END: an event whose bequest goes to a beginning

An end is an event, the circumstances of which contribute to the beginning of one or more subsequent events. Thus the end of a mantis is the nourishing bequest to the beginning of an araneid meal. The end of a pot and its essential potness, is the beginning of an archaeological fragment. The unrestricted incursion of designated weeds is the event marking the end of a garden. If the hazards can be avoided, the end of sexual innocence can be the bequest to a life of experience.

An end is an event which itself has a beginning and an end. Death, as the end of a life, is an event the start and end of which is often a subject of considerable dispute. The end of a pot being able to fulfil its function of containing, begins with the first appearance of cracks and fractures in the clay and ends with the fragments entirely separated into discrete entities. The end of sexual innocence begins at about the time that the individual has a revelation as to the potential uses of their sexual apparatus and ends with experiencing the stark consequences of practical application.

Being an event, an end is in the mind and has a duration. The duration of an end event is measured in terms of a timescale that is appropriate to the periodicity technology available. The end of a sexual affair may be estimated by a human diurnal clock to extend over many solar days or lunar months, but the period which signalled the end of an ice age, can only be estimated from information gleaned by means of such technological tools as carbon dating, dendrochronology and geological strata analysis.

Attempts to identify the end of an entity or an event may in many cases be very pragmatically agreed to, as in the finishing of competitive races or the closing of organizational meetings, but in a wide range of scenarios, coming to any sort of consensus as to what should be deemed to constitute an end, is less than straightforward. The end of a pottery bowl could be considered to be when the hammer reduces it to shards, but a more comprehensive annihilation would be when the pieces are thrown into a volcanic vent of molten lava. The end of a mantis appears to be the moment it first became tangled in the web of the predator, but oblivion will only be realised after it has been digested and its exoskeleton has been consumed by the myriads of smaller organisms waiting to complete the process. The end of a book for a reader may be simply the last physical sentence of the final page, but total extinction only occurs after all copies of the book have been burned in the fires of censorship. Endings are chosen by awarenesses according to their conceptual priorities.

An end does not and never can 'finish' time. The end of the cosmos is a conceptual absurdity. Things have ends because they are absorbed back into the cosmos. The cosmos itself has nowhere to go.