For years, when reading about temporal and inter-universal travel, I wondered if this would violate the conservation of energy. In the former, since the event exists within the same universe, it would suggest no. However, in the latter.....well, a black hole is effecitively its own universe. Yet, according to the theory of Hawking radiation, it isn't completely closed. It eventually bleeds itself back into its parent. Only just now, this to me would suggest that parent universes - across branes, that is - may be no different. In which, case, energy is conserved. There is no such thing as paradox, as the Cosmos is the superset, each universe sharing (or allowed to share) with another.
In thinking about the timeline, particularly of the Stone, in EON, it would seem much more likely that the invocation of the Way whipped it back in a loop along its own timeline. The Death was inevitable in either case (Stone - no Stone), only delayed slightly as the Stone had been around for a few years - distracting, but ultimately confirming destiny.
From: Greg Bear
I've wondered about time travel myself--mostly because there's an awful lot of energy involved in, say, writing a book, and if that book--a condensed form of evolution, some might opine--ends up in the past, does that violate conservation of energy? As for the Stone--the physics of that whipping across alternate universes is way beyond me. Patricia's tried to explain it, but I zone out when she gets to the nested Mersauvin functions and fractal Eigenvalues.
From: Rouald Laurenson
Just struck me delightful, Greg - your energy in the book-writing condensed [matter?] evolution metaphor ;).
Also your Patrikian answer to Sophe-more-ism, with its kindly hand on offer...
I have just been appreciating my way through Eon once more (you said compliments could come at any time).
It's very good to see how many facets are actually on offer, how the glimpse method with these characters carrys so much richness in their moments, and their explorations.
Apologies for too much condensation here ;)
From: Greg Bear
Thanks, Rouald! And thanks also that there's no math in your response...