Ancient civilizations such as the Mayan and the Incan believed that time was a circle, or a spiral. Far removed from our linear understanding of time, their sense of time was cyclical. The same events would happen over and over again.

They could pause and stand in time.

Infinite time: An Aztec stone clock of spirals. Wikimedia Commons

It goes without saying that planning a sea voyage or taking up a sport that requires you to do more than lift weights—that category of “time-consuming" activities—are ruled out.

If Mint’s readership surveys are right, we have you pinned down as an uber successful professional or entrepreneur who has, or will, travel the world. You’re on your second set of wheels already and paying back an ambitious house loan. You stop for nothing.

The Eastern and Oriental Express runs from Singapore to Bangkok, allowing a stunning view of the Kwai river from its observation deck.

Apart from those who celebrated or suffered personal milestones—first jobs, marriage, baby, divorce, the death of someone close—what will the rest of you remember 2011 for?

What this issue says is, quit living life in bits and snatches. Quit the maddening mission to “save time". You’re not running out of anything. You have the philosophy of Jean Cocteau as testimony: “Nothing ever gets anywhere. The earth keeps turning round and round and gets nowhere. The moment is the only thing that counts."

Make your moments count. You can pause and stand in time too.

You can stretch time, get more bang for your buck from 2012 if you purge the quick-fixes to take up the long-form: Get down to finishing that entire series of Alan Moore comics you ordered off Amazon but didn’t unwrap, start on your film queue of the 10 sexiest biopics of all time.

Speaking at the Penguin Annual Lecture in New Delhi earlier this month, the Dalai Lama made the distinction between happiness at the sensory level and happiness at the level of mental consciousness. The Art of Happiness, he said, lay in understanding the latter: an all-encompassing happiness that stems from a calmness of mind.

Beautiful things, good food and wine, all the sensory delights of the world, do bring joy, but they bring a joy that is short-lived; a joy that comes crumbling down with the slightest touch. The goal is to build a more lasting happiness—a warm home, a tightly bound family, a truly healthy body, knowledge, art, and dreams that will stay with you.

Slowing down doesn’t mean going on a month-long meditative retreat. It means really living the moments in 2012.

What this issue says is, take a deep breath. Slow down. Ditch the quickie. Make 2012 the year you make love.

Anindita Ghose

Issue editor

SLOW DOWN MAKE 2012 LAST LONGER

Get off the fast track. Clean up, refresh, embark on a journey or a project. Create a memory.

PICK FROM OUR 50 WAYS TO STRETCH TIME

1-11 | Throw out the toxins. Organize

Restore beauty: find the missing parts

2. Follow a different ‘real time’

3. Create a home retreat

4. Stitch in time

5. Mend the cracks with that friend

6. Back up the photo album

7. Put together a festival calendar

8. Make your home plastic-free

9. Purge the fast food

10. Get freewheeling

11. Rediscover slow food

Cick hereto read this set

12-21 | Take up a project, make a memory

Cover the Indian coastline

13. Write your novel

14. Build your own board game

15. Follow a cinematic thread

16. Meet the Steven Spielberg of Asia

17. Get puzzled

18. Knot up

19. Explore ‘Skyrim’

20. Understand Proust

21. The movie enterprise

Click hereto read this set

22-26 | Find your own fragrance

22. Make a scent

Build a classic wardrobe

24. Learn how to drape a sari creatively

25. Take a sari pilgrimage

26. Start out with clay

Click hereto read this set

27-30 | Go on a journey. Rediscover

27. Time travel

28. Follow your wings

29. Pick up the pen

30. Go back to your mother tongue

Click hereto read this set

31-32 | Build a classic wardrobe

Get some rock

32. Find your silhouette

Click hereto read this set

33-42 | Touch base with nature. Listen

33. Get some rock

34. Picture the wild

35. Go fishing

36. Birth of a bonsai

37. Let the herbs grow

38. Sound investment

Caption those photos

40. Understand your urban habitat

41. Rediscover science

42. Eat with the season

Click hereto read this set

43-47 | Go the family way

43. Caption those photos

44. Create an heirloom

45. Build a family tree

Find your way back home

47. String a family band

Click hereto read this set

48-50 | Get home. Breathe.

48. Find your way back home

49. Travel to a friend

50. Breathe

Click here to to read this set

Contributors:Amrita Roy, Anindita Ghose, Anupam Kant Verma, Gayatri Jayaraman, Gopal Sathe, Komal Sharma, Pavitra Jayaraman, Rudraneil Sengupta, Sanjukta Sharma, Seema Chowdhry, Shreya Ray, Supriya Nair and Viseshika Sharma.

For feedback, email us at lounge@livemint.com

Close