Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Times and Seasons

June 21st will officially be the first day of Summer in the Northern Hemisphere.

The four seasons take place logically because of the relative positions of the Earth and the Sun. But some ways we measure time are just arbitrary.

It's logical to call the cycle of the four seasons a year. Approximately twelve times a year the moon appears, becomes full, and disappears from our view again so it's also logical to have twelve months in every year.

But there's no logical reason to call seven days a week. We have weeks simply because people in the dominant cultures have agreed to do that for centuries.

Yes, we have morning, noon, evening and midnight because of the sun and moon, but dividing the time in between into 24 hours, hours into 60 minutes, and minutes into 60 seconds doesn't happen because of any natural phenomena. Again, that's just something people all over our planet agree about.

There are lots of things humans can't agree on, but at least we do all think alike about a few things.


Nancy Stewart said...

Lovely review here. I wish you such good luck, Barbara. And, Jan, thanks for another terrific book review.

Janet Ann Collins said...

Nancy, I think you meant to put your comment on my next post since this one isn't a book review. But thanks for trying.