The future is the indefinite time period after the present. Its arrival is considered inevitable due to the existence of time and the laws of physics. Due to the apparent nature of reality and the unavoidability of the future, everything that currently exists and will exist can be categorized as either permanent, meaning that it will exist for the whole of the future or temporary, meaning that it won't and thus will come to an end. The future and the concept of eternity have been major subjects of philosophy, religion, and science and defining them non-controversially has consistently eluded the greatest of minds. It is the opposite of the past. In the Occidental view, which uses a linear conception of time, the future is the portion of the projected time line that is anticipated to occur. In special relativity, the future is considered to be absolute future or the future light cone. In physics, time is considered to be the fourth dimension of the universe.
In the philosophy of time, presentism is the belief that only the present exists and the future and the past are unreal. Religions consider the future when they address issues such as karma, life after death, and eschatologies that study what the end of time and the end of the world will be. Religious figures such as prophets and diviners have claimed to see into the future. Organized efforts to predict or forecast the future may have derived from observations by early man of heavenly objects.
Future studies, or futurology, is the science, art and practice of postulating possible futures. Modern practitioners stress the importance of alternative and plural futures, rather than one monolithic future, and the limitations of prediction and probability, versus the creation of possible and preferable futures.
In art and culture, the future was explored in several art movements and genres. The futurism art movement at the beginning of the 20th century, explored every medium of art, including painting, sculpture, poetry, theatre, music, architecture and even gastronomy. Futurists had passionate loathing of ideas from the past, especially political and artistic traditions. Instead, they espoused a love of speed, technology, and violence. Futuristic music involved homage to, inclusion of, or imitation of machines. Futurism expanded to encompass other artistic domains and ultimately included industrial design, textiles, and architecture.
Famous quotes containing the word future:
“Common sense should tell us that reading is the ultimate weapondestroying ignorance, poverty and despair before they can destroy us. A nation that doesnt read much doesnt know much. And a nation that doesnt know much is more likely to make poor choices in the home, the marketplace, the jury box and the voting booth...The challenge, therefore, is to convince future generations of children that carrying a book is more rewarding than carrying guns.”
—Jim Trelease (20th century)
“That children link us with the future is hardly news. . . . When we participate in the growth of children, a sense of wonder must take hold of us, providing for us a sense of future. Without the intimation of concrete individual futures, it is hardly worth bothering with social change and improvement.”
—Greta Hofmann Nemiroff (20th century)
“The future is just as much a condition of the present as is the past. What shall be and must be is the ground of that which is.”
—Friedrich Nietzsche (18441900)