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К содержанию номера журнала: Вестник КАСУ №5 - 2010

Автор: Дьячук Анна Анатольевна

Time concept is one of the basic concepts when any ontology is built. The idea of the world that appears on different stages of thought development also defines the peculiarities of time comprehension reflected in psychic experiences. Time is divided into lots of ones and first of all into objective and subjective times as the attributes of matter or as cogitative forms. Time can't be comprehended just as physical or mathematical time. In various areas of knowledge it is defined as division, measure, resource, value, object of knowledge and in connection with history it is defined as movement, space and the activity deployment context. From these positions of consideration time is an object which doesn't characterize personal experiences concerning something that the person defines as time. The question on time experience by person was brought up by phenomenologists F. Brentano and, first of all E. Husserl. The main idea in subjective time comprehension (personal time) is now not comprehension of what the time is but how it is perceived by person and how the time consciousness appears. All mentioned above leads to the discussion of consciousness structures which organize time experience.

In psychological science traditional researches of time experiences are connected with two main tendencies. On the one hand time is regarded as the reflection of subjective time and its certain physical properties. All above is reflected in researches of psychophysiological and neurophysiological time reflection basic foundations (N.D. Bagrova, N.N. Bragina, T.A. Dobrohotova, E.Geron, M.Y. Zabrodin, H. Ehrenwald, S. Sherwood), researches of time perception peculiarities (N.I. Moiseeva, D.G. Elkin, E.N. Sokolov, J. Piaget, A. Pieron) and researches of time intervals estimation (F. Donders, W. Wundt, B.I. Zhukanov, P. Fraisse). Discussing time we define the factors which lead to distortion in objective time perception, feeling and experience. From a position of the given approach time is considered as mathematical measure, scale that is used by person to describe fluidity of psychic processes. Yet some new properties of time different to those of subjective, physical time were defined. They are: time reversibility, time inversions, time irregularity, etc. And that's why the question on nature of time was brought up.

To describe such personal time secrets some conceptions of subjectively experienced time which exists independently from physical one and can be defined as time of psyche itself appeared at the end of XIX century. The relational approach to comprehension of time took off psychological time “appearing” (S.L. Rubinshtein) and made it possible to consider its properties through the objects and processes of the system (Abul'khanova, 2009). Starting with M.I. Sechenov they started to consider time as a necessary characteristic of psychic power existence (L.M. Vekker, T.N. Beresina, L.P. Grimak, J. Kafka, P. Janet and others). Also the trends which pose the problem of subjective time in the context of personal development such as motivation, dynamics of perceived and unconscious, studying course of life and its specific temporal, biographical, eventful characteristics, plans for life, numerous researches of time prospective in conditions of activity implementation and communication, etc. appeared. In spite of the numerous researches of psychological time aspects consciousness of time is substituted for different time representations in consciousness.

To discuss psychological time we need to distinguish time as a subject and time experience, which don't coincide and thus the comprehension of time peculiarities in person's consciousness through analysis of time as an object is impossible. So there is a necessity to study time not as psychic or matter properties or objective time reflection in senses and experiences but perception and comprehension of something the person qualifies as “time”.

Point of view

Time in its real and possible forms appears in consciousness when consciousness is directed to time. To comprehend this thesis we refer to the ideas about consciousness intentionality by F. Brentano and E. Husserl: the thing doesn't exist when consciousness is not directed to it, but when consciousness directedness to the thing appears, the thing itself, the idea of it and its form come into being for every personality (Husserl, 1969). Time appears in consciousness in those situations when there is a necessity of defining something that should be completed in time. This appearance is connected with different psychic experiences (thinking, sensation, emotion) in which time appears to the personality because it is perceived by it in any way. Time as we comprehend it doesn't exist without some relations with experiences the personality has.

Experience is a complete act which includes something that is being experienced and consciousness itself into the complete structure. But if consciousness wasn't organized in a proper way we wouldn't be able to experience time. The structure of our consciousness “allows” us to experience the invisible reality that is time. Following I.Kant we consider time as a form of consciousness which is the condition of world perception and phenomena representation in consciousness. Form defines the fact that lots of things are perceived as complete unity in specific content. Referring to M.K. Mamardashvily, “form is something that was sticked together into some irreversible integrity... something firm, present and relatively constant in human socially-historical life, something invisible that is opposed to unsteadiness and stored” (Mamardashvili, 2002, p.144).

The ways of time perception in experience remain in language and culture as traces , they are “put” on individual consciousness by means of activity. The person uses different language notions of time not always reflecting his own time experiences. He uses linguistic turns, which are better represented in social relationships (for example – time is money). If we ask the person what time is, his answer will hardly deal with time experience. The comprehension of time experience peculiarity by the person is possible in situations that require self-determination regarding time from the person, when determination of psychological mechanisms is possible and so experience, time content and the organization of human activity in different situations are formed.

We define time transspective as time structure, temporal gestalt that defines the ways of structuralization of life time, activity and sense of time by the personality as such mechanisms.

The term “time transspective” was suggested by V.I. Kovalyov in the context of conception of time personal organization as specific activity connection, that structures different time intervals of past, present or future personal life in optimal time-personal formations. Such relation integrates past and future and becomes the basis of creative-converting act (Kovalyov, 1998). This term covers different aspects of time representation in the person's consciousness that's why modern researchers replace the term time prospective suggested before by this term to reflect not only person's conception of future but also his ways of constructing past and present (L.V. Borozdina, I.A. Spiridonova, I.V. Dubrovina etc.)

In our researches we consider time transspective as the psychological mechanism of integration, tempo-rhythmical characteristics of processes on different levels of organization retention, definite stable connections of activity functional space creation. This mechanism is reflected in perception, time experience, motivational tendencies, ideas and attitude towards time (giving value to time). As a gestalt time transspective specifies the integrated representation in time realization and also the situations which deal with time experience and experiences connected with time as a symbol of reality which defines this reality content formed in time. So to say the person is inside this time structure, that self-organizes separate acts of different rhythms and cycles co-ordination, dynamical peculiarities of processes which take place in activity space and instantaneous fixity of event organized as this structure.

Our researches showed that there is a definite hierarchy structure (that means it has different levels) of consciousness. This structure can be defined when planning and realizing activity as a time object take place. So we considered strategical activity as such activity. It demands to solve the problem of psychological “harmonization of times” and various phenomena in integrity.

Materials and Methods

Organization procedure of empirical study pointed to definite the relation between temporal pattern and strategic activity. Single-factor analysis method was chosen for the basis of research scheme formation. This scheme allows to constrict the numbers of influence conditions and to mark the most important of them. We can speak about the influence of the factor (temporal gestalt) on the feature (strategic activity) only if the factor has not less then 3 gradations, because it allows to determine nonlinear dependence.

Strategic activity can be measure through successful activity acquirement characteristic. It's essential to mark qualities, which are important for such an activity. During theoretical analysis we have detached opportuneness, activity, mobility(flexibility), constructiveness ( situation gestalt formation with the shortage of information). Thereby, these qualities must be regarded in the ratio, as interrelated. These qualities correlation can become the criterion for description of qualitative and original realization of strategic activity. This pilot study allowed to mark the technique for these qualities measuring. We used graphic scaling method by analogy with Dembo-Rubinshtain methodology, which is simple in practice and has no numerical scale of evaluations. Subjective judgments were compared with experts estimations, who made their estimations about quality intensity among test persons. Experts estimations were independently held from each other. It allowed to evener subjective factors, affecting on estimate, and to get objective results.

Operationalism of temporal structure was based on temporal experience description, as well as oneself activity regulation on the ground of such experience. The first characteristic was measured with the help of «Temporal experience scale» by E.I. Golovaha, A.A. Kronic, forming by the semantic differential type. We chose this methodology, because psycho-semantic methods help to see world view from the other person position, find out individual system of values and meanings. Predetermined outcome of estimate criterias allows to correlate test persons descriptions and to match them. On the other hand, this methodology doesn't allow to elicit linguistic form, which person uses to explain his or her experience.

For this problem solution, it was suggested to give associations and pictures of the word «time». Time regulation investigated with the help of questionnaire and interview with test persons, the main aim of which was obtaining information about the success of task achievement on term, the scope of unsolved problems, method and meaning of the planning. During the processing it was important for us not only detachment of one or another experience representation and regulation method, but also reference one to another.

Thereby, examined phenomenons were acted as multidimensional, multiparameter, having different connections between measured data. On the other hand it was reasonable for us to determine not quantity, but quality characteristics of examined phenomenons. However, quality differences definition supposes criteria allocation and it was rather difficult. It's especially important in temporal gestalt criteria allocation as the basis for levels (gradations) allocation in chosen scheme. Gradations definition and description, indicating the real measured data correlation and distribution, have become one of the research problem.

69 persons took part in the research (47 men and 22 women) at the age of 32-57, commercial organization and education institutes directors.

Searching of the given criterias was done by cluster analysis. This technique represents mathematical method of data grouping by classes (clusters) in order to define a similar objects group, belonging to one class, homogenous in any features in comparison with the objects, incorporating in other classes when certain criterias are already known.

On the first stage test persons were divided into groups (classes) according to different characteristic profiles of temporary structure using clustering middle K-method. By means of this method we could define an exact amount of K-clusters, the amount of clusters needed to researcher, arranged in the distance from each other. As a result we have clusters with minimized variability inside them, and maximized variability among clusters(for this task solution the statistics device STATISTICA v. 6.0 was used). We decided to distinguish three clusters, since the variability of the phenomenon and dependence type definition are possible in this case, and in order to the clusters contain enough objects for examination of obtained result as nonrandom. Divided according to their temporal experience into three groups test persons were considered as factor levels.

Temporal experience quantity data definition was done by allocation of structures with the help of close neighbor merging method, that connects similar characteristics and could be displayed in hierarchical tree with various branches called dendrogram.

We repeated this procedure for allocation of strategic action quality peculiarities. Three groups were allocated by the means of clustering middle K method. Quality correlation between criterias for each group were obtained by hierarchical cluster analysis.

Further, selected by strategic action and temporal structure groups were correlated with the help of conjugacy table and the statistical estimate of obtained relations significance was done by χ2 Pearson criteria (χ2 =10,12, p<0,05). This procedure allows to distinguish statistically significant, nonrandom correlation among temporal experience and strategic action.

Results and Discussion

The analysis of gotten results showed the typical forms of time perception and experience, the ways of self-organization in time, attitude towards time, time abilities which are stable and can be reproduced.

The first group peculiarities of temporal experience are connected with a sense of time in the situation of sequence reconstruction and timetable of events. The order sets integrity, even though time experiences as something disunited, discrete and uneven. The concentration of attention and efforts on exact tasks bring to the fact that the new task perceives as unexpected, but demanding its’ execution, it leads to disconnection of previous task decision and both impossibility of sequence building and its’ coherence.

This group can be characterized by “disappearance” of time as the objective one. The timetable and sequence of events specifies some illusion of temporality, but also some disunity of events and their spasmodic character. It is impossible to organize activity in the situation of substantial uncertainty.

The other group represents the appearance of time reflection according to solving tasks that set temporal relations synthesis, duration. Timing starts to comprehend that is why the activity regulation happens rather effectively during the goal setting. In the situation when aims are removed in time perspective, the time itself charges as extended and it disorganizes, doesn’t allow regulate somebody’s resources in the situation when future results are not defined.

Temporality reflexion as united experience of different senses and perceptions appears; subject activity as the objectness for me is constructed. All above leads to changeability of time horizon in dependance on the emerging challenges. If there is a deadline of carrying work out, the sense “work isn't mine, time isn't mine too” appears to the designated period of time.

For the third group time is experienced as continuous-discontinuous, connected with apportionment of general through the reflection. Getting to the oversituational position is connected with understanding of situation uniqueness, not determined by previous course of events development, its untypicalness as unique combination of different conditions, resources and potential variants of reality development, determining the value of the situation itself. It is noticed to experience opportuneness.

This group is defined by the value of the moment (situation) as having the possibilities of person's self-realization, definite aims of development achievement, timeliness. Different modifications of past and future combinations in actual present appear on this level. Time is experienced as continuous-noncontinuous and connected with defining general one by using of phenomenological reflexion. Oversituational position is connected with situational uniqueness comprehension. This situation is nondeterminated by the previous course of events, is also untypical as unique combination of different conditions, resources and prospective modifications of reality development that determine the value of situation itself.

Comparison of received groups with strategical activity peculiarities showed the following.

For the first group (in considerable degree the first type of temporal experiences represented) is characterized by the disorganization of action with the work realization on time necessity, difficulties in activity organization of events forcing progress, when activity has more situational character. Decision making occurs while defining results of situation development and action algorithm, leading to this decision.

The second type of experience correlates to the following strategical action peculiarities: the ability of events forcing progress, when the logic is clear, delay in opportunity usage, activity proceeds only when the developing image integrity occurs, disability to distribute the situation resources, when the future results are not defined. “Insensibility” to the weak signals, disability to build up the future image in situation with a lack of information, difficulties in decision making with the independent determination of boundaries and forms for realization of necessary activity in the situation, when aims and future results are indefinite. The third type of experience occurs attitude towards the situation as independent from previous, unlike, untypical, but included in unique action structure. Actions form future situation itself. Decision realization defines by the action conditions and individual opportunities transformation in plan of real action towards the aims.

Mobile correction of activity in the plan of real action for subjective and organizationally acceptable results achievement.

These characteristics are also repeated in further researches. They are stable and reproductible on different samples and that allows to speak about certain form, general arrangement which its separate components are depend on.


The analysis of results shows that activity planning appears in correlation with definite basis of time construction that forms a special generality. Such arrangement allows to perceive something that can't be perceived visually. And this is time. This structure defines the way the person comprehends time. Time structures characterize different organization of consciousness. Defining different types of consciousness organization we should also discuss different time forms. Discussing strategical activity we have assumed that there's such type of consciousness that was identified as strategical consciousness and specially for it, as we assume, another form different from others exists.

Thus, the studying of psychic structures that appear in psychic acts of consciousness and specify time content will allow to describe psychological mechanisms which define the time peculiarities of the personality. The time forms differentiation is directed to comprehension of time experiences and their contain, situations which they appear in.


1. K.A. Abul'khanova, “Consciousness as Person's Vital Ability”, Psikhologicheskii Zhurnal, 1 (2009), 32-43, in Russian.

2. A. A. Dyachuk, Time transspective as psychological mechanism of chief's strategical activity. (Krasnoyarsk: Abstract... Candidate of Psychological sciences, 2005), in Russian.

3. V.I. Kovalyov, “The category of time in psychology (personal aspect)”, The categories of materialistic dialectics in psychology. (Moscow: Science, 1998), 216-230, in Russian.

4. E. Husserl, Zur Phaenomenologie des Inneren Zeitbewusstseins: Husserliana. (Den Haag, 1969, Bd.X).

5. M.K. Mamardashvili, Lectures on ancient philosophy. (Moscow: Agraf, 2002), in Russian.

К содержанию номера журнала: Вестник КАСУ №5 - 2010

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