There are two other ways people think about time which are based on the future. Earlier (here) my last post explained how time perspectives structure our lifes bearing in mind that aside our personality, background, and upbringing how we view time can influence our response to situations. Also, I explained with examples four (4) ways in which people think about time. The last two ways are discussed below.
Social psychologists research concludes that the last two ways people think about time are based on the future.
- Future Active
- Future Fatalistic
Future Active: The future active are planners, they work more rather than play and resist temptations. Decisions are based on potential consequences of actions rather than the experience itself. Common future active statement are "If you don't go to school you wouldn't get a job" "If you don't exercise you will get fat" "If you don't read your books you wouldn't pass your exams" "If you don't put in hours you will not get that promotion." Analysing the future active against the fatalistic (discussed earlier) using the second statement we can understand why some response to situations differently.
For example, Mary a gym instructor and a friend of Bola tells Bola that she is adding weight and if she doesn't watch it, she will blow up (meaning she will be fat.) Bola already struggling with her weight clearly knows that she is increasing but doesn't seem bothered, or isn't planning on doing anything about it. Mary (future active) would think her friend Bola (the fatalistic) is lazy or nonchalant about her weight and isn't looking at the benefits of having a good body shape, it's health benefits and having a good routine. While Bola (the fatalistic) is looking at the issue from the moment or from the present and not the future, alluding to the fact that her decision has future benefits or consequences. Clearly, Bola understands that her decision affects her positively or negatively but she isn't looking at the future, she is looking at the moment or present and response to it the same way she has always responsed to other future things; easy going, untroubled, or carefree. Mary only sees the situation from her shoes, that is what she would have been doing if he was adding weight. She can't comprehend Bola's response but she is still her friend and will learn to accept her the way she is.
Future Fatalistic: The future fatalistic believe that all events are predetermined and therefore inevitable. The difference between the future fatalistic and the present fatalistic (discussed earlier) is that the first is driven by the certainty of life after death and some kind of judgement day when one will be assess by how virtuously one has lived and what success one has had in life while the latter focus on the present but these moments are products of circumstances beyound their control. Almost, all religion are based on the future fatalistic.
Hinduism one aspect of its teachings of "Karma" that is if you die as a good person you come back rich (that's if you where poor) but if you die as a bad person you come back poor or as an animal (that's if you are a rich person.) Most christains holds that human beings experience divine judgment and are rewarded either with eternal life or eternal damnation ( that means, if you die as a good person you go to heaven but if you die as a bad person you go to a place of fiery torment, or purgatory or Limbo depending on the denominations.) Islamic belief about the after life holds on the continued existence of the soul ans transformed physical existence after death and that there will be a day of judgement in which all humans will be divided between the external destinations of paradise and Hell.
Time perspectives make a big difference in how we view, value and use our time. They can make issues more serious than it is but if well understood can help to resolve major problems in the world. So it is important to be aware of how others view time and their response to situations than simply looking at situations from how we view matters, our experience or our personality and background.
Podcast from listening practice
Mankind Search for God. New York: Watchtower Bible and Track Society, 2006.