Thoughts on Time
The most misunderstood phenomenon in our world is time. We perceive ourselves locked into linear flow of time, and this leads us to postulate that time is a separate entity, like a spatial dimension, that has an independent reality. If only we could discover the time corridor, we could go back and forth in time, changing unwanted outcomes to more positive ones.
What is time, really?
Time results from the perception of the movement of objects in space. We perceive that a particle was HERE, and now it is THERE. This leads us to the concept of BEFORE and AFTER, and it is a small step then to the concepts of past and future. Without motion time does not exist, and motion is an inherent property of matter and energy. This implies that time is inseparable from the motion of particles in space; an exclusive property of physical objects in a physical universe.
Consciousness, however, is a static: a non-physical, virtual, creative principle. Consciousness has the capability to reach a static, pure state of awareness that is not time-dependent. By static I mean virtual, with no mass, no energy, no movement.
Time is perceived as linear because we perceive the movement of objects in space linearly. In fact, as I discuss in the Appendix to my book, The Vibrational Universe, the human senses sample the universe every 0.001 - 0.002 seconds, or approximately 500 to 1,000 times per second, which is the time it takes for the neuron to fire and reset. Like the quantum transition of an electron from one energy state to the other, human beings perceive digitally; the neuron operates remarkably like a logic gate. Human perception of the universe appears to follow one frame after the other, like the frames of a movie. This is what gives the illusion of linear movement.
Although it is possible to precisely measure the movement of an object from point A to point B mechanically, the measurement itself is dependent upon the movement of objects in space (timers, the atomic motion of cesium atoms etc.) The definition of time is therefore self-referencing, using itself to define itself, and so is, even in a material sense, entirely subjective. This again reinforces the idea that time is simply a characteristic of motion, and itself has no independent existence.
(The General conference on Weights and Measures defines the second thusly: “The second is the duration of 9 192 631 770 periods of the radiation corresponding to the transition between the two hyperfine levels of the ground state of the caesium 133 atom.")
The experience of time by a conscious being is subjective: “Time is dragging,” “Time is flying.” Which is to say, the movement of objects is experienced differently by different people. Example: A man drags his wife to a football game. For him, the experience is over all too quickly, but for his wife, the event was interminable. Same event, much different perception. If time were strictly a physical property, and we were strictly physical beings, we would all perceive events in exactly the same way. If time is a linear flow, and we are immersed in that flow, then how come time is perceived differently from person to person?
The feeling of time arises when we do not perceive 'in the moment.' All of life is lived in the now moment. All perception is in the now. The 'now moment' I define as the window in which all events are perceived. This window has a granularity or a delta = 0.00, and a volume = infinity (which is, of course, a physical impossibility). The now moment is independent of the movement of objects in space and can be accessed only by a static with no physical characteristics. The now moment is also outside of time.
The hunan senses are only capable of perceiving the motion of objects, and thus human beings are inevitably immersed in time. It is possible to reach the Srill Point, the place beyond time, but to do so requires one to transcend the limitations of the human senses.
Reaching The Now Moment
When attention is focused without any resistance, there is no sense of the passing of time. You are 'in the zone.' Descriptions by persons who have entered the zone almost always describe a feeling of lightness, effortlessness, and sometimes, a feeling of detachment from the body.
When there is resistance to the flow of events, there is a feeling of time. When you are happy, you don't even notice the passing of time: you look up at the clock and hours have gone by. The old saying, "time flies when you're having fun," perfectly expresses this phenomenon. Experiencing the now moment is an expansion, or a release, of consciousness, and results in heightened awareness and ability. When you release, you allow yourself to feel the human energy field that is all around you. This field is you, or rather, it is the subtle, etheric creation of the static potential, and unique to each conscious personality. It contains the body and provides animation and nourishment to every cell in the physical body. In the presence of this field, life is possible; without it, nothing can exist. The human energy field goes out several dozens of feet around the body, and when you "let go," you feel expansive, lighthearted, energetic, and powerful. You experience a heightened sense of self. This is what happens when you hit the zone.
You can also get in the zone through physical activity. At first attention is focused, on a task, lets say. You 'get into' what you are doing (a good expression) and you give more and more of your attention to it. You are getting lots done, and you look up and see that 3 hours have passed, but you didn't even notice.
Somewhere in the middle of your focusing, however, you have unfocused without knowing it! This is the release point, the point of letting go. You have gone completely into the NOW. It seems like you are working effortlessly, you almost feel like you are outside yourself, outside time. This feeling of being 'in the zone' is actually an unfocusing of your entire being from the perceived (illusory) flow of time. You experience a heightened awareness of your surroundings, but you are working on a level of knowing that no longer requires concentration. It is beyond concentration. It is a level where all data is available to you, from the universal field of thought and information that is streaming all around you. This occurs because you have begun to use your "spiritual sensors": those vastly superior intuitive and perceptual abilities that lie byond the limitations of the human senses. This makes no sense to those who believe in the biological basis for consciousness, but such people are deluded, and are probably not reading this anyway!
If you've ever been in the zone, your physical senses are sharper, but you have also expanded your consciousness outward to include more of your personal energy field. At death, one experiences a complete return of awareness of this field of consciousness, and the interface it provides to the All-that-is. It is my belief that the human energy field, or sphere of consciousness, is a Lightship capable of accessing every dimension in the All. It has capabilities that we have never even dreamed of. I wrote about this in my novel, Beyond The Beginning.
One way to get 'in the zone' or 'in the moment' is to first focus on something, then continue to focus until the point of release takes you completely into the now. For some reason, concentration enables the release point, but I have never found a way to do this consciously. In meditation, we often focus on a mantra, or the breath, in order to focus the attention and keep the mind quiet. Eventually, we may reach a state of serenity or altered consciousness when the release point is hit. (Sometimes, the release point comes on you without notice. You'll be walking around and suddenly feel a rush of joy. Where did that come from? When you try to get it back, you can't.)
When you attain this state, you reach a place of total knowing of the actions necessary to effortlessly accomplish the task. The effortlessness comes from a greater connection to the universal field of consciousness, brought about by your release of attention (unfocusing). If this process is taken to its ultimate state, you would merge completely with universal consciousness and become aware of everything-at-once ( a complete release from the perception of time). "Death" is an unfocsing of consciousness from its intensely focused state of physical incarnation, to a much broader and more comprehensive state of awareness. The release point is the partial unfocusing of consciousness while still associated with the body.
When you are focused, there is an element of being aware of your surroundings and the passing of time; there is a feeling of effort being expended. But when you reach that place of complete oneness with the task at hand, you reach the place of total knowing, the place of effortlessness, that Zen place where the action attempted seems trivial to do, no matter how difficult the task.
The Master was instructing the bowman to hit the distant target. He said: “When you are ready, release the arrow like the leaf bending under the dewdrop.” The Master was telling the student that he can reach a state of complete certainty of success, before even attempting the shot, by removing himself from the (illusory) stream of time and gaining the place of complete knowing that when the arrow is released, it WILL hit the target. It is at the point of unfocusing that total knowingness of success is assured, and it is as effortless as the eagle gliding on the wind. It is an awareness outside of, and encompassing, time itself. It is the eternal moment of now.
I remember Michael Jordan in the NBA finals some years ago, playing against Portland. In the first quarter, Michael was in his zone and hit shot after shot with effortless grace, many of them 3 pointers. He took over the game all by himself and at one point after making a shot, he sauntered back and just shrugged his shoulders as if to say “this is so easy.” Michael had found the place outside of time, he had gone through release point and was in the now moment of perfect creation.
This release point is very important. It is the point at which everything is possible, because it is at that point that you connect with all-that-is. You have gone outside of the linearity of time. Meditation is not a requirement for the release point into ‘the zone;’ it is a function of consciousness itself, and can be attained even during intense physical activity. Those who are expert in the martial arts will understand what I’m saying.
Unfortunately, it is impossible to teach the release point. The release into the now moment, the place beyond time, is entirely personal (subjective). That is why there are so few Masters and so many students.
In normal life experience, the 'window' of the now is a point, but when your consciousness expands, that window expands. When you are in this state, you can read potentials. The future is not known because free will reigns supreme; however, there are vortices of probability surrounding all people and events. These potentials are vibrational and indicate the current trend of thought and intent. Unless a sudden decision is made that breaks the pattern, it is possible to "read" the future when in the state beyond time, for the window of perception broadens to include the complete tapestry of past, present, and future potential, subsumed by the NOW moment.
Transforming the Perception of Time
"What is written is written." The past is the past, and cannot be changed. Or can it?
It is possible to change your personal perception of reality by going back to those events in your mind and reliving them differently. Properly done, you can not only change your perception of those events (overcoming personal psychic and phyical trauma), but also affect how others do so as well. Because you are a part of those events, a vibrational signature exists within the minds of all who participated in them. When one person changes his or her vibrational stamp, it affects the energetic signatures of all who participated. Thus can an angry or hateful event become transformed and transcended. This technique is used in the Hawaiian Ho'oponopono method of healing.
The Creation of Time
Humans separate themselves from the flow of life, creating resistance to events, and a greater awareness of time. Man (at least Western man) , in his disconnection from the now, has emphasized his separation from the natural flow of life by designing society around an artificially created calendar, and especially around the timepiece. Timepieces are everywhere, to remind people to jerk their attention off their natural rhythms and place them on artificially created ones. Every aspect of life in our society is based on the timepiece, keeping everyone in a state of constant anxiety. There is always a subtle worry when looking at the 'time' -- am I late for an appointment? Is my project going to be done on schedule? Is it time to take the kids to soccer practice? How early do I have to go to bed tonight to make it to that early meeting?
The feeling of time results from dissatisfaction with our experience in the moment. We say to ourselves, for example, “If I can just get through this last hour of work, I can go home and relax.” Glancing up at the clock every 5 minutes, that last hour seems to go on interminably, doesn't it? Our resistance to being at work provides the 'push' that takes us out of the moment. It is a sort of dissatisfied longing for another, hopefully better, experience that will occur later.
Our economy is tailor-made for producing this feeling of separation and dissatisfaction: the bills come every month, and a lot of us start the beginning of each month in the hole, hoping that if we work hard enough, we can get ahead. This produces a feeling of anxiety and separation from life that many people are so used to, it's not even noticeable anymore. A local talk show host bought a new, expensive house and spent most of the morning bemoaning his increased mortgage payment. "I hope I can hold onto this job," he joked, "because I've got 15 more years to pay this off!" He was attempting to make light of his situation, but the tension behind his words was evident.
When a person begins to live life in the now, less time is experienced. Timepieces become much less necessary. The calendar becomes less and less important. The artificially imposed rhythms of life become replaced by more natural ones -- rhythms based on knowledge of self and connection to source energy. Each moment of experience is accepted for what it is -- a moment to enjoy.
Time Travel And Parallel Universes
What about time travel? Is it possible to physically travel forward or backward in time, a la H.G.Wells and his Time Machine?
Only if time is accorded an independent physical dimension; where one might travel along it as one walks down a corridor, viewing all events isolated from the flow of time. Nobelist John Wheeler postulated that the vacuum was populated by mini-black holes and other exotic sub-atomic phenomena, which could lead to "wormholes" where matter could travel backwards and forwards in time. Feynman showed in his famous diagrams how a subatomic particle could attach or release another subatomic particle, both in the time forward and time reversed directions. The mathematician Hermann Minkowski graphed time on an independent axis, along with the three dimensions of space, to form Minkowski space, the setting for general relativity. Minkowski said, "Henceforth space by itself, and time by itself, are doomed to fade away into mere shadows, and only a kind of union of the two will preserve an independent reality." Space and time are inseperable.
In science fiction, stories abound of traveling in time with the physical body, going to past or future events. Then the inevitable paradoxes come up -- can you go back in time and see yourself? Can you alter the past so that the present is changed? Can you see the future? Are there timelines where events occur differently? Then we get into the concept of parallel universes where each timeline branches off and has its own independent existence… the multiplicity of history theory. It becomes so torturous and complicated because there is an incorrect assumption underlying all of it. Paradoxes occur when there is incorrect data or ideas about something.
There is great debate amongst philosophers of time as to whether the world is 3D or 4D. In a 3D world, there is no difference between yourself at the age of 5 and the age of 25. In this conception, objects are not temporally 'spread out,' but maintain their identity throughout time. In other words, we say that at age 5 you are you, and age 25 you are you. In this view, yourself at 5 is the same object as yourself at 25 -- you are not somehow 'spread out' or splattered in time. In the 4D view, objects are made up of many different temporal parts and are extended in time like the segments of an earthworm are through space. In this conception, yourself at 5 and yourself at 25 are just different parts of a greater whole.
Both arguments have validity. From a purely physical point of view, it would be absurd to suggest that at 5, you were somehow a part of a physical being 20 years in the future. Your mom might have something to say about that, as she hustles you out the door for school in the morning! However, from a purely spiritual point of view, it is also obvious that the non-physical consciousness that is truly you is not physically discrete. In that sense, you can be thought of as a dynamic whole that is intimately connected at every moment of your life. The only way to access time is from a purely spiritual framework.
Let's say you could go 'back in time' with your body to your town or city 100 years ago. There you are on the street, observing and interacting with your forbears. (All of this interaction would, however, occur in the NOW moment of everyone present) Say you meet your great-great grandfather on the street, get into an argument and kill him. Now, you don't exist. This is absurd, obviously. We could use the parallel universe idea and say that you disappear immediately after killing your great-great grandfather and translate to an alternate timeline, perhaps in a parallel reality. This is the multiplicity of history theory. But all of these explanations are long-shots, they require fantastic alterations of existence and tremendous expenditures of energy in order to explain events. Because every action in the past requires an alternate universe, each altering of the past requires a separate universe in order to continue the timeline in its new incarnation. Does matter and energy magically appear out of nowhere? I think not! We can't even explain the origin of our own universe without contradicting ourselves.
I'm not saying that these complex explanations aren't possible. But in my lifelong search for truth, I have found that the simple, elegant explanations are the ones which turn out to be correct. So I conclude that time cannot have an independent existence coequal to the three spatial dimensions, because the consequences of such an assumption are too torturous.
Changing The Past
Time cannot be accesed physically, but it canbe accessed through the mind. One can work miracles from a spiritual approach to time.
We traditionally think of time as moving only forward, but if time is just a feeling or idea we have, then there is no reason to suppose that the present couldn't alter the past in the same way that the past affects us in the present. Here's a simple example:
Say a person comes to a counselor because something traumatic in his past is really bothering him. In the reduction of traumatic incidents (TIR), the viewer closely re-examines the old painful incident from his position in the NOW, going over and over it until the painful vibrations can be released and the client feels better. When this happens, the past is changed, from the 'future' of the past incident. As a side effect, physical changes in health can result.
The harmful incident happened in the 'past', but truly that incident is alive in the person's present, in the form of a vibrational activation. If it wasn't in the present, it couldn't, by definition, be affecting the person now. The 'past' and the 'present' must therefore be somehow connected.
This vibrational activation, often called trauma or more accurately, charge (the negative emotion in the incident is actually electrical in nature) is affecting the person's future as well, as far into the future until the viewer examines and nullifies it, or takes his attention completely away from it. How is it that the person can change something from the past and have it affect his future?
Because it's all happening now! The passing parade of perception is recorded by the being, in the form of a vibrational energy pattern. The stuff that is recorded is thought energy of an uncomfortable vibration within the Human Energy Field. I believe that this field is a spherical hologram which captures every thought and every perception. The amount of information contained in this hologram is practically infinite, and it can be accessed through the mind and reprogrammed. When mental or psychic therapy is successful, it allows the being to access uncomfortable events, release the chaotic energy patterns associated with the event (which then affect the body), essentially reprogramming the holographically encoded information.
An uncomfortable event, a car accident for example, is recorded along with the physical pain, and negative mental thought patterns the person had at the time. If the person continues to place attention on those vibrations in the present, the incident will continually be activated, and the painful feelings will continue to be felt throughout 'time,' in each moment of now. When the incident is re-examined, it allows the person to confront what was unconfronted during the time of the event, and unfocus attention from it. All of this unraveling of the 'past' is done from the now moment.
Applying Knowledge of Time to Life
The past can be changed by focusing upon it from the present, by 're-running' it, so to speak, from the present. I gave an example above, using the reduction of trauma. But this idea can be used in everyday life as well.
Say you had an argument with your brother-in-law, a real set-to in which you and he vowed never to speak again. You can change the past by simply going over it again in your mind, changing what you said and felt during the course of the event, until you have completely changed your attitude about the whole thing. For you, the argument now never happened. You have changed your recording of the event from one of painful emotion to one of positive emotion. Your attention is totally off of it, you have replaced the negative vibrational content with a positive one, and you no longer feel upset with your brother-in-law. This process, which some would call delusional or dishonest, is actually quite powerful! You have essentially erased the past, and put a 'new' past in its place. You have actually changed your past, because for you it's like the original event never happened. The amazing thing is, by releasing your cord of energy that held the bad feelings in place between you, you help your brother -in - law to release his emotions as well. Here we are using the principle of non-locality to resolve a situation from one pole only! In physics, the phenomenon of quantum entanglement allows us to extract information instantaneously from two separated but correlated particles, even though it's twin is separated by enormous distances. What is possible for sub-atomic particles is also possible for consciousness. In our vibrational universe model, everything in the all-that-is exists in a universal field of consciousness that connects everything together. When you release your bad feelings, it has an effect on your brother-in-law as well.
It's hard to fight against something that doesn't put up resistance! The Aikido master neutralizes the attacker's energy by not resisting it. The attacker eventually realizes there is nothing for him to push against, and that his attacking energy is pointless.
Your brother-in-law may spontaneously call you and tell you that he no longer feels upset with you. The reason this can happen is because an argument is a two-pole energy system. When one pole is deactivated, the energy between the poles stops flowing.
Past incidents stay with us because we are still placing our attention upon them in the present, keeping their vibrational content continuously activated.
As we mentioned above, some people will say that altering the past in this way is not only delusional, but dishonest, because it really didn’t happen that way. But the alternative is to stay stuck in the incident, or bury it. That’s what happens to a lot of people – they are so focused upon being honest that they do not think to create a new reality for themselves, and their past timeline is filled with painful emotion. I can tell you that it is not delusional or dishonest to want to feel better about something; the Law of Consciousness tells us that consciousness is pure, creative potential and that it is self-reflexive, having the ability to alter itself. Why not use that ability to change something bad to something good? That is what happens in all successful therapy: a person makes a new decision about a past incident and releases the resistance in present time which is causing blockages in the natural flow of life force energy within the Human Energy Field. Honesty about negative emotion just continues to stick you in it!
Is the future predetermined? Are all events known, from some higher perspective?
No one physically incarnated can answer that question.
However, if all events are known, then free will does not exist. This is a violation of the First Principle: Consciousness is non-physical and has the ability to think, to choose, and to perceive what is has thought.
The alternative is to believe in a world where the universe is mechanistic and is winding down to some predetermined conclusion. This idea is popular with behaviorists and other control freaks who have no clue about who they are, and have led to totalitarian philosophies that require a small elite at the top, ruling a frightened and controlled population. Any sane person will reject these dark philosophies and beliefs! The good news is that these socked-in persons will discover the Light upon transition out of the body. So it's all good.
So how can psychics and other intuitives read the future?
In our vibrational universe concept, all things have a vibrational signature. If thought and intent proceeds along a certain direction, it will entrain more thought like itself, causing an increading vibrational resonance, like a snowball rolling downhill. A psychic or an intuitive can read these potentials, if they are strong enough, and predict a likely outcome. But these potentials are not written in stone, for a conscious being can always change his or her mind, creating a new vibrational signature. What passes for "random" events are billions of free choices, constantly altering the tapestry of life.
One can "program" his or her future through visualization. The value of visualization is that it creates a vibrational "stamp"
that can program future behavior and provide access to others with similar vibrational patterns. The more you work at something, the more your reinforce a vibrational resonance toward a known goal, and the more you attract similar people and resources to you.
So although it is not possible to know the future, it IS possible to create a vibrational tendency toward a particular outcome.
That is the challenge and the beauty of earth: making your own path within a dynamically changing tapestry of thought and intent created by over 6 billion human beings.