The word itself originated from Latin “futurus”, and literally means “about to be” (dictionary. com). At this point you might say “Ha! So much for etymology”. Nevertheless, let us not be hasty, for the primordial semantics of “future” as “something that will happen” had been specifically “something after death”. It is a prevalent theory that the process of separation of our species from the rest of the fauna had started with the cognition of our mortality as our imminent future. Since it had proved to be a strong enough reason to wrest the entire race from a perfectly comfortable embrace of the Mother Nature, the future remains to be the most intriguing subject.
Future is time period that will proceed after the present, is complied to the laws of physics. Thus, it must unavoidably commence some time after. However, where is the margin that demarcates that the “present” had already became the “future”? It creates the notion of eternity - This question has been substantive in both religion and science.
Ever since the prehistoric period the concept of “future” perceived as “fate” had shaped and formed almost every civilization throughout the world. “Fatum” in ancient Rome meant the ultimately ruling force. Ancient Greece, despite being clearly polytheistic, incorporated one Ultimate maxima: according to legend the Delphic Oracle said that no one, not even the god can escape predestined fate. Mysterious Peruvian people of Nazca left gigantic geoglyphs etched in the desert just to propitiate “Future”, and that, by grave irony, led to their downfall. To construct their giant animal drawings they had used trees from a nearby forest. The forest soon was devastated and that had triggered the drought. The whole civilizations was erased from the surface of the planet on the grounds of their belief that “future” was impendent. In ancient Egypt people believed that gods was guiding every living human to their appointed destiny. In this way, a man if becoming successful was not credited himself but the gods who kept his course. Out of inability to look through the veil of present in the future, the idea of “faith” arose. What is “faith” if not the humble disposition of man’s life into some indefinite superior power? However, what is equally interesting is that nowadays people tent to believe in fate, destiny and prophets (luckily Maya proved to be wrong) even more ardently and under news aspects – scientific ones.
Studies of last years presumed that our fate could be in our own genome. Sequence of mutations is defining current particular qualities of a species, and, by extension, its nearest future ones as well. Our DNA conceals the information about our abilities, features, qualities and even aspiration. This very same principle of inheritance is a precise example of how our past influences our future. It is also applicable to our quotidian life as well. An apparent implication: if we want our future to please us, we should better start making it pleasant right now.
Equivocality of the future world is postulated by our own volatility. When a heart of one man is a mystery under the seven seals, who can tell what may this heart stir? It may inflame the hearts of millions and the consequences might be uncontemplated.
Possibilities promised by “Future” are always ambiguous: sometimes chimeric and repulsive, and sometimes compelling and beckoning, – as it has vividly been demonstrated over many works of science fiction. Theories of time travel gave birth to numerous books and films in which many ethical dilemmas and paradoxes occurred.
Supposedly, you built a time machine and went to visit the other Self in the past. Let us for a moment forget the Doc’s Brown ominous admonition of catastrophic consequences of the so-called “grandfather paradox”. Imagine that you are shaking hands with the younger slaphappy Self and that action is taking place in His “present”. Does that mean your “present” (which is left now in the future, obviously) is changed? Is not it contradictious to your “future self”? You have either altered your reality, or remade entire space-time continuum. With that bearing in mind, would someone ever want to travel through time?
Nevertheless, time travelling exists. Even as we speak, - or rather - I make this report, - an unthinkable quantity of the smallest particles travels through time. University of Queensland’s scientists in their work “Extraction of timelike entanglement from the quantum vacuum” (arXiv:1101.2565) discovered that two of more particles can share the same existence. What is truly amazing that they found a new type of entanglement that extends, not through space, but through time (Olson, Ralph, 2011). That claims to give us theoretical possibility to travel into the future or the past avoiding mentioned “grandfather paradox” altogether.
However, the “future” to most of us is an everyday reminder to improve our “present” rather then sophisticated quantum physics. It is an inexorable source of inspiration and virtue for one who is purposeful and ambitious, and of despair for… everyone else. Planning our future correctly could be the most powerful devise in our possession. If you will examine lives of outstanding persons, you will find out that most of them share the same collective trait – disciplined schedule. Ability to manage your time gives you an advantage that hardly could be overestimated. Otherwise, none of these book and programs on “effective time management” would make such a hit.
Overall, thou “children of the future age” (Erdman, et al, 1997) it would be highly vacuous of you not to attend in the making of brighter future, for you reap what you soil.
Psychologists advise to visualize what you crave in order to obtain it. Visualize your future self as if looking through the prism of time. Now, think of all the ways to become that person. That would indeed be a step into the future.
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