Now…Then What?

I want to add a quick addendum to my previous post: Peace. Ever since that dream, my mantra has become: “Make peace with where you are.” Whenever I feel anxious or uneasy, I repeat those words to myself…and really think about them.

In doing this, I received further insight.

The New Thought movement has taught us that our greatest power is in the now. When we’re thinking about the past or thinking about the future, we are doing so now. We are taught that the thoughts we entertain right now are what matter. The thoughts we entertain right now are what mold future experience. But that concept right there can be a trap as well.

In a recent moment of unease, I noticed the tightness in my chest, the laboring of my breath, and then I repeated my mantra. Without thinking about it, I asked myself why I felt stressed to begin with. There was nothing happening in that now moment, which should have caused stress. So what was the issue?

I asked the question…and the answer came.

I discovered a very subtle, but pervasive thought (belief) that has been causing me stress and it stems from that teaching above. If my now is molding my future, then my inability to feel good now means I will create more of this.

In other words, I have been giving the present conditions of my life too much power.

So now, my manta has evolved. I still tell myself to make peace with where I am. I then say, “This—the present conditions of my life—doesn’t mean anything. Just because life is the way it is now, does not mean it is stuck this way.”

This, right here and right now, is OK. And, it doesn’t mean anything. I am not settling for mediocrity by accepting what is.

The now is a point of power, but it is also quite fluid. Every now flows quickly and effortlessly into the next moment of now. Really think about that. You don’t have to push it. Every tomorrow comes and becomes today. But we can only experience now.

So make peace with where you are as often as you can. And, don’t give it power over your future, if it happens to not feel that good.

The Universe is so gracious, it continues to throw magical moments, sweet beautiful moments, onto our path regardless of where we are. For me, animals are an example of this. Dogs, cats, birds—I can be stressing out in my mind over one problem or another, enter the elevator, and then there he is: the neighbor dog, smiling and looking at me, wanting nothing more than to enjoy this moment…with me.

The other day, I entered the stairwell in my building. Not two feet in front of me, a barn swallow sat on the railing. I shut the door behind me and she did not move. She just looked at me as I looked at her…and she was beautiful.

I’ve been keeping my eye on the swallows as they fly around my place so joyfully. But I was amazed that this little one just sat there looking at me…in peace.

I later realized that she was a baby that had just learned to fly. She was only a couple of yards from her nest. She and her siblings have been practicing by flying around that area, but no farther.

My focus on that moment brought me another. The next day, while walking on the trail, a blue jay fledgling landed on the ground in front of me. He, too, was just learning to fly.

When I feel a bit stressed, I remember the magic of these moments. Each was a  specifically profound now, and even though they have passed, I can think about them with appreciation now…and that feels good.

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