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  • Mishtee Agrawal

Time - A Perplexing Riddle

If one caught hold of Draco Malfoy’s time turner and time travel like in Harry Potter and the Prisoners of Azkaban, the world would have a chaotic and overlapping series of events with everyone manipulating time to play out events according to their own will.

Have you ever wished to alter a disconcerting event from your past or to unravel a mystifying secret? Have you ever yearned to see the aftermath of a decision or the advancement of technology in the future?

However, infelicitously to the chagrin of several dreamers, travelling through such long periods of time is only possible in movies, which may make time travel seem cool and doable.

However, it is practically impossible because of the predicament of several paradoxes that we need to overcome in order to time travel. One of the most renowned time travel paradoxes is the Grandfather Paradox, which questions the consequential turn of events. It creates a hypothetical situation wherein a time traveller travelling to the past to kill his grandfather ends up not existing in the present. This questions the ability to alter the past when he was never born!

This paradox can be overcome by suggested theories.

Timeline protection hypothesis: This theory suggests that he would be subjected to many obstacles which would ultimately result in him not being able to kill his grandfather to prevent disruption in the sequential occurrence of events in the present.

Drawback: This paradox has serious implications on the nature of free will which he is deprived of if a force predetermines that the grandfather would not die.

Multiple universes hypothesis: If the grandson succeeds in killing his grandfather, it would create an alternate universe in which his grandfather is dead, while the grandson would travel from his universe where his grandfather is alive to one where he is dead, therefore not affecting his existence.

Drawbacks: The existence of infinite parallel universes that accommodate every possible combination of behavior for all the particles in the universe is not feasible.

Einstein's theory of relativity gives the best answer to the Grandfather Paradox by providing the idea of a world line stating that the faster you travel, the slower you experience time.

“Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, today is a gift of God, which is why we call it the present.” – Bil Keane.

Time Travel

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