Friday, November 9, 2007

kairos - chronos

Digital Composite


Kairos, Chronos

“Being time is never wasted time. When we are being, not only are we collaborating with chronological time, but we are touching on kairos, and are freed from the normal restrictions of time. In moments of mystical illumination we may experience, in a few chronological seconds, years of transfigured love.”
Madeleine L’Engle

An experience in Wheaton Illinois visiting friends
brought me to these thoughts.
I was lying on a bed
looking between the spaces of a horizontal blind at a winter killed tree.
Only a few leaves remained.

Although it seems contradictory,
it moved both awkwardly and gracefully in the wind.
I liken it to our own idiosyncrasies.
We recognize another’s movements.
A walk or run.
Handwriting. Scent.

Those attributes make up the essence of that person.
And when we recognize this,
we are aware of the beauty of particularity.

I saw the trees essence.
I saw it moving in the wind.
I lost myself in its dance.
Indefinable time passed.
I became aware of the monotonous ticking
of a battery-powered clock on the wall.

My mind jumped.
I shrunk back.

I found myself longing to escape through the window
from chronos (human time)
to the simple beauty of kairos (divine time).

This piece is a culmination of that thought.
The bright yellow of the clock stands out,
stealing our attention away from the reeds.
Human time, finite and distracting,
often blinds our view of what matters.