“The power for creating a better future is contained in the present moment: You create a good future by creating a good present.“- Eckhart Tolle
Each day of your life appears to consist of thousands of moments where different things happen. Yet if you look more deeply, this one moment-Now-is the only thing you can never escape from. No matter how much your life changes, only one thing is certain that is your present moment.
Having your attention in the Now lets your life unfold with ease. Yet we have a tendency to treat the present moment as if it were an obstacle or we feel we have a future moment to get to that is more important. The habitual tendency of resisting the present moment creates a constant undercurrent of unease, tension, discontent or anger.
Thoughts, emotions, perceptions, and whatever you experience make up the content of your life. You derive your sense of self from this content, or so you believe. In other words, your sense of Now becomes obscured by circumstances, your stream of thinking, thereby giving into confusion, anger, depression, and conflict. And so you experience I Am or the Now only faintly and indirectly. Whereas your innermost sense of I Am is one with the Now and it always remains the same as it is deeper than what happens in it. It is the space in which it happens. The space of Now always remains unchanged.
The ‘Now’ & your ‘conscious self’
The Now is inseparable from your conscious self. Being conscious doesn’t mean that you are constantly thinking of self. If the emphasis is on the “self” or on your successes and failures, or how you are being perceived or if you are worried about others’ opinion or judgment of you, you again remain ego centered and lose your actual sense of who you are and so too lose your present moment. Instead if you change the focus from ‘self’ to ‘consciousness’, then you begin to identify that you are not your emotions, experiences, perceptions, and thoughts. You are not the so believed content of your life, but you are the space in which all things happen and you are the consciousness itself and you are the Now.
When your emphasis is on ‘consciousness’, you come to understand that your authentic self always remains constant and your conscious experience is the one which is constantly changing and shifting and flowing smooth like a stream according to the ebb and flow of your thoughts and experiences of the world around you. A form that appears in your consciousness disappears as that experience dissolves. But most of us feel that our identity, our sense of self, is something incredibly precious that we don’t want to lose. The truth is you are not somebody who is aware of the thought, feeling, or experience. You are the awareness or consciousness in and by which those things appear. You cannot find yourself in the past or future. The only place where you can find your self is in the Now.
Finding your strength in ‘Now’
• The present moment is sometimes unacceptable, unpleasant, or awful. The continuous judgment creates anxiety, stress and unhappiness. By becoming aware of ebb and flow of your thought-patterns, you can step out of its resistance patterns. This way, your thoughts don’t draw you totally and the incessant stream of thinking slows down thereby creating a gap of no-mind. This can help you to step out of the content of your mind, and step into the Now.
• You become aware of your own essence which is your innermost sense of who you are. You will come to know that your innermost sense of who you are is eternal in you and that’s the only thing you cannot lose. Through this awareness, you can experience yourself as conscious being free of form, desire and fear and fully present in Now.
• Taking responsibility for this moment means not to oppose internally the ‘such ness’ of Now. Whatever the present moment contains, accept and work with it and not against it. when you no longer argue with what is, the compulsion to think lessens and is replaced by an alertness into Now.
• When you identify with your negative energy unconsciously, it rises up and tends to create further negative field making you a victim or perpetrator. But if you focus your attention consciously and observe by accessing the power of now and become a witness or watcher. you can break the pattern and it can no longer replenish itself through you.
When your attention moves into the Now, you find your strength. The more you live in the Now, the more you sense the joy of being.
Mindfulness helps you to return to and stay in the present moment by slowing down the thoughts. It helps in balancing the mind and makes you realise that there is no control over past and future. Make it your practice to welcome the ease and joy of simply being. During your meditation process, practice being an observer of everything that you are experiencing. Notice everything that is arising and passing in your awareness without denial, resistance or judgment. Accept the present moment, pleasant or unpleasant, just as it is, without either clinging to it or rejeciting.