If you could travel through time, would you? Which way would you go, forward or backward? What if you went forward and the world no longer existed when you arrived?
If you went backward, why? Right a wrong? Warn of an impending disaster? Fix a relationship? Change history? Make yourself wealthy?
Today I was catching up on podcasts while running, and the National Public Radio program “This American Life” had broadcast an interesting show on November 7, 2014 (yes, I’m that far behind) entitled “The Leap” with “stories of people who leap from their lives, their comfort zones…even through time.” Act Two discussed recent research about people’s views on time travel. If that’s your thing, it’s at http://www.thisamericanlife.org/radio-archives/episode/539/the-leap.
Me? Three thoughts come to mind —
— At the end of my life, it would be interesting to be able to go back to a critical decision point, say the choice of college or a course of study, and take a different path. My present life has turned out pretty well. But could I do better? Would another career have been more fulfilling?
— As a history nerd, there would be a great temptation to go back in time and substitute myself for someone else — some notorious tyrant or despot. Think of all the tragedy that could have been adverted! About a dozen situations immediately come to mind.
— But as a practical matter, I don’t see how time travel could ever be possible, and thus this is a useless exercise to begin with.
So what do you think?