Saturday, June 18, 2011

The Eternal Now

This is an interesting expert about Past Life and the future from the YOGA SUTRAS OF PATANJALI, written in the second century BC.The past, present and the future all co-exist in the ‘Eternal Now’ The commentary and explanation given below is by translated by Charles Johnston.
Source –http://www.sacred-texts.com/

The difference between that which is past and that which is not yet come, according to their natures, depends on the difference of phase of their properties.

Here we come to a high and difficult matter, which has always been held to be of great moment in the Eastern wisdom: the thought that the division of time into past, present and future is, in great measure, an illusion; that past, present, Future all dwell together in the eternal Now.

The discernment of this truth has been held to be so necessarily a part of wisdom that one of the names of the Enlightened is: 'he who has passed beyond the three times: past, present, future.'

So the Western Master said: 'Before Abraham was, I am'; and again, 'I am with you always, unto the end of the world'; using the eternal present for past and future alike. With the same purpose, the Master speaks of himself as 'the alpha and the omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.'

And a Master of our own days writes: 'I feel even irritated at having to use these three clumsy words—past, present, and future. Miserable concepts of the objective phases of the subjective whole, they are about as ill adapted for the purpose, as an axe for fine carving.’ In the eternal Now, both past and future are consummated.

Björklund, the Swedish philosopher, has well stated the same truth:’ Neither past nor future can exist to God; He lives undividedly, without limitations, and needs not, as man, to plot out his existence in a series of moments. Eternity then is not identical with unending time; it is a different form of existence, related to time as the perfect to the imperfect.

Man as an entity for himself must have the natural limitations for the part. Conceived by God, man is eternal in the divine sense, but conceived by himself, man's eternal life is clothed in the limitations we call time. The eternal is a constant present without beginning or end, without past or future.'


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