“Time rules over us without mercy. Not caring if we’re healthy or ill. Hungry or drunk. Russian, American, beings from Mars. It’s like a fire, it could either destroy us or it could keep us warm. That’s why every FedEx office has a clock, because we live or we die by the clock. We never turn our back on it and we never ever allow ourselves the sin of losing track of time.”
Standing in Moscow’s Red Square, Chuck Noland, the lead of the film Cast Away, played by Tom Hank, admonishes his new group of Fed Ex employees to recognize the enemy: Time.
The film is a long one. Two hours and 23 minutes. It also took a long time to film. The director and crew took a year off to allow time for Mr. Hanks to grow a full beard and lose 50 pounds. The film though is a meditation on making friends with time. Time also heals.
My oldest son, Ben, on spring break from college visited the Kabbalah class on Time this week. In his one comment, he reminded the class of the healing properties of time. On our way out the building he offered an unnecessary but welcomed apology to me for some of his behavior during his teen years. His simple words were: Sorry for giving you such a hard time. He is now as tall as me. We look at each other eye to eye. It is a good time.
For our world times are hard and I fear only going to get harder because we don’t have enough time to heal from the constant news of deaths by mudslide or airplane crash or violence; murder and suicide and disease. The Sabbath has become more and more a time of refuge—a time to heal form the week’s news. There are of course heartwarming stories that balance out to a degree the tragic and there is finding humor that helps keep one afloat.
I am not sure you will share my delight in learning that Crimea will be changing its clocks to Russian time. The clocks hands will be moving forward. Time on the other hand will be moving backward.