Time & Truth About Its Use

Jul 29, 2021

Guest Oliver Burkeman states in his new book, Four Thousand Weeks: Time Management for Mortals, that “outrageous brevity is life’s defining problem.” At age 80, you’ll have had a paltry 4,000 weeks. Such brevity is breathtaking, so we create defenses against the reality of finitude. We distract ourselves with the belief that fulfillment lies in the future, that plans and goals prove purpose, and that we can achieve almost any number of things by being more efficient/motivated/healthy—or just overall exceptional. Paradoxically, embracing life’s limitations can open us to what Jung called “a new attitude”—an inner pivot from the daily grind to seeing and seizing life’s possibilities. Time is not our adversary, the present is not hostage to the future, and we can choose to be alive while we’re alive.

Here’s the dream we analyze:

“Had a dream about a close friend. She had committed a murder, and there was a police detective asking her questions. She had some sort of tracker device that she was holding in her hand most of the dream. She lied to the detective and said she only had it because of her work, and she hadn’t even turned it on yet. The policeman wanted to check her tracker to confirm she wasn’t at the scene of murder. She kept making up excuses as to why she couldn’t give it to him. She kept coming and going in her car from this house that we were in sometimes with the policeman; other times it was just busy with different unknown people. My friend was terrified and turned to me for help. At one point, she was wailing and pleading with me to help her, saying, “please don’t let them take me away.” I was holding her and comforting her and saying I wouldn’t let them do that.”



Burkeman, Oliver. Four Thousand Weeks: Time Management for Mortals. https://www.oliverburkeman.com/books

Burkeman, Oliver. The Antidote: Happiness for People Who Can’t Stand Positive Thinking

Burkeman, Oliver. Help! How to Become Slightly Happier and Get a Bit More Done 


Learn to Analyze your own Dreams:  https://thisjungianlife.com/enroll/

1 Comment

  1. Isabel

    Awesome podcast, very interesting episode, thank you all. I think that the murder may be, in the case, related to the fact that the friend is worried that the fetus may have a malformation and she will have to make the decision to carry on with the pregnancy. In IVF there is a lot of monitoring for health reasons (the tracking device that will tell her if the baby is healthy or not). This is a dilema for every woman and more for a person who is accustomed to always help and care. It can be easily seen as a contradiction to her own character if she has to end the pregnancy, for concerns of what the life of that human would be.


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