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the nature of time

Science has wrestled with the nature of time for centuries, framing it through various lenses ranging from Newtonian physics to Einstein's theory of relativity. More or less, time is and has always been regarded as a defining element of reality as we see and experience it.

repositioning time

Traditionally, time has been conceptualized as a continuous, linear parameter—a construct to measure change and sequence forward events where everything aligns to it no matter if you assume Time to be constant or relative.

Understanding the nature of decisions, their irrevocable nature, how decision chains form reality, and what effect the density of decisions has on the perception of Time challenges the existing models by fundamentally altering the view of Time as a defining unit of progression to a resulting variable perception, a side effect of the number of decisions taken by a participant | Life Form | in a given frame.

decision dots

To view time from a different perspective, it is imperative to understand what a Decision is and how multiple decisions form a decision chain. Regard each tiny decision you make to reach a goal as a decision dot.

Decision Dots have two types of state: 'Decided' and 'Undecided.' The decided dots represent made decisions, crystalized into reality. Conversely, undecided dots represent potential decisions that still need to be made.

In this framework, time, as we perceive it, is not an independent variable ticking forward but a human cognitive representation of the transition from undecided to decided decision dots.

Time is a perception, a sense of progression dictated by the density of our decisions and not by an autonomous entity governing events.

fractioned experience

Driving home from work can sometimes feel like it passes in the blink of an eye, even though the journey usually takes an hour. This phenomenon can make you wonder how time seemed to slip away. Let's explore this experience through the lens of the density of decisions, focusing on the different ways of decision-making, the progressive and non-progressive decision chains, and how they create a "fractioned" path during your drive.

the fractioned path

While driving, you might find that your experience of Time seems to "jump" between different states. One moment, you're aware of every action you're taking, and the next, you've traveled several miles with little to no memory of it. This is because your journey from point A to point B is often "fractioned" into progressive and non-progressive segments.

decision chains

In non-progressive decision chains, you make a set of decisions in advance before their execution. For instance, when you drive past a familiar gas station, your mind processes in advance (a simplified representation of the process) that you do not need to focus on. The decisions about what is included and what is being ignored have already been made, allowing you to bypass this segment.

Non-progressive decision chains make it possible to go through several parts of your journey simultaneously and additionally contract further the perception of time by reducing the interaction between reality and you. The actual act of driving—maintaining your lane, monitoring your speed—is decided in advance, and therefore, these activities don't register in your conscious memory as events that consume time.

In contrast, there are parts of your journey that are progressive. Imagine encountering a road under construction, and you must take a detour. Every action you take—from interpreting the detour signs to navigating unfamiliar roads—happens progressively, allowing you to choose the paths you follow. Each decision is made step-by-step, engaging your full attention and making you aware of the passage of time.

Here, we don’t consider other actors (drivers) that complicate things, as they would need to consent in advance for a non-progressive chain to be executed.

the standard pace

Time perception varies in many situations but stays within an observable bandwidth. For example, after an hour's walk through the forest, you might feel that it lasted for a day but not a year. This is because you measure the deviation from the average pace (pace of decision-making) to the perception of time you spend in the forest (the number of decisions you made while in the forest). Further, you are limited by the maximum amount of decisions you can make during your walk. Theoretically, if there was no maximum, you could come out of the forest and have spent 100 years there (in your perception).

the subconscious mind

Throughout life, your subconscious acts as a 'curator' of your experience by creating a perception of reality, simplifying things you see, hear, feel, and much more. But it also executes all decisions the conscious mind cannot achieve yet. It determines when to switch to non-progressive decision chains (allowing you to 'skip' through time). It engages you in progressive decision chains (requiring your full attention and choice and making time feel like it's moving at its standard pace).

Your drive home might feel like a „temporal time anomaly“due to the fractioned nature of the trip. It includes segments of non-progressive decision chains, which seem to speed up time because decisions are made in advance, and segments of progressive decision chains, which align more closely with our typical perception of time passage. This switch between progressive and non-progressive decision-making happens many times, and while sometimes you notice the contraction of the perceived time, usually you don't.

evolution and decision-making

From an evolutionary standpoint, humans have a finite capacity for decision-making, a band between the minimum and maximum amount of decisions they can make. This is the evolutionary defined band of the number of decisions humans make within a given frame. This band expands with progression.

Let’s observe the lower limit of the number of decisions required to live. It covers everything the body needs to survive. If, for any reason, this number would further drop, the body would die without other measures. For example, if someone has a severe accident and stops breathing, he would die. For whatever reason, the intent to breathe can not be executed. The decision chain required to breathe is missing but can be replaced by the forced third-party decision chain to supply artificial respiration.

Evolution is not just a biological process; it's a decision-making framework of progression and learning.

repositioning time

The human perception of time is not merely a cognitive byproduct but serves an evolutionary function.

The ability to perceive progression—via what we call 'time'—is crucial for survival, as it allows humans to plan, predict, and make decisions based on past experiences and future expectations. Thus, the sensation of time passing can be understood as an adaptive mechanism for observing decision chains unfold.

the control of decisions

While humans believe they have a substantial degree of conscious control over their decisions, this control is limited. You can regard the decision-making process as a combined effort involving the subconscious and the conscious mind with various levels of authority and execution control.

To put it into perspective, consider how the human body functions. Our conscious mind does not control the majority of physiological processes. For example, heart beating, blood circulation, and body temperature regulation are all managed autonomously. Autonomously does not mean without a decision process in the background; it just means without the participation of the conscious mind.

If humans were suddenly responsible for making all the decisions required to sustain their biological processes consciously, they would be overwhelmed, and survival would be impossible.

At this point of evolution, the unconscious mind continuously presents appropriate upcoming decision "packages" to the conscious mind, letting it participate both in the forming process and the decisions itself. These "packages" have to fit the ability of the conscious mind to engage in a decision-making process, allowing for an appropriate window/space for the process to happen, from gathering information to forming intent and execution. The "packages" presented to the conscious mind are mostly cases where the resulting reality is easily observable for the conscious mind or at least a reality as the outcome is assumable.

the quantitative side

Suppose we regard the maximum amount of decisions a human can process within a given frame as a quantitative measurement of progression. In that case, we can state that the more decisions one can process, the more evolved he is. Here, we don't talk about fluctuations and varieties of individuals but about the overall applicable quantitative frame from the evolutionary perspective. The effect on time perception directly correlates with the evolutionary given (reached) frame representing the minimum and maximum number of decisions a human can make within a given frame.

reimagining time

Departing from the traditional linear view of time as a governing element and redefining time as the resulting perception of the density of our decisions, we open up a new world of possibilities, from traveling deep into the universe to simple applications to increase efficiency and optimize our paths.