Consciousness is only ever here now. The body exists only at this moment. So, you are always here now. From Joshua’s point of view – the present is inescapable, so there’s no struggle to be here. A tool called “mind” arises from the ever-present consciousness.
If you are absorbed in a memory, whether it’s pleasant or unpleasant, the mind is doing it now. The feelings arising from the memory happen now. If you are excited, worried, or feeling anxious about what is to come, again, the mind can only do that now. There is only now. And, right now, most people are dwelling on memories or the future, and reacting to the present moment unaware.
The challenge to awaken the observer of our thoughts and feelings in the present is worthy of our effort. The question is are we aware of our thought and feeling choices or are we running on autopilot. Are you and I living our lives now, or are we reacting to the present as if it is equal to the past? Do we live in the moment, or do we simply go about life running our pre-recorded programs? Is today a rerun of yesterday? Is my attention present? Often, our routines lull us to sleep, and our mind drifts. This is not good or bad, it just is.
One reason we fall into habitual response patterns is that sensory information we gather is automatically placed in context so we can understand and evaluate what we observe. Our majestic brain makes immediate associations to interpret information gathered in a nanosecond.
For example, our brain recognized the symbols on this page forming words that have meaning in English. Using our mind, we put the words into a context that has personal meaning. This skill depends on past learning. Context is built upon past experience.
Our brain is amazing, yet our mind is not our brain. At this moment we have the power to focus the mind and observe our choices. Right now, only now, each of us chooses our thoughts and feelings. When we practice awareness at the moment, the observer is awake. Awakened, we observer our automatic and habitual thoughts and feelings. Awakened, we observe how thoughts and feelings arise and pass right now. This awareness is often referred to as “mindfulness.”
Mindfulness, focusing attention here and now, is powerful because mindfulness takes us off of auto pilot and restores our power of choice.
With practice, we are able to observe our patterns and end our habit of reacting to this moment as if it is equal to the past. With practice, mindfulness relives anxiety about the past, and what is to come. Being aware in the present moment isn’t about forgetting our past or ignoring the future. Present-moment awareness is a key to enjoying life now. This practice helps us stop ruminating about past events or worrying about what may come. Truly, mindfulness enhances our entire journey because we become aware of the thoughts, beliefs, and feelings that create our personal reality.
I won’t offer any tools for developing present moment awareness in this blog. I have the highest respect for your discovery and practice of the tools that suit you. As always, Joshua wants to stimulate our knowingness – our self-awareness. He gently nudges our curiosity to seek our own answers, and to develop our own practices. I have a practice I use to focus my mind, yet I do not presume that my method is good for you.
If the desire to practice mindfulness calls to you, there are abundant resources on this topic. I assure you that practicing mindfulness costs nothing. Mindfulness need not be tied to a religious doctrine or practice, yet that option is available if you find it fulfilling. Enjoy your journey.
If you don’t practice mindfulness, or whatever you call present moment awareness, don’t worry. Live life as you chose. You cannot make a mistake, and you cannot do it wrong. Consciousness exists here and now – eternally. The mind, a gift arising from consciousness, is fluid. The mind has no boundaries or limitations, and there is only one mind here (oneness concepts are explained in The 7th Major Understanding–A Message of Awakening).
I choose to believe that there are many benefits to practicing mindfulness, and that is why I share this opinion with you. Beloved teachers, healers, and leaders of our global awakening, I have great faith in your methods, tools, and teachings. I invite you to share your ideas and comments on this blog. I would love to hear your ideas and beliefs. Together we are planting the seeds of change. I love you.