We are the result of time

The lives of most of us are rather sluggish - like still waters, they are dull, dreary, ugly, and insipid - and some of us, realizing this, bury ourselves in political, social, or religious activities

Published: 13th June 2017 10:06 PM  |   Last Updated: 14th June 2017 05:28 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

BENGALURU: The lives of most of us are rather sluggish - like still waters, they are dull, dreary, ugly, and insipid - and some of us, realizing this, bury ourselves in political, social, or religious activities, and thereby we think we can enrich our lives. 

But surely, such action is not enrichment because our lives are still empty; though we may talk about political reform, yet our minds and hearts continue to be dull. We may be very active socially or may dedicate our lives to religion, yet the meaning of virtue is still a matter of ideas, of mere ideation. So, do what we may, we find our lives to be dull; they are without much significance, for mere action without understanding does not bring about enrichment or freedom.

So, if I may, I would like to talk a little about what is time because I think the enrichment, the beauty and significance of that which is timeless, of that which is true, can be experienced only when we understand the whole process of time. After all, we are seeking, each in his own way, a sense of happiness, of enrichment. Surely, a life that has significance, the riches of true happiness, is not of time. Like love, such a life is timeless; and to understand that which is timeless, we must not approach it through time but rather understand time.

We must not utilize time as a means of attaining, realizing, apprehending the timeless. But that is what we are doing most of our lives - spending time in trying to grasp that which is timeless. So, it is important to understand what we mean by time because I think it is possible to be free of time. It is very important to understand time as a whole, and not partially; but I will have to deal with it as rapidly and as briefly as possible because I have many questions to answer. It is interesting to realize that our lives are mostly spent in time - time, not in the sense of chronological sequence, of minutes, hours, days, and years, but in the sense of psychological memory.

We live by time, we are the result of time. Our minds are the product of many yesterdays, and the present is merely the passage of the past to the future.  So, our minds, our activities, our beings, are founded on time; without time we cannot think because thought is the result of time, thought is the product of many yesterdays, and there is no thought without memory. Memory is time, for there are two kinds of time - the chronological and the psychological. There is time as yesterday by the watch and as yesterday by memory. You cannot reject chronological time, which would be absurd - then you would miss your train.

But is there really any time at all apart from chronological time? Obviously, there is time as yesterday, but is there time as the mind thinks of it? That is, is there time apart from the mind? Surely, time, psychological time, is the product of the mind. Without the foundation of thought there is no time - time merely being memory as yesterday in conjunction with today, which molds tomorrow. That is, memory of yesterday's experience in response to the present is creating the future - which is still the process of thought, a path of the mind.


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