Whatever the year, month or day, it is always NOW. Our entire life is always happening right where we are Now because there’s no other place for it to occur, no matter what the date or time of day. Eckhart Tolle wrote, “Nothing has happened in the past; it happened in the Now. Nothing will ever happen in the future; it will happen in the Now.” If we remember what we were thinking about or what we were doing yesterday, we’re remembering it Now. If we remember how we felt when something painful or embarrassing happened yesterday, or last year, or the year before that, we’re remembering it Now.
As saying goes “The past is rolled up behind us.” It’s no longer there, but we are. We’re where we always are, right here Now. We remain a living expression of Life right now with nothing behind us except the Power of the whole Universe that has our back, Now and forever, and is ready to create for us. We create our Life experience by thinking. We call our experiences “the past” when they’ve already occurred in our physical world, and “the future” when they haven’t yet occurred. But our life unfolds with our every step in the present moment.
When we’re experiencing something good, we want the moment to last forever, and when we’re experiencing something unpleasant we want the moment to pass as quickly as possible. Yet the Now moment doesn’t go anywhere no matter how we’re experiencing It. There’s no place for It to go. It is always Now because Now is Life and Life is Now, even when we’re not paying attention to our life. Or as John Lennon put it, “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” Now is the timeless gap of Pure Unconditional Life between our thoughts. It’s there no matter how fast our thoughts seem to cross our mind. It’s there between what was and what will appear next, even if there doesn’t seem to be a pause in between.
The idea of time and space that is the basis of this human environment allows us to measure and evaluate our progress along our eternal spiritual journey of Love—where we are now and where we want to be in the future. But when we get “there,” the future will be Now. Time and space give us the chance to make changes in our direction, if choose to, but we can only make those changes Now. Time and space offer us opportunities to assess our mental-emotional-physical movement from there to there, and to decide if we want to move in a different way by taking advantage of the present moment to change our thinking and change our life direction.
Now doesn’t change, we do, or rather our experience of Life changes because our mind is the master of the thoughts that create our experiences. We are free to choose, and choose again, how we’ll experience each moment. We are free to try on a new way of seeing our self and Life right Now. We are also free to hold onto thoughts of what was and focus on them right Now. But, either way that will be our experience of Life for now. The good news is that when we think about the past Now, we’re free to think about it differently. That’s how the past loses its hold on us. Nothing is written in stone. Life is fluid, changeable, and always in motion. We are immersed in a Sea of Love that is always moving us in the direction of Love’s expression. We only get seasick when we resist going with The Flow!
The only reason we don’t believe we are free to see the past differently is because we think we’re a done deal, solidified by our past—filled with habits we can’t seem to break, and ways of responding to life that keep us glued to past performances, ours and those of others. Nothing keeps us from feeling free more than judging our self and others by past performances. Rumi wrote, “Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I’ll meet you there.” That field is Pure Love, the Holy Vacuity or Emptiness that is forever “full” with infinite possibilities for Love’s expression. It holds no record of wrongs because Now holds no record of the past. In the Now we are unconditionally free. There’s not one thing we can’t change Now. Not one thing we can’t think, say or do differently Now, and everyone else is free to do the same.
I don’t read the details of most news headlines, but one day my curiosity got the best of me. As I was halfway through reading some news report, it became obvious to me it was impossible to know who was telling the truth, and who wasn’t (as if it was any of my business anyway). I felt so exhausted I stopped reading because both sides sounded right to me and both sounded wrong. Then the words “Who Did, Who Didn’t, Houdini” came to mind and as I said them out loud with a sigh, I felt better. Then I laughed (for a long time). The more I laughed, the better I felt, and the better I felt, the lighter I felt, and the lighter I felt, the less I cared about who did or didn’t do something! Houdini was a great escape artist who could escape from almost any pair of handcuffs. Nothing keeps us handcuffed to negative energy, nothing holds us down more than holding onto ideas about who did or who didn’t do whatever. It’s not possible for us to feel light within us, and at the same time worry about who’s right and who’s wrong around us. When we feel light, we know everything is alright, and we can let it be.
Nothing makes us feel lighter than laughter. We love to hear babies laugh. We love to be around people that we can laugh with. Joy is the Key to living a Life we love to live because It is the elixir of our soul, and the best medicine on Earth to remedy sadness, sickness, boredom. Norman Cousins, an American journalist, professor, and world peace advocate, wrote the book Anatomy of an Illness after he laughed himself well. He’d been diagnosed with a degenerative disease that left him in almost constant pain, and motivated his doctor to tell him that he would die within a few months. But Norman Cousins learned that negative emotions, such as frustration and suppressed rage, were linked to his illness. So, he was sure the opposite would be true too, that positive emotions like love, hope, faith, laughter, and confidence would heal him. To combat his pain, he watched Marx Brothers films, Candid Camera, and anything else that made him laugh. He discovered that ten minutes of belly rippling laughter would give him two hours of pain-free sleep when nothing else, not even morphine, could help him.
Alan Watts wrote, “Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun. The only thing that could be bad is taking it too seriously.” We were in on the joke before we came! Are we having fun yet, or are we spending our life bemoaning the past—thinking about, wondering about, worrying about, and talking about who’s right and who’s wrong, and who did or didn’t do something. Now is the perfect time for us to lighten up and live as we are created to live, in joyous boundless freedom. Now is the time for us to stop taking our self and Life so seriously and just let our happiness shine into the world. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar said, “Measure your success by the number of hours you smile.” Every smile breaks a link in the chains that keep us down in negativity and allows us to be happier and more free.