THE PAST AND FUTURE
For if we open our eyes and see clearly, it becomes obvious that there is no other time than this instant, and that the past and the future are abstractions without any concrete reality.
Until this has become clear, it seems that our life is all past and future, and that the present is nothing more than the infinitesimal hairline which divides them. From this comes the sensation of “having no time,” of a world which hurries by so rapidly that it is gone before we can enjoy it.
But through “awakening to the instant” one sees that this is the reverse of the truth: it is rather the past and future which are the fleeting illusions, and the present which is eternally real.
—Alan Watts, The Way of Zen