You’ve probably heard a lot lately about ‘being in the moment’ or ‘being present’, sometimes from me (although I refrain from buzzwords and catch phrases).
As someone who has been meditating daily for several years, and who believes strongly in the power of meditation, presence, and of having a regular spiritual practice to heal, I think have a pretty good understanding of what most people mean when they say ‘be present’.
But I’m afraid that you may not.
Not that you don’t literally understand what it means, but that how to actually practice being present in real life may be difficult for you.
I suspect this because it’s difficult for me to, and I’ve been practicing for a while.
One of the big reasons is time.
You have been trained since birth that the world revolves around time. Clocks are everywhere. School starts and ends on time. Everything is by appointment or schedule.
But the real word, in fact, does not. Time is a convenience, a tool constructed by mankind so that we can coordinate activities – nothing more. It is not actually real.
This particular dogma is very difficult to shed, because it is (for the most part) a positive one that helps us accomplish much, and because it is pervasive.
There are, however, a few places you can to see examples of what it’s like to live without the construct of time. You may have experienced this camping in nature, on a vacation, or in a casino.
When you’re not thinking about time, it doesn’t exist.
You are naturally aware of this since the day you were born. I don’t have to tell you; if anything, this is more of a reminder.
So, what does this mean, in relation to being present?
The next time you find yourself stuck in the past (which leads to a lack of progress, regret, or depression) or worrying about the future (which leads to anxiety), remember that there is no past or future.
There is only one big moment, now, which you are living, and you can completely control how you approach it.