Time and Space are fundamental to creation. The created universe exists because of it. Of this time is even more fundamental than space because it existed even before space was created at the beginning of creation.
In this glorious creation exist both animate and inanimate matter. Both are affected by time. The timing of movements of the stars and planets is determined by universal laws, such as the law of gravity that creates and holds the universe together. These laws prescribe timing of movements of planets and they also determine when stars and planets deviate significantly from orderly movements, a time when they are destroyed.
Animate matter or life is distinguished from inanimate matter in the universe by the fact that it has the capacity to perceive and feel and a degree of freedom of choice that it may exercise for its activities in time and space. The kind of choices humans make decides the quality of their experience in the universe and their progress as also their destruction. The proper understanding and use of time as a matter of choice is fundamental to the human experience. It is also fundamental to yoga, practices recommended by ancient scholars for development of body, mind and soul.
A simple thing that humans understand is punctuality, the strict adherence to a time schedule that has been predefined. Punctuality arises when timings are carefully decided after due deliberation and then strictly adhered to. It is to be truthful to time. While humans speak casually or even lie to each other on occasions, when this is done with respect to time, when they are not punctual, it is to be disrespect or lie to the basic firmament of the universe or to God Himself for those who see God as the ultimate source of all creation.
To be punctual is to adhere to a word given. It is fundamental to yoga for those who term practices of human evolution and progress as yoga. Civilizations that have progressed much such as the British during the days of their empire and the Germans, Swiss and Japanese even now adhere strictly to punctuality. Those that disregard punctuality can not progress or develop. In fact the present note was inspired by an item in a daily newspaper yesterday (here) entitled,
“Japan railway 'deeply sorry' after train leaves 20 seconds early”
Timings of public utilities such as railway have a great influence on the psyche of the public. When they are punctual, the public learns value of punctuality. When they are not, the public and the nation too becomes unpunctual and may descend into chaos. Those who say they were unpuntual because of this or that reason are right. It is becuase of this and that reason. The problem is that they have given more regards to the this and that than Time instead of trashing it, or they have given more value to a lump of garbage that a rose or perhaps they are near their end when no timing can be kept and time to be destroyed is at hand.
Scientists’ link time to another fundamental quantity called entropy. This author has been a scientist with interests in mysticisms. Arising from this mix this author, several years ago, introduced a modern interpretation called Entropy Yoga. A note on that can be found here. To quote a simple easily understood passage from it regarding time,
“Organizing time implies being punctual in appointments with others and also in ones activities such as meals, sleeping etc. Time has to be organized over days, weeks and months. It implies that one would schedule all activities and appointed hours and minutes after due deliberation and once having done so stick to it precisely. Just check how the most developed cultures of the world such as the British, particularly during the Victorian era, Swiss and Germans are rigid about time and how they developed as a result of it. A quick check of the daily punctuality of a nation is to go to the train or bus station and see if they arrived in time. A quick check of the annual punctuality of a nation is to check the school and university schedules of sessions and exams over the last ten years and see if they remained fixed or changed. This author did a doctorate from UBC; Canada where at his university the schedules remained substantially unchanged over thirty years. This country has been rated as one with one of the highest qualities of life. Compare this with countries that disregard punctuality and end up as undeveloped.”
Yoga originated in India at a time when the famous king Dashrath said,
Raghukul Reet sadda chali aye
Pran jai par vachan no jaye
It is the custom of our family from the beginning that life may go but a word given must not be disregarded.
However over the intervening centuries the fundamentals of yoga have all but disappeared from daily life of Indians and much chaos rules. It is hoped that as India frees itself from ruling dynasties gone sordid in their indulgence and returns to progress and prosperity once again with the help of new democratic leaders such as the new PM Shri Narendra Modi, it shall once again discover fundamentals of life and beauty.