Reply To: General "Block Universe" Discussion

Ken Wharton

Hi Ian! Yes, I’m looking forward to talking about this in person…

I wouldn’t say that the Block Universe is particularly motivated by retrocausality — it’s best motivated by general relativity! (So yes, it does imply some ontological status of spacetime, modulo diffeomorphisms, etc.)

And curiously, many people interested in retrocausality don’t particularly like the Block Universe, a fact that I’m still struggling to wrap my head around.

I think I’ve heard you agree with Eddington’s perspective on this: that there must be something we’re missing in our physics of spacetime, because the Block Universe is somehow at fundamental odds with our sensation of “becoming”, or the “flow of time”. (Or, if not at odds with it, at least missing some crucial element that would permit such concepts to be discussed in a physical framework.) Is this accurate?

None of the “becoming” crowd has chimed in here, so if you’re willing to be a spokesperson for that perspective, I’d be curious as to what sort of things you think are missing from the Block Universe perspective. (And what you think of my anti-“flow of time” rant in section IV of my latest FQXi essay, linked to in the second post, up above.)

See you soon! -Ken

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