Time on My Hands

Time is such a strange invention.

Time is an illusion, a man-made creation designed to delineate, to count moon cycles, to mark the days. Time is infinite, but we covet it and hoard it and act as if there’s not enough of it.

We make time. We find time. We lose time. We kill time.

There seems to be only a finite amount of it. We imagine there are only twenty four hours in a day. No more, no less.

But is that really true? Some minutes pass quickly, some slowly. Does time itself speed up or slow down, or does our perception change?

The obvious answer is the latter. Time is static, right? There were no more or no fewer minutes in the last few moments than in the few moments before that. So how we perceive the passage of time determines how fast or slow our minutes tick by.

So we control time.

We choose how fast or slow time passes. That choice, though, and the implementation of our control is still a theoretical concept, at least for me.

I’m sitting here waiting. There are other things I could be doing, but even if I was doing those things, I’d still be waiting. Sometime soon, my waiting will be over. The thing I’m waiting for will happen. Meanwhile, it’s really hard to wait.

And while I wait, no matter what I do, it seems as if I’m simply biding time, killing it, trying to devour it in large chunks in order to get to that point in time when the thing I’m waiting for happens and….

Then what? Will I finally be happy?

Maybe I should’ve listened to Mom when she admonished me to “be patient.”

But she didn’t tell me how to be patient. Truthfully, I don’t think I ever asked, but even if I had, I don’t think she would’ve had an answer.

Patience is mean some days, taunting me, sticking its tongue out and saying “nah-nah-nah-nah-naaaaah, you can’t get me.” Hateful!

But then I observe that when I’m engaged, like, say, when I’m writing a blog post, I don’t need or want patience. Patience could stick its tongue where the sun don’t shine as far as I’m concerned, because the current moment is all there is.

Time no longer exists.

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1 Comment

  1. mike and brandy

     /  March 20, 2013

    i have to disagree with you that time is an illusion or an invention of man. we all know frfom experience that the old wives tale (apologies to all the old wives out there) “a watched pot never boils” isn’t really true. no matter our ‘experience’ or ‘measure’ of the time it takes, it boils right ‘on time’ with the laws of physics and thermodynamics… with us watching or not.

    the same is true of Time. time passes, regardless of the measurments in seconds, minutes, hours, or even millenia. our ‘experience’ of it, be it subjective to us, or made more ‘objective’ by agreement with other’s experience of it or a timepiece or a constant measuring stick, what we know as Time itself continues on without the help of our measurement or lack of experiencing it (like when you’re sleeping thru that chick flick your ‘old wife’ wants to watch before going to bed).

    time is not an illusion. time most definitely exists. it is not subject nor can it be to the individual predilections or relative experinces of it. we don’t move it, we move thru it. and i think that’s the point. “how then shall we live?” with only limited resources, limited time each new day? I believe we would both agree with Henry David Thoreau when he emplored to all of us “simplify, simplify, simplify”
    thanks for the opportunity to contribute.


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