Friday, January 18, 2013

It's not that "today is the first day of the rest of my life," but that now is all there is of my life.




Today's Quotation:

It's not that "today is the first day of the rest of my life," but that now is all there is of my life.
Hugh Prather

Today's Meditation:

It would appear that Hugh has a problem with the people who focus on the idea that "starting now, I can be a better or different person." Personally, I do not have any problem with the concept, but I can see Hugh's point quite clearly--the more we stay focused on what we are going to do with the rest of our lives, the less we allow ourselves to commit to living the present moment for all that it is worth.

"Now is all there is of my life,"--and Hugh is right. Your next moment, ten minutes from now, two weeks from now--none of these things is guaranteed. And what happens two weeks from Thursday is completely out of our control. What will happen will happen, and we may be able to influence it, but we certainly cannot control it. The present moment, lived fully with enthusiasm, love, attention, and awareness, truly is all there is of our lives. And once it is done, it will be replaced by another present moment.

When all is said and done, life is simply a series of "nows." How we live them depends on us. I do not want to stay focused on the rest of my life because if I do, I am taking away from the potential of this moment. Yes, I prepare for the future, and I prepare for retirement, and I prepare for what may come later, but even that preparation is accomplished in my present moments.

At this moment, you have the entire world full of possibilities at your disposal. If you decide that you want to travel around the world, you have the potential to do so, if you spend your nows preparing for it and raising the money for it. If you want a stronger relationship, then you can spend your nows improving that relationship. If you want a better job, you can spend your nows learning more about your work and improving your performance. But please, do not waste the present moment by putting your focus on some future moment that may or may not get here.

Questions to consider:

What resources are available to you right here, right now?

How might you improve your experience of the now? How might you get more out of each present moment as it arrives?

Why do so few people keep their minds, their hearts, and their attention on right now?

For further thought:

Many people live as if life were a dress rehearsal for some later date. It isn't. In fact, no one has a guarantee that he or she will be here tomorrow. Now is the only time we have, and the only time that we have any control over. When our attention is in the present moment, we push fear from our minds... Practice keeping your attention on the here and now. Your efforts will pay great dividends.
Richard Carlson

1 comment:

F. Khristopher Blue said...

What resources are available to you right here, right now?

I have the resources of:

my family, the ones that are close and those that are extended...
my friends, who I may not always communicate with but are there when I need them and vice versa, that's what friends are for...
my co-workers, supervisors, and work supports...
my clients who always help me keep things in perspective and appreciate what I have...
the city that I live in, full of life and culture and new experiences...
music...

How might you improve your experience of the now? How might you get more out of each present moment as it arrives?

I strive to live each day as if its my last... appreciate each breath and experience. I make time for those that are important to me and enjoy the time, however limited it may be, we spend together. I let people how I feel, expressing my wants and needs for there may not be another opportunity.

Why do so few people keep their minds, their hearts, and their attention on right now?

When I was that way, I was afraid of being judged, to be seen as weak or not strong, I did not want to seem needy or clingy, I put on a mask of not caring and disinterest to prevent the feeling pain, and that was the very thing to make me lose what I loved and feel the ultimate pain.