Let’s examine what it means to be completely present without thinking. It means to be right here, right now. So let’s look at “right here” first. “Here” indicates a location, i.e., I am here, sitting in this tan chair, in my living room, in this condo, in Daphne, Alabama, at 11:04am, on Thursday, March 31, 2016. My physical body is right here in this precise moment. It can not be other wise. You will notice that in describing my “here” I also indicated that I was “here”, “now”, (at 11:04am, etc., etc., etc.). However, it is now 11:14am. Yes, I happen to be sitting in the spot I was at 11:04am, (the same “here” but simply by chance. I could have been in several different locations. Different “here’s”. For example, the bathroom, the kitchen table, driving to the store, etc. The point is, here changes.
Now, what about “now”? In this example, at 11:04am we said it was “now”. Then at 11:14am we again said it was “now”. Were these two different “nows”? Is the first “now” a former “now”? The now at this time (11:25am) A present “now”? What about 2:00pm this afternoon? A future “now”? What I am getting at is “now” never changes. It is always “now”. Unlike “here”, which changes from moment to moment, year to year.
So, back to Being Completely Present: “Present” is just another word for “now”. So, really wherever you are it is always “now”–You can’t get away from it, even if you wanted to. So, you say: What’s the problem? OK, here we go.
Remember when we started we said we were going to examine what it means to be completely present without thinking? Well, not thinking is required (not optional) if you are to be completely present–period! Let’s look closely. How can thinking prevent you from being completely present?
First, what is thinking? Thinking is your mind having a particular opinion, belief, or idea about someone or something. While “now” or “the present” just is as it is. It is simply “what is”. So the reason “not thinking” allows you to be completely present is because you use your senses (looking, listening, smelling, touching, tasting) to directly experience what is “right here”, “right now” (The Actual or Reality) without the thinking mind’s opinions, beliefs, and ideas “about” what is “right here”, “right now” (The Conceptual).
It has been said that the normal human condition is that of being lost in thought. In other words, our “now”, “what is”, is covered over or obscured by “thinking”. We are possessed by our mind. Yes, we are physically present “right here” right now”but our mind has taken us elsewhere, not in the reality of what is.
When we are lost in thought we can be said to be in a state of unconscious conditioning. Conditioning means our conditioned minds. A bundle of thoughts about how life is. We’ve been collecting this bundle of thoughts all our life. It is sort of like being on auto-pilot. It covers every aspect of our life.
However, when we are completely present without thinking, we can be said to be in a state of unconditioned consciousness. Unconditioned means we are simply experiencing what is, clearly, without our collected bundle of thoughts obscuring the reality of what really is, the truth.
Hopefully we have established that we are always right here, right now. There never has been a time nor will there ever be a time when it is not right here, right now. So, right here, right now is LIFE! RIGHT?
Also, we have established that there are two states of being available to us right here, right now. (Life) 1) The state of unconscious conditioning. 2) The state of unconditioned consciousness.
THE GOOD NEWS IS WE GET TO CHOOSE!
If we choose unconscious conditioning, we are choosing to live in a state of self-created suffering. Why? Because our thinking minds are resisting what is, right here, right now. Or, our thinking minds are lost in the past. Or, our thinking minds are lost in the future. Or, our thinking minds are lost in anticipation of the 100 things we have to do, or want to do, or should do, or at least should want to do. BOTTOM LINE: We are spending our Life lost in thought. Our mind has taken us elsewhere.
If we choose unconditioned consciousness, we are choosing to live in a state of peace, ease, and joy. Why? Because, by relinquishing thinking we can see clearly what actually is, right here, right now, and realize that since it is already what is, to mentally resist is futile and quite insane. By relinquishing thinking we realize that dwelling in the past is useless because the past is gone. By relinquishing thinking we realize the future is just a thought form. By relinquishing thinking we realize that we can only do one thing and we can do it right here, right now. And, by the way we also realize that we do that one thing for its own sake, and not in order to get on to the next thing.
LIVING IN PEACE AND JOY IS TO BE FOUND IN THE LAND OF WHAT IS. EACH OF US CAN LIVE IN THIS LAND BY SIMPLY BEING COMPLETELY PRESENT WITHOUT THINKING.