The Now Is not a Thing

Moments of silence are sacred in our day, in our lives. But most often we don’t see them as sacred at all, but quite the opposite: we see them as a problem, as something to get away from, as something undesirable. We see them as an opportunity to move onto the next moment. And this is how we often relate to the moment, as a springboard towards the next one, and the next one, and the next and so on. 

The problem with this – the immense problem – is that our life happens to be this moment, not the next one, nor the previous one.
The previous or the next moment is a construction of the mind, not a thing that actually exists. 

What I just wrote in the previous sentence is not easy to grasp. We are so accustomed to believe this immense space of time composed of the past and the future is an absolute reality; but it is not. 
We can say that the past and the future are a practicality, something that is necessary – from the past we can learn from mistakes and enjoy memories and from the future we can plan and organize our lives – but they don’t really exist outside of the creation of the mind. 
Only human beings have the capacity to create a ‘next’ or a ‘previous’ moment. 
All other creatures on the planet know nothing about a next moment. They don’t have a mind to create that possibility, and that is why they can’t plan their lives. 
But practical lives are only a possibility we are given, not a necessity of existence. It is like ice cream; it is wonderful to have it (especially for people like me :)) but life can very well exist without it. 

I understand that this can became very abstract. Past and future seem so real…but they are nothing but a mind construct.
In experience – and experience is the very substance of our lives – there is never a next or a previous moment. Never!
We experience this moment, plus a mental construction, like a memory. And mental constructions are like the stories in movies: useful, but not fundamentally real. A movie is nice and, hopefully, entertaining to watch, but the story, what is happening in the movie, is a construction, not a real happening. 
The mind is like an app, and this app has the capacity to think, to construct ‘the next moment’, but this next moment does not exist outside of the mind, outside of a mental construction. 

Of course, I don’t mean at all that we should try to erase the next moment. We should not! It is wonderful to have the possibility to think of it and plan for it. It is definitely a very useful construction, but just like movies can be a problem if we spend the whole day lost in screens, the next moment can also be a problem if we spend the whole day thinking, worrying, planning, stressing about it.
We can use this amazing power of the mind to remember the past and project the future in order to plan and mature, but we should not make our lives exclusively out of them. 

Now, my intention with all this is not really to be philosophical, but simply to encourage you, using reason and understanding, to come to the moment, to the one thing that exists outside of the constructions of the mind. 

This moment is. 
There is something fundamentally alive now. We cannot name that ‘aliveness’, because the moment we name it ,it already becomes a construction, it becomes either the past or the future, it becomes a thing frozen in time and space. 

Which means that the now I am referring to, the present moment, is not something that can be spoken about, that can be thought about, that can be grasped and understood with the mind, but even so, it is something that is always here, always alive, always present. 

This is why my words, whatever I have written here, are not really talking about the now, but they are pointing in the direction in which we should look, and that direction is here, is now, before the mind can take it and transform it into a ‘thing’.
The now is fluid, alive, always present, always here, but never graspable, never becoming a ‘thing’.
This now is a silence, is a stop, is a space that feels like a presence, like an aliveness, like an awareness…but again, all these words are just pointers and not the now itself. They are like fingers pointing to the moon, but not the moon itself. 

Everything on the planet, in the whole universe, can be thought about. Even what we don’t know now has the potentiality of one day being known, and being thought about. 
Except the now
The now is the fundamental experience of life, it is like the seed from which the whole universe shatters into existence. 
The Big Bang did not happened billons of years ago. It is happening right now…it is continuously happening!
Before the mind has its say – before we eat the apple from the tree of knowledge – there is this silent, open, aware, infinite now…and then, as the mind makes its move – after we eat the apple -BANG!!!, the whole universe explodes into existence. 

We can and should use the past and the future to have this amazing life that is offered to us, but also, we need to learn to return to the very substance of that life, to the very source of that life, to the only place where true meaning, satisfaction and peace can be found, to this moment, this space, this silence, this aware-presence, right now. 

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