You know, Anthony Robbins says that people do things to avoid pain. Or at least what they fear as being painful.
I grew up a Catholic girl. When I had my confirmation in the sixth grade, we were to ask for a gift from God. The gift I chose was courage. I was always incredibly fearful.
My mother is a bit of a mental case. She lives in the future. In a perpetual state of “what if?”. She has successfully managed to fill me with fear and doubt through my formative years.
If I am going to the beach it’s “be careful of the sharks!”, if I’m going for a walk “there’s snakes around this time of the year”, if I sleep with my window open “someone could break in and murder you!”, even if I’m driving to the gym “don’t have an accident. There’s lunatics on the road!”
They say if you live in the past, you live in regret. If you live in the future, you live in fear.
That’s why Eckart Tolles best selling book “The Power of Now” is so hopeful to so many.
The past is gone. The future hasn’t happened yet. The time is always now.
He gives the analogy of a tree.
He says if you were to ask a tree (assuming trees could speak), what the time is, they would reply “time? What is time? The time is now.”
Time is where fear comes into place.
“But what if I don’t get that job?”
“What if it’s raining tomorrow?”
“What if I have a car accident?”
None of these things have even happened yet, however it still manages to produce the same level of anxiety and fear. Because we are living it as if it is happening.
I read a book a number of years ago that used the example of imagining eating a lemon.
Let’s do it. Start concentrating.
In your mind, slice open a lemon into quarters. Now pop that lemon slice into your mouth and bite into it. You should be salivating right now. That’s the power of the mind. Whilst you are not actually eating this lemon, you still have the same reaction.
Which brings me back to the now.
Right now, I am sitting outside in the sunshine, drinking a coffee, smoking a cigarette (which I really need to quit that filthy habit), and writing a story. That’s all. There is nothing at all to be concerned about.
However as usual, in my contradictory fashion, I want to speak about the past. Even though that is not living in the now.
The reason that you are the way that you are, is shaped by your experiences in the past. You cannot deny that. If you are who you are as a result of the past, how do you let go of it and live in the now?
This is something that whilst makes sense in theory, in practice I simply cannot comprehend. Living in the now that is.
You are who you are because of all that you have experienced and endured up until this point. So how on earth do you forget the past and move into the now?
Do you forget about people you have met along the way? Do you forget about all you have learnt? All you have felt? All that has helped shape you into the person you have become?
Ordinarily I’ll conclude my posts with some sort of answer, but to this particular question, I have no answer. I simply do not know.