The present moment has always been available to spiritual seekers, but as long as you are seeking you are not available to the present moment. “Seeking” implies that you are looking to the future for some answer, or for some achievement, spiritual or otherwise. Everybody is in the seeking mode, seeking to add something to who they are, whether it be money, relationships, possessions, knowledge, status.. or spiritual attainment. –Eckhart Tolle
The immediacy of life in the present precedes the mind and all concepts.
It’s hard for the mind to understand what being present is because the mind is never present. Yet, we do have moments of presence, when we are awed by beauty or those times when we are in flow.
You will find being present is ordinary. Don’t expect the extra-ordinary; that will take you right out of presence.
It is not an effortful presence. The ego is capable of creating a mental space of presence, and you can tell because ego-presence feels effortful, artificial and dull.
We are already always present, so it’s little misleading to say “be present.” What we mean by that is to be aware of being present, be Awareness, absent of the constant lurch for the next moment, the grasping, or the becoming.
The body is always present, so we can always bring attention deeply into the body or breath to be present.
You will find being present is ordinary. Don’t expect the extra-ordinary; that will take your right out of presence. The extra-ordinary unfolds unexpectedly.
Do the following to be present:
Be the gentle, passive, unoccupied watchfulness, that which can watch everything and contain everthing, right here, right now, without effort, without the subtle lurching to the next moment, without the leaning back into the past.
Or try this:
Sit down, shut your eyes, and watch your breath. Become aware of breath going in, and going out. Breathe freely, there is no need to control or change the flow. Become aware of the sensation of air passing through your nose and nostrils. Pay attention to the lungs filling up and emptying. Pay attention to the belly expanding and relaxing. If attention is distracted by thought, gently bring it back with a smile.
Expand your attention to the sounds. Don’t label or analyze, simply listen to the undulating sound of breath, or whatever sound you are attending to. Notice that there is no time delay between perception and hearing. Time only happens when there is thinking about hearing. Hear without thinking. Is there any effort required to hear? Pay attention to the way the sound is heard. As you notice the sound, pay attention, just to hear the sound, without decision or interpretation or judgment. Hearing just happens. There is no thought required. Meet the perception half-way. Is there any time delay between the sound and the hearing? The hearing of sound is thought-less, time-less. Relax, and be the awareness that hears the sound, without thought.
If thoughts rise, let them and shift attention back to the sounds.
Now feel your weight. Feel your skin touching your clothes. Feel your skin touching air. Don’t label or figure out what it is touching, just simply feel the perception of touch. Go inside the body to feel it. Put attention inside your hands and soon you will feel a tingling, an aliveness. Notice there is no time between feeling the sensation and being aware of the sensation. Just to feel, is there any time required between the sensation and the feeling of it? There is no decision, no effort, no thinking; it just happens. Time only happens when you interpret the sensation with thought.
Move attention to taste. Do you taste anything? Is there a taste? Don’t figure out what it is. Just be aware of it.
Move attention to smell. Is there any smell? Don’t label it or figure out what it is, just abide in the perception of it.
Open your eyes. Look around the room. Don’t label anything. Simply take in the seeing. Take in colors without labeling them. Take in the background, the ceiling, floor, the walls, the sky, clouds, everything without labeling. Feel the colors rather than seeing them. Notice there is no time delay between seeing and awaring. Perception takes no time. It is right here, right now. Don’t label anything, see it for the first time. Trace the contours and edges very slowly with your eyes. This is just Awareness. Everything you see is Awareness seeing in Awareness. The entire visual field and beyond is in Awareness. All these objects are simply perception in Awareness.
Enlightenment is a sudden, direct and energetic illumination that is continuously available to anyone who is ready to let go and allow it. It is the open secret which reveals itself in every part of our lives. No effort, path of purification, process or teaching of any kind can take us there. For the open secret is not about our effort to change the way we live. It is about the rediscovery of who it is that lives. -Tony Parsons
Move deeply into the Now.
Thoughts come. Thoughts go.
When you are deeply in the Now, look at the grasping and running-away feeling in the mind, with Awareness.
Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck. –Dalai Lama
Looking around at the resources available for awakening, one might get the idea that there is something accomplished or highly intellectual or difficult about awakening, and one might get the idea that a teacher or tradition is essential. Remain present and ‘you’ will be your own best guide.
This is why I write books. I present very simple techniques which are easy to learn and integrate into daily living. I encourage people to get in the flow of awakening because there is a tidal wave of awakening happening across the globe. We are coming up on the Age of Consciousness. Hurry up and awaken, because it’s only the beginning!
That’s all folks!
Please visit www.beyond-karma.com for free articles and more books.