“Thus the Sage, doing nothing, leaves nothing undone.” ~Lao Tzu
We always seem short on time as well as money. This is a reflection of ourselves, not necessarily of outer “reality,” despite the difficulty in seeing that. And hence, we have more time than we realize.
In Metaphors We Live By, George Lakoff and Mark Johnson showcase the pervasiveness of considering time via the metaphor of banking:
Time is money.
You’re wasting time.
This gadget will save you hours.
I don’t have time to give you.
How do you spend your time?
That flat tire cost me an hour.
I don’t have time to spare.
You’re running out of time.
You need to budget your time.
Is that worth your while?
Do you have much time left?
He’s living on borrowed time.
Use your time profitably.
I lost time when I was sick.
Thank you for your time.
Time as money in a banking system is thus a limited resource, a valuable commodity. Thus, we account for our time, keep track of it, quantifying what is actually a nebulous dimensional aspect of space. That conceptualization, in turn, colors how we consider time and its possibilities and demands.
It’s not necessary. Not all cultures view time this way, and in fact, would have difficulty comprehending such a strange construction (and it is a construction, not a natural law). But it does effect our decisions and our work.
Anthropologists have found cultures where people work on average three hours a day, filling all their “work” needs within that time. Economists have estimated that if we took out all the activity in Western culture that is really just taking things from each other and left just the productive endeavors—we’d be working three hour days, and with all the goods we enjoy now.
Our concept of time is particularly perilous because we can’t actually bank it. Even “saving” sick days or vacation time is just rearranging available “earned” time. Time doesn’t work that way. And since we can’t store it, we can’t get rich on it.
To be time-rich, we have to live in the Now. That means truly losing the idea of scarcity, seeing endless bounty in each moment instead—not as a philosophical or spiritual ideal, but as simple reality.
This is turn sheds some light on our misunderstandings of money. Replace money with prosperity, a much more inclusive term, and hence, a much more accurate one. It’s the mental/emotional/spiritual/physical difficulties that are creating our artificial financial barriers, so including all these aspects of ourselves in prosperity is crucial.
Consider the progression of the Pentacles suit in the standard Rider-Waite tarot deck. The nine of pentacles shows a very wealthy and happy woman in her garden. But the ten of pentacles shows three generations of a family, the children playing, the dogs doting on the patriarch, and a husband and wife engaged in discussion, and the pattern of the pentacles suggesting the Kabbalah’s Tree of Life.
To see real prosperity, though, move from Pentacles to Cups, i.e., from money to love. The nine of cups shows a happy and wealthy man, but the ten of cups shows dancing children, a husband and wife embracing, looking out over their beautiful farm, a rainbow of cups framing the scene as if a spiritual halo.
Imagine making that shift. Imagine seeing prosperity as love. Love of what you do, love of whom you help, love of your place in the bigger picture—money/prosperity as reflected love…changing to this from an attitude of artificial scarcity would certainly be a tremendous step in both healing and in the feeling of a rich life—whatever you earned.
Love. It’s more important than we generally realize. Love is the key. Love is the medium. Love is the goal. Love is the Now. We have but to live it.
We see the Now as “Timelessness.” What does this mean? If we take it as an escape from the tyranny of time, then it will always be only a temporary reprieve from the perceived realities of the time track. But if we recognize that it’s not “less” time, but NO time, not an escape, but the recognition that time is a created illusion, that it doesn’t exist, “No-time-ness,” that to be in the Now is not a stepping back but a stepping in to Awareness. It is learning to Be.
To take this into our daily lives and live it presents a challenge. But the alternative is to continue to live a fantasy. Try it. Really try it. Breathe. Allow more than do. We are vibration, energy, frequency. It’s what Napoleon Hill kept talking about in “Think and Grow Rich.” Stop trying to get ahead by working harder. You can’t still the pond by slapping down the waves. Let it clear, and see. You can learn to be time rich, and you can escape the illusion–not just the race.
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October 2012 is a series of daily posts about “A Wilderness Hike,” taking readers through the healing of wilderness experience and glimpses of my work at Kwan Yin Healing and of my book, “Getting Unstuck.”
You can read the series from the start via the links here:
Oct. 1: A Wilderness Hike
Oct. 2: The Sixth Hour
Oct. 3: Snowy Mountain
Oct. 4: Letting Go of Baggage–the Wilderness Way
Oct. 5: “Bear” the Thought
Oct. 6: Mountain. Buddha. Impermanence.
Oct. 7: The Rewards of Rain
Oct. 8: Finding the Keys
Oct. 9: “I’d love to, but times are bad.”
Oct. 10: Attracting the Law of Attraction
Oct. 11: We are not our thoughts
Oct. 12: Honesty, Forgiveness, Healing
Oct. 13: Getting Unstuck: Feeling Overwhelmed
Oct. 14: Money is remarkably easy to come by, if that’s all you want.
Oct. 15: To be Time Rich, Learn to Be
Oct. 16: Changing Thoughts for Changing Work
Oct. 17: Finding and Sharing your Gifts
Oct. 18: Do you want to be the boss? Be sure you want to run the show.
Oct. 19: Finding jobs within jobs
Oct. 20: Bright Mountain Dream
Oct. 21: Escape the Wilderness of Addictions
Oct. 22: The Importance of Spiritual Direction
Oct. 23: In Search of Enlightenment
Oct. 24: Relationship Thoughts from the Wilderness
Oct. 25: We learn in realtionships
Oct. 26: Chrysalis
Oct. 27: Self-Healing, part 1
Oct. 28: Self-Healing, part 2: Time for a new perspective
Oct. 29: Dix Mountain
Oct. 30: The Mist-Filled Path
Oct. 31: From Wilderness to Wondrousness