Day 344 of the Calendar Year

What would Aristotle, Plato and Socrates say about time to Confucius and Lao Tzu? What if the greatest philosophers of the Western world met the greatest philosophers of the Eastern world? What would they say to each other about time? Confucius emphasized doing the proper thing at the proper time. Lao Tzu believed that time was created in our minds and to say “I don’t have time” was to really say “I don’t want to.” Socrates would have asked “why do you think time is in your minds? Could time not be in our hearts?” Aristotle would have pointed out that the planets, stars, and earth all do their own thing independent of what humans believe or want. Aristotle defined time as a kind of ‘number of change’ with respect to the before and after (Ursula Coope, “Time for Aristotle,” 2005, Oxford online Monographs). By this time, Plato, totally exasperated would note that “no human thing is of serious importance.” “Thus, why waste time quibbling here over what time is or is not, let us go find a tavern and have a drink together.” And so the philosophers all went off in search of a tavern. Legend has it they spent the rest of the day drinking and making fools of themselves with the young women in the bar who could not understand what they were talking about. Well, such is the folly of most men when their minds meet their basic instincts and needs.

My question for you and all philosophers is: “does time rule your life or does instinct and nature rule your life?” Do you live according to the clock and logic or do you live according to your feelings and instincts? What most guides your choice of activities and times? Are you a thinking person or a feeling person? What if you could switch? How would your life be different?

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