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Can Time Travelers Go Back To Fix This Mess?

 

By James Donahue

 

One reason the Matrix film series was so popular is because it suggests that we live in a make-believe world where events can be altered by master game players at the push of a button.

 

As humanity rushes headlong into the threat of extinction because of over-population, reckless environmental policies and consequently a polluted, dying and over-heating planet, we seem incapable of fixing our desperate condition.

 

Not only can we not fix it, we seem incapable of agreeing that it even exists.

 

As an old science fiction buff, I have been unable to avoid entertaining the thought that perhaps time travel is possible, and that somehow, at the last moment, we might discover a way to send someone back into the past who can do something to alter current events and save the day.

 

But if it were possible, just where would we send this time traveler, and just what mission could he or she have that would make such an impact on today’s hopeless world? Might Henry Ford be encouraged to develop cars operating on alternative forms of energy? Might Thomas Edison be persuaded to listen to the voice of the late Nikola Tesla and choose a cleaner way of generating power for mankind? Perhaps we could have persuaded Saul of Tarsus not to make that historic trip down the road to Damascus where he allegedly had his encounter with Jesus and consequently launched the religious movement that became The Roman Catholic Church.

 

Now a report by physicists Daniel Greenberger of the City University of New York, and Karl Syozil of the Vienna University of Technology in Austria, suggests that the laws of quantum physics seem to permit time travel, but prohibit the paradoxical problem of altering the present because of the things we might do in the past.

 

The theory they present is complex, but it suggests that quantum objects split their existence into multiple component waves, each following a distinct path through space-time. They believe that even if a person were to travel back to the past, they would unlikely be in places where they might interfere destructively with an event and change the present.

 

While it may be good news among sci-fi buffs who worry about the paradox of going back in time and destroying themselves by accidentally killing their grandfathers, it also suggests that nothing we do can alter the course we have chosen for mankind in general, even if we succeed in going backward in time.

 

Some believe that time is a relative only a creation by the human mind as a way of putting events in perspective. Outside of our three-dimensional existence, however, entities that exist in a spirit universe around us appear to live outside the boundaries of space and time. If this is true, they can see our future as well as our past because they exist in all places at the same time.

 

Supposing a way could be found to send a few humans back in time and we could successfully get a team of genetic researchers as far back as the dawn of human civilization. Suppose they could implant contemporary human DNA in the unborn children of humanoids existing at that time. From these children might spring Homo sapiens, with all of the genetic memory of what went wrong this time around. Might we hope they get it right on the second try?

 

The question nags, however. Is humanity so flawed that because we have been given free will by the creator, we are bound to fail? In spite of all we might do, would it be impossible for us to change the level of mass insanity going on today?