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OK guys, I do not claim to have all the answers but I’d like to throw out some thoughts for consideration and would love to hear your thoughts.
It seems obvious to me that all we ever have or ever will have is the present moment. The past and future exist only as thought, whereas, the present moment is reality and forever shall be. That being the case the present moment is not merely important but is all there is. Yes, it will change and will be a completely different experience constantly and forever but it will forever be “this present moment”. This present moment is without beginning or end and is eternal but in a constant state of change. Another way of thinking of the present moment is “what is” right now. In other words, whatever we are now experiencing in this present moment is all there really is.
I’m going to suggest some startling observations. First and foremost, we cannot change, influence or affect “what is” in any way in the slightest. What is, IS. We can only respond to it, we can like and accept it or dislike and resist it. Our whole life is the experience of, and responding to, what is in the present moment. Is this not true? If so, how is disappointment, discouragement, anger, resentment, greed, etc. ever justified? Is not the seeking of something different the root of all evil? We tend to think that resisting that which we do not like leads to change for the better. But I believe deeper contemplation indicates such not to be the case.
We can only find contentment, peace and happiness when we are in harmony with “what is”. If there is any resistance whatsoever, it causes tension, stress, anxiety, etc. Our problem, it seems to me, is that we tend to think life should be smooth sailing and become displeased when it is not. But life is variety, it is a constant changing contrast of duality, opposites, good, bad, long, short, up, down, hot, cold, etc.
Are we capable of actually changing anything, making choices, etc. After much deliberation and contemplation, I do not think so except as how we respond to the present moment. Does prayer change anything, I do not think so. I know there have been various studies that suggest that it does but there are just as many that indicate the opposite. Meditation is acceptance with gratitude for what is, while prayer is asking for something different.
We are obviously not generating our thought. If we were, we would know it in advance and be planing it. It flows from beyond. No brain ever created a thought or anything else for that matter. The physical does not create the mental, it is the other way around. Thoughts flow from beyond. “My brain is only a receiver. In the Universe there is a core from which we obtain knowledge, strength, inspiration. I have not penetrated into the secrets of this core, but I know it exists.” Nikola Telsa
I believe we are here to experience whatever this life delivers as aspects of the One or All That Is. Carl Jung’s famous statement I believe is true, “that which we resist, persists”. Perhaps change for the better comes as a result of accepting and complete surrender to what is in the present moment. It may not be that which we would choose but it will be that which God chooses. To me this is “faith”. It may be that regardless the circumstances that develop, our change for the better is simply in accepting graciously “what is”. Is this not the same as that which most religions advocate when they say that we should completely surrender to God’s will? If the present moment or whatever we are experiencing right now were not God’s will it could not exist.
Of course, this philosophy is essentially that of the Eastern thought of Non Duality or Advaita which rings true to the ears of this writer (a former Christian).
What would the world be like if everyone was graciously accepting “what is”?