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Sunday, June 24, 2007

The Cycle of Time

In recorded history, time has always been an enigma. To some, time is merely a regulator. Everything they have to do is divided into hours, minutes and seconds. In the modern world it is normal to be slaves to time. To others, time is seen as a continuous subtle thread to which all events and scenes are tied. Whichever, time stands as the measure of processes. Though time is not tangible, it can be understood. The nature of time can be described by the processes which it measures, or in other words, the processes which take place within time.

All the processes of nature are cyclic; day and night, the four seasons, the phases of the moon, the motion of the planets, the cycles of water and carbon, etc. Yet scientists still cling to the idea that historical time is linear, that there was at some moment a beginning.

Human beings thought that the earth was flat until it was discovered that one could travel in a straight direction for a certain distance and arrive back at the same point. So after the invention of the telescope and the voyages of the great navigators we had to change our understanding of the world, and in this way all subsequent scientific theories have continued to change and become more refined. Through the "apparatus" of meditation and spiritual knowledge we penetrate new dimensions and come to a cyclic understanding time.

One theory that scientists have postulated is that this is an expanding universe in which originally all matter was densely concentrated, and there was a great explosion since which time all matter has been expanding outwards. This is called the "big bang" theory. One thing this theory overlooks, however, is the most basic of all cosmic principles; the law of cause and effect. What was the cause of this "bang"?

One the other hand, most would agree that time and space are infinite. Even the symbol of infinity, the figure eight written sideways, suggests something that has no beginning or end. One can safely say that the law of cause and effect operates forever. Each point in the cyclic flow of events gives cause to the next point, until eventually it arrives at the same point that it begins from. Time as a cycle is the only possible way that we can bring infinity and the law of cause and effect together and tie them neatly into one "unified field".

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