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Tick Tock: The difference between
the meaning of time and moments in time
Nathaniel Hawthorne’s Dr. Heidegger’s Experiment

Meagan Hanley
12/712
English 3
“Life is not made of minutes, hours, days, weeks, months, or years, but of moments. You must experience each one before you can appreciate it.” (Sarah Breathnach). Time is a lifeless measurement of the years that one has spent on earth. One can go through life living by these lifeless minutes and never experience what life is really about. People spend every minute wishing for more time to be beautiful, to be power, to be rich. All the time in the world can pass but moments are what make life worth living. Moments are where love and wisdom are gained and without moments life is a race to the grave. Throughout Dr. Heidegger’s Experiment, Nathanial Hawthorne examines the meaning of time and moments with the chance of growing young again to experience life.

Dr. Heidegger not only learned early in his lifetime that the experiences of moments are what make everyday worth living but that it can all be taken away from you very quickly. Dr. Heidegger explains that love and the moments based around it are what life is measured by, not the element of time. Time is wasted if moments are not continuously building on the experience of the lifetime. “Well- I bemoan if not; for if the fountain gushed at my very doorstep, I would not stoop to bathe my lips in it- no, though its delirium were for years instead of moments. Such is the lesson ye have taught me” (310). One can live like the Widow for many years without any memories to look back upon. Dr. Heidegger built many memories in his short time with Sylvia. In his early life Dr. Heidegger lost his true love Sylvia before their marriage leaving him heartbroken and alone. Even though he found a way to bring her back to life, he understood that more time with her wasn’t what he desperately wanted. He wanted the moments they had once lived together. The lesson...
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