I can tell you one thing I learned in elementary school that has stuck with me: Which direction do you move the clock when daylight savings time hits? I know the answer to this one!
Mrs. Schroeder, my fourth grade teacher, drilled it into our heads: "In the Fall we fall back, and in the Spring we spring forward. So boys and girls, in the Fall we set the clock back an hour, and in the spring we move the clock forward by an hour."
Many things have changed since the days of Mrs. Schroeder's class. So many of the clocks are now digital, that many younger people don't have a sense of the hands of the clock moving forwards or backwards. The term is almost meaningless to them. Also, many of the reasons given to justify daylight savings plans no longer apply including the savings of energy. Nevertheless come this Sunday, November 3rd, we will once again set our clocks back an hour.
However, I believe there are some good spiritual lessons we can learn from all of this, including:
1. The is a relativity to time, and it is not an absolute. This is true not only for is it 12 noon or 1 pm (i.e., what was noon yesterday is now 1 pm under daylight savings), but how fast time seems to be moving is relative to us. So often the sense of time moving fast or slow depends upon the things going on inside of us.
2. Not only is there a relativity to time, but when we have some of our deepest spiritual experiences, we seem to be in a timeless state. We are not even aware of time.
3. While there is a bump caused by the sift in time, most of us can adapt and get used to the new "norm" fairly quickly.
4. We can even use these shifts as markers for things we should be doing. For example, a very wise friend (in terms of home and building matters) suggestged to me that I use the daylight savings shifts of the clock as markers for when I should be replacing air filters in my house.
5. I also use the daylight savings shifts as a reminder to me to consider time and to remember that my time in this body-- on this go-around-- is not infinite. I use daylight savings time to ask some key questions: Am I using my time wisely? Am I learning the lessons I am meant to learn in this lifetime? Am I spending time on the things that really matter, and value, the most?
Given my responses to the points in the above stated questions, I ask myself: What adjustments, or midcourse corrections, should I be making? May you have a productive daylight savings time this Fall.
Rev. Dr. Rick Belous
Unity Center of Tulsa