In the frame of a 'block universe' we all perceive the present at the same time. Imagine astronaut that goes to deep space and when he comes back he starts experiencing things ahead of time.

EDIT: As per request in comments: let's say he is in a time frame that is ahead one minute from the universal.

I believe it is also worth expanding on what 'block universe' means for those who are not familiar with theory.

This is a doctrine called determinism. Main idea is that since all physical objects obey laws of physics and that everything is predefined including your thoughts and future behavior. This can be seen as a Universe where from the beginning to its end it is like a movie that has completely made with every event existing in its own movie frame. It can be observed at any point in time. For example this edit you have already finished reading it - it's just that you from your perception of time haven't reached this point yet. For character it would be one minute ahead of others since he is desynchronised from normal frame of 'now', so he could start reading my edit one minute before I would finish writing it....

How could desynchronization from others with regard to experiencing present manifest itself?

  • $\begingroup$ I guess your answer lies in relativity. $\endgroup$ – Mukul Kumar Dec 5 '16 at 16:05
  • $\begingroup$ So his physical body is at present time but his senses are sensing the world one second ahead? Or he actually exists in a world a second ahead? $\endgroup$ – Juliette Evans Dec 5 '16 at 16:48
  • $\begingroup$ @JulietteEvans his body and mind are ahead of time. $\endgroup$ – Matas Vaitkevicius Dec 5 '16 at 16:49
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    $\begingroup$ How can his body and mind be ahead of time? If so, then what part of him is in the 'right' time? His body has to be in the present while his mind gets senses or thoughts from the future for this question to make any sense. $\endgroup$ – kingledion Dec 5 '16 at 16:53
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    $\begingroup$ That's just very simple time travel to the future. And it actually happens to satellites. GPS satellites have specially modified clocks that go slower than earth clocks because, due to their distance to the earth, they travel through time slower than us earthlings. $\endgroup$ – Annonymus Dec 5 '16 at 17:18

This depends on exactly what you mean by 'ahead'. For now I'm going to assume a fixed period (say ten minutes). There are a few different scenarios:

1: His body and mind are 'ahead':

This guy is pretty simple: He's exactly the same as everyone else. If his body and mind are at the same point in time then for all intents and purposes he isn't 'ahead' of anything. He experiences things and reacts with exactly the same properties as you ten minutes in the future would. To all intents and purposes he's no different.

2: His mind is in the present, his body in the future:

This guy is known as being the slowest person on the planet. On the other hand he can recall events from ten minutes ago with perfect clarity.

3: His body is in the present, his mind is in the future:

This guy will stub his toes a lot. In the best case scenario he can remember what was going on ten minutes ago (where his body is) and behave accordingly, however he is utterly blind in the time between when his body is and when his mind is. If he changes anything in the past based on his future experience then at best he has no idea what is happening to his body based on the effect of those actions, leading to him flailing around trying to react to events that (depending on your particular paradigm of time travel) haven't happened or might not happen at all. At worst he accidentally causes a paradox and the universe implodes... or something. This really depends on how time travel works in your narrative.

4: His view of time is just a bit detached and fuzzy:

This guy is your stereotypical seer. Normally capable of dealing with the real world, occasionally away with the fairies but very helpful. Somewhat reminiscent of Old Mother Dismass.

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  • $\begingroup$ He would probably become a stock market trader and become very rich. He would try to move as little as possible, staying in his living room where his trading desk it located. Because he is so wealthy he lives like a king in a prison. Sometimes he would try to go outside but it would be so dangerous that he is afraid of the oustide world and just stays in his house. He can't communicate with anyone because he takes 10 minutes to answer. $\endgroup$ – Fred Dec 6 '16 at 7:48

Well the person would come across as psychic I would think. Someone who would answer your questions before you asked them. Also they'd be reacting to stimuli that hadn't happened yet, if I'm understanding your question correctly.

Of course, depending on the situation they might just come off as unhinged. Or clumsy, for instance if your astronaut stops in the middle of the sidewalk to avoid tripping someone, but then has someone slam into his back all anyone else would perceive is this person stopping for no reason then stumbling away from a push that didn't happen.

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