How to Live in the Present Moment
We humans are funny. We keep ourselves in misery by chasing the material world and all its promises. I know, because I am no stranger to this habit. Just when we think we are going to accomplish some goal, it slips through our fingers. When we haven’t quite hit the mark… we discover there is another thing we need before we ‘get there’. We humans turn every part of our lives into ‘a thing’. For example:
Design and production of clothing
Advancement of technology
Craft of marketed goods and services for financial exchange
Mass production of food, and shipping it around the globe for consumption
Educating our children to develop these models and enhance the progression of the material world
Oh we are so smart! Look at us go! Look at the population exploding and all the conveniences we never had before! (Take a cell phone, for example: it’s a camera, it’s a flashlight, it’s a watch, it’s a computer, it’s a TV…. My life is SO much better now that I have one… right?) Fields of achievements have seized our minds as important… as the way of “The Good Life”… so much so that we have lost sight of what is Real.
In his book, Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, Yuval Noah Harari demonstrates how the advancement of homo sapiens as a dominant species is due to our ability to tell stories and collectively believe in them.
His claim is,“There are no ‘gods’ in the universe, no nations, no money, no human rights, no laws, and no justice…. All of these concepts exist solely in the imagination of human beings.” “Human Rights is an imagined order. Homo Sapiens have no natural rights, in the same way that a dog, elephant, dolphin or ant have no natural rights. Gravity, a natural order, will not cease to exist tomorrow. In contrast, an imagined construct is only valid because enough people believe in its truth or validity.” This world of collective stories is fleeting. Our world affairs is but made up of stories from our imagination. If enough of us believe the stories, we make them appear real and powerful. But they are nothing when compared to the TRUE NATURE OF THE UNIVERSE. LIFE IS. What we tell ourselves about life is what keeps us happy or miserable. Metaphysician, Ernest Holmes’, teachings provide similar insight. He wrote,“There is that within everyone which is made up of Universal Wholeness - LIFE - some call it Christ Consciousness or the Divine Being - and since it is made up of the nature of the Divine Being, we are divine. “Life reacts to us according to our belief in It; and that is an unchangeable Law, working the same for each and every one of us. This unchangeable Law doesn’t care who you are. It cannot be bound. All the denying of it will never change it; all the affirming of it will never make it any more than it is. “But since it is what it is, and it works in the way that it works, it appears to each of us through our belief. It is done unto each one of us as we believe.”
The Law of Life will affirm all our stories… not because our stories are True, but because we believe them to be true. This is tricky business!
So, if the material world is built on made up stories, what is Real and True?
There are true unchanging Laws of the Universe. Gravity is always present today and tomorrow, never changing how it works. Thoughts create things… yup, always unfolding… this is the Law of cause and effect.
The best way to describe the Laws of Life is through “the 7 attributes”: Peace, Power, Life, Love, Light, Joy, and Beauty. Our life is always revealing or concealing these attributes. They are always present in their fulness in every moment, only sometimes we might have trouble recognizing them. I remember a class where the students argued with me about the validity of their personal ‘law’, that was, “In order to get ahead you have to make sacrifices!” This is a perfect example of a ‘made up story’. The students were upset! They believed they had sacrificed so much… and that is why they enjoyed the ‘gains’ they had achieved. My job, as teacher, though, is to help point out our stories. We are not victims to our limiting stories if we don’t want to be. We can re-write our script any moment of every day.
The Truth is, Life simply is. All exists in wholeness right now. We don’t need to makelife happen… whether through hard work, good investments or whatever other controls we think we are exercising. Life just IS. This present moment is already complete and whole. To quote Ernest Holmes again: “It is necessary that we release all thoughts —as well as things—that clutter up our lives. “We are reminded that there is something resembling the Divine in the intelligence and fearlessness of the organs of our body, in the way they take that which is necessary to their sustenance and well-being, and release that which is not needed. If the organs of the body followed the average tactics of humanity in their acquisitive habits, if the lungs hoarded the air they take in, if the heart kept the fresh blood stored within its walls, refusing to allow it to circulate, if the stomach retained the food taken in for nourishment, what a static condition we would have! But the very reverse is true. Such perfect assimilation, elimination and circulation has never been equalled by humanity in anything we have invented.”
So I affirm: “I yield, I YIELD my human will to its nothingness and I experience illumination of Truth” What if I just surrender? Pure surrender. What if I stop looking for problems to solve? What if there are no ‘problems’? What if I sink into the wisdom of now, the IS-ness of this moment? What if I surrender to acceptance… not resignation, but acceptance of the presence of all the attributes of Good that are always revealing themselves?
What I focus on expands. I get to focus on the world of form and material substance, or the world of Spirit, goodness and all Its attributes. I affirm, “My life is the good works of Spirit this day!” Creation is always beginning, but never ending. The only constant is change itself. The slightest thought sets power in motion through the Laws of the Universe, producing a corresponding thing. Things may come and things may go, but Creation goes on forever.
So, I aspire to turn my attention to the revelation of the spiritual attributes of Life, Peace, Power, Life, Love, Light, Joy, and Beauty. This is how I choose live in the present moment, and it is a practice I work on every day.