There's a lot of passivity in The Time Machine, from people lounging in their awesome chairs all day, to entire societies giving up when the monsters come to get them, to the world no longer spinning. The most obvious example of passivity is the laziness and weakness of the Eloi, who can't keep up with the Time Traveller. Similarly, there's the laziness of the 19th-century dinner guests. Maybe they work hard during the day, but what we see is mostly people sitting around after dinner, drinking and talking. Third, we could also talk about passivity on the cosmic scale. When the Time Traveller visits the very distant future, it seems that the universe has lost energy and slowed down.
The Time Machine makes two contradictory predictions about the universe: 1) everything will slow down and stop; 2) everything will continue to change.
While the Time Traveller has bad things to say about passivity, the novel shows that action doesn't always pay off.