Let’s begin by saying time is a perception, as is all else, except our souls, who are the perceivers. Perceptions are malleable. Past, present and future can happen at the same time, and all can be changed.
The most pertinent question may be what learning, what experiences are to be gained by the passage of time. If human souls are the source of the perception, what transpired in the eons of time before the appearance of humans on this earth may have been captured in a fabricated instant of past remembering. The best way to explain this is to think of a dream that you drop into during sleep. You know who your fellow compatriots are in the dream, remember their history, remember the place the dream is occurring in, and perhaps even remember the history of the civilization you are in during the dream (this actually happened to me in a lucid dream). But you do not know these people in your waking life, nor do you know the place of the dream or the civilization in which the dream occurred. Your soul, by itself, has instantaneously created a whole history of people and place in your dream. It is very real, and very detailed. If your soul can do this for you, cannot the combined Consciousness of all human souls create a detailed perceived past that seems very real, as real as the continual, unfolding perception of current life?
So, if a past can be created thoroughly and instantaneously, and all of human experience is valuable to Consciousness, then perhaps the universe “began” when the first human appeared on earth to begin its job of perception. Or, if human experience of duality wasn’t really valuable until we got past the creation of fire, perhaps the universe “began” with the first flame ignited by human hands. Or, after the wheel was invented, or after the first writing occurred, or after the first World War, or yesterday. And, does it matter when the universe began, if the remembered but nonexistent past is as replete with dualistic experience as the present and future?