The vacuum catastrophe refers to the discrepancy between the predicted and detected values of repulsive vacuum energy. To tackle the issue, we start from a model of inflation in a time-symmetric quantistic vacuum, which, due to the Mandelstamm-Tamm inequality, leads to a trapping of a part of the original vacuum during the formation of our closed Universe. We show how the energy of our cosmos is stored in two different compartments, the microscopic quantistic vacuum and the macroscopic detectable cosmos. If we take into account, at the time of the Big Bang, the occurrence of time symmetry breaking into our Universe, we achieve a macroscopic energetic system governed by the second law of thermodynamics, where time acts like a continuous gauge field able to progressively increase the entropy. Our framework makes it possible to assess, among other issues, the vacuum catastrophe, to calculate the minimum three-dimensional volume of the pre-Big Bang vacuum and to make previsions for the future evolution of the two energetic compartments.