Of course, this question is a quote from the Chicago song, “Does anybody really know what time it is? Does anybody really care?” from 1970.
The chorus goes,
Does anybody really know what time it is?
Does anybody really care?
If so I can't imagine why.
We've all got time enough to cry.
Getting back to the first question: Does anybody really know what time it is? No, because time is a relative measurement based on agreements we have made so we can organize our lives. For example, we agree that we will meet at noon for lunch or be in a class at a certain time because is a practical way of working together as a species to accomplish our goals.
Other animals do not have need of this type of measurement because they do not need to plan their lives. A dog or cat does not know the difference between 2:30 and 2:45 PM. A coyote does not fret because she will be late to a meeting. A snake does not measure the minutes on a clock so he can get ready for some event. Living our lives by the time clock is strictly human behavior.
The actual time on the clock varies according to where you are on the globe or in outer space, so in that sense it is also relative and not absolute. It is never 10:00 AM all over the world at the same time. Time is also relative, as Einstein pointed out, depending on the observer of it, as in “Time flies when you’re having fun” or it drags when you are bored or stuck.
The only absolute time is the speed of light. Nothing can go faster than that. But notice that time and space are united as it measures how long it takes for light to get from point A to point B. Therefore, time and space are inextricably bound together. In that sense, time is a continuum, which we break up into chunks for planning and organizational purposes.
Now, for the second question: “Does anybody really care?” Yes, if you are a human being living in the modern world. In primitive times, we conducted our lives according to the flow of nature. Now, in our organized societies where products, services, and information drive people’s survival, people do care intensely what time it is.
Caring about what time it is causes huge amounts of stress on humanity. We get stuck in traffic and fear being late because we could lose our jobs. People will not be able to depend on us if we are not conscious of time. Our reputations are at stake. And time stresses us out because we feel there isn’t enough of it to get all the things we want to accomplish done in our lifetime.
That brings us to the most important reason for why we care: Only the human animal is aware of the fact that it has a time-bound, limited life-span and can reflect on this. It frustrates us to know that our life is whirling by and there is nothing we can do to stop this movement towards our physical death. We know that there is going to be an end to this physical time and it frightens most of us. We will die and we will not have fulfilled our plans. And therefore, we care very, very much.
Outside of the world of form and physicality, time does not exist. Only eternity prevails in the world of the Spirit. Eternity is without beginning or ending and flows continuously and simultaneously everywhere. It is a space of fearlessness that exists outside of the human mind and its desire to measure, acquire, accumulate, and plan. It is the eternal Now.