Why Time Only Goes Forward: A Theory I Call Time Gravity
Introduction
What I discuss in this article is a theory of mine. I’m proposing that time moves from the past to the future due to some sort of “pulling force” that I call Time Gravity.
Everything we know about time and spacetime are based on theory. Einstein described Gravitational Time Dilation in his general theory of relativity:
Clocks that are far from massive bodies run faster than clocks close to massive bodies.^{1}
My concept is not the same as the gravity between masses. I am not talking about the effect of gravity on time. That's being studied by scientists such as Holger Müller of the University of California Berkeley and Steven Chu, former United States Secretary of Energy in office from 2009 thru 2013.
For that matter, the clocks on our GPS satellites tick faster than clocks on Earth since the satellites are about 12,550 miles above the Earth and the gravitational pull is weaker. A correction is put into the GPS programs to account for this difference.
Once again, my concept of Time Gravity is different—It’s a force that pulls time itself.
You may think of this article for entertainment purposes only. However, I wouldn’t hesitate to let it be considered an essay for further scientific study. After all, we really don’t understand time. Everything being examined today is all based on theory.
My Theory of Time Gravity
In our threedimensional world, we are very aware of gravitational pull. All mass is attracted to one another. I have carried this concept to the next dimension, the fourth dimension—which is time.
Time can be described mathematically as being a 90degree angle to our threedimensional space. In this fourth dimension, a force exists that overcomes the inertia that would otherwise cause time to stand still. This force is similar to the gravity that we are aware of in our 3D space.
My proposal is that this gravity is what propels us forward in time. Without this Time Gravity, everything would remain in the present moment. Time wouldn’t march on. Clocks wouldn’t tick. The Universe wouldn’t materialize.
Can you imagine being stuck in a moment without time moving forward? You really wouldn’t exist to even have the ability to think about it. Something is making “time” happen. Could this be it—Time Gravity?
Now that I explained all that, you may have a better understanding of what I’m talking about. Time passes because of Time Gravity pulling everything in space forward—in time.
How Consistent is Time?
There is a good reason why time must only go forward.
If it were possible for time to go backwards, then there would be no past, present, or future. It would just be a mumble jumble field of chaos because events would happen repeatedly in different ways, causing an uncertain and inconsistent present and future. This is logically impossible because all events in time can only occur as long as there is a reliable means to an end.
Everything that happens in time leads to achieve another outcome later in time. If the outcome cannot be depended upon due to the past constantly being modified, then you can see how this would lead to utter chaos.
We know that the three dimensions of space are very reliably defined. Length, width, and height can be measured with complete accuracy. But what about the fourth dimension through which time is measured? Is that just as stable as threedimensional space?
The fact of the matter is that space is not consistent. It can be warped. As I mentioned earlier, Einstein has proven that the force of gravity bends light traveling through space. This makes space appear to become warped. Therefore, time most likely can be warped too, just as light is warped by gravity.
This warping effect won’t bring back the past, but it will affect the passage of time. However, we will never know it because we are traveling along for the ride and as time slows and speeds up, we will just remain consistent relative to the movement of time.
Why Time Only Goes Forward
Now, if all this is true, why don’t we drift backward in time? What is stopping us from going backward?
Something must be causing this gravitationalpull to become weaker as we go forward in time, so that there is less force attracting time backward.
I gave a lot of thought to this and I found a mathematical formula to clearly show why time can only go forward. The momentum increases and the force required to go backward would be so extreme that it can’t be achieved.
The Force of Time Gravity
You may remember the equation taught in High School science class that is used to calculate the gravitational force on an object. It’s a function of the masses of both objects and the distance between them.
F
 Force due to gravity

G
 Gravitation constant (6.673 x 10^11 Nm^2/kg^2)

m1
 Mass of one object

m2
 Mass of other object

r
 Distance between the objects (from the center of each)

As you can see, dividing by r^{2 }(the square of the distance) the force of gravity is reduced by the square of the distance.
I propose the idea that this same formula would apply to Time Gravity. I call it the “Force of Time Gravity.” There must be a force on both ends, the past and the future.
Based on my proposal, as time moves forward, we are increasingly removed from the past. That is, we leave the past behind. The farther we move away from the past, the weaker the gravitational pull of Past Time Gravity becomes. It reduces in force by the square of the time that elapses, just as the force of gravity between two masses becomes less by the square of the distance.
This means that the pull of the past continues to become weaker and weaker, and the thrust into the future becomes stronger and stronger. Hence, we continue to move forward in time with a force F based on this same formula.
At the same time, the Future Time Gravity continues to have more of an effect on time, “pulling” time forward.
Since the Past Time Gravity becomes weaker and the Future Time Gravity becomes stronger, something must have started the process. Maybe it was the Big Bang, and this would indicate that time didn’t exist until the Big Bang.
Isn’t that a mindblowing thought? I’m not done yet, one more thing.
My Misleading Judgment
The formula indicates that the force of gravity between two objects is a function of mass. The larger the mass of either object, the greater the gravity. This is somewhat different when this formula is applied to time, since there is no mass involved with time.
Therefore, I have made a misleading judgment in the development of this theory. I can overcome that, however, by applying the meaning of "mass" to something more appropriate when considering the concept of time. I need to apply mass to time. I need to find a way to prove that time functions similar as mass. Can I do that?
Fluid Dynamics and Flow Velocity of Time
The Navier–Stokes equations^{2}, named after ClaudeLouis Navier and George Gabriel Stokes, can be used to describe flow velocity of fluid. I take this a step further and apply it to time.
If you ever had a flood in your house, you may have heard how plumbers talk about water always seeking its lowest point. Well, time also seeks its lowest point, in my opinion.
Time has an inertial frame of reference^{3} and tends to find its lowest point—the future. This is similar to how water is attracted by gravity and will seek its lowest level.
The frame of reference is not linear. Time passes at different rates dependent on the speed of motion of the observer, as explained by Einstein's General Theory of Relativity. This fits perfectly with the way fluid dynamics has been described. I wonder what Einstein would say about that? I wish he were alive today so I could share this article with him. Just a thought.
I now return you to your normal state of mind. If you still have a few minutes, I think you’ll relate a lot of what I said to the concepts in this nineminute video.
Gravity and Time
References
© 2017 Glenn Stok
Comments
Is there any role of electromagnetism or any other element in pulling time forward? Because if the universe is expanding then there might be some force which is pulling it in outward direction.
I have always been fascinated by time. This is a very thoughtful article Glenn. I have always questioned the existence of time. Is time absolute or does it exist only in our minds?
Thanks for the great article. I certainly look forward to reading more of your work.
Glenn,
I was laying in bed contemplating the nature of time, gravity, and the big bang and had a thought that I think is very similar. What if time is a function of gravity pressure? From the Big Bang, all of the mass in the universe pushing outward would create a pressure wave that would then also be pulled by the vacuum of space. Two opposite but equal forces working in tandem to expand things outward. Could be what is causing the increasing rapidity of universal expansion. Time could just be the expression of that pressure wave and why time is only moving in one direction. Think of forward as outward instead. What do you think? Are we thinking along the same lines?
Can you explain the gravitational pull of time considering one day in past or one day in future? The distance i.e r2 remains the same, so the pull force should be the same. Then Why cant we go back in past for one day or one sec in past then?
PS: M a process engineer, dont know much physics. Just curious about this amazing theory you described. Looking for any explanation regarding life.
Oh, you are too kind, Glenn. No, I'm not on to anything hahaha ...just when you say time gravity, made me think of waves being pulled forward at a certain time ...but not really "time" as you say. And that you say we are being "pulled" forward in time. Way over my head, obviously, but still fascinating to me.
Wow, Glenn, I found your essay to be fascinating and I believe you are on to something! Time has always intrigued me. When you are talking about being pulled forward in time, I am reminded of waves or tides and the gravitational pull of the sun and moon for some reason. ...but then there is low tide?
I will be back to read again to soak in more of your fascinating theory here! You are brilliant. I love the way your mind thinks.
I should take a look at your other articles, hopefully this weekend. Even though I've known you for so long on HP, I never realized you wrote in the science domain.
Yup, that's exactly what I was proposing. The possibility of time travel or rather go backwards in time. You may not be able to warp back in time like in the movies.
Another crazy idea could be that there are forces pulling us in all directions of the spacetime domain and we move along the resultant direction.
Any small change (the butterfly effect), even at the subatomic level influences this resultant forces direction and maybe even its magnitude fluctuates (we could just not be aware of time passing quicker or slower as we are entities in this domain) .
Glenn, you have not mixed up gravity and time gravity and you have clearly said it's similar and not the same when you talk about the relation.
I think a lot about the spacetime continuum too. What I was trying to point out or understand (from your perspective) is the reasoning behind the forward progression of time. You use the analogy of the mass gravity equation to say the time gravity equation would most likely be similar having a square of the time in the denominator and then proceeded to say this is the reason time only moves forward. But if you read my previous comment where I consider a timeline you will see how this cannot be (in my understanding).
I'd like to think there's another relation which is not dependent on the time that has passed or is to come.
P.S: I'm only commenting since I really like the way you related the two and it's a pretty interesting take. I hope I'm not intruding with my own thoughts on the matter. This isn't a forum thread after all :)
Hi Glen, amazing article and I like the way you think. I like the analogy where you compare time to a fluid.
Then again, I do not agree or I failed to understand your relation between gravity between masses and the forward flow of time. Let me try to explain what I mean, and you could then hopefully explain what I failed to understand:
Let's say we have time in seconds projected onto a number line. Our current moment being at 0 seconds, the future at 2s and the past at 2s. Just these three timesteps to keep the question simple.
If time gravity were related to matter gravity, what's stopping me from saying that it is just as easy to go to 2s as 2s from our initial time at 0s? If the time gap is squared I see no difference, the sign plays no role anymore and the magnitude of force (or another phenomenon) to get to either of the two points must be the same. I would propose that it's not time squared or any positive power.
Let us just say we agree that it's an exponent of 3 rather than 2. We have a negative sign, but the sign is just mathematical. In my opinion there needs to be another factor that plays a role in moving it forward. Something that got the ball rolling in a particular direction. Some sort of momentum. Maybe this momentum can be altered both in magnitude and direction by objects on the spacetime continuum.
A very heavy object such as a black hole would have a huge impact on the spacetime continuum (relatively speaking) and maybe, just maybe time and gravity are inversely proportional. This would lead to time almost stopping at a black hole and that's why even light cannot escape. Maybe it's still moving trying to reach the other side, it's just not got there yet or it just doesn't have the energy to get out of there (E = mc^2) due to the steep climb the dense black hole has left on the continuum.
I blabbered a lot and just wrote whatever came to mind while writing the comment. I initially just wanted to talk about the squared power of time in the equation :)
I don't think I understand everything you've said but it's interesting nonetheless.
Just as an example, if the mass of the sun was reduced and lessened the gravitational force on the earth, would time then slow down?
Since Pluto would have less gravitational pull, could time almost stop there?
If this creates a concave net of force, what could create a convex? If this did occur would time go backward as the gravitational force is pushed away?
On a philosophical note: Couldn't that be what happens when we die as we see our life flash before us. Although the theories are applied to the universe, if you attach it to a human life, time is constantly moving forward (as in the video of the man standing still). However, when our energy, (life force) is drawing out of us, the brain emits flashes of memories or is it rewinding?
Pretty Cool Glenn! Interestingly I have an electric LED clock beneath my TV on the stand. It looses time. But, it moves forward and not backward. Huh! I have never seen that before. I reset it 01/01/17. It is now 4 min ahead of the clock on my TV. hmmmm . . . does that prove your theory in an odd way? I dun'no . . . Great article Glenn that is giving me much food for thought this morning. Thank you!
This Time Gravity concept is not the most difficult of your philosophies to follow. Now I can explain why time only goes forward. I like the mind exercises you create.
Loved reading your post especially about the relation between time and gravity.
Interesting theory. Some scientists say that time is just an invention to help people keep track in 3 Dimensional space. That would mean there has to be some way to anchor it, and your theory is as good as any. Some theorists have likened the universe to cake batter, folding over and over on itself, and the Big Bang as just another fold. Would the next fold in our space be another Big Bang, and the time "clock" be reset with it?
To be honest, time and gravity has always been a bit beyond me. But reading your hub has proved most interesting and informative. I've learned something today. Thank you.
Wow, you write on such an impressive variety of topics and this one is thought provoking. I'm challenged to wrap my mind around concepts such as space time but I digested your ideas a little easier for some reason. Must be your writing!
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