Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Philosophy: Why Cronos is Associated With Time

In the Spring of 2001, after reading a short two page excerpt of Hesiod's work I wrote a brief paper on Why Cronos is Associated with Time. If you have an interest in Greek Mythology this might interest you. If you are not familiar with Greek Mythology or philosophy maybe this will intrigue you to want to learn more or this could just thoroughly confuse or bore you!
We received the assignment on a Friday and was due on Monday. While at the local bowling alley that night with friends and family I came up with this and wrote it down when I got home. Might not be the most conventional way to write a paper, but my professor seemed to like it saying "This is an outstanding paper - from which I have learned!"
The idea that I propose is that Cronos is associated with time because he creates it. In order to explain how it might be a possibility that Cronos created time, there are a couple of questions that need to be taken into consideration such as: Can the gods such as Gaia, Ouranus and Eros exist before time? If these gods were to exist before time, then where did they exist? How did Cronos create time? Through these questions and Hesiod's text, one should find it plausible that Cronos' association with time is that he created it.
From Hesiod's text, we know that the gods such as Gaia, Ouranus and Eros existed before Cronos' birth; therefore, if Cronos created time, then these gods had to exist before time came to be. Is this possible though? To answer this, one has to first look at what time is.
Time is a period in which change takes place; therefore, it is possible for the gods to exist outside of time, they can even operate in it. The only limitation put on existing outside of time is that change is unable to place.
After consideration of what time is and realizing that the gods could possibly live outside of time, one stumbles onto the next question of where did the gods exist if they existed outside of time. Looking at the opposite of time, one will find eternity. To say that the gods lived in a state of eternity before time was created wouldn't be far off. By looking at Hesiod's text to the passage in which Ouranus prevents Gaia from giving birth to their children, it is easy to see how this could be a state of eternity. In eternity, change does not occur, so by the action that Oranus takes, he is preventing change from occurring.
This now leads us to the final question of how Cronos was able to create time. It was through the plan, which Gaia thought up, that Cronos was able to create time. At the moment Cronos cut off his father's genitals, time came to exist. The separation that occur ed at that moment created a space. It was in that space that time came to be because after the separation, change occur ed when Gaia was finally able to give birth to her children; therefore, ending the eternity that Ouranus had been prolonging.
Through this interpretation, it is conceivable that this could be one possibility to why Cronos has an association with time. Without the courage of Cronos to go ahead with his mother's plan, the gods may have lived outside of time forever, and never have experienced any sort of change. Fortunately for the gods, Cronos created time in the space created by separating his mother and father.

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