Time Defines Us.

How We Look At Time

How do most of us look at time?

We live in a variety of time paradigms.

Here are a few:

Man-Made Time i.e. the days and months  that carry us along from day to day.  The Calendar has been revised many times in our history as our Species have learned more about the world. We  have jumped from calendar to calendar over thousands of years . Man-made time is a bit topsy-turvy. Especially our current calendar.  A couple of examples of this are July and August… named after a couple Roman kings (Julius and Augustus). The Church and Time Reckoners realized that Easter (the Spring Holiday stolen from the Pagans) was being celebrated later and later in the year and was jumping from one season to the next, over time. They added a couple months on to try to straighten it out.  That is why October (8th month = Octo means 8) is now the 10th month.  The days in the month are a bit discombobulated; some months have  30 days, others have 31 days, while February has 28 days (and 29 days every four years). I got dizzy just writing that.

Time as used/seen in Physics gives us ways to think about time never imagined by our grandparents. Here we see investigations of a single continuum called spacetime which bring questions about space, into questions about time. We won’t go down the rabbit hole on this one at this juncture.

Then of course there is  Biological Time.

I was mostly thinking how biological time conflicts with man-made time and how we define events in our life based on how we see time, or moreover how we are taught to see time.

Here are some illustrations of how distorted and warped our view of time can be… and how it is used this to control us and make us confused:

Time Schizophrenia

To drive in most of the United States you have to be 16 (plus usually ½ a year added with driver’s education, the driver’s test etc.)  Driving should be done by a mature person, since when one drives they are operating a machine that has the potential to kill others or damage property if not used right.

They skip right over 17 years (though in some states if you commit a crime, and if the court feels fit, they can try you as an adult and give you a prison sentence or the death penalty).

When one is 18, one can purchase a firearm in some Amerikan states, often with nothing more than a driver’s license.  On one’s eighteenth birthday, one can vote.

One can join the Military on their 18th. Being of ‘legal’ age gives one the privilege of fighting in combat for one’s country (if instituted it also gives one the privilege of being drafted into the military to be sent off somewhere in the world to protect and fight for the Freedoms of one’s country; though I’m not sure how one protects one’s house by invading his neighbors’).

Might I make an amusing digression:

An Example of Man-made Time Schizophrenia

A youth (let’s call him Joe), reaches his 18th birthday and becomes a ‘legal adult’.  Joe voluntarily joins – or is drafted into – the military.  Joe goes through Basic Training and is re-programmed (you know, ‘we break you down and build you back up’). Just for fun, let’s say that Joe has additional Airborne training at Fort Benning, Georgia (this training of course almost certainly gives him the opportunity to fly to an exotic place somewhere in the world and kill some of its inhabitants).

He is sent to whatever country happens to be the enemy at the time (the enemy of course is always changing usually depending on economics) and is told to shoot that way, because the Enemy is shooting at him.  Joe shoots and get’s shot at.

A couple of Joe’s buddies die for their country.

Conflict ends.

Joe is physically and emotionally drained.

Joe and his surviving buddies are sent home.

Upon arrival, their Commander gives them a little R&R.

“Relax men! You are all brave and a little rest and recreation are just what you need. The United States thanks you for your Service. Now enjoy the rest of today and tomorrow off!”

Joe and the rest of his Comrades cheer.

When the commander leaves and the men are left to their own devices, they decide that a commemoration should be forthcoming to celebrate their surviving the danger and mourn the loss of their Comrades.

Joe volunteers to go out and get the food and beverages.

He walks into the PX (Post Exchange) and gets the usual party favors: chips, soda, mixes for drinks, and of course beer.

As he gives his items to the clerk, and is asked, “may I see your  ID, please?”

Ahh yes, only ‘adults’ can drink. And to drink in the Good Ol’ USA, one must be 21 years of age.

Old enough to buy firearms; old enough to die for your country, but not old enough to have a beer after a hard day in Dangerous Combat!

And this is the Land of The Free!

Biological Time

Mother Nature has her own clock… therefore she defines an ‘adult’ as the stage of the life cycle of an animal after reproductive capacity has been attained… i.e. menstruation in women, ejaculation in men, and pubic hair in both sexes.

Some cultures, such as cultures in Africa and Jewish Traditions (Bar Mitzvah) a human being is an adult at 13.

The United States is rife with teenage pregnancies… some as young as 13 or 14 years old (Most Christian sects don’t allow abortions). These young parents have a bit of a dilemma entering a PG13 (Parental Guidance)  movie, being parents and ‘minors’ at the same time.

Mother Nature has her own clock. That is why some people in their 60s look like they are in their 40s, and conversely why some in their 30s look like senior citizens. That is why some die when they are in their 40s, and other’s live much past a century.

Indeed, our biological clocks can be influenced by our environments:

*10 year old girls developing breasts because of high Bovine Milk consumption https://bostonpaul.wordpress.com/2010/01/21/health-the-dangers-of-milk/

*Higher rates of cancer and heart disease in the 30 to 40 year old demographic –  considered ‘old people’s’ diseases in our not so distant past.

*Receding hair lines (genetic yes, but also a result of a stressful environment. Hair loss in women is also on the rise.

What time is it?

Half past a freckle and a hair.

I’ll update this 2nd draft soon.

Published in: on June 25, 2010 at 12:37 PM  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Your example of time madness is a good one! One that has always amazed me in the States is the legal age to vote. Old enough to vote, but not to drink?!

  2. and always young enough to be strictly restrained smoking in Taiwan

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