Muchness

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Gravity and time

Time is an illusion. Lunchtime doubly so.
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When Einstein developed his theory of relativity, I wonder if he thought wryly to himself how time bends for the individual. Actual time ticks along the same for everyone, but the experience of it is relative to emotional gravity.

See, time goes slowly in high gravitational fields like grocery shopping, public transport, Friday afternoons and team meetings. Emotional states like boredom, pain and annoyance can stretch three minutes into an eternity. Likewise, time goes faster in low gravity fields like lunch, holidays, flirtatious encounters and the space between your door and the bus or train. Time sinks like treacle into memos, well meaning neighbours and movies set in ancient history. Your mobile phone is a black hole, PDAs doubly so. I’ve suspected for years that office spaces are built with a Murphy’s Law machine in the concrete foundation that distorts time relative to workload. C’mon, you know exactly what I mean.

Time is problematic. There isn’t enough when you need it and too much of it when you don’t.

Lately, I’ve had the disquieting sensation that I’m not where I need to be or doing what I need to do. It adds a strange inertia to the usual gravity of time… kind of how you might feel if you catch the wrong train, discover it’s an express and suddenly find yourself speeding away in the wrong direction with no clue as to when you can get off.

Last night I lay on the bonnet of my car miles away on Tamborine Mountain. With my hands behind my head, I looked at the stars and the shadow of distant mountains, pretending I had no other place to be. I waited for the tight inner knot to unravel and for time to fall out of hyperspace drive.

If time is an illusion, what are the gravitational forces affecting you?

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This entry was posted on February 15, 2010 by in Living fully.
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