Concepts of Time

“Perhaps what we need is a radical reconceptualization of time: not as an adversary to be vanquished (a race against time) or a criminal to be tracked down (fugitive time) or an employee to be disciplined (time management) or a commodity to be squandered (wasted time) but as an expansive, fluid entity that will always resist our efforts to contain it. Time can enrich our lives (quality time), transport us to new places and paces (island time), and help us out in moments of need.”

Helen Sword, Air & Light & Time & Space: How Successful Academics Write (Cambridge, MS: Harvard, 2017) 26.

They say that westerners think about time in a linear way as a finite resource (teach us to number our days) while non-westerners think of time in a circular way as a renewable resource (the deep river runs on). But how to live the difference?


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