The substance of our mental cell - Feelix and his spheres of influence, perception and thought - is time. Time in the form of moments, enter and leave our cell in a constant stream. Time is the Blood of Consciouness. Every single moment that enters our cell is digested, and like the structure of our consciousness this digestion occurs in a similarly universal way. All of us - however individually distorted - experience, respond, reflect, remember and forget. Like the cell has pathways in its metabolism of sugar, so our consciousness has pathways in its metabolism of time.
Each moment that is experienced in our lives emerges from the well spring of the future, but it's considered the altered future because to some extent what happens next is determined by the outcome of the previous moment. This moment, freshly drawn, is 'reduced' into percieved consciousness. When we experience any individual moment we have the capacity to experience a lot more of it than we do. For instance a patterned carpet can be experienced as a swirling mixture of faces and images but our experience of it is 'reduced' to patterned carpet. Similarly we know a great deal and have a great many feelings for our friend Tom, but he is reduced to 'Tom'. This filtering or reduction of the moment keeps things simple.
Reduced, this moment enters our perception, we 'see' it, we 'feel' it, we 'percieve' it. There it is, Tom standing on a patterned carpet*. This moment is then analyzed or interpreted by our 'inner mind' - the place where we believe ourselves to be thinking from, typically just behind the forehead - and then reacted to accordingly - in this case perhaps to say 'hi' to Tom. Our choices in this moment, our response to it, then goes on to change the future - for what has been done has been done, words cannot be unsaid - etc**.
This inner mind, the place where we think we think, draws on the memory in order to answer the questions provided by the currently experienced moment. It maybe as simple as remembering Tom's name, or language used, but in more complex moments more complex memories are drawn on in order to successfully engaged with the challenge or question of that particular moment. Similarly once remembered, such information must be forgotten into the memory, in the same way that a library requires us to put the books back after use. All of the information we have stored in our memories cannot be present in our 'inner mind' - where we percieve ourselves to think - because it would be overwhelmed and flooded, so it must be stored and 'brought to mind' when neccessary. The inner mind 'interface', if you like, can't be cluttered by having everything we know present there all the time. The moment itself, when experienced, contributes to the memory and thus to the altered past.
Qabalists will see how this diagram of the Metabolism of Time relates to the ToL - we have ten sefirot, or positions in our mental metabolism. What is analytical or deconstructive about Gevurah? What is generous or merciful about our response to the moment? Why is Hod associated with 'remembering' why Yesod associated with the altered past? Are these titles descriptive of the phases or applicable to them - should we be more Gevurah in our analysis, more Chesed in our response? For anyone with a basic understanding of the Qabalah as used in the Western Mystery Tradition there is much of worth to meditate on here.
*Qabalists, note how the 'perception of the moment' would relate to Daat if the above diagram was placed over the ToL and how there would be no Malkuth. Understanding this is important when understanding why Malkuth is pendulant to the Tree of Life and why it fell. The reason is that people do not percieve the moment as their perception of the moment, but they believe it is the actual thing itself. They believe that they look *through* their eyes, hear *through* their ears, as opposed to experiencing a hologram of sights and sounds from somewhere in the mind. Acknowledging this fallacious thinking and living in the reality of your consciousness, goes someway to remedying this 'fall'.
**Qabalists, one of the alternate names for Binah in the Kabbalistic traditions is Teshuvah or 'return'. Also speculate on how the decisions of the previous moment, and the way they affect the subsequent one, literally 'birth' the future.