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  • Writer's pictureSimon Vincent

Contemplating Time and Meaning

Updated: Mar 6, 2021

The Drinker, by Erich Plontke

Truly, all we do is trying to come to terms with the consequences of time.

We live in a world of constant change, yet we desperately try to hold on to good moments forever.

It is as if we have the Everlasting instilled in us, and therefore react with trauma in the face of death and decay.

We reinvent ourselves, our cities, our ideas, our lifestyles, even our identity - as an attempt to re-create the feeling of newness. But the moment comes, and passes. Nothing stays the same.

We fear that one day we may lose it all, though we certainly will lose it all. We cling on to our wealth, possessions, relations and ideas and swear to never let go. But one day, we will.

Knowing this, it is obvious that the human soul yearns for the eternal. Death is unnatural to us. Being bound by time, and with it decay and ageing, is experienced as an unpleasant surprise, though we have all been aware of its inevitability.

Each of us will one day realize this on an existential level. And this terrifying realization is the yoke of the human condition: eternal beings, trapped in a temporal world.

We are chained by the effects of time (death and decay), and in response to it, we strive to make it all worth it. If we must decay; suffer; struggle; and die - then, let it at least be worthwhile.

Some indulge into endless entertainment or drown their senses in the stimuli of sex, drugs and food. Others build vast constructions, accumulate riches or build a prestigious repertoire to be considered "great" by other humans. And some choose contempt, as they allow anger from the bitterness of loss and decay to consume them.

But ultimately, there is no redemption in any of our endeavors. There is nothing we can do about our mortality. Filling our days with temporal ("worldly") things only makes the effects of time be felt much harder. In turn, reinforcing our sense of hopelessness, leading to exhaustion and despair.

So, what is truly meaningful?

Usually, we consider something valuable because it serves the purpose to which it was created. A hammer is meaningful in a workshop because it serves the purpose of hitting a nail. A knife is meaningful in a kitchen, because it serves the purpose of spreading butter on a piece of loaf.

So each item has a design fit for a purpose. This purpose is fulfilled when it yields an impact onto something. Liken this, then, to us humans. We have a design, so we have a purpose, too. But that purpose can only be revealed when our lives are run their course. In the Afterlife.

Purpose and meaning of a human life is only found beyond death. Meaning can only be found there, in the timeless. What is meaningful is that which transcends death itself. That which detaches us from the effects of time, and echoes into Eternity.

We already have the Eternal instilled in us (otherwise we wouldn't be bothered by time). It is in our design, and so is the key to our purpose.

We then arrive to the final, most important question of all: What can transcend death itself? What leads us out of the bondage of time and into Eternity? This question holds the secret to the meaning of life.

We find the answer at the foot of the Cross of Christ.

None of our endeavors save us from mortality. What we need is the Eternal to enter into time and relieve us from it. By taking our mortal human nature through death by the power of the Divine.

”Jesus answered, “I am the Way and the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." (John 14:6)

Jesus the Christ - who is Way, Truth and Life itself - walked the mortal path we all must take, but filled it with his Divinity. He lived in the human condition - experiencing the yoke of humanity - and touched every aspect of it with His Light and Life. In-so-doing, He filled it all with timeless meaning.

"[28] Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. [29] Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. [30] For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.(Matthew 11:28-30).

Christ is the only salvation for mankind, not because of some dogma - but because He, as God, voluntarily entered our depraved state of being. He took upon Himself the effects of Time by being incarnated in human form. He took upon Himself the decay, suffering, tragedy and death of humanity. But as He is Eternal and Divine, He fills it all with His Life.

Even the way into death (the way to the Cross) was filled with His Life and Light. And His Resurrection is the revelation of all this.

If we must walk the mortal path, therefore, let us walk it with Christ. It’s the only footsteps that lead to redemption and restoration.

Through them, our very soul is transformed and restored to its original purpose: to live in the Everlasting, where the shackles of Time are no more.

Our true, natural state is the Eternal. A state where death, the alien enemy, is no more.

Therefore, Christ is the meaning of all things. His footsteps is what transcends Time and death itself. He is the One that makes it all Meaningful. For He restores us to our true nature, the eternal.

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