Group time vs Individual Time

Posted on December 19, 2009
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I got into a really interesting metaphysical tonight with my friends about group time vs individual time. I was describing to them some of my paratheatre work with time and we got to talking about the difference between Western time, which is monochronic and this very scheduled and linear with one thing happening at a time and polychronic time where lots of things could be happening at the same time and its very non-linear with little in the way of scheduling.

Then I began thinking about group time, time which is created when a group starts meeting and working together. It’s a kind of sacred time in its own way. When I interact with a group, the experience of time changes quite a bit because of the group interaction, but also because I’m no longer in individual time, time spent with just myself. And I notice with group time it is different because with interaction of other people, the sense of time changes. It feels like the moment lasts longer, instead of with individual time, where the awareness of time is based more on solo activity and when those activities are finished.

It’s an interesting realization and it speaks to some degree to the efficacy of group time, because everyone participating in a group is also participating in the experience of time in that group. The contribution of each person’s awareness of time creates the experience of group time an consequentlly can alter the awareness of the flow of time.

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