Could I really function in split time?

Exactly what can you do in a split-second?

Everything. Just. Stops. (Photo credit: Road Fun)

Imagine for moment that you’re going about your day, and time just stops. How does that look? For a moment, nothing seems to be wrong; and then you begin to realize that nothing is moving. People aren’t moving, cars aren’t moving, the grass isn’t swaying in the breeze, and for that matter, where’s the breeze? Not even the air is moving. All of a sudden, you are in unknown territory. What do you do?

Somehow, instinctively, you know that the moment you do something – not just any something, but the moment you change something – time will start back up. So what is it that you will change? Does that really depend on the context, or is there a bigger answer here?

The reason I ask is because generally speaking, I’m reticent to answer that question. Take a moment to appreciate the situation; during this instant, while you’re frozen in time, you do not exist. And all the people around you, all the things you’re looking at – neither do they. What do you mean? You ask. I can see them right in front of my eyes. Well sure, that’s an artifact of your visual perception. And what happens. . .

Speed of Rhythmatic Light
Even the light stops, and after that, it’s a whole other ball game. You would be wandering through streams of information with no context of where they came from, where they go, or to what – or whom – they belong. There’s no way that any human would be able to navigate this morass without a completely different set of senses. (Photo credit: atinirdosh)

Well, technically time isn’t frozen, because if it was then particles of light would not be moving, and you would not be able to see anything except maybe the last instant before time froze; in effect, you would be frozen in time too, or you’d be groping blindly through a strange field of colored light particles. They were traveling on a trajectory, reflected from a surface that modified their respective wavelengths by virtue of its physical properties, and as each particle hits your eye it’s a bit of color sent to your brain. The density of light particles is perceived as a degree of brightness. So as you move with your eyes open the light that’s perceived via your retinas now also reflects the speed of your passage through this strange new world, practically unaided by the sense that was previously prime in your perceptual palette.

Furthermore, the more you progress the less reliable the images become; they’re all holograms that hide the real world. You see a tree in front of you, but do you know that it’s on the other side of a ravine? Consider the speed of light; how far away is that tree, really? Take another step if you dare. Now add in the fact that you can’t hear anything because there’s no air movement. You can’t smell anything because. . . Well, you know. You’re essentially locked in chaos, and the remainder of your short life will be chaotic. This was the Universe before the Big Bang; this was the realm of the old gods.

The metric expansion of space. The inflationar...
The metric expansion of space. The inflationary epoch is the expansion of the metric tensor at left. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Space’s main function is to expand. The expansion of space creates time. Time enables the movement of quantum particles which are not only the foundation of everything that exists, but also of the various devices that power the senses. These things all have to move to work. Life is meant to be lived in time going forward; standing still just won’t do. If you find yourself in such a predicament, I suggest you try to change your perspective; if that does the trick then the Universe truly has smiled upon you.

Here’s an even scarier thought: what if it seems like time is standing still, but really it has passed you by and left you behind? Time moves on without you while you’re groping in chaos. Now that’s something to consider.

This post was prompted by today’s Daily Post prompt.




  1. Just a few minutes ago, I was thinking about being in the mountains. I sat on the deck and stared at the bird feeder and wished to freeze that moment. I guess, in a way, I did, because I remember it months later.

  2. Interesting perspective and thoughts about this particular daily prompt. Enjoyable and unexpected – but provides ground/framework for potential story ideas …. as she hears his brain working at light speed 😉

    Well done 🙂

    • Lol yeah, and I started out with one idea, then where it seems like I switched gear a little (“actually…”) it’s because I suddenly realized that there’s no way we could function if time was truly stopped. I was supposed to write a follow-up post to appease those who would call me a party pooper but I’m working long days this week. Sigh, que sera sera.

      • Too bad about the long days make sure you take care of yourself …. as for writing up a follow-up post … to appease …. give yourself a break! The DP is a challenge – and what you make of it *is* what your interpretation means …. which is subjective on any given day/moment. So please yourself – besides, it was an entirely unique post and thought-provoking, so in my books, that’s all good. 🙂

          • Well I didn’t think your post sounded wishy-washy at all.

            But if you want to run with the question because it inspires you – then by all means – go for it! 🙂

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