Manon (energy therapist), Kim (yoga teacher and holistic therapist) and I are organizing a retreat in December which we named Endless Time. Time is an interesting concept to me. We often experience obstacles because of it. We never have enough time. But what exactly is time?
Time began with the Egyptians. The Egyptians used a rod in the ground to tell time; the shadow of this rod allowed the Egyptians to tell what part of the day they were in. This later became the sundial. The first clocks, which were only able to indicate hours, were placed in monasteries so that monks could pray at set times. A major step in the history of displaying time was taken by Christiaan Huygens. In 1656 he invented the pendulum clock, which approximated time to the nearest second.
If you ask me, time is one of the first things we humans have wanted to control. In today’s society time often creates obstacles. It starts the moment you wake up. The first thoughts you have are often (for many of us) about time; whether you have enough time, whether you are on time or late. These thoughts set an intention for the day because if you wake up short of time, it will probably feel like that for the rest of the day. As a result, you are in a rush all day long.
Then imagine another famous time related obstacle; waiting. Do you get frustrated when you have to wait in line at the supermarket or does the line next to you always move faster? Why is waiting so annoying?
Its definition “stay in the same place or in the same situation until someone comes or something happens” is rather interesting. Why is it so difficult? I think it is because a lot of people don’t live in the moment. When they are standing in line at the checkout, they are thinking about where they have to go after that or about all the things they still have to do. They think about being anywhere else but there. Waiting is hard because you can’t be in the moment and let go.
What would it be like if we went back to the visible times; sunrise and sunset? You wake up without an alarm clock. You start your day relaxed and start doing everything you want to do that day. As soon as it gets dark you go into relaxation. Obviously, that would mean you have more productive hours in the summer than in the winter. But does that matter? What would your day be like if time didn’t matter?
Because of the choices I’ve made, I’m already pretty close to living with the sunrise and sunset. I wake up when I wake up. There is no clock involved. This was a difficult in the beginning. I was afraid of running out of time if I didn’t get up on time. Now I know that was because of my thoughts about time. When I could let go of those thoughts, it turned out I naturally wake up around sunrise without an alarm clock. I feel I have more than enough time every morning for an extensive morning routine before the rest of the world wakes up. I don’t have that time because the clock tells me. I feel that time, the space, the moment. No matter what time the clock tells me it is.
In the evening there is still an obstacle in front of me. I clearly feel that it is bedtime. Then I meditate, read, relax, and then when I’m relaxed I press my power button again. And I start filling the time with other things instead of sleep. I fill it with work, Netflix, food, quite literally unnecessary nonsense. This obstacle has everything to do with surrendering to the moment and letting go. I feel it’s something I’m good at during the day, but at night…. Let’s say I’m working on it. My ambition is to take time for what it is and don’t feel controlled by it.
All these aspects inspired the name of our retreat Eindeloos de tijd (Endless time). We hope we can help you let go of time, and the associated thoughts, and trust your inner clock, your inner being. Do you want to know more? Click here (it’s in Dutch)