More on experiencing space, from my first book, Grandmother Dreams, Conversations Across the Veil, (Balboa Press 2012), p. 97-98:
“Shifting one’s attention to Space can be challenging, because Western culture immerses us in a worldview that is Time-oriented. Time orientation focuses on objects and uses the clock to measure all events. It places things one after another in an orderly fashion. Linear organization––jumping from one object or point in time to the next, also encourages the development of hierarchies to explain the relationship of one person to another. These linear arrangements are visible in top-down cultural institutions like government, organized religion, and patriarchal families. Hierarchies function with fixed rules about how things came to be and how they will stay that way. They force reality to “stay in line”. Many people are comforted by the apparent stability that linear thinking offers.
Westerners are focused on Time, however, at the expense of our awareness of Space. Space is the environment where we exist. It is not neatly ordered, because it contains everything at once. The space we end up ignoring when we focus exclusively on Time includes our own bodies, as well as out relationships with other people on the planet and with the planet itself. This is evident in our appallingly poor health as a nation, our attempts to ignore the world’s poor, and our resistance against taking responsibility for climate change. We end up valuing the hierarchies of status and ownership, creating a celebrity and consumer culture.
What would spacial orientation look like? We have many examples available, although we discount them precisely because we don’t understand them. Indigenous world view is Space-oriented. In indigenous cultures, there is room for Time, but it is not linear time. It is cyclical time, seen in the turning of the seasons and life cycles––with all of the cycles connecting endlessly with each other. This non-linear thinking sees everything as connected. It encourages honoring and sharing and stewardship. Not rules and hierarchies, but relationships and shared community are valued.
…Much of the ancient teaching that is now being brought to the surface is about honoring Space rather than Time.”