Spirituality - Living In The Moment
Living In The Moment Brings Balance
There are only two kinds of balance in life: the precarious balance of being pulled in opposite directions by equal worldly or emotional forces, and the peaceful balance that comes from your spiritual center and keeps you steady whether you're standing on a mountain or a surfboard tossing about storm-swept seas.
The former kind of balance is a truly unhappy one. After all, it's impossible to row your boat across the ocean of life with one hand lashed to a cruise liner headed East (your memories, experiences, regrets) and the other lashed to a fleet of whales headed West (all hopes, dreams, wishes, fears, and doubts pertaining to the future). As these powerful forces follow their respective paths, how do you save yourself from being torn apart? This is where it gets tricky:
If you only release the rope that binds you to the future, you'll be dragged back to where you've already been; the cruise liner will eventually make port in the least comfortable place possible, retire there, and leave you to wander the vast Museum Of Personal Pain And Suffering until it's time to check your luggage with St. Peter.
If, on the other hand, you decide to release only the tether binding you to the past, the merry fleet of whales will drag you ahead so fast, you'll spend the rest of your days wind-milling your arms and trying to stay upright while your life passes you by unnoticed. (Worse yet, you have no chance of ever catching up to those whales - by their very nature, they're always a full rope's length ahead!)
So what should you do? Simple! Let go of BOTH tethers, preferably at the same time. Once you do, you'll find yourself standing on your little boat with both hands free - and in perfect balance.
Living In The Moment Brings Security
Now that you're floating happily along on your boat (this moment), let's take stock of your new situation. You're no longer at the mercy of the cruise ship dragging you kicking and screaming toward Port Yesterday. You're no longer slave to the fleet of whales representing what you want or fear of the future. But even more importantly, you no longer risk being torn apart by hanging on to both past and future at the same time.
Instead, for what is perhaps the first time in your life, your vessel is truly your own. You're still not in control of the ocean beneath you, of course - that's God's job - but you can enjoy certain freedoms you simply didn't have before:
- You can use the oars to row back to a place you've already been (a memory, good or bad) without fear of getting stuck somewhere where you don't want to be.
- You can use the rudder to set a certain course (where you'd like to see yourself one day), but you'll always be free to adjust it (to reflect spiritual growth).
- Free of useless attachments, you can turn your attention to the moment - this moment - which will give you quiet clues about where to go next.
With these freedoms, this blessed balance borne of keeping both feet firmly grounded in the moment, comes true spiritual security - the result of tuning in to the divine compass that has been part of your soul since before you were born and is always true.
Living In The Moment Brings Peace
Once you've found the compass and grabbed the oars, you will make yet another wonderful discovery: Your little boat is growing - every time you discover a new truth (about yourself, the world, the nature of reality, et cetera), every time you offer a prayer of gratitude to the Creator, every time you let go of something negative, and every time you choose light over darkness and joy instead of bitterness, there's a new compartment filled with something you need:
- Food (spiritual sustenance)
- Water (spiritual cleansing)
- Medication (spiritual healing)
- Blankets (spiritual warmth and compassion)
- Pillows (spiritual comfort and relaxation)
- Books (spiritual knowing and wisdom)
- Clothes (spiritual protection from negative forces)
- Lamps (spiritual light and empathy)
- Tarps (spiritual and moral fiber)
- Binoculars (spiritual foresight and hindsight)
- Maps (spiritual help and guidance)
- And on and on it goes; there is no limit.
This means that the longer you spend in your boat (this moment), the better equipped you'll be to handle anything the sea (life) throws at you. And the better equipped you are, the less likely you are to jump overboard (depression, suicide) if there's a storm on the horizon.
This Is Your Moment - This Is Your Life
Now that you are finally free to enjoy the things that truly matter, enjoy them! Look to the starry sky above, alive with a million points of light. Listen to the birds sing as they soar above the waves. Feel the cool rain that washes the dust of the road from your face. Watch the dolphins laugh as they play, dance, and jump.
Countless wonders await you in the here and now. All you have to do is look around you. Don't set your sights on too distant waters ahead; one mirage can lead you far off course. Don't look too far behind; take the lessons but leave the pain. And above all, remember this:
Life is a series of moments. How you act in each moment - what you do, what you see, what you learn - determines what your NEXT moment will be like.
Make it a good one.