THE ULTIMATE EXPERIENCE
Come, sit with me, close your eyes, hold my hand, let's go far away from this place to the place in which you came from.
We Leave the Present Moment for an Untouchable Past and an Unforeseeable Future ...
“If you are depressed you are living in the past.
If you are anxious you are living in the future.
If you are at peace you are living in the present.”
― Lao Tzu
As I searched my soul for a topic to write about, this topic came into my mind in the early hours of the morning. I was already awake as my head popped up and I thought, "yes we need to talk about this."
Years ago I read the book by Eckhart Tolle, "The Power of Now: A Spiritual Guide to Enlightenment," and it changed my life forever. Even though I only remember specific parts about the book, I remember most the message, and that was keep your mind in the present moment. By keeping your mind in the present moment, you wouldn't be filled with shoulda's, coulda's, and regret. At the time I was regretting a lot of my past choices. I didn't like where I was in life. I wasn't giving gratitude for just being here. I was so focused on what I thought I should have done or could have done. I would say that if I could go back in time I "woulda done so and so," how I would have done so many things differently. I wasn't looking at the fact of what's done is done.
I was speaking to my brother who was incarcerated at the time about how I was feeling, and he said to me, "You know what book you should get? The Power of Now." I bought the book as he recommended and read it, I was immersed in it, I loved it. It talks about regretting and visiting the unchangeable past and how doing so affects the present moment.
Pay close attention to your conversations throughout the day, and you will recognize how much you speak outside of the present moment. What can you do outside of the present moment? We talk about how we should have handled our money differently. We go over hurtful experiences and talk about what we would have done differently if we had another chance. We speak about relationships that went sour and what we could have done differently. We regret encountering the people that hurt us speaking about what we could have done to avoid ever meeting them. I think that's the one that gets us the most, the people that we wish we'd never met.
One bad relationship experience can seriously impair our trust for being open to meeting anyone else and letting them into our heart. It could be a friendship that goes sour and we will be singing, "no new friends." Do you know how many women that I’ve met who say that they don't have female friends or very few, due to a lack of trust for women? You know why this is? They have been burned by a so-called friend, and that's a pain that they don't ever want to feel again. It's the same thing in a relationship with a significant other, once they break the trust bond, you feel like you never knew them. You ask yourself, "How much of the relationship was a lie?" You will go crazy replaying conversations and intimate moments in your mind trying to figure out what you missed or what you should have done.
We think outside of the present moment about the past and the future. We worry about the future, about things that we need to get done, and how things will manifest. We can get anxiety about what we're going to do about certain upcoming situations. We can get filled with "what-ifs,"thinking ahead and become fearful about things that haven't happened and most likely won't happen.
How many times have you been anticipating things with fear just for them to go better than you imagined? How many times have you worried about situations that turned out perfectly for you? There was a time where I had an addiction to worrying. I prayed and worried at the same time. I couldn’t sleep at night and it wasn’t insomnia, it was worry. Some of what I worried about I brought into fruition while some of the things that I worried about never happened. Either way, I was good, I was safe, I am still here.
I monitor my thoughts and conversations to make sure that I am operating in the present moment. What can I do about something that has already happened? What can I do to control the future? I can visualize, meditate, and speak affirmations over my future instead of worrying about it, yet I still cannot control the Divine plan for me.
I have been in some terrifying situations with my health that made me revisit the past and the future continuously with uncertainty and fear. I have been filled with regret for making decisions in regards to my health that landed me in places and situations that I didn't want to be in. This year I have been fighting for my life the entire time because I went for treatment and was severely injured in the hospital. It became difficult to look at what my future would be like. Would I make it to the future with doctors constantly telling me that I was going to die?
I had to keep my mind in the present moment. I would become fearful when I would think about what my future looked like as I looked at my injured body and replayed the past in my mind of doctors telling me I was going to die if I didn’t take dangerous treatments. Then my mind would lead me to regret from going to the hospital and staying there when my insides were telling me to leave. I was just trying to get help for discomfort and I got hurt instead.
I went back to "The Power of Now." I only have power in this moment. No matter how I try to stretch my mind to the past, I am led back to the current moment for relief. There is nothing that I can do about what has already been done.
When we take ourselves out of the current moment, our subconscious mind follows us, creating from that space. Our subconscious mind gives us more of what we feel and focus on. If we focus on the past, our subconscious will give us more experiences like it because it can't determine the difference between our present moment and the past or future. If we are thinking about the future and giving it a feeling, it will manifest in how we see it. Our subconscious mind works for us and it handles 95 percent of our actions and behaviors. Whatever thought and emotion that we give it, it helps us by manifesting it, it doesn't matter if it's in the past, present, or future.
We can ruin good relationships by focusing on the past and what happened in the past, painful experiences. This is the cause of most of our arguments in relationships, some past unhealed hurtful experience. We can also hinder our future relationships by focusing on hurt that happened to us in past relationships. If we focus on painful experiences of the past, the future will give us similar situations, insinuating a cycle that we will think is our life or our fate. “If your mind carries a heavy burden of the past, you will experience more of the same. The past perpetuates itself through lack of presence. The quality of your consciousness at this moment is what shapes the future.”
― Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment
When we think and feel in the present moment, being totally present in the current moment, we are most powerful. Because our subconscious mind works solely for the present moment, that is where we hold our power for creation and manifestation. It takes conscious work not to bring up the past and become anxious about the future. If we want to create a desired future, we have to be happy about the future in the present moment. I don't know about you, but I am excited about my future. Even with all of the adversity that I face, I am excited because I am optimistic and I know the Universe is always working for us and never against us. And I will maintain a disposition like I know that. “Nothing has happened in the past; it happened in the Now. Nothing will ever happen in the future; it will happen in the Now.”
― Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment
The book helped me, yet meditation helped me even more. Meditation helps you in detaching from the past, the future, people, and painful experiences. The more I meditate the more I detach from fears, from people that hurt me, and from the past. I have been in conversation and as soon as I recognize that I am talking about a painful past experience, I'll say, "let me shift this conversation now. If I am sitting with my thoughts and I drift to the past and what I could have done instead, I bring myself out, leading my mind back to the present moment, and when I get there, I feel so much better.
I can feel my power in the present moment. I feel free from everything in the present moment, I mean being immersed in thought, feeling, and totally present in the current moment is where you’ll find peace. I find gratitude in the present moment knowing that I am alive, and I have so many wonderful things to talk about and think about in the present moment. I am not focused on the unchangeable past and I can create from the present moment. I can think clearly from the present moment. When I go to the past in my mind I am met with frustration and irritation because I find myself trying to stretch my mind and paint the past in the way that I would have liked it to go instead of letting it be. Because the past will always be the way it is and there is nothing that I can do to change that.
The present moment is a gift because I can be sure to be free in thought and feeling. I am not bound by things that I can’t control being present in the now.
Life is much more enjoyable in the now. I work out all my past mishaps and future concerns in meditation. I leave it all there and I don’t go back to visit them.
The present moment is all that we have. We don’t have the past or the future in our hands, we have no power over those times. When we think in the past we can feel exactly how we felt in that moment and start to stir up uncomfortable emotions, reliving it all, because that’s how our subconscious mind works. When we focus on the future we can become anxious about how things will turn out. Our subconscious mind gives us what we feel and more of what we keep feeling.
The secret is in the feeling.
“Die to the past every moment. You don't need it. Only refer to it when it is absolutely relevant to the present. Feel the power of this moment and the fullness of Being. Feel your presence.” ― Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment
You can literally paint your future with your imagination. However you want it.
Thanks for reading and for hanging in there with me!
Infinite love to you,
Check out my blog at newdayze.com
Raquel Givens Jones
Author, blogger, poet, writer, radio show host, animal lover, yogi,
Subscribe to Newdayze for the latest blog posts! Thanks!