The varieties of time
One way of considering the complexity and varieties of time is to relate ourinvestigation to what we think we know best: our own lives. In doing so we recognize that each of our lives consists of the mediation and the running together of a series of different forms of time – the present, memories, hopes, our knowledge of death, our guesses as to what happens after death, our picture of nature, sleep, and our view of time in others’ lives, among others – and their resolution into a more manageable general conception of time, which we tend not to think of too much. This management of time, or the imposition of a sense of order upon the pluralities of time, is evidently one of the chief tasks of religions, though in some cases this is achieved through making time still more complex. In this chapter I want to further explore the notion that there are a variety of times and look at how we might access such temporalities.