Quote 4

Time can be conceptualized in different ways and that it can be stopped and expanded into something grander. The Greeks knew this with their distinction between chronological time, kronos, and sacred time, kairos. Just as with energy, time can be both a wave and a particle, something continuous and something discrete. My idea is that moments are discrete time, complete in themselves and utterly distinct from the habit-bound wave time in which we all live much of our lives. While minutes are earthbound and can be measured, moments both merge with eternal time and exist outside time altogether.

Not all minutes are created equal and only a few become moments. We tend to greet every minute with demands such as: “I want this. I don’t want this. I want more of this. I want less of that.” We have ideas about what our minutes should or should not be. We want sunshine or rain, quiet or company, work or rest. We are such yearning organisms.

Yet there is a sense in which many of us are fighting for our lives. We are struggling to be present for our own experiences. There is no more important task before us, or anything that could bring us more love and joy.

If we are lucky, occasionally we experience a sparkling moment when we break out of our trance of self and are fully present. Sometimes these lead to epiphanies, which present us with aha moments of new understanding. Or our thoughts simply may be “Isn’t this wonderful?” or “Isn’t life amazingly rich and complicated?” Or even, “Doesn’t this look beautiful or taste delicious?” What makes moments distinct is that we are celebrating what actually is.

— Mary Pipher, Finding Peace