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I have been thinking a lot recently about how we as human beings perceive time. Some say time is fleeting while others are of the opinion it tediously drags on. So what it boils down to is how we perceive time. To be honest, I have never spent an inordinate amount of time contemplating the meaning of time especially when I was younger. I believe when we are young our lives are so busy we never stop to fully realize how precious the gift of time actually is to us. There are so many examples of both perceptions but I will just give you a few. When you are on the side of feeling as if it's dragging on forever, a great one is how you felt as a kid, thinking Christmas morning would never come. Or when you take any type of test and have to wait for the results. Or maybe waiting for your partner to take out the trash. On the flip side would be when you literally blink and at that moment, suddenly your kids are grown adults and they have flown from the nest. Or when you reach a milestone birthday and choose to reflect on your life experiences up to that point. Or when you feel as if one entire year seems like only a month.
One of the greatest mysteries of life is how we as humans perceive time. I love that old saying, "time flys when you're having fun" I have always thought this was very true. Anytime you're engaging in a fun activity it seems as if time passes way more quickly at the moment. But later on, when you think back on the experience it will seem as if you actually had more time doing it than you had originally thought. And then there is the dreaded, "I'll do it when the time is right". People tend to say this when deliberating whether or not to marry, have children, change jobs, etc. But have you ever stopped to think that there is never really a "right time" for anything? That's because there isn't. There is only the time we are IN. The here and the now. In reality, time is relative and flexible. Albert Einstein said, "the dividing line between past, present, and future is an illusion". Thus, our reality is ultimately timeless. From the view of classical physics, it sounds rather odd but from the view of spirituality, it makes a lot of sense.
One of my favorite authors is Eckhart Tolle. His views regarding time are fairly identical to good old Albert Einstein's. In his book, "The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment" he quotes: "time isn't precious at all, because it's an illusion. What you perceive as precious is not time but the one point that is out of time: the Now. That is precious indeed. The more you are focused on time--past and future--the more you miss the Now, the most precious thing there is". What he means by this is that if you focus your mind repeatedly on either past or future events you will lose out on what is happening in the Now of your life. This particular viewpoint of time spoken by both of these extremely wise, intelligent men resonated greatly within me. Reading what they had to say on the subject literally gave me pause. So, I have been attempting to take their wisdom to heart and retrain my mind to focus more on my thoughts of what is happening in the here and the Now. No more thinking of what has happened to me before or what may or may not happen to me later.
However, as I have discovered, putting this into daily practice is sometimes so much easier said than done! But something wonderfully unexpected has happened whenever I find myself purposefully doing it. I gained so much more of the feelings I have longed for my whole adult life. I have found far more peace, joy, happiness, and fulfillment simply by living fully in the moment I am in. Just being in the Now. It is quite liberating actually. Not to mention it has alleviated a huge amount of stress which is a blessing. I encourage everyone to make the effort and try to frame your thoughts around this mindset in terms of time. It will open your mind and it will definitely show you that the only time worth having is the present moment you are in, the Now.
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