Sunday, 9 August 2015

Acceptance Of Time Travel

We saw here that Pummairam and Keith Denison found it easier than most to accept time travel. Here is a third example. In "The Year Of The Ransom":

"Remarkable how swiftly [Castelar] grasped the idea." (Time Patrol, p. 688)

However, there are several explanations for his acceptance:

(i) "Educated men of the sixteenth century believed in miracles; it was Christian, Jewish, and Muslim dogma." (p. 689)

(ii) "They also lived in a world of revolutionary new discoveries, inventions, ideas." (ibid.)

(Thus, tradition and modernity temporarily reinforce rather than contradict each other.)

(iii) "The Spanish, especially, were steeped in tales of chivalry and enchantment - " (ibid.)

(So their fiction also helped.)

(iv) "No scientist had told Castelar that travel into the past was physically impossible..." (ibid.)

(v) " philosopher had listed the reason why it was logically absurd. He met the simple fact." (ibid.)

So why are we told that:

"The Patrol got few recruits from before the First Industrial Revolution, and very few from prescientific societies..." (The Shield Of Time, p. 300)?

The reason given here is:

"A person who hadn't been raised in that style of thinking was seldom able to assimilate the concepts." (ibid.)

"...that style of thinking..." means the scientific world-view which is necessary to understand the entire context of the Patrol and its technology. Babylonians at the Time Patrol Academy have to be given "...a battle-of-the-gods routine." (Time Patrol, p. 14)


  1. Kaor, Paul!

    I certainly believe in the possiblity of miracles!

    What did you mean by "(Thus, tradition and modernity temporarily reinforce rather than contradict each other.)"? For instance, I don't believe the Catholic Church condemns anything that is truly good or true in "modernity." One example being how the Church has never condemned or rejected evolution as such.


    1. Sean,
      Much modern, scientifically based thought is against miracles. Of course, such thought may be mistaken!

    2. Kaor, Paul!

      And I don't understand this hostility to merely the POSSIBILITY of miracles. If you believe God is real, doesn't that have to include the possiblity of believing God sometimes ACTS in our world? I only need to cite the cures at Lourdes, esp. the ones the Lourdes Medical Board grudgingly conceded had no known natural or medical explanation.