Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Can You Be Present Every Moment?

The solution to our mood problems may not require heroic attempts to change our inner feeling world or the outer world of people, places, and jobs.  Rather, it may simply involve a shift in the way we pay attention to all of them”.
-Mark Williams
The little things we do in life may not seem to have a direct bearing on spirituality; maybe they seem quite unspiritual.  Nevertheless, it is your world you are dealing with; it is your environment.  So the things you are doing should be felt fully rather than rushed through”.
-Chogyam Trunga Rinpoche
As you walk and eat and travel, be where you are.  Otherwise you will miss most of your life.”
As simple as all of this sounds I find it very challenging to do on a day to day basis.  When I think of presence, I think of being totally focused on the moment and the event.  I then ponder, “When has 100% of me ever been anywhere and doing one thing at the same time”?  I often feel like I am going in ten directions and parts of me are trying to catch up with other parts of me.  Most days I have less sleep than I need, so I am often tired, and there seems to be places I need to go and things I need to accomplish.  By the time I get home at the end of the day I feel exhausted from trying to be present all day at work.  My evenings are generally free and unencumbered but I know many of you have child care responsibilities, part time jobs, or school obligations.  I don’t know that I can be conscious or truly present every minute of the day.  Consciousness or presence is a lot like meditation.  When one sits in meditation you strive to be present to the moment and most meditators focus on their breath or a mantra to stay focused.  When you realize that you are drifting you come back to your breath or your mantra in order to return to your center.  You really have to do the same thing when living a busy life.  When you realize that you are chasing your tail or meeting yourself coming and going, pause for a few moments and just breathe.  If you can, stop what you are doing  and use a mantra or a prayer word to refocus and re-enter your own center.  In other words, get your bearings and let your inner GPS re-direct itself.  Ironically, consciousness can be the awareness that you aren’t conscious!  When you are truly in the moment you probably aren’t aware of it.  Some psychologists refer to unconscious consciousness as “flow”.  Flow is when you are no longer aware of time or space.         

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