Time, again

How do we sense the passage of time in daily living? One way of course is to know the physical sense of time: the sun rises and sets, we fall asleep and wake, our fingernails grow longer, we become hungry and full and hungry again.

If we were only left with this physical sense of the passage of time, we would have not many problems in life. But apart from this purely physical sense of time, we have a mental time, or what Krishnamurti would call psychological time.

Psychological time involves yesterday and tomorrow. It involves a sense of me smeared across past, present and future. And because of this, it involves emotions such as fear and regret. Time and emotion both seem to construct each other. I am afraid because I project a future. I feel guilt and regret because I look back at the past.

Time, thought and emotion are all deeply interwoven.

But because the present moment is the only reality we have (and the present moment lacks the dimension of a smeared out time), time itself may be a distortion of reality. Also, if the ego is in a sense out of touch with reality, and the ego is bound up with time-emotion, again this suggests that time is a distortion of reality.

In a logical sense we may see this, but how do we understand deeply the role and limitation of mental time in daily living?

Watching the flow of time and the way the ego is caught in its clutches. Perhaps the sense of watching itself is timeless. This awareness is what we deepen in ourselves.

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3 thoughts on “Time, again

  1. Here and now. And nothing more. I could only wish. I try to set up my future on a grand scale and then just take it day by day, and try really hard to not dwell into the past, but learn from past lessons. It is difficult because the mind wants what the mind wants.

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    1. I agree, this is our biggest challenge. And yet I sometimes wonder: is describing it as “a challenge” falling into the time trap again? In the sense: asking how I am supposed to do this staying-in-the-present thing better might be looking for a method, like how to improve at playing the guitar. And then I’m back where I started! Using time to improve myself.

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