The Perception and Measure of Time
The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy asks, “What sense or senses do we use when perceiving time? It is certainly not associated with one particular sense. In fact, it seems odd to say that we see, hear or touch time passing. And indeed, even if all our senses were prevented from functioning for a while, we could still notice the passing of time through the changing pattern of our thought. Perhaps, then, we have a special faculty, distinct from the five senses, for detecting time. Or perhaps, as seems more likely, we notice time through perception of other things. But how?”
If you are interested in human attempts to measure time and understand the experience of time’s passage, take a moment to consider the resources below.
- Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy – The Experience and Perception of Time
- International Earth Rotation & Reference Systems Service
- Royal Observatory, Greenwich
Reference Database Articles:
- New Scientist: "The Clock in Your Head" by Linda Geddes*
- New Scientist: “The Now Delusion” by Michael Slezak*
- Scientific American: “Is Time an Illusion?” by Craig Callender*
Time Warped: Unlocking the Mysteries of Time Perception, by Claudia Hammond
Why does life speed up as we get older? Why does the clock in your head sometimes move at a different speed from the one on the wall? Time rules our lives, but how much do we understand it? And is it possible to retrain our brains and improve our relationship with it? Drawing on the latest research, the author delves into the mysteries of time perception.
The Secret Pulse of Time: Making Sense of Life's Scarcest Commodity, by Stefan Klein
With his journalist's eye for detail, Klein combines original investigation and reportage, personal revelation and a wide-ranging, commanding presentation of scientific research among disciplines with the goal of guiding us not only to better master time but also to understand why we so often fail to do so.
The Book of Times: From Seconds to Centuries, a Compendium of Measures, by Lesley Alderman
In an era when our time feels fractured and imperiled, Alderman encourages readers to ponder time used and time spent. How long does it take to find a new mate, digest a hamburger or compose a symphony?
Time, by Eva Hoffman
Time has always been the great given, the element that establishes the governing facts of human fate that cannot be circumvented, deconstructed or wished away. But these days we are tampering with time in ways that affect how we live, the textures of our experience and our very sense of what it is to be human. What is the nature of time in our time? What are we learning about the process and parameters of human time?
The Book of Time: The Secrets of Time, How It Works, and How We Measure It, by Adam Hart-Davis
This is a complete guide to one of the most important, paradoxical and mind-bending subjects there is. It explores every aspect of time: how it works in the natural world and in our bodies, its significance in religion and philosophy, how we measure it and how it has been essential to our scientific understanding of the universe and everything in it.
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