The Beacon

Are the past and present ideological concepts?

Savannah Pinnock, Opinion Editor

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The desire to explore and unearth the mysteries surrounding the unknown is characteristic of humanity. Our unquenched curiosity is fueled by our intellectual capacity. In fact, this may be the primary reason why you have found yourself reading this article.
Our ability to communicate interpersonally and ponder why certain phenomena occur has been the source of a myriad of interdisciplinary fields and academic scholarship.
We desire to learn more about the world around us which prompts us to ask a series of often cosmological and ontological questions.
The importance of this human characteristic is that it has led physicists and other scientists around the globe to attempt to answer one of life’s great questions. What is time? And is it real or simply an ideological concept?
Within the early 20th century Albert Einstein published his Theory of Relativity. This theory sought to provide an answer for the mystery of time. In his theory Einstein suggested that “all motion must be defined relative to a frame of reference and that space and time are relative, rather than absolute concepts.” In other words, Einstein came to the heavily substantiated conclusion that time is a relative notion. It is not a tangible and constant entity but something that is a bit more elusive.
To illustrate the relativity of time, Einstein revealed to the scientific world that time does not move at the same pace for everyone. Such a revelation is truly ground breaking even for modern day society.
For the everyday person who is not well versed in physics and other scientific disciplines it may come as a surprise to hear that time is truly relative.
In virtually all social spheres there seems to be a common consensus that is reached as it pertains to time. It appears the clear majority of individuals believe that time is permanent concept when it is actually quite the contrary.
In fact, a fast-moving passerby may perceive his surroundings as slower than that of someone who was not moving. In this sense, it is clear to see that time is subject to a greater or lesser degree of relativity.
What is even more striking is Einstein’s perspective on time itself. The theoretical physicist suggested that as a physicist, he knew that “that the distinction between past, present and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion”.
Einstein’s stance on the past, present, and future is truly eye opening even to this day as it makes it abundantly clear that time is simply an illusion.
With this being said, is Einstein suggesting that the past, present and future are simply figments of our collective imagination? In a greater sense, is he suggesting that time is a human construct?
Taking a closer look at the physicist’s statement towards time, it must be emphasized that the illusory nature of time lies within the distinction between the past, present, and the future.
According to Einstein, there is no true distinction between the past and the future instead our existence is singular; time is singular and not subject to compartmentalization.
One of the worlds brightest and ingenious scholars solved the mystery of time which has allowed humanity to understand that the ubiquitous nature of time is not one to be feared. In fact, there’s a subtle hope found in the understanding that time is ideological, singular, and relative. It allows one to understand that we are always in the present and experiencing a series of now’s. The past is just a series of presents and the future is the present that has not occurred yet.
With this in mind, if the future has not occurred yet, it is more of an ideology and the past is just the same as it only exists in terms of our memories.
So, find solace and comfort in knowing that the time is now no pun intended to achieve your goals. The future is an ideology and the past a memory, but the present is a very real entity.

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Are the past and present ideological concepts?