If we could step outside our fixed ideas of reality more often, if we could learn to pause the habit brain that tells us that we are unsafe and must fight; that we are not loved and must want, if we could let go of trying to conquer life, we might just find that what we have been hungrily seeking has been with us all along.
Those who meditate may know of this place, the space between breaths, the momentary pause that exists between the inhale and exhale. It is the space between thoughts that opens the gateway to the underlying reality of pure consciousness beyond the grip of our thinking mind.
Lovers may know this place when life feels perfect, whole, like a million watt light bulb was just turned on and all of life blooms into technicolour. Artists and athletes know this place in being surrendered to their task, and time dissolves, the sense of separate self is gone and all that exists is the perfection of what is. Heroes know this, when they throw all caution to the wind and dive into a seemingly impossible situation and experience the momentary death of their ego expanding into the realm of eternal possibility.
This moment, eclipsed a billion times each day, has within it all we need. Absent of the wanting that comes with thoughts of the past and projections into the future, this moment is complete unto itself. Yet, we are habituated, even addicted to eclipsing it. Never is this moment eclipsed for us. Due to our thinking and perceptual patterns, we cut our own selves off from the fullness of life.
For those who are attached to the idea that life is “happening to me”, identified with being a victim to this moment, the proposal that your sense of restless discontent is your own doing is not welcome news. It threatens the very fabric of that reality. But for those who are willing to look deeper into what is and see life beyond the grip of seductive illusions, this is great news. If we are the ones who have cut ourselves off from the perfect now, we are the ones who are able to reconnect with it.
Take a moment now, and breathe that in. If the unhappiness in your life is caused by the way you interact with and perceive the moment, you can change. Exhale, letting go of the need to try to figure it all out. You are lovingly held within a perfect whole.
We live our lives with coloured glasses on, tinted by our core beliefs. These are thoughts we have about ourselves, our lives, people, places, things…all of life. We have gathered these perceptions since we were children and from previous births. They represent the way we have adapted to the experience of pain, and the desire for love.
But we are limited beings. If the Buddha had been in situations you have found painful, would he have reacted the same? Likely, he would have taken nothing personally, seen only love, and expressed compassion. Why? Because the Buddha would have known that only love and interconnection are real. All painful acts and experience are born from ignorance, based on our own attachment to the illusion of separateness.
Unlike the Buddha, we react to our experiences and create core beliefs about life, that in turn create our personalities and the way we perceive this moment. Say for example, you were given a thorny rose at the end of a painful breakup. Since then, you find roses unpleasant. You may not consciously associate your dislike of roses with that incident. You just don’t really like roses.
If you were to surrender your preconceptions to the perfection of this moment, you would see the rose, just as it is: delicate petals, the strong stem, the sweet fragrance. And beyond the qualities of its physical appearance, you would sense its aliveness. You would sense the presence of the rose, as it is.
This presence is at the heart of all spiritual teachings and is what the practice of meditation cultivates. As we meditate – whether we choose to focus on our breath, or a mantra, or practice mindful action with all we do – we surrender our attachments to thoughts as reality. In so doing, we allow for a deeper truth to reveal itself. In that new found expansion, we also feel rooted and alive. When we surrender to the moment, we find the perfection of the now. Within it, is everything you need.
Parvati Devi is the editor-in-chief of Parvati Magazine and an internationally recognized Canadian musician, yogi and new thought leader. As a chart-topping touring musician, Parvati spearheads the Post New-Age musical genre with her independent success hit single “Yoga in the Nightclub”. She founded YEM: Yoga as Energy Medicine, a powerful yoga method that combines energy work and yoga poses. Her critically acclaimed self-help debut book “Confessions of a Former Yoga Junkie – A Revolutionary Life Makeover for the Sincere Spiritual Seeker” is currently in its third edition.