I agree with the first part of your elaboration, Diana.
Your comment about Eliot's relation to the Indic view in this regard
is something I'm not so sure of. I'd love to be informed on that.
Thanks, and regards.
~ CR

Diana Manister <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
                               Time past and time future
Allow but a little consciousness.
To be conscious is not to be in time
But only in time can the moment in the rose-garden,
The moment in the arbour where the rain beat,
The moment in the draughty church at smokefall
Be remembered; involved with past and future.
Only through time time is conquered.
Dear CR: The best interpretation I can offer of this passage is that by collecting the past in a present moment that is moving into the future, one experiences Bergson's "duration," or time as process, escaping or transcending the limitation of the isolated, static present moment.
In this passage, time is conquered throughan experience of Bergsonian expanded time, a present amplified by one's personal past and future, a present that includes all tenses in itself. Indic "enlightenment," or a moment of "tat tvam asi" in which the self identifies with everything else partaking of the present moment with no relation to past and future, is not seen by Eliot as being as positive an experience. That would indicate that Eliot rejected the Indic approach that had earlier attracted him, would it not?
"To be conscious is not to be in time" signifies a rejection of consciousness, because he goes on to write very positively of the experience of being in time. Diana

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