I sometimes wonder how I managed pre-internet. Certainly as a writer today, I constantly research via a search engine. I also rely on the instant access to refresh my dimming recollection abilities. What was the name of that movie starring...
Same with directions. What did I do pre-GPS?
Yet, I did manage to write many articles and stories. And I did travel and arrive successfully at my destinations, usually without the use of maps.
I used the phone and interviews most often for writing assignments. Sometimes I drove or took public transportation (when I lived in NYC) to a destination for firsthand observance!
And I truly can't remember how I got to where I was going by car. I know I rarely used maps. I think I asked for directions before departing and used my innate GPS. I do have a pretty good sense of direction. And not being male, I wasn't intimidated to stop and ask for help, if necessary. (Perhaps that's just my experience of traveling with men. It may not be a characteristic of all males.)
I'm appreciative of the modern conveniences. It's most helpful to get the info I need or factcheck with just a few clicks, any time day or night.
I can't tell you how many times I missed a turn or exit while driving pre-GPS, due to my inclination to get lost in my thoughts.
I remember that often during my days as an advertising rep driving on I-95 between Miami and West Palm Beach, I would suddenly look around to discover I had no idea where I was. Had I passed my exit, or not gotten that far yet? It is very handy today to have a gentle voice guiding me to "turn left at the next light" or "in one mile, take exit 53."
Yes, for day-to-day living on Kronos, society's accepted linear time, technology rules. But it's a #massivefail when it comes to matters of the heart or soul. Your inner wisdom doesn't rank on Google and won't be accessible no matter how many pages you advance on your internet search.
Since you need your inner GPS to guide your Kairos, or nonlinear time, you'll need to consult your internal search engine, also known as your Pillar of Light, for numinous or spiritual queries. Your Pillar of Light is the central energetic channel within you that spans the distance between the crown chakra atop your head to the root chakra at the base of your spine. Metaphorically and energetically, it is your connection to Divine knowledge and grounds you to the loving support of Gaia, Mother Earth.
Just a few moments ago, I found the following information via DuckDuckGo, my search engine of choice, to explain the significance of the difference. [Underscores added for emphasis by this blog's author]
"Kronos (or cronos in the English spelling, from which we take our word chronology) is sequential time. Kronos is the time of clocks and calendars; it can be quantified and measured. Kronos is linear, moving inexorably out of the determinate past toward the determined future, and has no freedom.
"Kairos is numinous time. Kairos is a time of festivals and fantasies; it cannot be controlled or possessed. Kairos is circular, dancing back and forth, here and there, without beginning or ending, and knows no boundaries." —Lonnie Kliever, university professor in the philosophy of religion
After spending last week on mostly Kronos time traveling and being with my children and grandchildren, I felt a deep need to immerse myself in Kairos time this week. Also contributing to my desire for introspection was the approach of a new year, a time of year associated with assessment and intention.
As I've expressed frequently on this blog, I've decided I've spent too many years trying to fit into a culture with values that do not reflect my own or how I want to be in the world. So, although I must to some extent rely on Kronos time and energy, I choose to live by Kairos time, which supports living by the guidance of my Pillar of Light.
Although I spent much of the time this week in true silence and not connected to the outside world via technology, the few emails and podcasts I accessed voiced an astounding similar theme: The need for external change resolved via inner means.
It makes sense. Why look to the outside world for answers to problems created by the outside world?
We can also learn much from our predecessors on this earth. The ancient Greeks were a highly evolved, intelligent culture that documented much of their wisdom gained from observing nature in the form of myth and literature.
The article I researched continues with Kliever's explanation of the Greek origins of the words for time via mythology.
"Like most mysteries of nature and life in the ancient world, these different experiences of time were seen as the manifestations of different gods. The Greeks represented time with nine different gods, but the main gods of time were Kronos and Kairos.
Kronos, the god of the world and time, was the most important of the Elder Gods. He was Lord of the Universe, the source of life and death. He devoured his own children to prevent them from replacing him as the supreme god, but his wife saved their last son, Zeus, who eventually overthrew his father's relentless rule of life and death.
"By contrast, Kairos was one of the subtlest gods in the Greek pantheon. He was portrayed as a winged god, dancing on a razor's edge. In one hand he held the scales of fate. He reached out with the other hand to tip those scales, altering the course of fate. Kairos was the god of lucky chance. He personified numinous moments of time giving birth to novelty and surprise.
"Drawing on these ancient mythic images, we can revisit the two kinds of time with deeper understanding. Kronos is mechanistic and deterministic, time that is ruled by the dead hand of the past. Kronos devours us with remorseless certainty. Kronos turns life into stone.
"Kairos is creative and serendipitous. Kairos is time that is energized by the living dream of the future and presents us with unlimited possibility. Kairos turns fate into destiny."
In an even larger context, it's not difficult to see the explanations of Kronos and Kairos as analogous to descriptions of the patriarchy and matriarchy. Our current society would have us believe that things are as they must be, despite the crushing blows to humanity and our planet. Our social indoctrination trains us to accept authority without question or consideration, often against our true inclinations.
Only when we spend Kairos time in nature or in silence and access our inner wisdom for guidance can we expect to be the true determinators of our lives.
Kliever sums up his explanation this way:
"We are not helpless to tip the balance in the direction of kairos over kronos. We can temper our fear and our fixation on sequential time. We can deepen our quest and our experiences of numinous time. In such synchronicity of kronos and kairos lies our deepest consolation and our steepest aspiration."
I am encouraged to find that I'm not alone in my quest for a value-led life. For so many years I felt separate and isolated; that somehow my natural inclinations were unlike everyone else's—and as such, were undesirable and needing to be disguised.
But now we are at the onset of the Age of Aquarius and many souls, like myself, are being emboldened to reject the status quo that doesn't serve our highest and greatest good.
Today is the last day of 2021. My wish for you and all the planet in 2022 is the realization of peace, unity, respect, tolerance, and the right to unfettered individuality within a system that supports each of our unique expressions.
Happy New Year, dear readers!
Lonnie Kliever excerpts from Kronos & Kairos: Linear and numinous time concepts, by Marney Makridakis, author of Creating Time: Using Creativity to Reinvent the Clock and Reclaim Your Life.
Image: Bad Hair Day ©Gemignani. Purchase prints here.
Text ©Shelley Lieber
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