"Exploring the Intersection of Time and Consciousness: Can We Truly Experience Time?"

Lucas Charbonnier

Lucas Charbonnier

Sep 13, 20234 min read


"Exploring the Intersection of Time and Consciousness: Can We Truly Experience Time?"


The concept of time has long been a subject of fascination and philosophical inquiry. As humans, we are constantly aware of the passing of time, yet the question arises - can we truly experience time? This article delves into the correlation between our stream of consciousness and the subjective and objective nature of time. Additionally, we explore the idea that time is an integral part of all our experiences and discuss the inherent paradox of trying to grasp the concept of time itself.

The Subjective and Objective Nature of Time:

When considering the experience of time, we encounter two distinct perspectives - the subjective and objective nature of time. Subjectively, time is deeply intertwined with our consciousness. It is the very fabric upon which our experiences are woven. We cannot detach ourselves from the notion of time, as it is our perception of time that enables us to engage with the world around us. However, when we try to grasp time objectively, it becomes elusive. The knowledge of time slips through our fingers, leaving us with an intangible concept that is difficult to fully comprehend.

The Inseparable Bond Between Time and Consciousness:

According to Saint Augustine, time appears to be intangible and elusive. However, it is the condition that allows for the possibility of any experience. Time, like space, is not an object we can directly experience, but rather a form that enables us to engage with objects in the world. Time exists because consciousness is experiencing something. It is a transcendental value, a fundamental condition for experience. Therefore, we cannot experience time itself, as it is not an object, but rather a medium through which we experience the world.

The Experience of Duration:

In our quest to grasp time, we may find moments where we catch a glimpse of pure time, detached from our everyday experiences. This can occur when a present sensation revives a past sensation, causing us to momentarily relive the person we were when we first perceived it. This experience allows us to apprehend time in its purest form. It is in these instances that we come closest to experiencing time as it truly is, free from the constraints of practicality and external objectives.

Exploring the Essence of Consciousness:

Consciousness, on the other hand, is the faculty of the mind to represent something. It involves a reflective process that allows us to understand the unity of our thoughts and actions. Whether it is moral consciousness, which judges what should be, or psychological consciousness, which is present in both ourselves and the world, all forms of consciousness entail a certain distance from what is being observed. This separation implies evaluation and choice, suggesting that consciousness is inherently moral. In moments of internal crisis, when choices must be made, consciousness becomes particularly heightened, emphasizing its intimate connection with freedom.

The Intersection of Time and Consciousness:

At its core, consciousness is synonymous with choice, according to Bergson. It is through our consciousness that we exercise our freedom. However, an essential question arises - does our representation of ourselves align with our true essence? This inquiry brings us back to the intertwining relationship between time and consciousness. Our perception of time influences our understanding of ourselves, as we constantly evaluate and choose based on our experiences. Thus, consciousness becomes intertwined with the concept of time, shaping our perception of reality and our sense of self.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Embrace the Present: To enhance our experience of time and consciousness, it is crucial to cultivate mindfulness and embrace the present moment. By fully immersing ourselves in the here and now, we can deepen our connection with both time and our own consciousness.
  • 2. Reflect on Choices: Take time to reflect on the choices you make in various situations. By engaging in self-reflection, you can better understand the interplay between your consciousness and the passage of time, ultimately leading to a more authentic and fulfilling experience.
  • 3. Seek Timeless Experiences: Engage in activities or pursuits that transcend the limitations of time. These timeless experiences can offer glimpses into the essence of both time and consciousness, allowing for a deeper understanding and appreciation of their interconnectedness.


In our exploration of time and consciousness, we have unearthed the complex relationship between these two fundamental aspects of human existence. While the experience of time remains elusive, our consciousness serves as a gateway through which we engage with the world. By embracing the present, reflecting on our choices, and seeking timeless experiences, we can deepen our understanding and appreciation of the intricate interplay between time and consciousness. Ultimately, this understanding can lead to a more profound sense of self and a richer experience of the world around us.

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