Using time allows us to index events and actions. Although we cannot control time, we can measure against it, which will give us an understanding lengths, frequency, and separation between occurrences. By defining lengths of time and times of day, we are able to keep a record of events, which allows us to plan and prepare for future actions and incidents. In this way, we are able to extrapolate from current conditions to understand what may or probably will happen in the coming hours, days, weeks, months, and years.
The diurnal cycle is a natural marker of time. The location of the sun in the sun shows the passage of time, and its disappearance gives us moments of separation that are discrete. This and our heart beat are our first understanding of time, and by subdividing this, we are able to create smaller units that are arguably artificial, but that are very useful to provide a record and description of events.
In the contemporary age, we are driven by the clock, but even before now, we were always relying on time, whether perceived or actual. As we grow, we develop a sense of time that is innate, and for some this is nearly as accurate as a clock. We know when to wake up, we know when to eat, and we know when to sleep. We do not need to rely on a timing device–we are our own timing device. However, we can measure time to understand history and the likely future, and we can measure the frequency and types of events to gather a temporal density of occurrences.
Because time measures the change in the status, we use time constantly. One would think we cannot have existence without time, as there is no change without it. Whether natural or artificial, we use time to have understanding and control of our environment, and if we are not able to have control, then at least we have witnessed the event. This perception of an action creates memory which we can recall to help or comfort us. To remember is a sort of log that allows us to grow and learn, so time is important for maturation and improvement, as well.
To experience time is to place oneself in an environment and observe and react to the changing conditions. Depending on our mental state, we can experience time accurately, similar to others, or we can have our own interpretation that is heightened by emotions. When we are bored we feel that time will drag on eternally, but when we are enjoying ourselves, time can slip away. Even though actual time is not accelerating or decelerating during these events, our perception shows that time is ductile, able to be drawn out of compressed from our view of the world.
The sense of time is both personal and experienced at a distance. We can all read the changing natural and manmade mechanisms to give us a knowledge of time, but our internal, personal clock can slow or accelerate depending on our mental state and desire to be a part of the surrounding events. In this way, time can be seen as similar to sight and smell, which can sense at different distances.
The sense of time is not considered one of the five classic senses, although it is absolutely a sense that is tracked in the body. When would we know to sleep, eat, or drink, if we didn’t have this sense. Our ancestors did not have watches or clocks, but they were able to sense time, so they would know when to undertake the daily processes.
Time is very different than taste and the forms of touch, in that it does not only operate with personal contact. Arguably, it is an abstract sense, as it is not the use and measure of an object, but the use and measure of the change of an object or objects. Yes, time occurs everywhere, but it is easily communicated or conveyed across any experiential distance–it is only needed to be experienced by an individual or individuals.
The best time to use the sense of time is when you are experiencing an emotion or emotional change. Although this can have both positive and negative experiences, the ability to experience shows that we are part of time and that existence is real and concrete. On the other hand, the worst time to use time is when being part of an experiential swamp or dead zone. The passage of time is like a heckler laughing at one set in the middle of the scene without stopping.