LS - How soon is now?

Lawrie Douglas (
Fri, 19 Dec 1997 03:33:27 +0100

Hello folks,

After a week of lurking, I have decided to weigh in with something of my
own. Sorry if it doesn't exactly tally with anything anyone else is talking

I've lots to say, but I thought I'd better keep this first offering short
and sweet.

I've been thinking about time a lot lately. The idea of "now" particularly
interests me. On the one hand, there can only be now. The past doesn't exist
anymore, and the future doesn't exist yet. That is to say, the past never
exists, and nor does the future. Only now ever exists.

But on the other hand, no thing can ever be now. If now always is, then it
is beyond time. It is timeless. There can never be any individual moments
which are now. Because by the time you have isolated them, put your finger
on them, they are no longer now.

So, on the cutting edge of life, on the n of now, all things must be one,
all one solid, timeless, spaceless, Being; Parmenides's One. In other words,
utterly changeless, the very opposite of the spontaneous, dynamic Quality
Pirsig sees as being the living essence of a thing.

The answer? No thing ever has an existence on THE cutting edge of Life, on
the N of Now. There is no one absolute Now, but a now for all individual
things. All things are relative, defined by all other relative things, as
are all moments.

Sorry, I've not expressed myself at all clearly. There's a lot more to be
said on this subject; I've got a whole book's worth. Now that I've
introduced this, though, I'll try and flesh it out, and in that make some

Good to speak to you all, anyway.

Have a good Christmas,

Richard McNeill Douglas.

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