Present is a term for a certain period of time not just between elapsed time ( past) and future, future time ( the future). As synonyms for the terms are used today and now. Variously the present is equated with timelessness. Present is the time in which take place all events.

  • 7.1 Literature

Word origin

The term is present is in the German language already in Middle High German, at that time, but only in the sense of " presence ". Only in the 18th century there was a significance extending to a time designation.


Present in said scientific context may refer to:

  • The linguistic realization - the Tempus - of things present
  • The grammatical present tense

The German grammar knows only one tense of the presence of a verb:

  • Present tense (present): I love; I go

See also: Present Tense ( English present tense ).


An excellent present is not an object of physics. There can only be defined and examined by the simultaneity of events the question.

Classical Physics

The arrow of time determines the direction of time from the past to the future. The past consists of the set of all events that are causally related to the event known as the present, this could affect so. This concept of simultaneity is called synchronism.

Quantum mechanics

The Heisenberg uncertainty principle states that time and energy of a quantum leap are not simultaneously determined with arbitrary precision, so the presence of the exact observation is not accessible: The therefore is now a scale- dependent auxiliary concept.

Relativity theory

With the change in the representation of time since the introduction of special relativity by Albert Einstein, the terms past, present and future have undergone a reinterpretation. Since there are two events that occur simultaneously for one observer, for a movable relative to the observer may no longer take place simultaneously ( relativity of simultaneity ), the concept of replacing " Lichtartigkeit " the " simultaneity ", while past and future constitute spaces of events, which are removed to an observer " time-like "; " Raumartigkeit " in turn corresponds to a ratio of two events that may bear no causal connection to each other.

The presence can thus be defined as the coordinate origin of a space-time diagram.

Brain research

The presence Duration: let New neurological and psychological studies suggest that the brain processes the presence in units of about 2.7 seconds. The ordinary language term " moment " is exactly this matter hereof addition, studies suggest that 3 -second units ( when it comes around to the detection of rhyme and rhythm ) and the music are also of importance in poetry.


The presence of standing against the ideas that one forms of the past ( eg, memory, history, origin, cause) and the future ( eg, hope, fear, vision, development).


Only in the present, it is possible for human beings perceive the world and his inner self and thus to enter into contact. To describe the presence in the context of psychotherapy and self-experience for patients touchable, it is the "here and now " called.

  • Attentiveness
  • Perception of time

Philosophical perspective

In the context of philosophy are two aspects of the presence of meaning:

Firstly, there is the contradiction of conscious perceived now and the impossibility to capture the sensual now. That is the question of the nature of time itself.

Secondly, the importance of the here and now in the face of human mortality. Two principally different world views are possible here:

  • The moment as the only to look real. Expressed the " nullity of human works " - the Vanitas - by saying things like carpe diem or memento mori.
  • Despise the moment and subordinate one's own life a goal, I live in the hope of man on it.

In art theory, this contrast reflects approximately in the traditional classification - resist Visual Arts - moment oriented - Performing arts and - work -related.