The Power of Time

52 Power of time
Take a glass filled with a fizzy drink, maybe Sprite. What do you see on the surface? Lot of small bubbles that fizzle out in a few seconds. Govinda Dasa, a Bengali poet, has said that our life in this world is as temporary and insignificant as a bubble of water on a lotus petal. Hence, the scriptures tell us not to aspire for a permanent settlement in this temporary world. All advances in technology and all attempts to prolong life in this world are akin to the attempt to prolong the life of a bubble in a glass of Sprite. In comparison to the sky of eternity, our life is as brief as a flash oflightning.

An old man and a young boy may both look at the same clock, but they see it differently. An old man is apprehensive and nervous as he sees the clock ticking away. A young boy, however, is impatient and wonders when the watch will speed up so that he can enjoy life. But the old man wishes that the clock stop moving. Well, a time piece may stop, but time won’t. When bored, we want to kill time,but no one can do so. It’s Mr. Time who kills all without discrimination.

I am always amazed to see the cemetery in New York. It’s a huge place extending over miles. You could drive for a long time seeing all the tombstones. It seems pretty impressive, but on closer examination we see it’s a sad reflection of the real world—devoid of all its glamour and glitz. A dead person is buried in an attractive casket that costs around $5000. Then there is the tombstone, which is made of granite or marble. I have a friend who’s in the tombstone business and he’s a millionaire. You will never go bust in this business because the market demand is always high and people are always dying. Then the dates of birth and death are written on the tombstone along with a message. A few friends drop by for a few years to remember the dead person.

Although the body is buried seven feet below the ground, still the insects feast on the casket and the body. There’s nothing in the cemetery about us except for the name and the years of our life. We thus become an insignificant statistic after a few years, lost in the teeming crowd of millions who are wandering in this material world.

– Radhanath Swami