Time, even when we are not next to a supermassive black hole, nor traveling close to the speed of light, seems to be relative. When we truly play, we can all relate to the ‘time flies when you are having fun‘ theory. When we truly sit in a boring lecture, we can all relate to the ‘shoot me now this lecture is never going to end.’
When physicists drink too much coffee, and decide to discuss the philosophy of time, they often begin, “Maxwell’s equations for electricity and magnetism allow for the symmetry of time!” Which is often followed by, “time must be asymmetric and forever increase in the Universe, because we have entropy!” Entropy is the Universe’s disorder. Panga on the grandest scale. Shit will not only go down, but more shit will go down over time. dS/dt > 0. The 2nd law of thermodynamics. The rate of change of entropy, S, will forever be positive. It will. never. decrease.
All these superlatives, make you wonder how super you have to be for this theory to apply to you, in your every day life where we can look back at time as one of the PaanchCons pointed out. If you knock over a glass of water, it seems that you will never be able to put every single drop of H2O perfectly back into that glass as it were before. You increased the disorder. You obeyed the 2nd law of thermodynamics. It turns out you have to define the system at hand. The Universe is a whole, is an isolated, closed system –there are no external accelerations that can change that entropy .
So now we must point out what Erwin Schrödinger, of the Schrödinger equation, said about entropy and living things. He wrote in his famous essay “What is Life?” that life was simply a violation of increasing entropy. We obviously do not spontaneously break down, are we violating this universal law in some way? It would seems so. Let’s define a living thing as an entity that has some basic consciousness. Let’s also consider how it is our consciousness which is governing our perception of time.
Your consciousness, in its most heightened, concentrated state could be most “alive” i.e decreasing entropy the most, and therefore actually slowing down your time.
This isn’t a surprising thought, although remarkable. Often, when people leave states of deep meditation, they describe how they are separated from time itself, dilating it to the greatest heights. Here, it would seem that the Vedic concept of dhyan or extreme concentration, is the component of our consciousness which is capable of controlling time itself. If one could master dhyan, one could master time.
Time functions quite differently in dreams as well, where our brain can assume a state of heightened concentration, albeit funky and nonlinear. In Christopher Nolan’s Inception, the final plane in the dream universe one arrives in, limbo, local time approaches infinity.
Perhaps if we spent more time contemplating, thinking, and meditating, we could ultimately save time, in the end. To focus on reversing entropy via dhyan, could this be our “why” in life?
To become a master of time.