1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9 and 10.
It probably took that voice in your head, the whole of a few seconds to comprehend and interpret that to some degree. Okay let’s be honest I’m not a neuroscientist or anything, so don’t take that on authority, at any level…(just saying) I don’t know anything about the inner workings of the mind, or even a tiny bit of empirical knowledge about the brain, but we can safely infer the mind takes “some” time to process information. So of what relevance is this first paragraph of? It illustrates how something, a concept so undoubtedly serene and yet so ugly, can be tragically misunderstood and forgotten. It introduces us to a mistress, cruel and impartial, forever unknowing and distant, Time.
I’d assume most if not everyone understands how this abstract concept works and how it relates to reality to SOME degree. We’re not here to talk about space-time and all that pretty physics that came from a mind so prodigious it practically became associated with and even sometimes synonymous with words like “genius”,”intelligent” and so on. Einstein people, I’m referring to Einstein (well to be fair, we should probably include Albert A. Michelson, Hendrik Lorentz, Henri Poincaré,Max Planck, Hermann Minkowski but I digress).
We’re here for a more “philosophical” pursuit unfortunately, and with all things philosophy its trouble and traps at every dark intellectual corner. Time is exceptionally fascinating but all alone in its abstraction, its gets isolated from meaning every now and then. Take a look at some corner of your laptop,tablet,phone, there lies something; it keeps ticking, seconds consistently and persistently turning into minutes,minutes morph into hours and so on. But what does it mean? wikipedia says :
Time is the indefinite continued progress of existence and events that occur in apparently irreversible succession from the past through the present to the future. Time is a component quantity of various measurements used to sequence events, to compare the duration of events or the intervals between them, and to quantify rates of change of quantities in material reality or in the conscious experience.
Now that we’re in the realm of philosophy, we’re immediately tempted into drifting into an intellectual abyss with the mere mention of things like”indefinite” “existence”,”events”,”material reality” and “conscious experience”. But no such demons will sway our minds tonight, perhaps another time ;). See what I did there?
But such politically (factually) correct terms fail to highlight something we take for granted, time is an ABSTRACT concept, it doesn’t “exist” materially, there’s really no “I’ll be there in 30 minutes” we simply pretend to assign it meaning. Time is a collection of pretty beautiful things that wither and die. These things, memories, Me, you everything and everyone else. They exist, and we buy and sell, trade and steal, experiences and moments. Somehow we depersonalize and oversimplify the concept of time with the numerical “values” ascribed to it(seconds,days,years and so on). We fail and purposefully forget to remember there’s nothing further from the truth.
Yesterday is a liar, tomorrow foretells little and today is never truly today, never truly ours, a mistress forever fickle. For my unfortunate aptitude to express myself in pure prose, I must resort to a rather poetic tone. You get the idea, this seemingly ever-fluid motion through past,present and future called “life”, is documented by an invisible apparition. And we must every now and then remember, she’s immortal in beauty and we sell our lives to her, for nickels and dimes.