Zen of Being Here

Zen, and many forms of eastern based philosophies often refer to “being in the moment” or “being here now” or coming back to center. All of which I thought sounded special and very metaphysical. I made a concerted effort for a few decades to accomplish that feat.

Except one afternoon in the middle of a retreat at Still Point Zen Buddhist Temple in Detroit, P’arang Geri Larkin encouraged me to “Go lay down” in the backyard. I, to this day, am totally unsure of how that encouragement arose, but it did, and I did. Lying flat on my back and staring into the dark clouds this awareness dropped in. (Thank you, Geri!)

My entire bio/cognitive/emotive perspective process I call Bryan IS ALWAYS IN THE MOMENT. The only time I believe I’m not, is when I get sucked into the stream of thought and my attention lies there hooked into thoughts. Yet, “I” as a process of attention and awareness live precisely where the body and breath exist. I can only leave the present moments if my attention is on the stream of thought, and that’s almost always playing in the future or past. Attempting to find some formula for “being here or being in the moment” is a lost cause, I don’t have a choice I am here continuously. It’s believing that the stream of thought in some mystical way, transports me somewhere else until I notice and return attention to the present moments. I don’t go anywhere; my attention gets caught up in a story about the future and past that can only generate from the very moments I exist.

The body and emotional structure are always present in these moments, it’s only the conditioned separate self that believes it’s not present. Until I start paying attention to the fact that I never leave these present moments at all, it just depends on where my focus of attention is centered at any moment, here experiencing in direct sense input, or in the past and future visions of the stream of thought.

My favorite holiday has ended, it was the best Halloween ever.

Take care of you today.

Bryan Wagner

2 thoughts on “Zen of Being Here

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  1. There’s something special about sky gazing! I like to lie on one of those lounger chairs in the garden and watch the clouds drifting by as they morph into different shapes. It’s mesmerising. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

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