Was there a time before time?

Before existence came to be, before ‘nature’ came to be everything that there is, was there ever a time before this?

I expected atleast one reply maybe…looks around

“time” is a human concept applied to allow us to understand nature, so I suppose you could argue that there was no time before humans.

Time scale is a human construct yes, but obviously nature existed before your and my being. But i dont want to get into a conversation about ‘Time scale’. I’ll make it as simple as possible for you to get the jist of what i’m trying to get across. Before nature came to be, before there was 'distance, was there ever a ‘Time’ before this? Or is nature eternal?

in the 90s during the heat of the dotcom bubble, it was commonplace to find in universities many diverse groups of people from all walks of life trying to get a foothold in on the last gold rush of the century, the internet. i went to school with so many people who had degrees in business, guys who had left medical school because with the rising cost of insurance there was more net profits to be made in IT than in general medical practice.

one of the guys i met there was in his 40s and was a minister. he also had one of his degrees in particle physics. i asked him how he could reconcile the two fields, and his answer was:

“what existed before the big bang? i think that is god”


so assuming that time began at the big bang, what existed before the big bang? could there be eternal recurrance? could there be inconceivable numbers of big bangs happening outside of our universe at any given time?

at this point such conjecture is the equivalent of pondering the existance god, and would yield equally substantial results.

though it is fun to think about

Time can be read as a measure of change. Was there change before the Big Bang? No. With the big band we get the beginning of time, the beginning of change.

Visions of being “outside of time” are painted as if you were the only one moving and everything else was frozen. But that would mean you would have to carry your own personal time with you. Otherwise your awareness could not change.

We have some good reasons to believe our universe originated from somethiing of a “big bang,” but what of the multiverse? Surely there could be other universes with other big bangs floating around somewhere outside of our universe. Furthermore, we have no evidence as to how this multiverse got started, whether it started from a big bang of its own is a complete mystery. I tend to agree with the italian on this…it’s pondering the unponderable…but isn’t that what philosophy is for?

If there was no change before the big bang then what caused that state to change?..was it change? But if there was no change before the big bang as your saying then how could that have happened?

Was their ‘distance’ before the big bang?

As for what caused the big bang, talk to an expert. Maybe Steven Hawkings?

The big bang WAS the first change. That was the beginning of time and space.

You completely ignored my post ‘the xanderman’. You said that before this Universe, there was no ‘time’…and you specifically said that ‘time’ is ‘change’ etc. That is fair enough but if there was no change before the Universe, then what could have possibly ‘changed’ that intial state? Would ‘change’ not have had to have taken place in a ‘timeless’ state for the big bang to even take place? Seen as the big bang is a mark of change, from a timless state, to the big bang…that is change. Surely if there were no ‘change’ before this universe then that’s the way it always would have remained…right?

You mean Stephen Hawking.

This depends upon whether you take at face value the definitions physicists offer for ‘time’. My instinct on this is the following:

Nothing can’t exist. By definition.

Therefore, for there to be something, there must always have been something.

Therefore ‘time’ had no beginning.

For if there was never nothing, that means something has always existed for time to be able to apply to.

ps. If you have trouble with the concept that ‘nothing’ NEVER existed, look at Heidegger on this: ‘the nothing nihilates’.

If nothing was to exist, that would make it something, so it would no longer be nothing! Sic nothing cannot exist…

It’s hard to talk about ‘time’ without people getting the wrong idea of what your actually talking about but here, i think we are all on the same level…so do you believe ‘time’ is eternal? Do you believe this natural state ‘stuff’ simply is?

Agreed; time is eternal.

I didn’t ignore your post. I may have misunderstood it, but I didn’t ignore it. I was trying to convey that the demarcation line between time and non-time would be the big bang itself. Before the big bang, no there was no change. The first change was the instant when time began. Before that first change there was no change, nothing like what we call time.

What was the duration before the first change? There is no answer because there is nothing against which we can measure it. If nothing moves then it is the equivalent of no time passing.

Now, how did the first change happen, I don’t know.

Neither do i but ‘time’ did not begin with the big bang. Only our ‘time’, only the ‘time’ of this Universe.

“now” is the only moment that has ever existed, ever exists and ever will exists. This now, right now, this very - eternal - moment.


I agree that only our time, the time of this universe started with the big bang. Before that there was no time, at least no time as we know it.

Perhaps there was a big crunch before the last big bang, so there would have been the changes that led up to the big crunch.

But there was a ‘time’ before the big bang, was there not?

Before we can understand the nonlinear truths concerning “time”, we must first be able to think in a nonlinear way.

Check out some Escher art

homepage.mac.com/webwyrm/Fire/ba … allery.jpg


as Kant said, there’s no time before humans
i disagree with him
but i don’t think there’s ‘a time before time’ either
that’s kind of like ‘is there an episode before the Smallville premiere?’ or something, the answer should be obvious, debate on this problem is meaningless.

you’d better ask ‘is there time before the Big Bang’, this question is better