Spiritual teachers point to the ever-changing Now and declare: This is it! Embrace it. Be it. Realize it.
Seekers all over this blue and green spinning planet hear these words and attempt to reach present moment awareness. We meditate. We adjust our chakras. We chant. We walk in the woods. We dance ecstatically. We write poems. We dream. We achieve an insight and think we’ve attained something. We try so very very hard to be aware 24/7.
The doer within so often hears words and attempts to claim this awareness. It comes up with plan after dazzling plan. And, if your doer is anything like mine, it fails with plan after dazzling plan. It’s always back to Square One. After one or six or ten years or a lifetime of this doing/planning/attempting/seeking it can get darn right discouraging.
What else is Mind to do except come up with a plan of action? It’s what our thoughts do. They’re so good and diligent at attempting to fulfill our wishes. Don’t you just want to hug them for trying again and again and yet again?
Yet the poor dears seem destined for failure. No matter how hard we try, no matter how much we insist, thoughts can not create the Ultimate Plan. They can not lead us to the Promised Land of Ourselves.
Why? Because present moment awareness pulses in an all-encompassing dance that surrounds and encompasses thought. Because present moment awareness sings as freedom, whilst thought prunes into categories and explanations.
Our Mind may read those sentences and determine that thought is an enemy to be conquered. (Just get rid of thought, Thought advises, and you’ll get there.) But thought isn’t the enemy. Thought is a good friend, a great tool, standing ready in love to assist your bidding. Thought need not be annihilated, even though it may be ready to try to serve your greatest desire.
So many plans of Mind leave us standing at a dead-end, weeping. We’re not there yet, we cry. We think up an explanation which attempts to explain our tears. We’ll say sentences like: I know I’m not there yet because I still think there’s a self. I know I’m not there yet because I’m not 100% awake and aware and in the present moment.
Thought sobs at our tears and starts another Big Plan…simply to fail the next day or six months later.
Around and around and around the karmic bicycle we pedal. (If this is our proclivity.)
Suddenly or very slowly we begin to realize that thought will never get us to ourselves. Because we’ve never left ourselves. Because this–this present moment awareness–is what we’ve been seeking all along. We’re like a baby in womb trying to find her mother. Her mother completely surrounds.
Thought isn’t the proper tool for realizing this pulsing dancing singing zing of present moment awareness. Thought is like a calculator. You wouldn’t expect a calculator to appreciate the beauty of a sunset, would you? And yet that’s what some of us do sixteen times an hour as we seek the home which calls us.
So what do we do about this thought tool? Is there any way for it to serve present moment awareness? (My thought delights that it’s being asked!)
“Remind me gently to simply notice what’s already here,” I say to thought. “Remind me to relax into this present moment awareness which always exist.”
Thought rushes off to comply.
Relax, it says periodically throughout the day. Feel what IS before this thought. Look. Oh my goodness! (And then, perhaps, it stops, flabbergasted, for nothing it might say could add or take away from what appears, so complete onto its ordinary and miraculous Self.)