Meditation as a guide to be present
We all understand what the concept primal factor of “present” is, in the same way that we understand what is “past” and what is “future”, but not all of us are capable of living mentally in the present.
What is the present moment?
Many people think that they are in the present moment because there is no option to be in another moment of the time line and yes, it is true that your body lives here, but your mind does not have to do it.
There are many cases throughout the day in which it seems that we are in the present but it is not so. On many occasions we have thought in the past, reviewing again and again situations that have occurred and that we do not finish understanding, for example. Reviewing what someone has told us and asking us why he said it, if he understood us well or if we have misunderstood him. Or reviewing our answers.
How many times have you had a moment of tension with someone and have you returned to that moment for the next days or even months, to analyze exactly what you said and think different things that you could have answered or mentioned? This is something that has happened to any of us and that, unfortunately, makes our mind escape from now, escape from what is important.
Perhaps until now you have not been able to grasp the transcendence of living with the mind really in the present. What is wrong with thinking about other things while doing routine actions every day? Let us give an example where the repercussion that this can have is clearly seen.
Imagine that you leave work and get in your car to go home. You have about 30 minutes of travel and take the opportunity to evaluate how your day has been in the office and work, what has been left pending for the next day. You also think about the next day and how to structure the tasks that you have pending, what is the best time to make the calls you need to make, the moment you stop to eat and what you will eat … Suddenly you park in the door of your house.
Think of the way … Do you remember any of the places you’ve been through? Surely not, because you have been driving in automatic to your home, with the danger that entails. Instead of having your senses put on the road you have had them divided, initially in the part of the day that has already happened and then in the next day.
This is an example, perhaps something extreme, in which the lack of attention to the present moment not only affects your mental and emotional self, but it can very seriously affect your physical self, but as a didactic example it has a lot of value. With this we can make an analogy of life, since we spend a large part of it driving in automatic, without being mentally present in the now.
The present is a moment to be enjoyed. We must accept it as it comes and taste it like that, find happiness in it.
What can we do to stay in the now?
One of the best methods to focus attention on the now is meditation. It gives us the ability to be present here and now getting our experiences to be amplified. Increase the value of what we experience and the meaning of what we consider important.
Meditation consists in suppressing the activity of the mind. This does not really mean to leave the mind blank, which is what many people understand by meditating, but it involves silencing the outside noise and avoiding consciously reacting. Meditation does not consist in stop thinking, but in letting flow.
The way we have to let flow is to control our thoughts. It is something that initially seems very complex, since we usually believe that thoughts are something that we can not control, that they are there and that we can not do anything to modify them.
If I tell you right now that you do not think of a white bear, I could assure you with a percentage very close to 100% certainty that is just what you’re thinking about, in a white bear.