Though this essay contains no math, it has been sculpted and cultivated over the years through coffee shop discussions and watching movies that don't make sense. While doing this a person forms a certain concept of the nature of time, that is unique to them dependant on how many bad movie they have watched. Though I do not claim to know the absolute truth, I do claim that I know what I'm talking about.
Look around you. Do you see any physical evidence of time?...A clock, you say. But that is simply a machine used to measure the supposed existence of an abstract concept. There is no substance so how is it any more useful than a bullshit detector; a device that tells us something exists when we have no actual proof.
Time, as I am lead to believe, has no substance; i.e. no mass, sent, sound, taste, or visual component. However, it is commonly assumed to exist because humans can conceptualize “before”, “now”, and “will be”. Though we do not interact with time it is said that time interacts with us, moving us forward along.
Similarly, gravity suffers similar issues with lack of substance. However, if a weight is dropped it can be observed falling. Gravity is observed. Likewise the observer can remark where the weight was, and that it is now somewhere else. Have they observed time?
Time does exist. As an abstract it is not measurable in a physical form, but it can be used as a dimension to measure position.
Everything happens at a place, at a time.
Consider a void, it contains nothing and is all of everything. Now, imagine the insertion of time as a single point in this vast emptiness. Time has no substance so still nothing is observed. Time is though in motion only in one direction, say to the right. Time continues on making a longer and longer line, stretching to infinity, but this by itself does not mean anything. Time must contain something for it to mean anything.
Now insert a universe into the void. A universe by itself is matter and energy. It has height, width, and depth. This can be observed and measured. However, it doesn’t seem to be doing anything.
Now move the universe into the time stream. Anywhere on the line it doesn't matter. A universe is an active device that requires time to be able to function. Now the line starts to change, as it is filled with the events occurring in the universe. Matter and energy react and shift through the time. Observing time simply as itself with interactions within the universe there is a start point and a continuing line away from the that point.
If attention is paid just to the universe, something else can be observed. Within a set cube defined by height, width, and depth, matter and energy is stagnant hanging around because the universal forces exact no change for some reason. If focus is held on that cube, yet moved along the timeline things change; matter and energy interact, and forces cause change on everything.
Now, stop moving on the timeline. Notice anything? The particles stopped moving. This is one point on the timeline, which can be identified with a number due to it having distance from the origin of time, to the infinity that time travels to. The numbering is a measurement. It is finite. Focus on that cube for eternity and the particles will move. Of course focus can be moved from one time increment to another to see where the particles were at a certain time. Without motion through time, movement and interaction is impossible. The three spatial dimensions are used to find positionn in a space. Time, the fourth dimension, is used to find when something occupied that position, if anything.
If time did not exist nothing in the universe would occur. Time is an abstract, true, it has no physical substance. But you can't hold a cup of gravity either, and it is very difficult to disprove its existence…though it’s equally difficult to prove it.
After much slackery on my part and many, many messages from other noders I’ve finally sat down to rewrite this piece. This entire article was originally written as a counterargument to a write up another noder made.
That person was rather well spoken, and made some interesting points, and we ended up having a long discussion over various bits of philosophy and metaphysics. However shortly after their arrival they decided to leave E2 (or at least change names) and I was left with a response to nothing. So, I’m rewrote it. Then, I realized that my rewrite was crap, so I’m rewriting it again.