Have you noticed how much there is happening right now? There are so many things in the present that it is sometimes difficult to understand how my mind is even able to wonder away from this moment. For most of the people, it is fairly common to have something that is called as monkey mind in the yoga world. Monkey mind is an ego or rational mind that controls thinking and through it also feelings. It comes, takes over and makes your mind noisy of thoughts all over again. When I started to practice meditation, I couldn’t even count to 10 without having thoughts that took me away from the moment. Living in the moment is such a well known cliché but how many people actually do it? In a spoken language it almost has a meaning of living reckless life temporary and seizing an opportunity without thinking too much. However, living in the moment is actually a lot more comprehensive approach to live the life.
Before a regular meditation practice I thought that I would not have time for sitting quiet doing nothing every single day. What a waste of time! Now it makes me to laugh to even think about the expression of waste of time. What do you live your life for if not for living the life? What do you save the time for if you are not spending it to living your life for 100% in each moment? Very good questions. If you think there will be a time or place when you can enjoy the fruit of your hard work and truly enjoy your life, I am afraid that you let the life pass you. The time to enjoy of life is right NOW.
Wherever you are, please close your eyes after reading this. Take a moment to listen to your breath. How it rises from the bottom of the belly and fills the lungs with so precious, fresh and pure air. Feel how your ribs are sliding apart creating more space into the rib cage. Feel the muscles on the both sides of your neck activating when the last bit of air flows in. They are doing it about 30 000 times a day, all year around, through your whole lifetime. Feel how the air leaves your body when pelvic floor, lumbar muscles and abdominals squeeze it out and diaphragm relaxes and expands. Listen to that beautiful peaceful moment after an exhale when the air is not moving in or out. Feel the stillness of it. It is full of excitement, hope and peaceful energy. It is a countdown for the new inhale. It is a new beginning.
Listen to your heart. Can you count how many times it beats in one minute. Can you physically feel it? Feel this beautiful mass of muscle that keeps your body alive every day. Give one moment to honor the process that created your heart in the first place and all the altruistic work it does. Imagine individual cells that were drawn together by the energy that still pulsates on you. Those lonely cells together built up a glowing creation that bumps the life into your body all day every day. What a miracle it is.
Feel the whole physical body now. The body that treats us with much more generosity than we usually treat it. Can you feel your pinkie toe? How about a middle finger? Can you feel a surface that you are sitting, standing or lying on? Does it feel hard or soft? How does it support your body?
Now open your eyes and take in all the colors and textures. What can you see around you? Can you feel other people around? Can you feel the wind on your skin? What can you hear? Maybe a baby crying somewhere or a bird singing its life story. How is your body in interaction with the surrounding environment? Do you feel lonely and unsecure or comfortable and supported in it?
Boom! Welcome to life. You lived for few moments completely focused on life. Now thank yourself for taking this moment and directing your focus on presence so carefully. It is such a great power to be able to control the monkey in your mind and decide what you pay your attention to. How do you feel now? Do you feel anxious or peaceful? Do you think that you just wasted your time or experienced something exciting? Make a note of these observations to your mind’s imaginary notebook. It is all very precious information to your body, mind and heart. All the information of each moment is store in your body and subconscious as memories. These memories are seeds that will grow up to a knowledge that effects on your thoughts, experiences and actions when the time comes.
It is overwhelming how much there is happening all the time and how you are part of everything. Brining your focus on each moment that you are living in, gives it a lot more value. You see and feel the life instead of rushing through it. You experience the world moment by moment. Your every step is important and full of information. Even the most boring duties become much more interesting this way. You open your eyes to new opportunities that you would miss if your thoughts were already on the next moment. You become aware of life and it’s opportunities.
Instead of setting a goal to reach something in certain time, set a goal to be completely in rhe present today at least few times. As Thich Nhat Hanh suggests on Miracle of Mindfulness, reset your thinking patterns: Do dishes because you are doing dishes, not because of getting clean dishes. This sounds very silly but is actually a great way to train your mind to focus on the present. When I am on the wall rock climbing, I can only focus on present moment in order not to fall down. Climbing is not so much about reaching the top of the wall but about the actual journey to the top. The process of climbing is a lot more valuable than reaching the end of the route. Symbolically, it refers also to life – it is about the journey rather than a destination. How beautiful and more enjoyable your work is when you do it mindfully. How much better your tea tastes if you drink it for drinking the tea and not just for filling the spare time that you had. How much more rewarding the conversation with your friend is if you listen to her mindfully without thinking already of what you are going to say next. Don’t worry, you do have time to think of it when you actually are about to say something.
There is so much power in NOW that it can overcome all the experiences in your past and direct all the experiences in your future. This power is so strong that it can cure diseases, make huge life changes and impact on the future. In fact, it can heal the world from epidemic unconsciousness. Yes, it is a lot of power to handle. May we use it sagely and pay more attention to it – attention that your life truly deserves. Your life is a perfect puzzle that is asking for your full attention to be completed as a whole. So play it wisely and the most importantly, have fun doing it. It is a miracle to be alive.