“Time is illusive, that is unattainable. If we try to take hold of it by looking at it from the outside, then we cannot even have ordinary refreshments1. When time is caught objectively in a serialization of past, present, and future, it is like trying to catch one’s own shadow. This is negating eternity constantly. The unatainable must be grasped from the inside. One has to live in it and with it. While moving and changing one must become the moving and changing. Emerson in
Brahma, sings of the eternal as ‘one’ in the changing and moving forms of time:
‘They reckon ill who leave me out: When me they fly. I am the wings; I am the doubter and the doubt. And I the hymn the Brahman sings.’
“Where the doubter and the doubt are one, there is Brahma as ‘the pattern of the eternal nature,’ which is God Himself. When the doubter and the doubt are separated and placed in the serialism of time, the dichotomy cuts into every moment of life darkening forever the light of eternity.
“’Living in the light of eternity’ is to get into the oneness and allness of things and to live with it.This is what the Japanese call ‘seeing things sona-mama‘, in their suchness, which in William Blake’s terma is to ‘hold infinity in the palm of your hand, and eternity in an hour.’” ~Daisetz Suzuki
Time is Illusive
Most of us take it for granted that time can be conveniently divided into past, present, and future. But when you try to get into detail, things get illusive. Specifically, when you try to define “the present”. I remember reading recently that according to one person, the “present” can be defined as a period of a few seconds. That is because it takes a few seconds after something occurs for our eyes to see it, transmit the images to the brain, get them interpreted, and react. But that seems to limit the definition of the present to human response. What about a computer that can execute thousands of commands in a second? If it just finished executing an instruction, doesn’t that instruction now become the past? In any case, my point is this. As technology has improved we can cut time into smaller and smaller pieces. This is resulting in what is called the present to get shorter and shorter. In addition, it is true that we are not aware of a thing until a second or two after it happens. So we can’t know anything about the present, only the recent past. So the idea of living in the present only is technically impossible. At best, we must live in the recent past. Continue reading “Unattainable Time, Persistence of Illusion”