Time’s a changin’

Time is a far from constant thing. One of the surprises of completing the training in the Leadership Development Framework was taking time to consider how different people at different stages in life have completely different conceptions of time. From the very young who have no concept of the future, to mature professionals who lead their organisations based on 5 years plans, to the more enlightened souls who primarily reside in place beyond time (forever NOW) and see the relevance and effect of their work on a more epochal time scale. The ideal perhaps, is to be able to choose the appropriate way of considering time based on the circumstances in which you are in.

One of the distinctions that EnlightenNext makes compared to Eastern spiritual traditions is to introduce a linearity in time. This linearity in time is important because that is the context in which the universe, earth, life, biosphere, mammals and ourselves have come into being I.e. Evolution. In an enlightenment context, this is important to convince some people to engage in the world, to convince them that their conscious participation in evolution is more important than stepping out of the cycle of lie.

Personally, I have been more and more conscious of my own time horizon expanding out to the decadal scale. This has been one of the drivers behind my move back to Australia: I don’t want to do short-term projects anymore, I want to work on initiatives that I can contribute to for ten, and twenty years and for me that can only happen in Australia.

Yet, as I have travelled this journey, I have become more and more aware of other timescales, for example:

  • Many of the countries have different calendars to those that I am used to, either with different ‘year zeros’ or even different numbers of months.

  • The ritual daily worhsip, and annual or regular pilgrimages performed in Iran, India and elsewhere alerted me to those sorts of cycles

  • Working at Navdanya reconnected me with the daily, monthly and seasonal cycles that are the most critical to anyone earning a living from working directly with the land

  • And I am sure many more strange cycles and non-linear perceptions of time are to come…tides, ages of landscapes, monsoons etc.

And, one for me to keep an ear out for in conversations, teamwork and cultural contexts: when we talk about the future, a project, or a desired outcome, are we talking about the same timescales?

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