Every day we go on a journey through time
It was a wonderful vacation last summer? The sand on your feet, the salty water on your skin, the sun, the sociable evenings with a glass of red wine? How gladly we think back! Or – do we still have to go shopping after work? Write down on a shopping list what we will buy later? Planning the trip to the supermarket?
We have already travelled through time – without consciously noticing it. Once into the past – to our last holiday and another time into the future – to the supermarket where we want to do our shopping later.
Unlike the clock, man has his own time
The time on the clock is called “formal time” by humanists, the time in people’s heads “subjective” time. In our minds we can make wild time journeys, from the past to the future and back – at the speed of light. It’s not even taxing us.
The difference between the times is most obvious in love and boredom
We meet with our love, sit in the cinema, have dinner and talk by candlelight. So much was said – so many glances exchanged. A glance at the clock – hours have passed that seemed like minutes to our loving heart. When we love, hours are like seconds. When we are bored, minutes seem like days. Anyone who has had boring school lessons knows that one of these lessons can last forever.
The older we get, the faster time goes by
Small children do not yet make time travel. Unlike us adults, they always live in the moment. This may be the reason that they are less concerned about the future or are struggling with the past. When we are children, a day is very long. The older we get, the shorter a day becomes. Time begins to fly, faster and faster.
Our watches measure formal time and ensure that we all function in time: Getting the train at the station, arriving on time for work and that we can meet – at the same time and in the same place. But while we agree on a time, each of us lives his own time.
For example, if two people are on a train, they leave at the same time. If one of them thinks of the next weekend, the other of the past romantic night – three times exist in one moment: We travel in time!
In the industrial performance society, the time that can be measured with the clock has gained in importance: it is the unit of measurement with which we produce in our factories. Before it was not absent, it was measured in day, night and seasons.
Stopping time and enjoying the moment
Formal time brings suffering. It brings us the knowledge of the inevitability of our own death and makes it clear to us that we have only limited time to realize our wishes.
Our knowledge that our time is limited whispers to us during each of our time journeys that we should enjoy the moment. If we can do this – then we are young, like a little child – for this moment. For this feeling it is worth being careful.
Susanne GoldFounder & editor of the future and science blog Utopia collector
Futurist, utopian, inventor and social scientist. Seeking utopias and collecting stories. Understands digitization as a departure into a new world – and dreams of a better one.