Do you have time? Can I borrow a moment of your time? Do you have time for a meeting? When will you have time to get together? Can you make time to finish this up? Time for me? Time for this? Time for that? Do you have time to spare?
Is anyone devoting time to invent a time-machine – not a time travel device that has fascinated all of us and an entire genre of books and movies – but a time dispensing machine, rather like an ATM, where we could simply punch in our code, and the universe would grant us extra time. Punch, punch, punch – I need an extra hour today. Punch, punch punch. I think I’ll take two additional hours today. Wait, hold on. Twos not gonna cut it. That’s not enough– I need time to help Bren with the Science Fair and I need to stop by to see my mom; Erin has Daisies and I need to get to the grocery -- better get 6, and then I’ll have time to work out. Maybe take the dog for a walk. Mow the lawn. Pay the bills. Write that proposal. Does this machine have a limit? I’m gonna need MORE.
Where does it end? Why are we struggling so hard to ‘make time’, ‘borrow time’, ‘find time’? And how did we get programmed to accept the scarcity of time?
When I was young, one of my favorite sayings was, Time is Money. It became my motto. Time is money. I was a champion babysitter, never refusing a job. Why would I? Time was money. And...... I was 12. I had time on my hands. Time to spare. Nothing but time. And time moved slowly. I babysat for friends. Their friends. And friends of friends. After all, people were paying me for my time. And, I had traded in on my time. As a teenager, I walked into a car dealership with cash in hand for my first car. I had used my time wisely; and took the time to save my money to get what I wanted most. Freedom. Freedom so I could fill my time with friends and school and fun. I could waste time. Blow time. Kill time. Until time moved on; and time became more scarce. The more time I exchanged for money, the more I needed. There was never enough. Time or money. Time became my greatest commodity. I never had enough time. Time for work. Time for play. Time for family. Time for friends. I was a regular at the ATM of time. Punch, punch, punch – I need an extra 2 hours today. Punch, punch punch. No, better make that 3 hours today. Wait, hold on. Threes not gonna cut it. That’s not enough– I need time to help Bren with the Science Fair and I need to stop by to see my mom; Erin has Daisies and I need to get to the grocery -- better get 6, and then I’ll have time to work out. Maybe take the dog for a walk. Mow the lawn. Pay the bills. Write that proposal. Does this machine have a limit?
There was no Down time. Nap time. Playtime. Time was fleeting. Time was precious. Time was ticking away. I was operating on Double Time. Overtime. And, I still couldn’t find enough time.
And then… time stopped.
My world stopped.
It doesn’t matter why. It doesn’t matter how. It doesn’t matter what. It just did. The unimaginable had happened, and time no longer mattered. Nothing mattered. I was suspended in time. I hated time. I didn’t want any more time. I wanted my time taken away. I had no use for time.
Buddha said, “The trouble (with time) is, you think you have time.”
No one has time. Time cannot be owned. You can’t keep time. Hoarding it away and saving it for later. It can’t be kept. It can’t be saved. And once it’s gone, you can never get it back.
We are at war. War for time. War for what’s important in time. Leo Tolstoy said, “The two most powerful warriors are patience and time.” We live in a culture where our patience and our time are in constant battle. We can’t slow down long enough to see where our time is wasted. Squandered. Mis-used. We aren’t patient with time. We have no time for patience.
We live in a world where there are more time saving devices and technology than ever before in the history of mankind. The processing power in the phone attached to our hands today has the same processing power we used to put the first man on the moon. With all of that ability in our hand and at our fingertips – we should have time on our hands. Literally, time IN our hands. Time to spare. Nothing but time. But we don’t. Why?
Confucius said, “Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.” We humans, by the power of our greater intellect, can invent, develop, and use our amazing brains to come up with the power to do all things – and then… screw it up. We take all of the time saving devices, the conveniences of this technology age that we live in, and we expect more. More speed. More information. More pictures. Better information. Better processing. Faster data. Faster processing. More. More. Better. Better. Faster. Faster. But, what are doing? What are we missing? Our ability to have time. To control time. Time can’t be controlled. It can’t be owned. It can’t be kept. It can’t be gotten back.
Time is free, but it is priceless. Time is NOW. In this moment. In this day. In this place. What are you doing about time? One thing the greatest thinkers of the world can agree -- Real knowledge is to know the extent of your ignorance.
And, I can say with expert authority that we know very little about time. Each new day credits you with 86,400 seconds. Live in the present on today’s deposit of time. The clock is running.
Enjoy every moment. You DO have time.