Living Always Now…


being-present-1024x433Feel, savor, enjoy, embrace the moment that is now

Take on, overcome, fight, challenge the time that is now

Find God, your answers, your help, your deliverance, now

Live always your life now…

It is remarkable how much energy we squander reliving past moments and future times. When our recall is pleasant or our anticipation sweet, our time travel enhances our journey. But when with squinted eye we lament the past or rashly dread an imaginary future, we sully and tarnish our journey and cut ourselves off from the experience of life that is now.

Just as your mind was designed to think one thought at a time, no matter the speed, and always in succession, your experience of life was intended to occupy all the space of right now. The incredible sensory beauty of nature is to be both perceived and received now. The love of people and your relationship to them is to be performed and reformed now. The solution to your trouble, your difficulty, your toil can only be discovered and then rediscovered now. Your life is now. Your feelings are now. Your understanding is now. Your experience is now. Your decision is now. Your God (and mine) is now.

Our senses have become so easily distracted, so anesthetized, so diluted that we fail to register what we need to detect. We miss it. We look asconce. We harden our hearts. We blow past it recklessly and without thought. We never impressed on our minds what “it” is and why we need to address its beckoning. Instead we dart beyond it, nervously anticipating or retreating from its threatening, all the while never slowing enough to see it for what it is. Feelings of boredom or lethargy frighten us and in escape from them we fill the air around us with media or music or talking or booze or anything that will succeed in removing the threat. However, the specter is not removed just postponed. Then each postponed moment adds, multiplies and carries over until the life of the person is eventually lost.

A bad marriage isn’t one thing it’s a compilation of things. It’s a hundred unsaid sentences; a thousand unspoken thoughts, a million feelings unaddressed. The job you loathe became so by your own diminished effort, your silent acquiescence, your failure to shine and effervesce and move upward and onward. Your lack of money or respect or fulfillment came not because someone wrestled it from you, but because you gave it up in thought or in practice, or better said in failure to think and then act. You arrived at where you arrived at not by a sudden bolt or surge or happenstance, not by commission, but by omission. All that futile dragging about and wallowing in some long dead past moment or anxiously rehearsing some ghastly, dreadful, or shame producing future time succeeded in removing your precious perception from the thing you needed to take care of while it was still called “today!”

Our present time has become perilously occupied and as addicts we crave more and more of both quantity and frequency. We can scarce handle a break in entertaining media. In our compulsion our time diminishes leaving us exhausted and busy and tired. Instead of running, running, running we should stop and have the courage to take on the moment that is now. Don’t busy yourself with trifles. Don’t log on or search or shop. Don’t turn on anything but your beautiful mind. Allow yourself to feel again. Let pleasant and unpleasant emotions just be. Look at those thoughts that dog you and grab them by their leash. Consider whether they’re real or imagined. Push through the veil and see who has been driving your bus. Who or what has been moving you against your will from what’s most important to you in life and convincing you to settle for less than that? What wrong ideas or untested theories are hiding in the darkness and acting as chains to bind you where there are no limitations? The answers to these questions; to anything that ever plagued you are all right here, obvious and clear in the moment called now, in the sweet reverie between you and your Creator.

The message has been playing all around you since time was first initiated. It’s in the still small voice. It’s in quiet meditation. It’s in the honesty of prayer. It’s in yoga and in sitting still. It is found in every sunrise and sunset. It’s blended in the green of the tree leaves and grass and the bluish hue of the sky. It’s the ocean, the sand and the gentle breeze. It’s unplugged, outside and in every woods. It is your cherished life right now, and now, and now.  It is your distinctive, wonderful experience of life both right now and in every incredible, future, unique now.

Don’t grieve God’s heart by passing time and finding things to get you from one moment to the next. Don’t occupy yourself for occupation’s sakes. Don’t waste time in mindless distraction or in things not worthy of your experience. Instead harvest the bountiful crop to be savored in every precious moment of life. Honor your own heart and your own feelings. Trust yourself and move confidently toward those things that warm you and ask your heart to speed up. Open your eyes and finally see the incredible attention to detail; the unfailing love; the miracle that is this life all wrapped up in the wonder of time right now…

How cloudy, how faded, how dim our true recollection of times gone past

How blurry, how hidden, how hazy our view of some future day

Yet how clear, how true, how faithful the record of our lives ever in the moment called now

Live always your life now…

Just some good thoughts…

 

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21 to Nothing…


453127445I’m not sure how this kind of thing happens or what’s behind those sudden decisions we make in life, though I have some strong suspicions, but for whatever reason you suddenly find yourself consumed with the idea of putting yourself to the test in some capacity for some important reason. This is exactly what happened to me. I was about to return from a conference where I happily ate, drank and was merry. As the conference closing drew near, I finalized the idea that when I got home I was going to put myself on a drastic calorie reduced diet. My reasoning basically consisted of the idea that I had allowed myself to get fat and was getting to the point where I could barely tolerate that guy in the mirror. I knew this diet was the only plan that had worked for me in the past, so I put the naysayers behind me and began the 21 day quest. Naturally, my reduced calorie diet included an abstinence from alcohol for the next 21 days as well. I’m not the kind of guy that needs a drink to function, but I cannot recall the last time I hadn’t even had a glass of wine for 3 weeks. So the test and the learning commenced…

Much to my surprise, my first lesson made clear to me how important it is to make decisions, specifically the stronger your decision, the easier it is going to be to carry out your plan. When, by God, you decide how it is going to be, then, by God that is exactly how it is! Day after day I lost a pound as promised; did not cause my body to think I was starving; had vegetables and protein daily; did not suffer the litany of other ailments I would surely undergo from losing weight too quickly. My only pair of jeans that still fit soon took on the baggy look. I found a whole wardrobe of suits and shirts that magically worked again. Shoot, I could even wear a t-shirt to the gym without the all too familiar belly bulge! Victory!

Uber discipline in place for calorie reduction, my most pleasant surprise came by shaking up my familiar routines involving alcohol. Not having a glass of wine during the week was relatively simple, but not having any wine on the weekend days, that’s a whole other story! You may not realize this but Friday nights were made for wine. Choosing no wine on wine night is quite a slap in a habit’s face! Abstain I did, as I had already decided, and I was left with myself facing myself. You know what I found? Years of unresolved childhood issues and hurts left unattended? Painful realizations of what my life really consisted of? Ummm, no! What I found was that absent the anesthetic, I was damn productive. Suddenly I had a lot of shit to do! After I did it, I assumed my usual veg position on the couch minus the fatty chips and a glass of wine. When in doubt, do thinking… I think you’ll enjoy it.

My next realization and perhaps best lesson learned involved how I felt about myself. I’m not trying to tell you that abstinence is best or that you should live without many of the things that you enjoy. What I am telling you is that controlling yourself feels damn fantastic! Control yourself! Learn to say no! Resist! Take charge of the organism. Your desires, your wants, your enjoyments, your habits aren’t in control, you are! And when that day comes, for whatever reason, prompted by whatever logic, do it, feel it, overcome it. Controlling your own self is like crack cocaine to your self-esteem. You become the “effin” champion! It’s the most unusual, yet most profound thing in the world. Controlling yourself, not just for a rough 21 day test, but throughout your life, clearly is the best thing to do. I mean, if a small piece of cheese makes a mouse return to the same spot, the feelings you get from controlling yourself, alone, are worth any hardship you might face. It’s like God is telling you, “See, control isn’t bad, it’s everything good!” Try it…

At the risk of sounding preachy or, God forbid, religious, your brain really doesn’t need the substance to be okay. Your unaltered mental state can actually be very sweet and even more resilient than you have given it credit to be. The trick is to avoid rapid medication over just allowing yourself to be with yourself as yourself. Some jokes aren’t that funny. Some experiences are hysterical. In short, you start to figure out things that need to be done and things you want to get done. Have I sworn off wine forever? Of course not! But, I did put myself to the test and not only won, but more importantly learned some valuable things about myself.

My seemingly insignificant little experiment taught me so many things, the greatest of which is that control is not something to be feared, but rather something to be embraced and honored. Cliche’ aside, life is too damn short to be under anything’s control! Prove it to yourself!

Now, what’s next? What should you do? Well, if you don’t mind, find that thing that you cannot live without; find that part of life you’ve convinced yourself you have to have and go without it. Cut it off for a minute. Give it up. Just say no! It can be as simple as Dunkin Donuts coffee or as serious as a drug addiction. Point is – you don’t need anything outside of yourself to be happy and you can discipline yourself to give up almost anything (except what you need to live). But, don’t do it because I said so, do it when you also experience that urge; that calling; that determination to put yourself to the test and win.

Life under control is awesome people… Try it for yourself!

Just some good thoughts…