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Dr Sivaram Hariharan

Professor of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, PSG College of Pharmacy

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Is there a Universal Mean Time (UMT) for all of the Universe?

Dear friends:

Just today, I was wondering about the latest galaxy discovered, supposedly close to the edge of the big-bang and it was pretty mind numbing to read that it took the light many billions of years to reach earth. This in effect also means that the further and further we look with the most strongest and advanced of telescopes, the more backwards in time the images bring us to. As to what is happening to that galaxy (or happened) at this point of time (this very instant) is shielded by this seemingly impenetrable screen of distance which is of course again limited by the speed of light. The time-gap, as I choose to call it in this context, is many billions of years plus But there are time gaps even for nearer celestial objects like the star Alpha-Centauri where it takes the light 4 years plus to reach us. So we see the star today as it was say in 2009 and so also would any person on that star see us as. Even the Sun has a time gap of 8 minutes or so and the moon, a few seconds.

In that analogy, even a person standing one meter away from us has a time gap of that distance divided by the speed of light. Even though that number would be infinitesimally small, it is still not zero. So all our perceptions of our external world has a time-gap and it seems that we can never escape this. Each conscious being has its own sense of time. U are a past image to me and so am I to U. U have already HAPPENED for me and not HAPPENING. So is I to U. It is only happening within my own consciousness.

In this light, the question to ask here is: Is there something called universal consciousness of time, which takes in and comprehends the present at all parts of space in the same instant. Is there an UNIVERSAL PRESENT (like we have the GMT as a standard across various time-zones in our own little Earth). Should we call it as the UMT (Universal Mean Time) Is it possible to be in the present everywhere?

Dr Sivaram Hariharan, Bhaarath (India)

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    Mar 20 2013: PPF, or Past, Present, Future is psychological time. We can logically have a precise calender system of time where every moment occurs as a co-ordinate and we have a totally PPF free time. However, there cannot be a universal consciousness of time as time is perceived by us individually.

    The unit of time is called a 'second' because you need a second event to perceive a time interval.
  • Mar 16 2013: Yeah; it is . . . NOW. (Seriously!)
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    Mar 16 2013: Please know that physics answers and claims in TED Conversations are often incorrect representations of what science says or what scientists think.

    When you have a science question, particularly in physical science, and want a reliable answer, please also post your question in a place in which trained and working scientists will respond to you and offer authoritative links to verify their claims. The American Physical Society is a good place to start and has links to other sites.
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      Mar 20 2013: Golly geez, Fritzie. You have NO in-depth knowledge of what is going on in many fields of science - especially QM and neuroscience, and you are totally unaware of how some very stunning things are on the verge of going mainstream. Yet you insult those of us who ARE informed, just as you insult the questioner by assuming that he is stupid.

      Dr. Hariharan is not stupid. Look at the question he asked. Look at his credentials:

      Ph.D North Dakota State University, USA.
      Post Doctoral Research Associate, North Dakota State University, USA
      Post Doctoral Fellow, University of Arkansas USA.

      He is not stupid. You don't need to insult him just because he asked a question that violates TED's now-known ideological purity policy.

      I think it is clear to even the least educated that this is not a physics forum. Surely Dr. Hariharan could figure it out. We don't need the thought police keeping our inquiries in check by belittling those who might say or ask something that you, in your uninformed and unenlightened state, disagree with.

      A proper host doesn't denigrate guests.
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      Mar 20 2013: PS: There is no consensus among scientists in many fields of science - as you falsely represent.
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    Mar 16 2013: I believe that all exist as one with universal consciousness that is accessible through the moment of NOW. It's an idea that quantum physics could allow for. It's where I think humankind is going in its evolution.

    What to call it? You could call it "now".
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      Mar 16 2013: Is there a NOW for the entire cosmos? Probably this is the supreme consciousness that the Vedic scriptures are alluding to. What is happening NOW (at this very moment) at a galaxy, say a billion light years from us. Will science ever break this barrier to universal concurrency?
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        Mar 16 2013: Science is on the edge of it now. But it cannot know what "ALL" is. We can only know about the observable reality. Still, we can infer from what we know.

        Here's the back story: If you split a quantum particle in half (let's say a photon) you create two photons that remain in constant communication no matter how far apart they are from one another. This communication happens in no time, thus NOW. It appears that an invisible super-positioned photon exists as the sum total of the two photons that it remains in constant contact with. So from the perspective of sentient photons, the super positioned observer appears to have multiple presents, pasts, and probable futures, and the photons appear to be disconnected even though they are not. In my opinion, from the super-positioned point of view, there is probably only NOW in a system of latent and budding probabilities. A growing number of quantum physics (now about half) agree.

        I believe that there is a "collective" consciousness and that is what Eastern traditions refer to. I also know that we can become one-with that consciousness and that we can communicate with those portions of that consciousness that we want or need to.

        I see it this way: In the beginning was the singularity. When it fractured (by choice), it entered a state of super position just like the photon in superposition. It has no power of its own, but it is the power that we use, just like an hour consists of an infinite number of possible and probable divisions that make the hour what it is. The hour's power is in the moments that create it. In this way, we are each and all aspects of the whole that still remains in super position. WE see divisions between and among us, but those are mere perceptual distortions.

        Science cannot show you whether or not Betelgeuse has exploded. It can only say that it was getting ready to do so 600 years ago. Now is not complex enough to allow for anything more than probabilities.
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        Mar 16 2013: Science is on the edge of it now. But it cannot know what "ALL" is. We can only know about the observable reality. Still, we can infer from what we know.

        Here's the back story: If you split a quantum particle in half (let's say a photon) you create two photons that remain in constant communication through the original photon that is now in super-position (thus invisible). Distance is not a factor. Communication happens in no time, thus NOW.

        IMO: From the perspective of sentient photons, the super positioned observer appears to have multiple probable presents, pasts, and futures, and the photons appear to themselves to be disconnected even though they are not. In my opinion, from the super-positioned point of view, there is probably only NOW in a system of latent and budding probabilities. A growing number of quantum physics (now about half) agree.

        I believe that there is a "collective" consciousness and that is what Eastern traditions refer to. I also know that we can become one-with that consciousness and that we can communicate with those portions of that consciousness that we want or need to. They are part of our greater being.

        I see it this way: In the beginning was the singularity. When it fractured (by choice), it became a state of super position just like the photon in superposition. It has no power of its own, but it is the power that we use, just like an hour consists of an infinite number of possible and probable divisions that make the hour what it is. The hour's essence is in the moments that create it. In this way, we are each and all POWERFUL aspects of the whole that still remains in super position. We see divisions between and among us, but those are mere perceptual distortions. We are the gods and WE are a god. As I do to you, I do to me.

        Science cannot show you whether or not Betelgeuse has exploded. It can only say that it was getting ready to do so 600 years ago. NOW cannot allow for anything more than probabilities.
  • Mar 15 2013: now the idea of time is just our own perception proportional to how long we have been alive and conscious now a GMT is worthless in a advanced culture unless we had to keep two worlds connected at the same frame of perception now a real question which you bring up is that is there a relative "perception" of time do all species perceive time passing by at the same rate proportional to how old they are and would this constant be the same with alien species