In Einstein's theory of relativity, we start with describing events as coordinates in 4D Minkowski space. All events that have occurred in the past and future would then be represented as points in this 4D block structure. But is this not in direct contradiction with our experience of time? Why does anything at all happen then?
Consider a 2D being living in 2D space. For our purposes of visualization of this being's time as a dimension, we take the 3rd dimension. Now any dynamical behavior of this particle would be captured as a series of successive "slides" that grow the height of this box. But if we know the mathematics of the dynamical laws, we can compute and build this box ourselves, and this box will be identical to the first box. When we view this box, we can find no information that tells us that this being is in this slice of time rather than that slice of time. There is no implicated direction, only a static block. So why is it that this 2D being should "feel" the flow of time?
If we ourselves live in a 4D block universe, described by a set of equations that are completely deterministic, shouldn't we too not experience time at all? What then causes the illusion of "flow", that enables us to talk about the "present" rather than the future or the past? Is this indicative of a shortcoming of all mathematical models of the universe?
The way I see it, any mathematical description of the universe, if it exists in principle, should predict all events from the creation to the end of the universe at once. Like a solution to a set of equations exists, whether or not we choose to go through the calculations, spend time with it, and arrive at the solution, it exists regardless. Similarly, if a theory of everything is mathematical, why is it not simultaneously a static unchanging solution? The universe "knows" what its initial conditions are and subsequently the entire future of it is determined, so why does a need for passage arise, as evidenced by our experience? The solution already exists, no need for a computation, implying no evolution of state and no passage of time.
So how do we reconcile the fact that any mathematical theory of the universe will incorporate a dynamical nature to it, that is unknown prior till it actually happens? Does it mean that the laws of the universe themselves change over time, giving rise to a notion of time, a present fundamentally different from the past, circumventing the need for a static solution, providing a direction of time?