Money doesn’t exist in and by itself, isolated from anything else, self-sufficient and immutable.
It’s a mental construct, but one closely related to another mental construct: time.
In order to get a better understanding of money, we need to stop for a while and try to understand our relationship with time. (I know, it’s hardly feasible to get even a glimpse of it in just a few paragraphs, but for the goal of our definition, that will do.)
Let’s start from the fact that we derive meaning (another way to say “we make sense of our reality”) by relating to a past, anchoring ourselves in a present and projecting a future.
Except for the present time, though, which is an always elusive reality, the other two are imaginary. They can’t exist in a sense that they are provable and repeatable. We can’t prove the future and we can’t repeat the past. Sometimes we may “guess” or “predict” the future, and sometimes we do similar things with what we did in the past, but the entire reality encompassed by that specific part of time can neither be repeated, or predicted.
Not to mention that the actual experience of past and future is completely different for different actors. Although we may have witnessed the same event in the past, we don’t have the same experience of it. And although we may see future in the same way, we certainly experience that projection in different ways.
Now here comes the interesting part.
If there won’t be any sequential perception of our interactions, which increments in definable and measurable slices, then money (along with a lot of other stuff in our collective illusion) couldn’t be conceived.
And with that, let’s get back to our definition: the continuum of interaction is the space in which we find all the interactions performed by the total number of actors (or the Population of Actors) and it relies on time.
Without the illusion of time, this continuum can’t exist.
An interaction is a part of reality that must be reinforced in and by time: it gets remembered somehow (or even recorded), and it may generate the need to be repeated in the future by the involved actors.
The perceived value that we may get as a result of an interaction is not immutably linked to the precise moment when we evaluate it, but it must “hold” its value after the interaction.
This “hold” is proportional with the trust invested in it. But more on that soon, when we will talk about trust. For now, let’s just mark once again that if there won’t be an “afterwards”, there won’t by any way for us to determine the perceived value.
Without time, as we imagine it, generating money will be impossible.
The concept of time is closely related to money as we will notice that some perceived value decays (degrades because / as a result of time), preserves itself (in spite of time passing) or even appreciates (again, seemingly unrelated to the passage of time).
The continuum of interactions is a simplified version of the time bounded reality that contains the actors.
This continuum of interactions is also the very fabric of our value perceptions.
Without a continuum of interactions that can be remembered, evaluated, longed for, repelled, feared or wanted, there won’t be any way for us to perceive value.