It is amazing how the “keywords” are more important than the experience itself.
“You have to live in the now.” “Women want a sexual partner who has presence, who is fully present in the act.”
Those phrases sound amazingly good. Knowledgeable stuff. Best seller material, but…. what is presence and what living in the now mean?
Do you know? Do you practice it?
There is no definition. There is no practice.
Do we need steps or methods to get there?
How can we explain something which defies our language?
Through a common Life scenario.
When we drive a car, as we become familiar with its operation, things become “second nature,” that is “automatic.”
We are driving for some time and our thoughts will appear and process some incident of the past or fantasize about something in the future, or even create a story out of some current Life episode. Have you noticed that?
If we haven’t noticed that, we are not ready to live in the “now.” We don’t know what that is, even if we repeat the latest definitions and use the more hip-hop terminology. At that point, we need to read “best sellers” on how to practice “presence,” and how to live in the “now.”
We need definitions, we need “how-to’s” and ideas to make this practice permanent in our everyday life.
However, a time will come when we notice our fantasizing, our dream world or tele-transportation into a remote past… then we are AWARE. No more “best seller” material needed.
When the mind is full of thoughts, we are not living in the “now.” When we drive the car in the “now,” we are automatically alert, even though it is the same avenue that we drive every day to work. Thanks to our mind, we can remember the familiar sight. But, thanks to our mind, we will snooze into unconsciousness due to the familiarity of the sight. It is the same old thing. No need to be alert.
When the mind is empty of thoughts, we are alert, aware, conscious. When we add content thanks to the conditioned mind; that pristine moment is not. Then, we do things in “automatic mode,” thoughts take over and we forget what we did 10 seconds ago.
After hearing this “revealing” explanation, some will say: “From now on, I will practice to empty my mind of thoughts, so I can live in the now.”
Please don’t put yourself in that stressful situation. Observe that there is no practice whatsoever. AWARENESS is not a practice. Emptiness of thoughts is not a practice. As our consciousness and state of BEING are in a tranquil state, the necessary space to separate ourselves from the mind will appear, then we could observe the mind.
Ahnanda is not saying “my mind,” but just the mind.
At that point, we will become AWARE on how we have obeyed the dictates of the conditioned mind for so long, thinking that THAT was ME.
No wonder, the greatest teaching of all time to remember is “Know thyself.”
Paradoxically, it is not a “Best seller.” 🙂
What is the value of collectively defining who we are?
Some definitions: Souls, Love, Spirits, bodies, nothing, everything, etc.
When we hear that we are “truly love,” what actually that means?
Nothing. However, we like to repeat that; we like to make it into a discussion, we like to create spiritual workshops, classes with such definitions.
Our minds maybe interested in information, in the latest discoveries of science in reference to our “true” nature, or in the latest religious belief; but until we abandon completely the things of the mind, there cannot be inner knowledge, there cannot be a starting point in self- realization.
Our society surrounds us with useless information in “spiritual topics,” away from the awareness of our presence. That information will foster our addiction of living Life through the mind.
I’d like to share that “spirituality” from my viewpoint is only related with living Life fully, that means, by being aware of the “now.”
Any information as to who “I am”, or what “should be”, or what “I will become”, it is completely and utterly useless. Any questioning requiring a verbal answer is only a step away from feeling Life in the now. When the mind is engaged through those questions, Living Life “now” becomes another idea, something away from the “now.”
There is a process in Life.
Many are trapped with their own minds. The process of “liberation,” may be equal to being born again. This is not something that we can DO, but rather it happens when it is our time, then all conditions will be present. It may not be something which we call “good” according to our conditioning, but the opportunity is right there.
Before that process, we probably indulged with many answers, many beliefs. Our minds became full of information about how to become enlightened or how to be near God, or any other mental goal to entertain us.
Those mental goals only replicate our previous conditioning, what we have learned through our experience with society.
I know this may be hard to swallow. There may be many “thinkers,” arguing about the value of “spiritual” information, the value of scientific research, etc.
However, what I am referring to is not “theory.” You must experience it to understand.
Unless you abandon all the definitions about yourself; there cannot be a space to observe the mind.
Without observing the mind, there is no chance of being AWARE of how much the mind interferes in our joy and in the experiences where letting go and surrendering to Life are needed.
Love, sex and death are such experiences. The mind will interfere with questions and answers in its need for control. Greater need for control means a great inability to surrender to the moment.
Most everyone admires children. That innocence, that ability to live in the “now,” that energy comes from no-mind. As the child is trained to worship words and ideas, to obey certain paragraphs, his Life becomes mental and from there, goals, achievements, purposes will drive their lives and take away their joy.
This does not mean that society corrupts the children. No. Society only provides with a Life under a different consciousness. The child will learn to call that consciousness “real,” the “real Life,” when in fact, it is only a perspective of it. 🙂