Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Be Here Now

Someone i know told a group of us that she had had a mild breakthrough recently. Like a great many people, she had for a long time tried to live the “Be Here Now” mantra, but always took that to mean that the goal was to be wherever you happened to be at the moment. If you were at the theater, be in the theater, don’t be anywhere else. If you are in a yoga class, be in that yoga class, on your mat, nowhere else. If you are at work, be there and nowhere else.

Then, the other day she realized that it meant more than that. It could also mean that one was supposed to mentally be here and now no matter the emotions at that time, no matter the feelings at that time. If angry, be here and now with that anger. Don’t try and run away from it. If stressed out, be here and now with that stress. Don’t try and cover it up, don’t run to comforting distractions. Realize that whatever is happening, is happening for a reason. Stay with it and find the lesson.

It’s not my place so i didn’t say anything, but wanted to tell her that there is an even subtler level to that well-worn mantra. What i take as the true meaning is to go through, and then past both of the above meanings, settle onto your meditation cushion, and let go of that person you think you are. Let go of Dave, let go of male, white, American, yogi, runner, henro, zen practitioner —- let go of everything, of every story you have about yourself.

Let go of it all and simply be nothing other than “here and now.” This does not mean “you” should be "something." You shouldn't be anything. At this stage the “you” you project to the rest of the world has disappeared. The “you” that interacts with all the other people in the world, is no longer sitting on your cushion. The world is no more. Your cushion is no more. All that exists is “here and now.” Your original nature; what you truly are. Be that!

If you sit as here and now often enough, long enough, consistently enough, you slowly come to understand what that means. You slowly begin to see that this here and now is not something. It is not nothing either. It is nothing more and nothing less than “Is.” It is nothing more or less than “Being.” Not something or someone being something or someone, simply Being in all its unconditioned and unmanifest glory.

When You relaxes, lets go, and surrenders to Being, and there is no longer someone sitting on a cushion, but only Being simply being, here and now, in the non-existent eternity that this is...then you understand what it means to “Be Here Now.”

Then, and this is the important step, the practice becomes to take this off the cushion and out into daily life. Can you see that You are a fake, only an actor and that Being is being Being at all times, in all places, no matter what you are doing, no matter where you are doing it. Being is always here and now; there is nowhere else it can be, there is no other time available.

When this becomes the way you live your life, when this becomes the way life manifests though who you thought you were, liberation is not far away.

Wishing you all success. Be here now and nothing else.


Marga verder said...

Bon Camino!
‘Mountains and water right now are the actualization of the ancient Buddha way. Each, abiding in its phenominal expression, realizes completeness.

Lao Bendan said...

Beautiful words. From the Mountains & Rivers Sutra? They remind me of this, from Muso Soseki, which I have had stuck to my kitchen cabinet for almost two decades:
"The sounds of the stream splash out the Buddha's sermon.
Don't say that the deepest meaning comes only from one's mouth.
Day and night 80,000 poems arise one after another, and in fact,
not a single word has ever been spoken."