Dois tempos

“If we think of time as a line, we think of the present as one point on it, with the past on one side and the future on the other; the present, I suppose, is imagined as travelling into the future so that what was future becomes by degrees first present and then past, and then more and more remote in the past. But this figure only seems appropriate so long as we forget that the line is really regarded as consisting of events arranged in a temporal series, and that therefore we are thinking of all events, not as happening, but as existing from eternity to eternity and merely waiting to be revealed by a kind of searchlight called the present, when it reaches them. Unless we think of them thus, the figure of a line has no applicability whatever; for the events of the future do not really await their turn to appear, like the people in a queue at a theatre awaiting their turn at the box office: they do not yet exist at all, and they therefore cannot be grouped in any order whatever. Similarly about the events of the past; which, because they have happened, and therefore are not now happening, do not exist and therefore cannot be arranged along a line. The temporal series regarded as a line, therefore, is in reality a line consisting of one point only, the present. The present alone is actual: the past and the future are ideal and nothing but ideal.” 

“Preveo que el hombre se resignará cada día a empresas más atroces; pronto no habrá sino guerreros y bandoleros; les doy este consejo: El ejecutor de una empresa atroz debe imaginar que ya la ha cumplido, debe imponerse un porvenir que sea tan irrevocable como el pasado.

Sobre António Figueira

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