What is Time?

“…we understand it when we speak of it; we understand it also when we hear another speak of it.” (On Time, from Augustine’s Confessions). 

We all have a universal understanding of what time is, yet when asked to describe this idea, my mind struggles to find the right words. I think the only way to describe what time is would be by describing change. Time is the only always ever changing thing on our planet. It will never stop. The sun will always set and rise, the tide will always fall in and fall out, and the earth will always take 365 days to revolve around the sun. Time is the thing that dictates when we must get things done and when we get to relax. The concept of time can be seen in very different ways. One may simply ask “what time is it?” for reference, while time can also be used as a count down method to an event. We use time to tell stories of the past and to ponder on the future, that then becomes the present. It is probably the most thought about concept in our lives, one way or another. It can be something we look forward to or stress about, there’s nothing like the feeling of running out of time. We only have so much time in our lifetimes, none of us knowing exactly how much, which is where the term “living life to the fullest” most likely comes into play. Sometimes we sense a feeling of wasting time when we believe what we are doing is unproductive or unenjoyable. I honestly believe we learn from all experiences, so there cannot truly be a defined waste of time, as long as you gain something out of what you do. I think time is a concept taken for granted and overlooked in our world today. New opportunities are given to us everyday, only on the basis of having more time.