We Come in Peace: Philosophy in Arrival

The other day, I rented a DVD entitled, Arrival, an acclaimed alien sci-fi thriller. I now intend to buy it after a riveting series of plot twists and philosophical notions. Keyly, it entails the ideology of time being non-linear and raises thoughts on the crucial nature of communication.

Time: Everywhere and Always

I’ve previously mentioned the topic of time in blog posts such as ✍Time Travel & Ethics⚡️and ✍The Speed Force & Links to Time Travel⚡️, but the intriguing idea that time is not linear or chronological, but instead an ever-fluid, continual entity that is always happening and can be experienced in a different order, appeals to our interpretation of reality. With stories of prophetic dreams or intuitive actions, this concept that time is non-linear holds significant value.

In Arrival, a squid-like alien-race gift the weapon of ‘timeless’ language to a linguist and the human race. With circle symbols secreted from a sort of alien ink, the extraterrestrials communicate complex sentences and thoughts with easy images that last forever. By understanding the language, the linguist, Louise (expertly conveyed by Amy Adams), gains the capacity to foresee events in her life and alter her future, living in a present simultaneously intertwined with spurts of future and past .

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With circle symbols secreted from a sort of alien ink, the extraterrestrials communicate complex sentences and thoughts with easy images that last forever.

Though fictitious, this philosophy of non-linear time or even as it could be called, cyclical time (coming in a cycle of past, present and future; representing unity of the three), holds relevance to me. Continuously happening, events of the past are still occurring as is the future, except I am only experiencing what I am open to; only experiencing the present of where I am. It makes sense as my future, soon becomes my present which then becomes the past. For example, as I’m writing this sentence, I am in the present. The next word I am about to write, is my future and the words that I have just recorded onto this page, are in my past. What separates these things into respective fragments of time, is merely a matter of when I experience it.

So, if it’s just a matter of when, all these things must co-exist at the same time; as I access the present, the past and maybe even the future (if I’m psychically inclined), at any moment in my mind. Right now, I’m in the present as I type but also the past as I read back this sentence. I might reminisce about my day today: which this morning, was the future, is now the past but was today, part of my present.

What a befuddling topic time is! I shall explore it in more depth through a blog post in the near future…which shall one day be the present… and the past. Screen Shot 2017-04-29 at 1.55.29 pm

Got more time on your hands? Discover more insightful posts on pop culture and philosophy here:

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