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Time IS Relative! September 14, 2011

Posted by nrhatch in Magick & Mystery, People.

Time is relative.

Our pace of life and perspectives on time vary from country to country, city to city, and even from parent to child.

We enter the world as present oriented hedonists.  We live in and for the moment.  We want to maximize pleasure and minimize pain.

Over time, we are socialized to adopt the preferred perspective on time shared by our respective culture.  Be that Past, Present, or Future.

Cultures with a future orientation (e.g., the Protestant Work Ethic) encourage delayed gratification ~ a nose to the grindstone approach to life and its many challenges.

* Always put off until tomorrow what you could enjoy today. 

Cultures oriented in the present savor the moment, lingering over meals and celebrating the sensual pleasures of life.

* Life is uncertain . . . eat dessert first. 

Present oriented hedonists discount the future consequences of today’s choices.  They overeat, exercise too little, and spend too much.

Future oriented puritans often postpone pleasure for future reward.

Of course,  that future may never arrive.

So . . . who’s got the right idea?

Thoughts to Ponder:

* Time is our most valuable and irreplaceable commodity ~ a bank account which mandates daily withdrawals, prohibits deposits, and pays dividends when we spend it wisely.

* It doesn’t really matter how fast you’re going if you’re heading in the wrong direction. ~ Stephen Covey

* Life is stirred with a slow spoon.  Be patient.  Let the future unfold.

* A man who views the world at fifty the same as he did at twenty has wasted thirty years of his life. ~ Muhammad Ali

* Make the most of this moment . . . you’ll never pass this way again.

Related posts:  Surprising Research Re: Motivation * Changing Education Paradigms * HATCH ~ Uniting Creative Minds * Common Sense Ain’t So Common * Relax . . . Time Is On Your Side * Uncorked (The Only Cin) * Playing With Time (Woman Wielding Words) * 5 Before 25 and Paths (Maggie Writes)



1. creatingreciprocity - September 14, 2011

A balance is usually best don’t you think? Enjoy and live in the moment in the full and certain knowledge that the past exists and has a place but not a dominance and in hope for a future that needs some – but not all – of our attention and focus.

nrhatch - September 14, 2011

Well put, Trisha. We can live happily ever after on a moment by moment basis if we pay attention to what is offered here and now . . . but (especially when we are young) we must also prepare to greet the future that is coming around the bend.

Hang on . . . the future is next!

2. Thorny Rose - September 14, 2011

Wow! What a great post! I grew up in an extremely “future-oreinted” household. Now, I’m living in Chile, a much more “present-oriented hedonist” culture. While Chileans do seem to work a lot, they also tend to “overeat, exercise too little, and spend too much.”

No wonder I’m confused!

nrhatch - September 14, 2011

I found this video quite eye opening. It explains to me why “common sense” ain’t so common ~ because common sense must be based on shared perspectives of the world.

If we live in a stable world, it makes sense to focus on DREAMS FOR THE FUTURE.

Hang on . . . the future is next!

If we live in a tumultuous world, it makes sense to focus on NOW:

Live today . . . for tomorrow we die.

3. theonlycin - September 14, 2011

I’m battling against time with work deadlines and suffering much stress, time to kick back and award myself some r&r, thanks 🙂

nrhatch - September 14, 2011

Do that!

Aah . . . that’s better! 😎

4. spilledinkguy - September 14, 2011

This is something I struggle with…
what I would want to do having less time vs. what I would need to do if I’m lucky enough to have more time…
those things really seem to be at odds…

nrhatch - September 14, 2011

I would like to know WHEN I am going to die . . . valuable information for planning purposes, eh?

* If I’m going to die next week . . . pass the chocolate!
* If I’m going to die next year . . . I quit! I’ve worked long and hard enough, thank you very much.

* If I’ve got decades to go before I sleep . . . I better take the time to exercise, eat right, and get enough sleep.

5. LittleMissVix - September 14, 2011

I always struggle with time and work eats up far too much in my opinion but we do need to think more about making the most of our time and living for today!

nrhatch - September 14, 2011

Indeed! Seize the day.

6. Lisa (Woman Wielding Words) - September 14, 2011

It’s so funny that you wrote this today, as I wrote my post this morning before I had access to the internet. We are on the same wavelength http://lkramer14.wordpress.com/2011/09/14/playing-with-time/

nrhatch - September 14, 2011

Timely post . . . perfect timing! 😀

7. SuziCate - September 14, 2011

I’m all for eating dessert first, and if there’s any left over I’ll have it for breakfast the next day!

nrhatch - September 14, 2011

And we’re all for baking cooking BEFORE the storm to eat by candlelight! 😉

8. souldipper - September 14, 2011

As I was chopping my wood before the rains came, I was thinking about how grateful I am that my body still lets me chop a cord of wood and stack it in two days, ready for winter days. I decided it was Zen and the Art of Wood Preparation. It’s accepting that Nature has the upper hand and I have to work with it – whether the dictates are from weather or my body aging.

As I rested in the middle of this – a speaker talked about how our perfectionism spurs us on to ego-driven goals. I kind of like being older and knowing that the goals are completely changeable when necessary.

When I was younger, I ran like the goals were carved in cement! I could have enjoyed them more had I really embraced the concept of doing what I could in the present. The joy of being older – the goals are mostly mine.

Perhaps I’ve accepted my power more by realizing it all works out in the end.

Nancy, I don’t know if I’ve said a thing! But it’s sure been good to sit & look at my stacked wood while enjoying a decaf latte and a chat with a good blogger friend. Bwwaaahhhaaa!

souldipper - September 14, 2011

Oh, and P.S. – I love the self-portrait of Escher. He was a marvelous manipulator of natural laws and lines!

nrhatch - September 14, 2011

Chop wood . . . carry water!

I’ve enjoyed our cyber chat. It is good getting older and being more self-directed in our goals and priorities. We choose how to spend our time . . . and how to savor our “free time.”

Aah . . . that’s better! 😎

Debra - September 15, 2011

I agree. 🙂

‘The joys of being older – the goals are mostly mine.’

‘Perhaps I’ve accepted my power more by realizing it all works out in the end.’ ~ Great insight (both)

When Ego is taken out of the picture…all that is left is Bodhichitta.

thanks for a warm wake-up post Nancy, and thanks to everyone’s replies…all very community -feeling. 🙂

nrhatch - September 15, 2011

Debra ~ I expect that you’d be fascinated by A Stroke of Insight.

My take on her TED talk: when we meditate, we leave the Left Brain and enter more fully into the Right Brain.

9. Pseu - September 14, 2011

So many truths!

nrhatch - September 14, 2011

The video gave me some real insights into why “common sense” is not so common . . .

We are playing on different fields with different rules so it’s no real surprise that our differing vantage points yield different points of view on what does (or does not) make sense.

Make sense?

10. nuvofelt - September 14, 2011

Your life is an occasion – live up to it! Make the most of whatever, whenever. Now is the time……

nrhatch - September 14, 2011

We are HERE. And it is NOW. What else is there?

11. kateshrewsday - September 14, 2011

My head says sow as you would like to reap, and on reflection, I think my heart agrees.

nrhatch - September 14, 2011

Some delayed gratification is necessary if we do not wish to end up FAT, LAZY, and STUPID. 😆

12. thirdhandart - September 14, 2011

A very good, thought-provoking post!
I like the Muhammad Ali quote:
“A man who views the world at fifty the same as he did at twenty has wasted thirty years of his life.”

nrhatch - September 14, 2011

I love that quote ~ consistency is over-rated!

Who cares who I was yesterday? Not me. We should change, grow, and evolve as we grow. If we don’t, we stagnate.

13. Pocket Perspectives - September 14, 2011

Ah ha…that time confusion again!
And for a change of pace? (pace=to do with time, right?) ….if you scroll all the way to the bottom of this linked post….it’s a post about “sweet blogs”…well, Nancy, sometimes your are “sweet”…really you are.. : ) ….But… I decided to add a new category to that “plain old sweet” category…the new category? The “Wonderfully Strident, With Some Sweet Mixed In” : ) …and you got it.. http://pocketperspectives.wordpress.com/2011/09/14/irresistibly-sweet/ (hey, it’s kind of fun having my own blog and making up anything I want….:cool: )

nrhatch - September 14, 2011

I am laughing out loud . . . but not too stridently! 😆

Thanks, Kathy. I’ll swing round and take a peek!

14. Maggie - September 14, 2011

The point of life is to have fun while we’re here, but to also be responsible. (At least… that’s the way I see it.)

nrhatch - September 14, 2011

That balance is key, Maggie.

Seize the day . . . but keep an eye out for the future in which you wish to reside.

15. Julie - September 14, 2011

I’m reading a book right now that discusses time as a function of our brain and that it is not “real.” Have you read Stroke of Insight, by Jill Bolte Taylor? Fascinating!

nrhatch - September 14, 2011

She gave a TED Talk about it in 2008. Amazing stuff!

16. jannatwrites - September 15, 2011

Life is too short, we must eat dessert first.

Then, I’ll jog around the block a few times in hopes that it does my body enough good that I can repeat in the future.

See, I can straddle the line between present and the future and be happy (and eat my cake too?)

nrhatch - September 15, 2011

You rock! 😎

17. adeeyoyo - September 15, 2011

Hahaha, Nancy, I love your take on this!

Love your quotes, but must beg to differ from this one:

It doesn’t really matter how fast you’re going if you’re heading in the wrong direction. ~ Stephen Covey

It DOES matter because you could have much further to retrace your steps!

nrhatch - September 15, 2011

You’ve got a point . . . unless they’re just spinning their wheels or running around in circles. 😆

18. sonsothunder - September 15, 2011

What a “Moment” life is…at least, here on this earth.
God Bless You

nrhatch - September 16, 2011

Namaste! _/!\_

19. jeanne - September 15, 2011

* A man who views the world at fifty the same as he did at twenty has wasted thirty years of his life. ~ Muhammad Ali I concur!

nrhatch - September 16, 2011

We live, we learn, we laugh . . . and we let go of X to make room for Y.

20. bluebee - September 16, 2011

A very interesting and thought-provoking post, Nancy – now, I’m off to have dessert for breakfast

nrhatch - September 16, 2011

Good plan. Eat dessert! 😀

21. bluebee - September 16, 2011

The video clip section on La Lega highlights the fascinating linguistic phenomenon of an absence of words in a language to describe a concept that is absent in the culture – thanks for this, Nancy

nrhatch - September 16, 2011

I loved that . . . no future tense . . . so nothing gets done! 😉

22. ElizOF - September 17, 2011

While I believe in moderation, I say enjoy your dessert now and let the rest follow… Postponement worries me… I’ve seen too many who just didn’t get to enjoy what they postponed… 🙂

nrhatch - September 17, 2011

With the draughts in Africa, Tsunamis in Japan, Hurricanes in Haiti, Flooding and Earthquakes in the states . . . we’re living a rather precarious existence at the moment.

Perhaps Mother Earth has had enough of these parasitic beings who claim to be so intelligent . . . when they are, in reality, short sighted, greedy, pigs.

23. Team Oyeniyi - September 21, 2011

Muhammad Ali was a wise man.

nrhatch - September 21, 2011

Much more so than I ever suspected when he climbed into the ring to box. 😉

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