ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Every Day is New Year's Day

Updated on December 28, 2015

Is history like a straight line, or is it more like a circle? CJ Stone goes in search of time.

Small things

A happy new year to you.

Also, a happy new day, a happy new hour and a happy new minute. A happy new second. A happy new breath. A happy new moment. A happy new everything.

Because - if you stop and think about it - the whole world is reborn at every moment, with every breath you take. There is only ever the present. What is past has already been done, and cannot be undone. What is in the future hasn’t happened yet. So there is only now. Only this one moment.

This moment encompasses all that went before, and all that is to come. It is the culmination of all the decisions you have previously made - all the accidental encounters, all the lost opportunities, all of life’s strange turnings, those twists of fate - and then it is also the seed for what is yet to be, what hasn’t been decided yet, the beginning of a new life and new opportunities and new journeys, just around the corner.

It is the collective decisions we make - all of us together, the whole of the human race, in this moment, at this crucial time in history - that will finally determine what our future will be, and each of us individually has exactly this amount of responsibility, that we must make our own personal decisions, but that we must make them with integrity and love. Whether it is a good world in the future - one that our grandchildren and our great grandchildren can enjoy - or whether it continues on its current descent into madness and absurdity, is still a matter to be decided.

Me, I’m a great believer that the small things in life count, small acts of kindness in a hostile world, the cheery smile in the supermarket, the friendly word, all those little acts of generosity and concern. I think these things matter. It’s the accumulation of all the small things that make the big things that make the difference.

There’s an old Zen saying: “Before enlightenment, chopping wood and collecting water. After enlightenment, chopping wood and collecting water.” A modern version would probably sound more like this: "before enlightenment, washing up and going to the shops, after enlightenment washing up and going to the shops."

It’s the approach you take to these mundane matters that makes the difference: whether you undertake them with anticipation and joy, or as just some task to be got out of the way before you get on with whatever other distraction is claiming your time and your attention. It‘s how you use your time that matters.

Time is actually a great mystery. Do we even know what it is or what it is made of? What is it for, exactly?

According to Einstein, for beings travelling at the speed of light time would not even exist. A being made of light could travel back and forth in time the way you and I get on a bus or hop on a bike to go to the shops.

There is one theory that as the universe is expanding so time is unravelling, which means that if space ever did collapse back in on itself, then time would run backwards again.

That is entirely possible. Thus we might have to live our lives all over again, but backwards this time: from death to birth, instead of the other way around. And who can say, really, which way is the right way? Life is a journey from one mystery to another, whichever way round you look at it.

Of course, whether you think now is the right time to wish anyone a happy new year or not depends on which calendar you are using. For instance, January in the Gregorian calendar is actually Tevet in the Jewish calendar, and the new year is not due for another nearly 300 days, on the 1st and 2nd Tishri, when the year will become 5773.

According to the Southern Buddhists, new year is the first three days of the full moon in April and the year is 2555.

According to the Muslim Calendar, new year will be November 15th 2012, and the year will be 1434.

According to the Julian calendar new year is on the 14th of January. The Julian calendar was the calendar used in the West until 1582, when it was replaced by the Gregorian calendar. Some Eastern Orthodox churches still celebrate New year on the 14th of January and some stubborn traditionalists still use the Julian calendar for all of their dates.

In fact it is possible to celebrate new year in almost every month of the year. It depends on what part of the world you come from and which belief-system you ascribe to.

Robert Anton Wilson

Circular time

According to Robert Anton Wilson, the great anarchist thinker and writer, the year is now 6012, his personal count beginning with the birth of Hung Mung, a mythological ancient Chinese philosopher who supposedly answered all questions by shouting loudly, "I don't know! I don't know!"

Thus Robert Anton Wilson’s satirical version of a calendar system begins with an uncertainty.

Later he revised his views, saying that ALL calendar systems, including his own, were attempts to impose a single vision on a complex world, and he started using a variety of different systems at the same time. So a Robert Anton Wilson article might be dated in any one of about twenty different ways.

What most of these different calendar systems have in common is a starting date. That is, they are linear and progressive and whoever devised the system had to choose a day on which to start calculating the progression of days and months and years that lead us up to today‘s date.

Thus time is perceived as a line. It goes from the past to the future, from something that is fixed and known to something that is as yet unrealised. It goes from young to old, from youth to maturity, from ignorance to wisdom.

At the same time it goes from strength to weakness, from vigour to decrepitude, from imagination into habit, from creativity into decay, and it is a process which can never be reversed.

But time might not be like this at all.

Time might go in circles.

One particular Celtic version of the new year came in the form of a story. The young Oak King challenges the old Holly King for the love of the goddess, and kills him. This story is commemorated in a garbled form in the ancient carol, the Holly and the Ivy, and is repeated, in reverse order, in the summer, when the Holly King defeats the Oak King.

Thus the cycle of the year is seen as a story of death and rebirth, endlessly echoed through time. Birth and death: it’s all part of the same process. The birth of the new year, and the death of the old.

Which, of course, is exactly what it is: death and decay giving way to growth and rebirth, and all of us spinning in a merry dance through the cycles of seasons.

Actually it is this notion of time which we celebrate in our modern version of the new year, which we commemorate by our new year’s resolutions. We celebrate the idea that the year can become new again. We celebrate the rebirth of the year.

Shall I tell you my new year’s resolutions?

I will wish everyone a good morning, even when it‘s not.

I will look at the stars whenever the night is clear.

I will always be good to myself.

Have a great new year everybody!

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • CJStone profile imageAUTHOR

      Christopher James Stone 

      6 years ago from Whitstable, UK

      You too Gerry. Have a good one!

    • profile image

      Gerry 

      6 years ago

      hi Chris,

      Loved your piece. Being nice to others and a big smile works well for me and enjoying each day as it comes is a good philosophy to have.

      Happy New Year to you and wishing you lots of luck and happiness for 2012.

      Gerryx

    • CJStone profile imageAUTHOR

      Christopher James Stone 

      6 years ago from Whitstable, UK

      And you Fen. Keep on writing!

    • fen lander profile image

      fen lander 

      6 years ago from Whitstable

      New, New, New every sunrise, every second, every minute, every hour of everyday, every week, every month, every year!!! happy New Everything for ever Chris.

    • CJStone profile imageAUTHOR

      Christopher James Stone 

      6 years ago from Whitstable, UK

      Thanks Pam, Szabi, Jon, SEM Pro & Bard. Have a great new year you all.

    • Bard of Ely profile image

      Steve Andrews 

      6 years ago from Lisbon, Portugal

      Sharing at FB and voted up! Happy New Year, Chris!

    • SEM Pro profile image

      SEM Pro 

      6 years ago from North America

      Deliciously wise Chris - thank you for sharing your link to bring my attention here. I sent well wishes on the Gregorian calendar's date because most recognize it but yes, we're able to incorporate pearls from many wise paths, all with a different New Year date - the wisest of all to realize it is only this very moment that counts. Cheers to our collective decisions, hopefully made with the purest and most joyful intentions :)

    • Jon Elliott profile image

      Jon Elliott 

      6 years ago

      Well Hung knew what he was talking about because his time must of been fruitless abit like mine philosophically speaking not knowing is confusing and frustrating but cross fingers for the new year we wont enter it shouting our heads off. bit sad about cheetah tarzans companion. happy new year chris interesting blog

    • profile image

      Szabi 

      6 years ago

      Great hub my friend,I wish you a happy new year,month,week,day,hour,minute,moment,lifetime,year,month,....

    • profile image

      PamF 

      6 years ago

      Happy New Year, Chris. And... Good morning!

    • Constant Walker profile image

      Constant Walker 

      9 years ago from Springfield, Oregon

      I loved this CJ, and a very Happy New Year to you and yours!  I, too, am all about the little kindnesses and courtesies.  I also believe they make a difference in the bigger picture.  I can see it on the faces that return my smile and/or a simple kind word or well wish. 

      Is there anything as marvelous as the face that lights up with a smile?

      PS: Thanks for the mention in the monthly HP letter.

    • Stacie L profile image

      Stacie L 

      9 years ago

      intersting and thought -provoking. Good news is a relief

      ;)

    • CJStone profile imageAUTHOR

      Christopher James Stone 

      9 years ago from Whitstable, UK

      Hi Steve, well that shouldn't be too difficult, and I'll do my best to sell some more of our co-authored efforts to help you on your way.

      cflynn: yes we should all look at the stars more, not least to remind ourselves what an awe-inspiring mystery it all is.

      Thanks for the poem CWB, but it wasn't time we polished the shine off but our own eyes.

      VioletSun, I think responsibility sounds like a good resolution, but particularly the responsibility to take time off to enjoy yourself every so often.

      JamaGenee, glad you liked the hub. Trouble with time is that it's a bit like an inconstant lover, always running out on us.

      Happy new year everyone.

    • Bard of Ely profile image

      Steve Andrews 

      9 years ago from Lisbon, Portugal

      Happy New Year, Chris! Sorry I am late at this excellent hub! As for my resolution it is simply make more money! lol

    • cflynn profile image

      cflynn 

      9 years ago from Ireland

      lovely hub. i think we will stop and look at the stars more often this year too

    • profile image

      ColdWarBaby 

      9 years ago

      It's about Time, which isn't easy to be about.

      Remember the shiny shine?

      Because it was new.

      We polished so hard, the shine rubbed right off.

      A free verse I composed when I was in high school. I still remember it today. My new years gift to you CJ. Hoping for the best for you and yours and all the family of humanity.

    • VioletSun profile image

      VioletSun 

      9 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie

      This was a very uplifting hub.  I liked the paragraph where you said you are a great believer that small things can make a difference, I do so too. And as for time, its a perception.  I find when I am having a pleasant time, time goes fast, but when I am stuck in a subway, that time stands still. But wonder what about aging? If time didn't exist as I know it, why do we percieve aging? Just thinking out loud. :) 

      My New Year's resolution is to take responsilibity in everything I do, be it finances, health, weight, choices. Sounds kind of a strict resolution, but its not, it makes me more aware.

      Happy New Year! 

    • JamaGenee profile image

      Joanna McKenna 

      9 years ago from Central Oklahoma

      Very insightful hub, Chris. Judging by the number of devices we buy (like clocks, calendars, and DayRunners) to keep track of "time" - whatever it is - we definitely are over-fixated on it today.

    • profile image

      Feline Prophet 

      9 years ago

      I love your resolutions CJ! :)

    • CJStone profile imageAUTHOR

      Christopher James Stone 

      9 years ago from Whitstable, UK

      Hi goldentoad, I imagine there's some places not too far out of town where you can see the stars. The Milky Way on a clear night is spectacular. And a happy new year to you too.

    • goldentoad profile image

      goldentoad 

      9 years ago from Free and running....

      Great read and Happy New Years to you, those resolutions are good ones, in LA though, the sky is hardly ever clear enough to see a star, but one of the goals is to get out town more often and see 'em.

    • CJStone profile imageAUTHOR

      Christopher James Stone 

      9 years ago from Whitstable, UK

      Hi Pam, and to you too. I've used it before too.

    • profile image

      pgrundy 

      9 years ago

      What a great hub. I love this part:

      There’s an old Zen saying: “Before enlightenment, chopping wood and collecting water. After enlightenment, chopping wood and collecting water.”

      I've heard it before, but I still love it. All the best to you CJ. :)

    • CJStone profile imageAUTHOR

      Christopher James Stone 

      9 years ago from Whitstable, UK

      And to you Paraglider!

    • Paraglider profile image

      Dave McClure 

      9 years ago from Kyle, Scotland

      Very uplifting hub, Chris. Happy New Year to you & yours :)

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)