Heraclitean reflections

DIGITAL CAMERAΠάντα ῥεῖ καὶ οὐδὲν μένει

Yesterday
Has flowed into today
With no perceptible boundary
Just as today will flow into tomorrow
And next year
Will flow
Ineluctably
Into the next.

Battling upstream in search of
Days and years
Washed away in the unremittingly constant current
Silting up the memory
Adds tears to the tide
But allows no progress.

If as the sages say
The time-space continuum
Is just an illusion
And everything is
Contemporaneous
Concurrent
There is no current:
Are all our selves convergent?
Is the me I was still there
Together with my future self
Inside me
Like a set of matryoshki?
Or am I too
Nothing
But illusion?

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6 thoughts on “Heraclitean reflections

  1. I just love your poem. Specially the concept of our different “MEs” being inside one another – just like Russian babushkas. (oooh dear, I am going to hijack your blog again….)
    Also the idea of all being an illusion has it’s appeal. In my perception it’s not so much an illusion, but all is relative (poor Albert…):

    I am sitting here quietly, watching a drop of coffee running down the outside of my cup. Though I am sitting perfectly still, the restaurant car of my train rushes through the sunny countryside at 130 km/h. The countryside at our latitude turns around the axis of our Earth at approx 800 km/h. If I was at the equator, it would be 1’600 km/h – faster than the speed of sound. Imagine that.

    Our little blue Earth floats around the sun at a relative speed of 30 km/Second. Our sun circles the centre of our Milky Way at 240 km/s, the Milky Way moves at 38 km/s within the local galaxy cluster and this cluster moves at 600 km/s relative to the galaxy super-cluster we are in. So zoom on my little quiet drop of coffee – you are moving relatively fast….

    Now I have started it, here are some more thoughts and trivia on the topic: Our sun circles the centre of our galaxy approx. once every 250 Mio Years. As it happens, this is about the time, when the sapphires of my wife’s necklace were created by the forces of volcanoes and tectonics; at a time when Africa, Madagascar and India were still all one big continent. Imagine that: my wife’s jewels were here once before – relative to the Milky Way’s centre…. All is relative.

    And now, just to conclude this relatively long post: The antapex of our solar system (the perceived area in the sky where we seem to have come from) lies in the constellation Columba – tranquil like my little drop of coffee; and the apex (the point in the sky where we seem to be heading) lies in the constellation Hercules(!). What a nice way to bring us back to the title of your lovely poem.

    • Thank you, Grizzly. Everything flows indeed, and physics meets philosophy at many points. Nice to know you are emulating Einstein in thought experiments in a (Swiss?) train LOL xx

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