Tag Archives: time travel

Parallel Universes

I’ve been ill for the last five days. Proper sick like. Fluids coming out of every hole but you don’t need to know about that.

During my sick time I’ve been spending a lot of time alone (on the toilet) and either reading or thinking, while not screaming out in frustration or pain or strain. One of the things I’ve been thinking about is parallel universes, or univi if you will.

I have decided they don’t exist.

So, for those of you that don’t know (and I doubt there are many) there is this theory that there are an infinite number of parallel univi. In this univi people are living your life but with at least one difference. This difference could be tiny or it could be huge but it’s the one thing differentiates this universe from that one.

Somewhere there is a universe where I’m EXACTLY the same as I am now but someone on the other side of the world is different. Somewhere there is a me that has no chest hair, or a me that can’t drive and even a me that doesn’t like movies. There is also a me that has all of those differences.

These difference could also be on multiple people, so while I’m strutting around with only nine toes, Brad Pitt has never been famous and Elvis really does work in the chip round the corner.

Well, I think this is all bollocks. There are absolutely zero parallel univi.

My reasoning is very similar to that of my reasoning for the impossibility of time travel.

It can’t be possible because someone would have come back and told us.

Often people say “Yeah, but when it’s invented it’ll be kept secret or heavily regulated so no one will know which is why you think no one has come back.”

No, more bullshit. Regardless of rules or regulations someone somewhere would come back and tell us. Look at the movie “Looper” for example. Time travel has been invented and criminals use it. If time travel had been invited we’d know it and it would not be a secret. We don’t, so ergo it hasn’t. And never will be.

The next argument that often comes is “But it hasn’t been invented yet! When it is, THEN they’ll come back.” Seriously, do you hear yourself?  By the way, read this entry about the “Grandfather Paradox“.

This time travel busting theory works for parallel univi.

If there is a parallel universe for every single and multiple differences then it stands to reason as well as there being a universe where Ben Affleck didn’t steal my career there is also a universe where someone has invented a way of being able to connect with every universe that exists. As such we would know about it.

I know what you’re going to say. “Maybe they have done it people have been back here, we just don’t know about it.”

Do you know, that makes sense. To certain point. Lets look again though – there is a parallel universe for EVERY difference. Which means there is a universe where someone has created a way of contacting every parallel universe AND announcing their arrival and letting everyone know.

“But surely there’s a universe where someone invented what you said and went to every universe but this one?”

Yep, there totally is so surely that means the universe where they contacted everyone doesn’t exist and as there is a universe for EVERY eventuality that means one of those two univi can’t exist.

This means none of them can exist because it’s either all of nothing.

So you see, I’ve had a stupid amount of time alone and my brain has gone off on a tangent.

In other news it’s supposed to be my first day back at university today but I’m in no fit state. You’ll never know how much that pisses me off.

Grandfather Paradox

I love theories around time travel. I don’t think time travel will ever be possible. When I’m asked why one of my answers is that if it was possible someone would have come back and told us. This rebuked with descriptions of how time travel will be so heavily policed the no one be able to come back and reveal who they were. This is a nice theory but human nature itself proves that it’s rubbish. In the UK guns are strictly controlled yet people still have them illegally. Drugs are controlled yet people still buy and sell them. Everything, EVERYTHING, that can be controlled can, and will, be abused.

Regardless of where you stand on the theory of time travel one of the stories I love is the grandfather paradox. It’s quite the mindfuck but well worth a read.

A baby girl is mysteriously dropped off at an orphanage in Cleveland in 1945. “Jane” grows up lonely and dejected, not knowing who her parents are, until one day in 1963 she is strangely attracted to a drifter. She falls in love with him. But just when things are finally looking up for Jane, a series of disasters strike. First, she becomes pregnant by the drifter, who then disappears. Second, during the complicated delivery, doctors find that Jane has both sets of sex organs, and to save her life, they are forced to surgically convert “her” to a “him.” Finally, a mysterious stranger kidnaps her baby from the delivery room.

Reeling from these disasters, rejected by society, scorned by fate, “he” becomes a drunkard and drifter. Not only has Jane lost her parents and her lover, but he has lost his only child as well. Years later, in 1970, he stumbles into a lonely bar, called Pop’s Place, and spills out his pathetic story to an elderly bartender. The sympathetic bartender offers the drifter the chance to avenge the stranger who left her pregnant and abandoned, on the condition that he join the “time travelers corps.” Both of them enter a time machine, and the bartender drops off the drifter in 1963. The drifter is strangely attracted to a young orphan woman, who subsequently becomes pregnant.

The bartender then goes forward 9 months, kidnaps the baby girl from the hospital, and drops off the baby in an orphanage back in 1945. Then the bartender drops off the thoroughly confused drifter in 1985, to enlist in the time travelers corps. The drifter eventually gets his life together, becomes a respected and elderly member of the time travelers corps, and then disguises himself as a bartender and has his most difficult mission: a date with destiny, meeting a certain drifter at Pop’s Place in 1970.

The question is: Who is Jane’s mother, father, grandfather, grand mother, son, daughter, granddaughter, and grandson? The girl, the drifter, and the bartender, of course, are all the same person. These paradoxes can made your head spin, especially if you try to untangle Jane’s twisted parentage. If we draw Jane’s family tree, we find that all the branches are curled inward back on themselves, as in a circle. We come to the astonishing conclusion that she is her own mother and father! She is an entire family tree unto herself.

Some people credit Robert Heinlein with this concept where as others credit Rene Barjavel.