Due to many topics of confusion in the previous post “THE PRICE OF TIME”, I decided to post a simplified version of the previous post. In this post, I’ve omitted the use of confusing terms like ‘absolute reality’, ‘relative reality’ and some scientific terms that I used much frequently in my previous post. I hope this post will be simpler to understand than the previous version of this post. I’ve tried to design the layout of text in such a manner that anyone can easily understand it without going deep into the scientific theories and their postulates.
Just like the previous post, let’s begin the journey by trying to define time! Can you define ‘time’? What is the physical or practical meaning of ‘time’ when we see it from the perspective of our life? When you are looking at your watch or the clock hanging on your wall, what are you actually at? Are you watching the movement of the hands of clock and trying to relate their motion or relative position to your current life events? There can be two approaches to this answer; one of which has already been explained in the previous version of this post. The second approach that is devoid of any scientific or philosophical explanations is now being revealed in this post!
“Time is that element of nature that tells you the direction of your life; it’s like an arrow that shows you the direction towards which your life ‘may’ proceed.”
The word ‘may’ is used here because the direction of your life can be voluntarily changed by your own will by making ‘decisions’. You may relate it with the term ‘fate’. Time takes you to the journey of your fate. You may have the belief that ‘fate’ is pre-decided by the Creator or GOD Himself; but this doesn’t allow you to conclude that you can’t change or modify or re-define it! Our ‘fate’ is decided by our decisions. Our decisions design our fate. Time is that line on which our journey of ‘fate’ lies. Every decision that you make creates a new line which diverges from a straight line that depicts your original fate. So, that means your every decision creates a new diverging line; but in the end all these lines again coincide with this line of fate. The original line of fate begins with ‘birth’ and ends on ‘death’. The end of this central line is the end of ‘fate’ and thus the end of life.
The adjacent figure describes it more clearly. The coloured lines diverging from the straight solid black line are your life paths that you chose at your own will by making decisions. The more decisions you make, the more diverging lines you will create. But these lines ultimately meet the center black line before the end of life.
Every newly born creature brings with him, his original fate; which he can alter by his own will. In this line, anything can be changed but not the beginning and the end. Birth is ‘necessary’ and death is ‘unavoidable’. Except these two fixed realities, everything else can be changed in life by a person’s strong will. Now question arises, what does the black center line denotes here? This center black line is the original line of your fate. Had you left everything on fate, then your life would have followed this line. But as you make decisions at your own will, you actually change the regular path of this fate by using your will power. That means you are actually modifying your fate in the way you want it to be; in the way you actually believe it to be. This is what our awakened minds teach us, that your life is actually the way you believe it to be. Your beliefs shape your life. But one thing is worth observing here, i.e. the direction of TIME. The direction and pace of time remains same, doesn’t matter which line you are following. This is the universal truth. That’s why I introduced my concept of relative and absolute realities in the previous version of this post. In absolute reality, time remains same for everyone. But in the relative world, as ours, time varies from person to person. For some, time may seem to progress too fast; for others, it may seem to move too slowly; and yet for many others, it may seem to be progressing normally. This is because the pace of time varies from perception to perception. A person who is stuck in problems may observe time to be progressing slowly because he thinks that he has made a wrong decision and chosen wrong line of fate. Now, when he looks carefully at various possibilities, he comes to a conclusion that ‘my life would have been much better if I had chosen the other path’. This belief makes him regret his past and as we know that our beliefs shape our life, therefore, for him, his life becomes what he believes – full of sorrows and problems.
Actually, time remains same in pace and direction for every path of fate you traverse. It is actually our wrong belief of regretting our decision that makes us feel that time is progressing slowly. If, even on the wrong path, you believe you are right, then time for you will be progressing normally. Same things happen when a person is too happy from his life. A person who is very happy from his life may observe time to be progressing very fast because he never really wants to be satisfied with what he has. He wishes for more and more. He wishes that happiness should either be higher in intensity or higher in duration or both. This belief makes him feel that time is always less for him. But actually, it is never so! If a person learns to be satisfied with what he has, then he will never seem to be short of time and thus, for him, time will progress normally. It’s really that simple; you just have to re-define your beliefs. This is my way of looking at TIME.
There’s one more thing that is again a part of universal truth about TIME. Time may seem to change in pace for different persons in different situations, but it can never change in direction! Time always flows in same direction like an arrow (as we generally say).
(P.S.: The above statement is valid even from the scientific perspective. As postulated by the great scientist and physicist Stephen Hawking, there may be possibility of time travel to our ‘future’ but not to the past. That means we can travel through time but only in future, i.e., in the forward direction on the direction of time. This clearly justifies that time is always constant in direction.)
In our life, we generally judge time by looking at watches; but time is actually not measured by watches or clocks, it is actually measured by the sequence of events of our life. Like, day and night are the events that occur regularly; the sunrise and sunset are regular events; and many more. It is not their repeated occurrence that gives us the idea of passage or progression of time, but it is their countable sequence that gives us the sense of time. Days and nights do not tell anything about time, but the ‘number’ of repeated sequences of day and night gives us the sense of time. Similarly, it is the number of repeated sequences of sunset and sunrise that give us the sense of progression of time. So, from practical point of view, it is calendar that tells us precisely about the progression of time, rather than clocks. Because calendar represents the sequence of days that progress in just one direction; unlike clock that repeats the same time every day without giving any idea about the sequence of events.
Now, before ending this long journey, one more mystery needs to be unveiled. The line of fate has a beginning and an end. But what happens to time when the life of a person ends? Answer…TIME continues to move on! Time keeps flowing; it doesn’t depend whether the person is alive or dead, time never dies. Time ends for the person who dies, but for others, it keeps moving! The actual or absolute end of time means the end of all creation, the end of a civilization. With this, I conclude that “Time is like an arrow that always moves by pointing in same direction with constant speed; and life progresses in the direction of time with the speed we decide at our own will.”
©Varun K. Sharma