Have you ever thought of what the world could look like if someone had figured out a way to invent things we’ve seen in movies, comic books, novels, and all things science fiction. What would it be like to finally and officially know without a doubt that we aren’t alone in the universe? What if we found out there’s another planet exactly like earth, with creatures like humans, living out lives much like we would. What would that do to us? Would be as firm and unwavering about what we believe about ourselves, our history, or even our creation? I think it would test the core of our existence.
I’ve often thought about what it would be like to find such life on another planet. I’ve dreamed up a world, all its inhabitants, and imagined myself being the one who interviews them. I ask them question after question about their history, their beginning, and their understanding of how and why they exist. What if their version of the Bible was a version in which Jesus never came to die for them? Or what if He came and only chose a few? Or what If they had no knowledge of God at all? That would probably be even easier for most Evangelicals. They would deduce that they need to hear about God and try to save all the souls and claim the planet…or something.
But what if they had a completely different story all together? What would that do to what YOU believe? Should it have any impact on what you believe at all? Maybe. Maybe not.
Lets go back to the idea of seemingly impossible inventions. What if we finally get around to inventing flying cars? How different would every day life be? How many hours a day do you spend driving from one place to another? I feel like I spend the majority of time in my car. So its a pretty big deal to me. But it wouldn’t be economically ideal, to say the least. Everyone would be exponentially more dangerous to the world around them… Ok, maybe flying cars should never happen. But what about cars that drive themselves? Think about the possibilities! We could have wifi hotspots built into every car, and seats that swivel! People could have meetings in their cars, families could play games, friends could socialize. Our whole world would be changes forever.
Think about the implications of someone discovering how to build a time machine. This one may be one of the most fascinating inventions to ponder. A time machine would create a multitude of possibilities beyond our wildest imagination. It could also be the most dangerous (Ex: The Butterfly Effect). But what if we had a time machine that wouldn’t just take our current selves back to a place in time to some random place in history, where we would be independently existing and able to change the entire course of history as we know it, but rather a machine that would transport us back to a place in our own lives, where we could live out our lives from a certain point on? Then the only course of history we would be changing is our own. I’d imagine that most of us actually consider this possibility indirectly all the time. We constantly think about mistakes we’ve made, roads we went down, directions we took, and think about what we would do if we did it all over again. Some things we’d do the same, and some we’d do differently. Some things we may just want to re-live agin. Some things we would want to ensure to never happen in the first place.
Life has a funny way of revealing things about ourselves that are less than pleasant to look at. I think back to all the times I’ve fallen on my face, picked myself back up again, and kept going, regardless of my lack of faith that I could do it again. There were so many times people consistently let me down in various ways.
There are patterns, these consistencies, constants, that are always there. I could easily be led to believe that no matter how many times I went back and tried to do things differently, the outcome would most likely be the same. I think maybe what we so easily forget is, no matter what choices we make, people are still the same. Everyone has their issues. People’s baggage so easily becomes who they are. Our experiences define us, in a sense.
Maybe the “time machine” theory would work if everything that ever happened to us was completely our fault, but often times it isn’t our fault, but rather a consequence of the universal system. Sometimes life just gets the best of us. But we’re resilient. In the end, no matter what version of our lives we live out, most outcomes would ultimately be the same. Its just the way the universe works.
We are stuck. We are trapped in a world defined by laws. These laws hold everything together. People have a habit of blaming every bad thing on everything and everyone but themselves. Because there’s no way any of the choices you’ve made could have led you to the place you are in now, right? No, the problem is that no one wants to take responsibility for their actions anymore. They just want to keep living life their way, and expect everyone else to go along with it. But when you raise up an entire generation of people who all feel this way…Well…We will all make each other miserable, which is the case most of the time. We make ourselves, and everyone around us miserable. We are always trying to find ways to create our perfect worlds, yet, if we actually got what we so desperately seem to want, we wouldn’t be very pleased. I bet most often the things we think we hate about people are actually the things we love and need in our lives. The problem is that most of the time the things we need most are the very things that contradict our selfishness and overwhelming self-absorption.
With the mess that we create, do you really think a time machine would change anything? I don’t think so.
So that is basically my thought process when contemplating a reality in which a time machine was invented. Things probably wouldn’t be that different. People would just keep trying to rewrite history, with the result being the same, or worse. We already try to do that all the time, and its not working that well for us now.
Maybe there’s a reason some dreams should never become a reality.