The Compleat Guide to Tyme Travell
How dowe know if we are time travelers?
Theimportance of belief
Whoare the Time Travelers?
Not toTrust Physicists
WhatEvidence Is There?
Whatare the best techniques for Time Travel?
Howcan we be safe?
Whatare uses for time travel?
Whatdo time machines look like?
How dowe get more of them?
Whatproblems commonly arise?
Do WeNeed an I.Q. of 215?
Timetravel and the Law
Timetravel and the Government
Recommendationsfor time travel
TimeTravel and Imaginary Time
- Time Travel and Ethics
Whatis the UIA?
How do we know if we are time
This is a crucial question, and
deserves a response. The problems of
popular disbelief, overcoming the typical conundrums attendant upon the issue,
remembering events when Entropy and Information-Loss preclude perfect
recollections, and simple
preservation of the kernel of
belief in a paranormal event, are all daunting challenges.
So, how do we know?
Firstly, time travel is as old as
the hills. Everyone has heard of it, and
no one doesn’t know what “time travel” means.
On a planet of six billion people, there are probably only a handful who
have no idea what we’re talking about, really.
If I walked up to you and said: “Howdy, I time traveled to Ancient
Greece today.” you would know immediately what I meant. There is no mystery about the meaning of the
“time travel”. And, since there can be no doubt, the
Rational mind concludes that
it must be real. For, if everyone knows what something means,
how can we doubt its existence?
Everybody probably knows or
suspects that Jesus, for example, was a time traveler. Walking on water (anti-gravity technology),
feeding the multitude (use of 24th century replicators), and the
Resurrection itself (simple use of a time-machine to reverse the time-field of
a pre-necrotic ‘t-stage’ body back to a time-stage prior to an injury or death
-- commonplace in ER rooms of hospitals on planets like Tau Ceti 10, for
instance), are all good indicators of time travel being involved.
From my experience, often the best
clues about time travel are subtle ones, but ones that can be discerned (by the
discerning). We must be alert for clues,
hints, and so on. We must be prepared to
deal with others’ doubt, apathy and intolerance. We are
‘the happy few’ (of whom Stendhal
wrote, in his dedication to “The Charterhouse of Parma”), so we must shoulder
the burden of overcoming skepticism. All
same, we shall prevail!
In my case, I deciphered the
encrypted messages in the Brandenburg Concerti by Bach with a colleague
(Kathryn S., niece of a CIA Director and Secretary of Defense) while a freshman
at Princeton University, in 1977.
inclusion of my name, and the
names of some of my other hall-mates in Princeton’s Henry Hall dormitory, was a
clue that I could use to amplify my belief in the elusive phenomenon, and could
provide both a mnemonic tool, as well as a stimulus to ‘recapture the past’ of
my having time-traveled.
Marcel Proust writes his massive
novel “The Past Recaptured” (in seven volumes),
focusing upon the phenomenon of
‘memoire involuntaire’, which is an involuntary,
extreme and overwhelming sort of
sudden conjuring of repressed memories, released
via a unique stimulus. Where
Dostoyevsky had his epilepsy, Proust had his involuntary memories, one is
inclined to think. In Proust’s somewhat
autobiographical novel, the
character Marcel links his recovered memories to an early childhood experience
of eating a type of cookie, called a ‘madeleine’. These are very good cookies, and I recommend
them, highly. For me, they don’t bring
back any memories, per se, but for Proust, since he associated them with his
childhood experiences, they did. Did I
ever meet Proust? Was Proust a time traveler, as well? Those are good questions, to which I return
Thus, the ‘madeleine experience’,
which is to say, an appropriate stimulus to the memory of the time traveler,
may rekindle recollections of his or her experiences in other times or
‘alternate universes.’ My particular inclination
is to use music as a ‘madeleine’, where I can collaborate with the composer
(Mozart, Bach, or whomever), to leave coded messages in his compositions, which
I can later decipher. Some of you might
have already figured out that “Back to The Future” is really a rip-off of my
putting coded messages into the Brandenburgs, etc. (“Bach to The Future” for
those of you who can’t put two and two together). When large amounts of history are altered,
for instance, it is useful to have details of some history from the “Other
Universe” (or “Branch of History”) which are encrypted back into the Past’s
artworks. Thus, those “History Vandals”
who go about changing History wantonly, find that we still possess the
information which they wished to repress.
We overcome their wanton and flagrant mutilations of the true reality,
by preserving evidence of the existence of that reality. They would have to go back and change the
Brandenburgs, then (and some other pieces of music I keep secret for safety),
to delete all evidence of their ‘time crime’.
Fortunately, they don’t have the Draconian spirit, the budget or the
technology, usually, to accomplish that rather Pyrrhonian goal. Usually, time vandals are fairly lazy and are
only looking for a ‘kick’. So, the
damage they do is limited (while it can be substantial).
Time travel memory, however, to be
fair, is quite a bit different than a ‘madeleine’ experience, in several
ways. Firstly, time-travel is always at
an axis perpendicular to
“Real Time” (relativistically),
along an axis called “Imaginary Time”.
Even a ‘hard-ass’ skeptic like Stephen Hawking makes this amply clear in
his book “Black Holes and Baby Universes”.
Thus, when we time travel, while our bodies might look identical to us,
and have the same features, names, memories, etc., they are actually
“doppelgangers” of ourselves. They are
doubles of us (not us, but identical).
Leibnitz wrote of the “identity of
indiscernibles”, but he was only ‘stretching.’ Clearly, the time travel
‘self’ is so like us; yet not us, since, if what happened when we were time
traveling was only in “imaginary time”, it isn’t real (thus not us).
So, look about yourself, and look
for the subtle hints, the anomalies, and so on that would lead you to believe
that “time is out of joint”. For
example, if you have an
overwhelming urge to call the CIA
forty times at 2:00 am in the morning to talk about time travel, and you keep
calling back every time they hang up on you, then you might be a time
traveler. Or, if you keep insisting that
the singer/actress Cher is a
member of Al Qaeda, despite the
objections of multiple FBI agents, months before the 9/11 attacks (with the
four hijackers named “Al-Sheri” on board), then you might be a time traveler.
If you frequently remember (or
imagine remembering) conversations between yourself and H.G. Wells, Albert
Einstein, Marcel Proust, and James Joyce, then you
might be a time traveler. Oh, how that Wells could moan and groan about
having time traveled! “The nausea!” he
used to complain… If you hear your name
(or those of your friends) in pieces of music composed hundreds of years before
your chronological date of birth, then you might be a time traveler. If you tend to tell people about disasters
and historical events decades (or even a few days) before they happen, then you
might be a time traveler.
If you frequently have a sense of
‘déjà vu’ about things, and even ‘new’ situations, which leads you to believe
that you might have experienced a similar Possible World before, then you might
be a time traveler. If your taste for
fiction includes a specialty in time travel, and you think that all literary or
cinematic depictions of time travel
‘lack realism’, then you might be
a time traveler. If you are constantly
telling your friends or other people that you are a time traveler, then you
might be a time traveler. If your
wildest delusional paranoid schizophrenic fantasies about time travel turn out
to be true, again and again, then you might be a time traveler. If you are constantly worrying about
time-bandits having stolen either (a) your time machine, or (b) your
billion-dollar fortune, then you might be a time traveler. If you frequently write the U.S Government
about topics like Roswell (and asking for the return of your saucer), or the
Philadelphia Experiment, claiming a “need to know”, then you might be a time
If you are constantly saying to
yourself: “If only I had a time machine, I’d fix everything,” then you might be
a time traveler. If you seem to
remember different time machines, how they look, and what kinds of effects they
had, their properties, and so on, then you might be a time traveler. If you find yourself writing letters to your
friends about your experiences in Ancient Rome, the Spanish Inquisition, the
signing of the Declaration of Independence, or your experiences on Alpha
Centauri, then you might be a time traveler. If your friends tell you: “You’re
traveler,’ then you might be a
time traveler. If you find physicists
annoying, and find yourself writing them peevish letters about being a time
traveler, then you might be a time traveler.
If you sometimes materialize inside of the CIA, at Langley, while naked,
holding a gun made of a blue metal that doesn’t currently exist on Earth, with
no memory of how or why you got there,
then you might be a time traveler. The
bottom line is: if you even THINK
you might be a time traveler, you might be a time traveler.
From my perspective, it came to me
not suddenly, as out of the clear blue sky, but rather gradually and in stages,
over a period of a decade and a half, that there was a method to the madness
that I perceived in the world around me, in its manifestations in art and other
forms, and that the degree of chaos and muddle in my own mind was still something
quite sufficient to piece together a mystery of significant complexities.
The world, and the universe which
subsumes it, are vast enough to confound any reasoning man’s effort to decipher
and comprehend them; still, the goal of elucidating the fundamental principles
which underscore and interconnect the many facets of our
existence, yielding predictability
as natural laws, or equations, is very well within man’s grasp. We have seen this again and again, and
despite pratfalls and failures, this is what the mind naturally does -- it
dissects, orders and analyzes the clues the world offers us, piece by piece,
bit by bit, until the goal is reached.
What grew upon me, over stages and
time, overcoming the amnesia and trauma of time travel and information-loss,
was the realization that the chaotic Universe can still be deciphered at an
enhanced rate, with assistance from our past and future selves, through the
vehicle of time travel and the encryption of clues into art. This
hypothesis, which I named “The Encryptment
Thesis” came into my consciousness after studying an article by Stephen Hawking
on ‘Black Holes.’ From a perspective
based on ‘Information Theory’ (a
branch of mathematics invented by Claude Shannon, to describe electrical
circuits and computation), the Black Hole presents
a very good analogy to time travel
itself, since it “swallows” all matter that enters it.
Matter, and time itself, swallowed
by a black hole, are forever lost to the exterior Universe outside the ‘event
horizon’. Some matter or radiation would
be emitted as
“Hawking radiation” as the black
hole evaporates over time, all the same.
The beauty of the concept of
Information Loss is its applicability to other phenomenon. Because it is sufficiently abstract, I saw,
for the first time, the relation or parallel with time travel (where vast
amounts of information might be lost, for instance about a possible future or
past which may not now ever occur or have occurred, as in the classical example
of a man who returns to a previous time,
and then kills his grandfather, so that he, himself, now will never be born in
the new “Branch Universe” he has engendered).
Any time travel, which alters any history at all (even the position of a
single electron in the Universe), must be travel to a new (“Parallel”)
I do not mean to say, literally,
that time travel occurs when one jumps into a black hole or wormhole,
precisely; but what may occur is that there is such a possibility in nature, or
through any of a variety of other means, not even most of which have even
been conceived, as yet. This reading of Hawking’s article provided a
blinding flash of insight for me, almost a ‘madeleine’ experience; but one
which I prefer to classify as something distinct (while similar) which I call
‘time travel memory’. Suddenly, given
this wonderful concept, an entirely novel idea to me, at the time, I knew that
I could be a time traveler who had returned to a time in my personal past, from
whence I could live again my life, and reorder a perhaps sorry destiny I had
befallen in a previous Universe.
How could one forget these
experiences, one might ask?
Surely that would be like
forgetting the most incredible and exciting events in one’s life. Yet, so little is known, from an experiential
or phenomenological perspective, about time travel, itself; and, the experience
is so bizarre, coupled with the information loss involved with
history-alteration; that the event may become traumatic, as in cases of alien
abduction or child molestation. Bizarre
and paranormal experiences are all too easy to forget, perhaps, since they
overwhelm our senses and intellects with a barrage of incomprehensible data,
with no frame of reference from which to evaluate them.
When the first Spanish explorers landed
in South America, they met Indians on the shore who asked them how they had
come to this land. The Spaniards pointed
to their ships lying in the adjoining bay, and explained that they had been
brought over the seas on these craft.
The Indians, however, trying as hard as possible to “see” the ships,
could see nothing, try as the Spaniards might to make them see the ships that
were in plain view. This phenomenon is
perhaps a clue; for the Indians, without any previous concept of “large ships”
had no way to comprehend what they were seeing.
Their ‘tabulae rasa’ (John Locke’s idea of the mind as a blank slate),
experienced, hence conceived, such a thing, and the very reality was so
staggering to the Indians’ minds that it could not be entertained. In the same way, time travel itself is such a
technologically advanced process that it can stagger even the minds of 21st
Given this analogy, and an
understanding of its principles, as well as the rich accumulation of encrypted information
in art that bears heavily upon the present
(or at least a ‘contemporary’
parallel universe), the inference of the existence of
time travel, via ‘time-travel
memory’ akin to Proust’s ‘memoire involuntaire’, has to
be made. I believe that eventually we will have even
more sound reasons to accept the reality of time travel, as man’s knowledge
crows ever nearer the critical limit.
As I have already stated, my first
glimmers of understanding were hidden in the world of music and
literature. I developed a fondness for
science fiction and
fantasy,as I grew older, not as
escape from the mundanity of the world, but as a means to explore the deeper
reality which lay hidden away, almost out of reach of my probing and practiced mind, yet not quite.
As I grew older, from the ages of
early recognition (say, twelve), to near-adulthood (seventeen and beyond),
having already developed a fondness for
science fiction and
fantasy, I began to speculate
about the significance of the slightly subtle traces of artistic modeling in
music, especially Bach. For instance, I
wondered (at the time) while listening to a particular piece of music composed
in the 1700’s (hearing instrumental speech synthesis approximating my name and
the names of some friends, encrypted into the music) whether there had been
some Divine intervention or perhaps some bizarre fate which had set into play
this phenomenon; still, I didn’t really possess any serious faith in the
existence of time travel, even then.
Faith is hard to come by.
Even though I was a “devout”
reader of science fiction, while hearing an instrumental chorus of voices in
some great intoxicating piece of music (Proust writes of the “Vinteuil Sonata”,
evoking that spirit of intoxication by the concept of actually recapturing the
lost moments of the past) discussing a character “Nick the Greek,” “Nick de
Sade,” or “Nick Genet”; I still seriously doubt that I believed with any
assurance, at all, in the phenomenon of time travel.
It eventually came to me, in the
process of psychotherapy, around the age of 33, that I possessed the ability to
recall distinct sets of memories which apparently had been realities in my own
personal past, yet which still contradicted each other. Both sets of memories could not be true, I
was told, but my conviction in my own recollective powers was sufficient. For, in some instances, I had proven myself
able to open, with
exactitude, a page of a classic
text of Philosophy, even to the precise page in question, although it was a
text I hadn’t even touched for many years.
This fact, of itself, provided a sufficient basis to enable me to
believe in having lived in multiple and different Universes, or different
Times/Histories. As my faith in myself
grew, my mind opened wider to these remembrances.
Had I excessively indulged my
tendency to rely upon my therapist, that would have put me in a very poor
position, with respect to this problem, even though it was partly through the
assistance of that fine therapist that I was able to connect with my inner
feelings, intuitions, and memories of prior experiences of a paranormal nature.
Experience has taught me to trust
myself, even though others care to help.
For, while another person may possess altruism, their perspectives are
generally far less informed with respect to one’s own intimate problems,
especially those related to the event and experience of time travel; this is
largely due to the incommensurability of two different observers’ different
ontologies (or ontological schemes) of the reality
that both observers perceive. Einstein wrote about this problem in his
‘Theory of Relativity’ (as you probably recall). My personal belief that time travel had
in my life, which my therapist
doubted, could still be substantiated by empirical data, more consistently and
logically than by denying the existence of that evidence.
The sacrifice of recognizing the
truth, however, is that one must learn to deal with the new questions which
arise. Memories begin to arise out of
‘time travel memory’ which were, in fact, previously forgotten entirely, at
least consciously. These are incredible
memories which we might even be only able to conceive by associating them with
past life regression scenarios or fantasies – life in an ancient Roman prison
(where former CIA Director James
Schlesinger is too frugal, confused, or powerless
to help out, while buying himself
an expensive leather suit of armor, so he can have fun while he visits), or a
visit to one of Tau Ceti’s inhabited planets, or a visit to my own personal
‘brainchild’ -- the Time Travel Museum
of Art (which exists in Hyperspace), and even my experience of heading the
European Consortium, after being ousted from the American Presidency (for being
a suspected ‘Alien/ET’). All of this
happened, though, in a world which has never happened at all, from our current
How does this occur? How can a thinking man, in his mortal life
span, have enough accumulated information, memory, intuition, and belief to
amount to several lives, in different times and places, while still retaining a
sense of persistence of self (not just soul, but self)?
It is simplicity itself (or
Occam’s razor) which provides the easy answer.
The truth is that very few people have even conceived what time travel
entails or means, and what really actually constitutes personal identity (i.e.
continuity or persistence of ‘self’).
One of the first ways I was
readily able to convince myself that I had achieved time travel was by
remembering accurately and thus, identifying with, the visceral nature of my
experience. Everyone has read the
stories of time travel, and probably seen the movies of H.G. Wells’ book or
another adaptation of similar novel; but, no one generally devises, for instance,
the idea that simply because one has a device to reverse the flow of time in
his surroundings (again, relativistically), that he can just as easily reverse
the flow of bodily (i.e. “zero-reference”) time, as well. At least, from my perspective, although an
extremely experienced fan of science fiction, I can’t recall any precise
example of that concept being written about, either as an element of a
science-fiction novel plot, or as an element of any literary documentary.
There is an exception (“The
Andreasson Experience”) worth noting, although that, for me, is the exception
that proves the rule. Personally, my many years of experiences onboard the
Klingon vessel that abducted me near Vancouver/Seattle in the year 1975, were
enough to teach me about the importance and utility of the
“time-reversal button”, but I
wouldn’t ordinarily expect someone else to know about that possibility, or to
have anecdotes to relate about it. The
movie “Peggy Sue Got Married” also shows examples of this concept, as do a few
others, but it is another exception to the general stream of thought on this
So, the uniqueness of memory; or
‘originality’ of memory, is something which can be a criterion of belief in the
experiencing of a paranormal phenomenon like time travel.
We can believe in an incredibly bizarre
experience, perhaps, if it is totally original, unique, different, and, still
(somehow) credible, based upon other criteria we already know about, which we
accept as ‘givens’. If I were only
hypothesizing or hypostatizing the existence of such devices (and experiences),
then I would find myself merely in the same boat as the humdrum and ordinary
science-fiction writers, using the same hackneyed plot elements, pseudo-turns,
pseudo-twists and other tricks to interest my reader.
This is not the case,
however. My memory brings to me that
clue, that bit of credibility, that scrap of the essential ‘quidditas’ (the
“whatness”, “qualae”, or characteristics) that exculpates my existence from the
madding crowd, which is actually that inscripted bit of one of God’s gifts to
Humanity – that bit of mind which John Locke called the ‘tabula rasa’. The great English philosopher John Locke
actually argues that we can only know, or even conceive, that which we have
already actually experienced in some way.
Thus, it becomes very difficult to lie about things that are utterly
unimaginable. Arthur C. Clarke’s
corollary to Locke’s postulate (merely paraphrased) is that “The truth is
always more fantastic than anything we can imagine.”
So, if something were completely
out of one’s intellectual grasp, or realm of experience, then one really can’t
imagine it quite enough to really make a consistent
story without holes in it. For that reason, it makes sense to believe in
some of the stories of alien abduction, as they do ‘ring true’; and to believe
in my own memories of time travel, age-reversal (i.e. ‘rejuvenation’) and so
Very few, if any, science fiction
writers I am aware of, have written of, or discussed the idea of a lifestyle
based on time travel/rejuvenation, etc., with attendant information loss, as a
fundamental tenet. My question to the
reader is: “If you were a science fiction author who was writing about time
machines that could transport you to anywhere in space-time in an instant;
would you be so lame-brained as to NOT conceive the idea that one would, under
those circumstances, also be able to reverse
(or even accelerate) the process
of aging by altering the ‘field’ around the experiencer? Yet, despite the obviousness of this concept
to me, I do not see this in the literature.
Hence, I deduce that the literature is merely fiction, and that my
experience is real. This, again, is a
way that we know that we are the time travelers, and not merely the fictional
characters that the fine and imaginative authors invent to excite their
multitudes of fans. Some scientists of
sociology have stated: “truth resides in the cracks, not in the bricks”, which
I think carries over to other fields, as well.
My interpretation is that the greatest truths, or intended truths, at
least, aren’t necessarily included in the fundamental solids of the metaphoric
comprise society, but, instead, in
the glue or mortar that hold those bricks or building-blocks together.
In terms of proving or
demonstrating an epistemological basis for claiming to “know” that one is a
time traveler, the conceptual problem that arises is with the objection that
because personal identity needs to be ‘spatio-temporally continuous’, it is
impossible to be ‘de-aged’ or ‘rejuvenated’ by time travel, and still retain
one’s consciousness of the events in the future that had already happened to
oneself, in that future from whence one was actually time traveling away
(departing, or being ‘reversed’ from).
One is, therefore, again, as with my ‘doppelganger’ illustration, and
with Hawking’s discussion of ‘Imaginary Time’, no longer the same person….
Would I still know how to read
Latin, if I learned the language when I was thirty, and then rejuvenated (with
information loss) to the age of twenty, say?
And, if I cannot recollect the grammar and vocabulary of Latin, at
twenty, having been rejuvenated to
that age after having already
learned Latin, would I not, in essence, have lost other memories which would
constitute the substrate of my personhood (i.e. my consciousness, feelings
about different issues, memories of my experiences, etc.)? How could I be
‘reversed’, and still be myself?
In a large and clearly true sense,
I cannot. Selfhood is alterable to a large extent by time travel (a form of
repentence), and by willing. Just as a
tree branches, and forks, so there are choices which we can make and unmake in
our lives. Rather than reducing oneself,
this avenue of rejuvenation (nothing other than inverse time travel) really
might allow one to remake his destiny.
Yet, why would science fiction authors tend to neglect this idea of time
travel unless it is comparatively unimaginable (due to the facticity of the Lockeian ‘tabula rasa’), to
one who has not experienced it?
The applications of this fecund
possibility, as well, are enormous, despite the weakness of fiction authors’
ability to discuss such possibilities (well-documented on other worlds, if not
Earth). I cannot conceive of there being
any lack of reasons to
write about the opportunity to
follow the “path not taken.” Still,
despite such weakness in the imaginations of mere fiction writers, we must
onwards, and strive to overcome
the enormous status quo of ignorance with which most Earthlings are constantly
bombarded (perhaps as a deliberate trick by the ant-people of Alpha Centauri 4,
whose psychotronic devices of evil disinformation are still unconquerable to
us, while time travelers are mostly immune).
In mythology and fact, the
caduceus, a symbol of medicine to this very day, which is rooted in its origins
in the time of Aesklepios; is the winged staff with intertwined serpents. This beautiful emblem of medicine is highly
symbolic of time travel (the “ultimate cure”), which possesses the ability to
completely rejuvenate even a corpse
(within a few days of its demise) back to full health. Of course, this great and very Jungian symbol
is evocative of a number of ideas: (1) flight through the dimension of
Time itself (when Time is
considered as a Plenum, or continuum), and (2) ‘twinning’ of time travel
engendered selves (i.e. ‘doppelgangerism’ – a phenomenon that arises almost
immediately in the mind of anyone who has studied time travel). The nature of doppelgangerism, of course, is
such that different t-stage (possibly spatio-temporally discontinuous) ‘selves’
might even function as adversaries (dueling snakes, intertwined in combat, yet
allied to cure the recipient of their ‘magic’).
What if the only cure for a certain disorder (or many disorders) was to
time travel the human body back to its state of existence prior to the
contraction of that disease?
Even with loss of information, if
one could be sent back to a world where one had not yet been contaminated by a
fatal virus or condition, one might be able to avert that event or at least, in
some sense, extend one’s life. Supposing
that one lost perhaps 20% of one’s total information, wouldn’t it still be
worth it, to continue to live?
How would this be considered an
extension of life? Would the time
traveler possess any memory of whatever had prompted his return? Yes.
Memories of predecessor selves from different ‘lives’ actually can be
reawakened (this page before you, dear Reader, is further evidence of that
fact, or I would not even have ventured to write it).
The ‘madeleine’ experience is to
the consciousness of Marcel as a seed crystal is to a supersaturated solution
of chemical salts, catalyzing the crystallization of a stream of
Remembrances. Thus, coupled with appropriate amounts of
information, as in the form of time travel encrypted information (embedded in
music, literature, etc.), the human life and consciousness, the very
persistence of self over disasters, catastrophe and even death, might be
Thus, with the artificially-aided
extension of self, through memory stimulations encrypted in art, it becomes
possible to remember the future, even if it happens to be a distant one (where,
perhaps, an individual time traveler might chose to ‘relive’ a major portion of
his life, possibly requiring him or kill, and substitute for, a ‘predecessor
self’). A constant supply of ‘déjà vu’
impressions would undoubtedly result, with frequent recollections of events
that were yet to happen. In this manner,
again, it becomes possible to ‘know’ that one is a time traveler.
It is then, fully possible to be a
President in one ‘life’, a billionaire in another, a CIA agent in the next, and
a free-wheeling adventurer in yet another ‘life’ (by which I mean a
four-dimensional t-stage of existence and experience which could be reversed
and revised, engendering another, ad infinitum, with the proper
technology). This would be a lifestyle
that would truly allow someone to taste many facets of experience, while, to my
consciousness, my recollections may be more vivid than any mere fantasy, they
may not be so strong as to readily contribute to the ‘cross-over’ of skills
from one existence into another. For
instance, while I might have been a surgeon at one four-dimensional t-stage in
the five-dimensional manifold of lives I have led, that doesn’t imply that I
could perform a surgery (any more than I might be
recollect German that I learned in college).
There is only so much, after all,
that the consciousness can recollect under
If it were,
indeed, vital for a time traveler to retain information across a sequence of
universes and times, then it would require, as discussed, the development of
a system for the chrononaut to avert major
information loss. I termed this concept
encryptment thesis’, as you have probably already noticed, which I
defined as the
strategy of encoding messages into events, works of art, music, etc.,
which could then
be observed by the time traveler (while completely deprived of his
and personal recollection of being a time traveler), so that the time
still be able to eventually deduce the fact of his having time traveled.
the finding of ‘anachronistic’ clues about oneself in different places, such
as art, is clearly one means of
knowing that one is, indeed, a time traveler.
The nature of encryptment is still very puzzling,
since there are serious logical conundrums and practical hurdles of explanation
to be overcome. Skipping over the simple
‘grandfather paradox’ (which is hardly any more challenging to resolve than
Zeno’s paradox, actually), there is the
question that, if I were to voyage to a distant
past to leave a ‘signpost’ to my future
self, have a now brought about a past which already really existed before me,
or have I visited to a time to which I never before could have been?
For example, if I undertake (and succeed)
to visit adolescent Wolfgang Mozart before his composing the Salzburg
Symphonies (c. 1766-1772), then I must also bring some memories of what Wolfy
was going to compose with me. Perhaps I
argue with the tempestuous and overly bold youngster, representing the time
traveling government of another United States, in whose alternate history I am
the chrononaut President, who has already studied Wolfy’s music. Do I ever actually change anything by
visiting Wolfy? Could he have composed
the music of the Salzburgs note-for-note without my having visited him? Would he not then have written a different
set of works, had he not possessed knowledge of me (about whom he wrote the
symphonies)? For, if he had not met me,
then where would he have acquired the information that he did encrypt into the
The question to which I return is: “Can I
truly be said to have brought about the past in any causal sense, even while
benefiting from the encrypted traces of information, later on?” My feeling, intuitively, is that I have, but
this may be simply a logical paradox.
Still, in a sense, I have been ‘abducted’ by the anomaly of a past-time
and an incident (the composition of an early Mozart symphony, etc.) where there
abnormally anachronistic level of
information which appears to derive from the
future. It appears to me that I actually imposed my
will upon the young Mozart to
enlist his very gifted assistance,
which might account for a certain abrasiveness in his
compositions (maybe he resented
the request for help, and my intrusion into his time).
Mozart’s modeling, as
accomplished, might be interpreted as something less than flattering to me, or
might be reflective of his desire to be more a master of his own fate than he
truly was, than fate allowed him to be.
In a sense, one is impotent to
alter a past moment or event. One can’t
will an imprint into already-dried cement, and would certainly be all the more
disturbed with the refusal of the artist to change in any way the work that he
or she hasn’t yet composed or created.
This doesn’t mean that one (as model or time traveler) is not partly the
causal agent of the effect. All the more,
even though the situation may clearly be called ‘cyclic acausal’ on the grand
scale, it is still true in both an immediately gratifying as well as a
long-term achievement, that a worthy goal of encryptment has been
accomplished. The accomplishment (at
least the pseudo-accomplishment) of a
‘madeleine’ being embedded in a
favorite artwork, from a time before one’s birth, in a manner which encrypts
and preserves information from the future or an alternate universe is certainly
something that ‘makes sense’ out of the absurd phenomenon of cyclic acausality,
All of which discussion,
naturally, brings me to yet another important conclusion for this chapter –
that, really, if you can sit around and write about things like this, and take
yourself seriously, you know that you are a time traveler.