If you’re trying to meditate or pray or just calm down, you’re supposed to think about (or, in sixties terms, be in) the present moment. You can’t change the past or control the future, so just forget about them, in other words.
For me the present moment usually ends up being inside my own head, a space that’s often teeming with lots of un-present moment stuff. But sometimes I try to think about the big present moment outside my head: what’s happening right now, all over the world. Where each of my friends is, right now, what they’re doing or thinking; what the present moment is for all the people all over the place I don’t know and never will (this is not recommended as a way to calm down).
But leave it to the New York Times: they’re going to capture it. Next Sunday, May 2, at 15:00 U.T.C., everyone (well everyone who has read this, at least) is supposed to take a picture and send it to the Times, where some poor soul will then create a “global mosaic.” (If, like me, you have no idea what time 15:00 U.T.C. is, you can look it up here; and if, like me – even though I fancy myself a time specialist – you’ve never heard of this abbreviation, it stands for Coordinated Universal Time, despite the out-of-order letters; and if you’re wondering why they did away with Greenwich Mean Time, at least this time specialist can help you with that.)
So anyway, we all have a week to figure out how to encapsulate our present moments into a photograph, as well as a way to remember when 15:00 U.T.C. is.