' may not be actual real things at, but are just 'concepts' only?

Your honest answer here will provide clues as to why you are so confused here now.

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Re: Is Time Just an Idea?

Post by creation » January 17th, 2020, 11:12 pm

RJG wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 4:56 pm
gater wrote:Dimensions are real, time is real, - im confused by your discussion.
Gater, I certainly agree with you. Dimensions and Time are real. ...but not everyone agrees.
Was there ever some sort of expectation, or even some thought, that there would be agreement on this topic?

As far as I am aware I am the only one here who agrees that 'time' is just an idea only, besides the fact that 'time' is just a human made up word, which also describes the measurements we take in relation to change.
RJG wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 4:56 pm
The confusion that I am trying to clear up is that many claim that Time is a dimension, and then go on to say that Dimensions are not real, so logically this means Time (and the other 3 dimensions) are not real.
Here you say 'many' claim ..., so who has claimed that 'time' is a dimension, and then went on to say that dimensions are not real?

If you think I am one of the so called "many", then you are very clearly mistaken. Unless of course you can prove me wrong.

Also, you are taking the 'time and the other 3 dimensions are not real' to the level of absurdity, as that then means that nothing in the Universe is real conclusion. There is some middle ground where the actual Truth of things might exist. But, with this 'black or white' type of thinking you will never be able to see, nor even recognize this Truth.
RJG wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 4:56 pm
But if this were so, then nothing is real (since everything, and all happenings, are constructed of dimensions).
But just maybe not everything, and all happenings, are constructed of dimensions. Just maybe human beings have evolved to conceptualize "dimensions" in order to just "deconstruct" the Universe in order to better make sense of, and understand, the Universe, Itself?

'Dimensions' could just be in concept only, and not be actual real things, in and of themselves? We will just have to wait and see. Unless of course you know what the actual real Truth of things is here already, which if you did you would already know that everyone could be in agreement with your views correct? And, if we are not all in agreement with you already, then why not? Can you see the actual real truth of things already? And, if yes, then we are all therefore delusional, correct?

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Re: Is Time Just an Idea?

Post by creation » January 17th, 2020, 11:22 pm

Steve3007 wrote:
January 17th, 2020, 7:01 pm
creation wrote:To me absolutely everything in Life is very simple and easy.
Ok. To me, some things are very hard, some things are very easy and most things are somewhere in between.
So, my interpretation of doing philosophy is to just remain inquisitive, open, and honest. All of the above will just fall into place naturally.
Obviously it hasn't fallen into place so far. Hence my reasons for setting out what I think seem to be reasonably sensible guidelines for discussions.
Have I mentioned, 'once or twice already', that when people make assumptions about, or believe, things to be true, right, or correct already, then they are not open, and thus also not inquisitive?

If yes, then that is why things have not YET fallen into place so far.

But if no, then that is why things have not YET fallen into place so far.

One has to be, and has to remain, inquisitive, open, and honest for your reasonably sensible guidelines for discussions to fall into place and happen.

To me, just about everyone here in this forum now, when this is written, are assuming and believing somethings are already true, right, and correct. Therefore, those ones are 'not' truly inquisitive nor open, and it is inquisitiveness, openness, and honesty that is needed for your sensible guidelines for discussions to occur in a philosophy forum.

To me, the very reason 'why' this has not fallen into place so far is for the very simple reason that people are not yet open and inquisitive, which I think was very easily explained. But if anything I say is not yet fully understood, then just ask clarifying questions.

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Re: Is Time Just an Idea?

Post by Steve3007 » January 18th, 2020, 5:07 am

creation wrote:To me, just about everyone here in this forum now, when this is written, are assuming and believing somethings are already true, right, and correct. Therefore, those ones are 'not' truly inquisitive nor open, and it is inquisitiveness, openness, and honesty that is needed for your sensible guidelines for discussions to occur in a philosophy forum.
I request that you read back the above post and consider the irony in it.

When I wrote the post citing the forum rules and suggesting some guidelines that might be mutually agreeable, I had hoped to "reset" things by meeting you halfway; by us both acknowledging past faults in our own communication styles and learning from them.

From what you've said above, and in the rest of the post from which the above quote was taken, I could be wrong, but you don't appear to me to get that. You still appear to me to view yourself, alone as uniquely open and inquisitive while almost everyone else is, in your view, convinced of their own rightness and unwilling to consider others' arguments. This view is not borne out by evidence. In my view, if you still can't accept that you also have to change the way you communicate, and that you also are apt to make unfounded assumptions about other people (such as the one you make in the quote above), then very little will change if we keep talking. I am not interested in continuing to be told, as you have told me in the past from the very start, without evidence, that I am closed to new ideas and that I worship particular ideas unquestioningly. I am not interested in those unfounded assumptions of yours. If you want to keep doing that, please do it with someone else. I would rather talk to other posters.

Obviously the above is just my view. It is not necessarily true, right and correct. If you disagree with it, that is, of course, your right.

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Re: Is Time Just an Idea?

Post by Steve3007 » January 18th, 2020, 5:42 am

viewtopic.php?p=346292#p346292
(This was directed at RJG)
Terrapin Station wrote:I'd ask you the same thing (again): are you familiar with the distinction between universals or types and particulars? It would be much easier to understand my view if you understand that distinction. I'm a nominalist. I don't believe that any universals are real (that is, I don't believe that any universals exist extramentally or objectively).
From the context in which you use the words, it seems to me that by "universals" you mean generalizations and by "particulars" you mean specific instances. If this is true, then presumably all "laws" that we derive, by a process of Induction, from observations of patterns in specific instances are things that you would refer to as "universals".

Is this right?

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