We Have Only NOW

“What time is it?” “Now.” “Where are you?” “Here.” Adapted from the Way of the Peaceful Warrior by Dan Millman

Time is an illusion created by human beings since the beginning of time. Wait a minute, (or an hour, or a lifetime). Did you just read what you thought you read? Yes, time is an illusion, a very good illusion, but an illusion nonetheless that human beings made up.

Yet, despite this unreality, people of all cultures and all ages believe that time is absolute and measurable, and have we ever measured it. From the Egyptian T-square to the Babylonian sundial, from the water clock to the hourglass, from the moon to the modern day watch, human beings have been transfixed and mesmerized by the passage of time and obsessed with measuring it, perceiving it and experiencing or escaping it. Yet, for all the “accuracy” of a chronometer, we still need an extra day in the western Gregorian calendar every four years to account for the “extra time” and the lunar calendar requires a 13th intercalary month every two to three years to “keep in time” with the naturally occurring seasons.

“Time flies.” “Time is like the wind, it lifts the light and leaves the heavy.” ~Doménico Cieri Estrada

We believe that time is a reality, the minutes are real, that an eight-hour work day is long (or short for those who work a lot). Yet, even in our language, we can begin to feel the malleability, the fluidity, of time. “Time flies when you’re having fun.”  “Time stands still” (when you look into the eyes of your beloved, when you hold your newborn in your arms for the first time). We speak of time or ourselves in time going in “slow-motion” (when we’re about to crash into another car, when we’re making the winning basketball layup). Zall’s Second Law states “How long a minute is, depends on which side of the bathroom door you’re on.”

Unlike Newton who claimed that time is absolute, Einstein has scientifically demonstrated in his theory of relativity that time is relative–that past, future, present all exist simultaneously. We can and have shown this with space travel where one person traveling in a very fast space ship near the speed of light experiences a few minutes or a few hours where another person on Earth experiences that same amount of time as days or weeks.

So why am I taking the time to write about time?

Similar to money and space (the distance between two points), time is relative and infinite. Some may immediately protest, “We only have a limited time between birth and death”. Yet, we don’t need a rocket ship to play with the “amount of time” we have. When we enter into the present, we can experience a timeless quality of infinity, eternity. We have all had these time-less experiences, when we’re playing an instrument, when we’re painting, when we’re playing our favorite sport, when we’re engaging in the flow of our most-loved activities–when time disappears & 3 hours, 7 hours, a day can feel like minutes.

“Time is too slow for those who wait, too swift for those who fear, too long for those who grieve, too short for those who rejoice, but for those who love, time is eternity.” ~Henry Van Dyke

So instead of being in the mode of time-scarcity, we have an opportunity to experience the eternity of now. How? By participating fully in this present moment. The past is a set of memories that only exist in our mind in the present. The future is only a hope or a dream, a mental construct of the present, and we can only experience the “future” when it becomes the present.  We can expand time, lengthen time and be free of time when we are fully here, now, when we are being present. Feel free to read my last blog post below to discover more about how to be present through meditation  https://possibilitiesunlimited.wordpress.com/2012/08/01/stillness-in-the-eye-of-the-storm/.

Much love, Jodi

“God exists in eternity. The only point where eternity meets time is in the present. The present is the only time there is.” ~Marianne Williamson