“Now or never! You must live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find your eternity in each moment.” ~Henry David Thoreau
I remember the sweet fuzziness of life from when I was a child. Time was an abstract concept, something I had to learn to understand and to mind. While immersed in the throes of the moment, all of my moments flowed together like a river, and I was like a leaf, riding the waves. I remember wistfully noticing, soon after I had become cognizant of the passage of time, how I missed that sense of complete absorption and the utter freedom that it allowed.
In a practical sense, that sense of complete immersion into the moment is only possible in snippets, my time being framed by weeks, and the weeks by days, the days governed by routines that manage the hours that I have in them. The blissful sense of being lost (and free of care) in my moments are now broken down into smaller increments.
So much of our present time is spent thinking of the past or looking to the future. Each time I lose my sense of the now, I catch myself in the act of doing these things. I’ve made it my daily practice to engage in this mindfulness… to gently re-steer my focus back to the moment, simply because the future doesn’t matter, and in many respects, neither does the past.
We become characters in our own plays, remembering what we think is the script of who we are, performing by rote the roles we think have been set into place. Really, we are changing, moment-by-moment. This is good. All things change. All things shift and evolve. It is a natural cycle. Sometimes we come full circle, back to where we started, but the previous journey’s insights will have been incorporated into our make-up, and standing back in a place where we have already been, after the journey, brings about a new beginning. Though the journey follows along the same route we have previously trodden upon, the experience alters.
I have found that it is a challenge to balance being in the moment and quieting the mind when it begins to feel the need to project forward, or look backward at past experience. Logic would dictate that drawing upon past experience is a rational act, one that is wise to consult when making choices in the present moment. There are times when I feel compelled to scrutinize current situations and determine that they are very similar in “look and feel” to what I’ve experienced in the past, recall how they made me feel then, and subsequently move me to make a judgement about my current experience. The struggle is in surrendering to the moment, regardless of the outcome, and reveling in it as it is, without the weight of past experience or future expectation. This is a tall order for this human, who naturally desires something to cling to, some sort of stability, some sort of guarantee of outcome, despite also having a full understanding that very little of what unfolds in the future is controllable.
Yesterday I read a blog post by Osho, speaking about his awakening. He speaks of the “it doesn’t matter” moment, the one where he realizes the futility of seeking. I’ve skirted this experience many times recently, in many facets of my life, and though I’ve not come to achieve the sort of awakening that Osho did, I sense I am getting closer to it each time I take notice of my wandering mind, each time I take notice of the futility of seeking for something outside of –and separate from– myself.
I know, I know… it sounds nutty as a fruitcake (that’s what I get for living here in California for over a decade and a half)… but I really can feel something… shifting.
It’s not a bad thing… shifts… changes… they are inevitable and essentially good things, if taken in stride. They say that the best way to keep from drowning is to not fight the current but to surrender to its flow.
I got a request the other day from someone I used to work with for a psychic reading, and the query had to do with finding a new job. Funny how that works, seeing that I, too, am currently unemployed, and doing much flailing around in the sense of trying to figure out, once again, what direction to go in, career-wise.
I suggested the following things to her…
The Law of Attraction pulls toward you more of the stuff that you are ‘pinging’ strongly emotionally… so if you are feeling needful/needy, anger and frustration, the universe will give you more of the same. If your greatest emotion is “need” (as in “I need another job NOW”) the situations that will manifest around you will continue to sustain that “needful” state of being.
So… I got this little meditation from one of my weekly “feel-good” subscriptions, and thought that it might help you in turning some of the energy around that you are carrying within you… perhaps by doing so, the universe will conspire to fulfill your heart’s desires…
Chet Day presentsEarthLeaves MeditationsMore Musings on Letting Go for Peace of MindJanuary 24, 2009
For this week’s meditation, as we so often do, we’llagain work with a wonderful Zen saying…
The water a cow laps turns into milk. Thewater a snake licks changes into poison.
Think about this one for a few seconds.
Then take three or four deep breaths, pausing for amoment between inhalations and exhalations.
As soon as you’re centered and focused, breathe inyour innate instinct and ability to be kind toothers.
Hold that kindness for a few seconds before exhaling.Savor it.
Oh, that’s nice. The thought of being kind is so nice.
Now exhale… and as your breath leaves, let go of anypoisonous thoughts or memories you may be holdingonto.
Letting that negativity go is nice, too, isn’t it?
And that’s how you can be like a cow who turns waterinto milk instead of like a snake who turns it intovenom.
Until next week,Chet
Chet DayEditor, EarthLeaves Meditations
I can also suggest a “releasing ceremony” to release your old job and make room for something better and more suited to what you want. In gratitude, write down in your own words the things which are good that this job has brought you and then say something like “I am now ready to release this job so it may be replaced with one that provides greater prosperity and _________________ (inserting whatever you wish this new job to bring you–be specific and clear–and be careful what you wish for… LOL!).
Put on some nice quiet/relaxing music. Light a small candle (can be a tealight… preferably white… always in a fire and heat resistant container), have a deep (fireproof) ceramic or cast iron container handy, light a stick of incense, and sit for a while in meditation, starting with some deep belly breaths, nice and slow and deliberate… in through the nose, out through the mouth.
Next, visualize your tailbone extending like a root deep into the center of the earth, and wrapping around its core. Imagine the heat from the core of the earth rising like a beam of white light, up through the roots and into your tailbone area, lovingly nurturing and energizing you as it moves upward through your central core, stopping to clear your perineal area, and moving upward into your pelvic area, then the area just above your belly button, where you would feel butterflies when you are nervous, then your heart area, then your throat, then up to your third eye area on your forehead, just above the area between your two eyes, and finally up through the top of your head… imagine the beam of light going higher and higher up into the universe, until it meets with Source.
Feel this connection, and now imagine a flow of energy from Source, flowing back down this beam of light and bringing with it love and a great sense of peace. Feel the Source energy expand so that it grows to cover all of your body and several feet beyond it, as if you were in a light shower that flows over you and around you and through you, and see it clearing away all of your worries… all of the dis-ease that you may have within your body/mind/spirit, cleansing and clearing as it moves through. Keep breathing deeply, into the belly, in through the nose, out through the mouth, slowly and deliberately.
Finally, focus back on visualizing your release from your old job and see yourself in your new one, doing what you want to be doing, even visualizing your big pay check and how good that makes you feel… safe and secure and confident. After you’ve comfortably secured your visualization in your mind, and feel calm and peaceful, roll up your note and pass it through the candle flame and place it into the fireproof pot or dish. Let the whole thing burn to ash, re-lighting it as necessary until it is all consumed by fire.
Leave the candle to burn until it burns itself out (a couple of hours, probably… make sure not to leave it unattended). Take the cooled ashes and bury them outside in the ground. I hope this helps, in some small way.
To let you know… I did this ceremony months ago, and steady movement has been occurring since… the tipping point was getting let go from my job at the beginning of the month. This has created a space of sorts, and if well orchestrated, will manifest into something that Paolo Coelho calls my Personal Legend. Time to sit down and listen to what the heart says, as we all know that nature abhors a vacuum, and when there is an empty space, it will get filled with something… preferably with something of my own making, as opposed to something random.