The real time

Dr Khalid Al-Saleh

one third of 2023 is behind us, and our current year will not be better than the previous ones. It will go by very quickly, and 2024 will arrive, with many people complaining 2023 had evaporated. Those complaining about the rapid movement of the years are those deprived from making achievements, as time is not measured by the movement of clocks; rather it is measured by what man leaves behind.

You wake up, go to work, then return home without feeling that you achieved something new or made any change — a circle that is repeated, and you end up wondering about the secret behind the speed of time! This type of time is like a shadow that you barely feel, time that is devoid of any stops, time that lacks influence. So how is it for a time that is moving nonstop and goes without true feelings — how can we feel this time or even live it?

Researcher James M Broadway, a post-doctoral researcher of psychological and brain sciences at the University of California, said people estimate time from two different perspectives: The first is by foresight, which measures our awareness of time at the time of the event, and the second is by retrospection, which measures our awareness of time after the event. That is why time goes fast when we spend it in entertainment, as successive events at the time intensify our feeling of time’s speed, while, when we remember an entertaining time in the past, we feel as if it took a longer time, because we recall it from a retroactive perspective.

We calculate the time of past events through the number of new memories which happened during the event. The more new memories, in a trip for example, we feel it is longer each time we remember it later. This phenomenon was later called the “vacation paradox”, which deals with our awareness of time during holidays, and this indicates that beneficial time that includes discoveries is a time that remains with us longer, contrary to the time that has nothing new in it.

So, we all have a true time, and there is also the mirage time, which is the time that passes like a person we barely know, and we try to remember where we saw him, and in the end we do not pause much at it. Yet, our actual time is the one that lives with us and we live it, a time in which we sought knowledge, or we called for a virtue, a time in which we helped a truly needy person or participated in a project that brought benefit to others.

The day we spend while we are busy with science or work or discovering what is around us of people and civilizations becomes a full day of giving, but all days of the year are completed with sincerity. Most people today are preoccupied, regretfully, with searching for building glory without a serious job or beneficial knowledge; busy with trivial matters for self-glory, or preoccupied with disputes and struggles that will not benefit anyone. Because they are in such a way, the year passes fast like a mirage that does not have any blessing in it.

Most people do not live their full age — they exert much efforts to maintain their health and attempt to live longer, but to the contrary they let their years go quickly in front of them. Congratulations for those whose year went with positive actions, that are influential in favor of the human being. Congratulations for their good deeds, and most importantly congratulations for the life they lived in full, without having their years go by like a mirage that they did not feel.

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