That thing that keeps one thing right after another from being everything all at once. (Paraphrased from Hyrum Smith of the former Franklin Institute. No endorsement expressed or implied.)
Relativity (in very simple shorthand) tells us that the faster we go, the slower time goes. The corollary to that would be that the slower one goes, the faster time goes. I guess that explains why as a child time seems to drag on and as we age time seems to accelerate with each passing second. I look back on things that feel like they happened yesterday and they in fact occurred years ago.
I wonder how, or even IF, animals sense time. That then leads me to wonder if possibly the story in Genesis about the fall of man and the knowledge of good and evil also involves man becoming aware of this passage of events we call time. What would life be like if we didn’t have to worry about managing this thing which we really and truly don’t understand?
I have a mantra that I repeat quite often. Let’s call it “Clint’s theory of Everything Human” and can be stated thus: if you want to understand something in the human world, follow the money.
With that postulate, we can then begin to understand the current human definition of time. Time is money. And once something, anything, is commodified, despite what the capitalists and market makers will have you believe, it loses all its REAL value. It is now worth only what someone is willing to pay for it. It can be argued that by definition that is exactly what value is. But, value is also what is important. And when money is what is important, the true worth of something tends to get lost in the negotiation.
To illustrate this, let’s look at a person’s life. It is often stated that a life is priceless. However, once life is commodified it then has a price: namely one’s hourly rate. The amount of money your life is worth distilled into one hour increments.
According to that, I’m not worth all that much. And this then brings us to how people value themselves and depression and sense of self worth and numerous other things all tied to . . . drum roll please . . . money.
And we are back to the definition of time. Time is money.
I heard in a prayer yesterday someone say, “God, please make us more effective managers of time.” I wonder what that means? If time is money, then they were asking God to make them more effective managers of money. If time is simply a series of events, then they were asking God to make them better managers of those things that are happening.
In the end, regardless of what time actually is or is not, we have created a way to measure it in units called seconds. The clock ticks them off continuously. We are bound by this thing called time and it rules our daily lives when conjoined to this other thing called money.
Until such a time when we are not.