11.32: When the clock ticks and tricks…
Ours is a clock-driven society. We have so many things to do and so little time to do it in that we frequently feel pressured to beat the clock – or at least to meet the clock. The clock controls our life much more than we do.
Our clock-controlled state demonstrates a fundamental spiritual truth: we cannot get away from the control of God. The Bhagavad-gita (11.32) states that time is a manifestation of Krishna. When we don’t submit to Krishna willingly, then we have to submit to him unwillingly through his kala-rupa (form as time).
When we are unwilling to submit to Krishna, then our awareness of reality becomes trickily distorted. We become acutely conscious of the ticking of the clock – the passing of minutes and hours, but remain abjectly unconscious of the ticking of time – the passing of years and decades. We become obsessed with our short-term and medium-term interests of succeeding materially in the world, but stay oblivious of our long-term interest of developing a relationship with Krishna. If we don’t correct our perception disorder before our time runs out, we may sadly discover that the ticking of time has become the tricking by time.
Fortunately, correcting our perception disorder is not difficult. We need to remind ourselves that time in general is a manifestation of Krishna. More relevantly, we need to stay aware that our time is not ours; it is Krishna appearing to gift us an opportunity for attaining supreme eternal happiness by remembering and serving him. This sacred vision of time empowers us to stop material exigencies from stealing away the time meant for our spiritual enrichment. When we thus offer Krishna as time to Krishna as the Lord of our heart, then we can know that time by its ticking is taking us towards Krishna.