The other night I caught myself again. I wasn’t where I was. I was somewhere else. Somewhere where most people often are. I was stuck on a thought. Lost in past & future. Thinking about something that happened yesterday, & wondering how it might influence tomorrow. –Then I snapped out of it.
I noticed where I was & what was happening at the present moment. Getting present brought everything into focus. I began to see what was true, what was happening in the moment — without a story about it. My feeling, my breathing, my mood, my energy — everything lifted. I went from a small boat, being knocked around by rocky waters, to deep presence, deep stillness. I was suddenly content; relaxed; at ease.
I thought of a map, & I made the connection. Minutes ago I was all-over the map, lost in thought, then suddenly saw the arrow & words: YOU ARE HERE. Of course, of course! What a great reminder! In thought, I was lost in past & future. But when I bring myself back to what it feels & sounds like at this moment — nothing I was feeling or thinking about matches, or compliments, this moment at all. It actually took away from it, overshadowed it — ruined it. What is happening now is divine & spontaneous & perfect. A gift.
And when I imagine myself in a bigger picture, on a much bigger map. How silly it all is! What in the world would I ever want to stress about, or take seriously, or personally? Everything becomes laughable & danceable. Everything becomes light. Infinite. The idea of a little me to identify with completely disappears. I fade into the whole. The wholeness of totality. I become imperturbable — because I no longer exist! I become a spec of cosmic dust. Stardust. Or dirt!
To be laughable & danceable: no longer in control; no longer important; no longer separate. Just some-thing or no-thing that is moved. I love being moved. I forget how easy life can be — when I stop resisting it.
Earlier in the week, on the same day, my nephew became a father & my friend lost his father. A child was born & a father died, on the same morning. I received a celebratory email, & I also received a bereaving email — moments apart from each other. All I could do was be present & respond to each email from an authentic place. The transitoriness of life was so present for me. I was awake to the transitory nature of life. The news of both events woke me out of my slumber — the daily grind haze, the fog that we sometimes get enveloped in.
How precious life is. What an opportunity it is. What an adventure it is. Why would I ever want to waste a moment of it lost in thought, when the present moment is rich & new & full of life? Why would I ever want to resist the flow of life, by wanting things to be different, by being stuck on how I think things should be? I’ve replaced the old habit of questioning life, for the new habit of trusting life. Trusting that it knows what is best for me. That it sees a bigger picture, one that I can not see.
It’s like a sprinkle on a doughnut concerning itself with what its place might be on the doughnut; in the bakery; in the town; in the country; in the world; in the universe. Stressing over it; taking it personal; over thinking it. It is unable to see all the other sprinkles, or even the doughnut. It’s way out of its scope. Its best bet would be to enjoy its place on that doughnut & to have fun being a sprinkle. To just shine & allow life to unfold. To enjoy it all — the mystery of it all! To be present to each moment, as if it were the greatest gift it could ever be given. To simply be present to the present.
What a powerful way to live. And it’s always there for us. Silently there all the time. Waiting for us to wake up to the beauty of it. To the beauty of ourselves. To the beauty of presence.
We can simply start with the present moment. What is happening, right now? Where are we, right now? Without the past or future stirred into it. This moment, just as it is. Us, just as we are. Here. Now.