A time when time did not exist …

Those of us, non-physicists, we do seem to realize that time is eternal. Yet there was a time when time did not exist; tough to comprehend? For us, time is something running on a clock or tracked on a calendar. Let me share what I think about when time did not exist.

A clock or calendar is a relative measure of time. By relative I mean we choose a zero or a reference point for our time axis. For instance, the year zero, anything after is AD and before is BC. A species on a different planet or in an alternative universe may very well have taken a different zero, or altogether have invented a different way to track time. Nevertheless, our scientists were clever enough in laying out the time axis aligning with the fact that time is eternal. One can only imagine as far back in time before the year zero (negative infinity sort of), and hope there is a lot more time waiting for us.

However, how do we realize the fact that time did not once exist? Only if we choose not to restrict a dimension in a clock! Let us rethink time outside of our clocks. Time is an instant when an event occurs. We measure that it in seconds, minutes and hours or days, months and years. Again, it is our (human) measure of time. In other words, time is a dimension that captures the occurrence of events – something that happens.

When did things start to happen? When did events start to occur? Per mankind’s understanding, it is only after the Big Bang. Before the Big Bang, nothing happened, no events occurred. There wasn’t nothing to capture, so to speak. Hence they say time did not exist before the Big Bang.


P.S: I am not a physicist. So my explanation may not be scientific precisely. However I think it would suffice for non-physicists to begin understand and wonder about time.

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5 thoughts on “A time when time did not exist …”

  1. Nice!

    I’ve been having this unanswered question since childhood.

    Science cannot explain this question.

    If nothing existed before big bang theory, what made it happen? What created time?

    I came to a conclusion that we have been thinking inside the box called maya and the only tool we know to use is reasoning. There should be something beyond reasoning and when we know it we will not expect answers. The result reasoning being expectation of answers.

      1. Reasoning is a primitive tool that we resorted to a long time back when we did not know how a lot of things worked. We asked why. Nobody asks how electricity works. Everybody agrees light is the fastest traveling one, as far we know. That’s all there is to reasoning. Reasoning is a small part of the intellect that we have exercised, and is not required when what we don’t know once is known as a fact later. Faith does not answer everything. Maybe it calms us down during adversity. Being spiritual without knowing science (don’t know a better term) is nothing more than a mental masturbation.

  2. Nice article…..
    But the conclusion is debatable ….”nothing happened prior Big Bang , hence nothing to capture” but the not happening anything is an event in itself , which could be wrapped in the fabric of time ,only thing we don’t know at this moment how far it stretches ….

    1. “not happening anything is an event in itself , which could be wrapped in the fabric of time” …. Yep you can imagine all of it is wrapped between instant 0 and instant 1 (so to speak) when time began. Nothing happened for any length of time can be captured in an unit measure of time. You know even that is ironic because you wouldn’t be able to capture something when there is no time. All that because we always look for a reference point. For instance, we imagine where we would fall when dropped in space. We have been taught or probably our brains are hard-wired for a reference point in time or space. In other words, “nothing happened” is not an event, per se, just so we could realize that there was no time before big Bang.

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