Sunday, June 25th 2017
Jun
2007
12

Living in the Moment is Hard

So I’ve been reading about being in the moment. It’s a great idea, but it sounds impossible to live in today’s world. I mean, imagine focusing on the now of eating a meal. You chew your food, you smell it, you feel it, you taste it you chew it some more and you swallow. It’s intense. It takes time. I can just imagine my boys asking their mother what daddy was doing at the table, having a three hour dinner.

So is there a middle road down the middle road? Can you live in the moment and live among normal people? Eckhart Tolle doesn’t offer us much in the way of advice in how to balance the two pursuits. Is presence more easily pursued in a monastery or on a mountain than within the confines of our mundane lives?

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One Comment on “Living in the Moment is Hard”

  1. I think there is a general misconception about that phrase, "Living in the moment." I've heard so many variations of it: Live in the moment to Live by how I feel in the moment, all of which do not describe the state, nor prescribe a means to achieve that indescribable state! What you seem to be describing is "Savoring the moment". Trying to heighten your awareness of every sensation that occurs is novel, but how does that relate to "living in the moment".
    I find living in the moment means being unaffected by your negative past. Think about that. If ever moment that you interact with life was governed by all the positive experiences you have acquired, without the negative, you would automatically heighten your experience of that moment, and each and every moment to come.
    Now the real question is how does one remove the negative influences of their past? You probably have experienced moments when you felt spacey or not quite attentive. If one could measure the attention units a person had, we would probably find that many of us have 50% of those units focused inward on our past, leaving the other 50% focused on what is happening outside of ourselves, i.e. in the "real" world. Perhaps we spend too much time running away from our past instead of confronting it and removing the blocks that suck up our attention units. Hence, we live in the past, not "in the moment."
    Try doing a simple exercise: Focus on an object and find 10 things you hate about that object. Then focus on it again and find 10 things you love about that object. Now try to notice each time if your mind wonders to something else, or other thoughts cloud your focus. Are you really living in the moment? Or are you being victimized by your past?
    Mmmm... Perhaps one's mundane life is exactly what one has envisioned and created for oneself...
    So, I think the answer lies not in finding ways to focus on the now, but finding ways to remove the stuck attention units that aren't focused on the now...
    Observe a child and you will see how totally focused they are on the now. A very small world is their to explore, but they focus much better than most adults. Why does that change? As we grow, we stumble into troubles that we allow to rob us of attention units and we don't know how to get them back, so as time goes on we find that life isn't as clear as it once was, if we even have enough attention units left to notice at all.
    Again, I say - find a way to regain your attention units and you will naturally live in the now, the moment, the present, or whatever you want to call it...

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