Q. How do I stay in the present moment when it feels unbearable?

A. When you say that your trying to stay in the present moment feels unbearable, do you mean that you are thrown into the future or the past against your will? How miraculous it would be if it were really possible! How many old people are anxious to return to their past, their youth, and how many young people long to see what their futures will be like?

To stay in the present moment generally means to focus your attention on the work you are doing at this moment without wasting your time and effort struggling with your irreversible memories of the past, or worries about the future which has not yet come.


However, if you, following the words literally, try to stay in the present moment, what is the present moment you seek to stay in when everything changes every moment without respite? You should know better than to be dazzled and deluded by such plausible sounding rhetoric. Trying to stay in the present moment is not different from trying to obtain the horn of a rabbit because there is, in reality, no present moment. This is namely to be deluded by the illusion of ‘present moment’.

Buddhist teaching doesn’t tell you to stay in the present moment but teaches you to realise that present, future and past are empty since they are all imaginary lines.

©Boo Ahm

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

#zen #meditation #zenmeditation #enlightened #enlightenment #zenfools #photography

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