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A temporal distortion or a temporal disruption is a form of damage to space and time that can be attributed to time travel, quantum chronodynamics and probability mechanics, often causing phenomena which can lead to the creation of an alternate reality, an alternate future or a parallel universe, a paradox in respect to the known universe.

Some well known examples of distortion of reality are the mirror universe, the Kelvin timeline, the mycelial network, anti-time phenomena, and other levels of quantum mechanics probability which challenge the concept of knowing if the universe of an observer was ever concretely a "primary universe", or if it is continuously changing in a fluid manner. Contact with the Federation Starfleet by the Travelers, the Prophets and the Q Continuum in the 24th century challenged Humans in particular to test their ability to perceive their place in the universe despite knowledge that time and reality is not immutable or linear, following the discovery of various time travel effects in the 22nd and 23rd centuries. (TOS episode & Star Trek 3 novelization: Mirror, Mirror; TOS movie, novelization & comic adaptation: Star Trek; Star Trek: Discovery; Star Trek: Enterprise; TNG episode & novelizations: Encounter at Farpoint, All Good Things; TNG episode: "Where No One Has Gone Before"; DS9 episode & novelizations: Emissary, What You Leave Behind; TOS novels: The Entropy Effect, The Wounded Sky)

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