17 April, 2012

Slow Down, You Move Too Fast

"Slow down. You move too fast.
You got to make the morning last."

I again find myself preoccupied with the present - living in the present, that is. It isn't easy to achieve consistently, at least for me. It's on my mind this week because of the post of a fellow blogger from Australia. See: There is more to life than increasing its speed by Janine Ripper. I find her thoughts about the world to be much like my own.

In this case though, I don't often get overwhelmed by the pace of things, but I do struggle to stay centered in the present. It isn't the past to which I return; I'm good at laying that to rest. I do, however, tend to look ahead, usually with hope that something will happen, but unfortunately that anticipation takes me out of the present.

I've been told on occasion to ride with the tide or to go with the flow. It's pop psychology when expressed that way, but it is also ancient wisdom. Living for the present moment is sometimes known as going with the Tao, and learning to live or to be in complete harmony with the Universe should mean enjoying a genuinely peaceful life.

It is an interesting challenge, this living in the present. This Being. This Being At One with the Universe. In spite of my best efforts I have discovered only a few moments during which I have been able to simply BE, and when those perfect moments did emerge, they seemed exceedingly brief. I fear the unfortunate but probable reality is that this pattern will continue - making it difficult to envision just how what should be could, in fact, ever become fully realized. Occasionally, yes. Constantly, far less likely. I'm left to wonder if frequently would be an acceptable path.

Nevertheless, my desire for such moments sometimes presses me to look forward to a future in which they might exist in greater abundance, and therein lies the rub. To look forward moves me out of the present and destroys that which I was hoping to achieve.

Although I am quick to banish such thoughts and return to the present, there is always one thought that persists. It is the recognition that just the effort of trying to stay present-centered may be sufficient to undo my oneness with the Tao. The path, after all, is simply to be. There can be no try. Just being. It is there we find balance and calm. Harmony. Being At One with the Universe.