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Sunday, August 15, 2010

Being Present in the "Now"


Presence, this is surely where I long to be; in reality, I am rarely there. But, I am getting better at it. To get there, you must be "selfish" enough to give to yourself a small block of time where you are doing nothing but being present.

Ekhart Tolle, from the book The Power of Now, writes "Presence is needed to become aware of the beauty, the majesty, the sacredness of nature. . . You have to put down for a moment your personal baggage of problems. . .your total presence is required."

From an article from USA Weekend, writer Laura Hoxworth discusses authors Susan L. Smalley and Diana Winston, who co-wrote Fully Present. Hoxworth says that the authors advocate "paying attention with openness and curiosity to the present moment." This article states that "Mindfulness is based on heightened sensory awareness, and studies suggest it can help reduce stress, increase attention span, boost creativity and strengthen the immune system."

This topic always resonates with me, as I have always been such a busy person. I think perhaps I tend to do this to show my worth to myself and others. More recently, I have learned that to truly love yourself, you must give yourself the gift of "stillness". Sit down and contemplate the beauty around you, read something uplifting, or just share love while caressing your pet (one of my favorites and it definitely is good for both of you!).

I like this experiment from Ekhart Tolle: "Close your eyes and say to yourself, I wonder what my next thought is going to be. Then become very alert and wait for the next thought." Tolle says that it will be quite a while before a thought arrives. "As long as you are in a state of intense presence, you are free of thought. You are still, yet highly alert." I have tried this and it is so interesting when a thought finally gets through.

So give yourself a break this week. Sit down here and there for a little stillness. You'll be glad you did!

Please enjoy a poem from my book Water Running Downhill!; and may peace be with you!

Joan

Exercise in Morphology

Hush
Be very still
With eyes closed
And imagine you are
As a blank, white canvas
A page not yet written upon

Concentrate
On this image
Within your mind
Then use this background
To paint who you truly are
Using previous life as a guideline

Envision
The beautiful being
That you have within you
Sculpt and recreate yourself
With your dreams as the bones
Then flesh out the rest by sheer will

Live who you want to be!

1 comment:

  1. Joan Ellen,
    This is a great poem and great posting. Yes, I find it hard to just be in the now, but how wonderful to cast aside worry and just enjoy the present.

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