A quick thought on the moment

Just passing

We all know how important living in the moment is – it’s not like this is news to anyone anymore. Why, then, is it still so hard to do?

Because to truly live in the moment means to embrace death. And nothing is less appealing at first glance. Writing this sentence felt a bit morbid already – I hope reading it wasn’t worse.

That doesn’t make it any less true, though. Living in the moment means no longer holding on to a past that doesn’t exist. It is to fully accept that everything that was is no more and will never be again – from that embarrassing moment of calling your elementary school teacher “mum” by accident (yes, that happened) to the sublime moment of embracing a loved one and anything in between.

This very moment is slipping into the void too fast for us to ever catch hold of it. Just like every moment that came before it, and every moment that we still get to experience.

In other words, at any given time, we are witnessing the death of a moment. So to remain present is to surrender to death in every moment. But surrendering to the reality of death does not mean dwelling on it. It means being liberated from it.

It means allowing ourselves to perceive the present as ever fresher, newer, and more worthwhile. Because the more we succeed in allowing the past to die, the more we can witness the present eternally born again with every moment.

After all, reality is what it is. Our choice lies in how we perceive it.

42 thoughts on “A quick thought on the moment

  1. Definitely not morbid to me. I am always fascinated by topics about death or mortality, because just like you said I think it’s also a way to celebrate life. Great post and I am loving this Quick Thought series!

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  2. I love the depth of expression in your thoughts here. Very thought-provoking. You’re right, the past is gone, even 3 seconds ago! That’s a liberating thought. If we take our mistakes are opportunities for growth, even those that just happened this day, our present becomes much wiser and sweeter.

    “In other words, at any given time, we are witnessing the death of a moment. So to remain present is to surrender to death in every moment.” — Wow, never thought of it like that. Thank you!

    I am sending my very best to you and your beautiful wife. I hope both of you are well! ♥

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  3. You make some good points here, Markus. I must admit that one’s attitude towards death and living in the moment in a more reckless way changes when you have children as everything becomes about them and less about yourself.

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  4. Life is quite unpredictable at the moment, i think thats what makes it harder to ‘live for the moment’, but as soon as some new normality comes into place, i will be living to the fullest!

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  5. The pandemic has made it even harder to live in the moment. There is always that invisible safety line to think about now. I really do miss it

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    1. The pandemic certainly made it even more tempting to ignore the moment, hasn’t it. Here’s to hoping that this time will make us more resilient and more able to appreciate what we have once the pandemic is over.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I really like these “food for thought” posts! This one is very interesting as well. I think that for me, personally, it is really hard to let go of the past when I feel bad, and to stop anticipating the future when I feel good. Isn’t it weird? Anyway, I completely agree with your words. Something that I’ve recently read and resonated with me a lot is: “there is grief in change”, and this is true for negative and positive changes. Thanks for sharing!

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  7. Great post… which is exactly why I meditate to rememind me of that very essence and appreciate that we are dying a little everyday. Look at you too soooo full of life, love and wisdom! congrats on 500 followers! 👏👏👏👏👏

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  8. This post reminds me of a song I really like. The name of it is “May I Suggest”. It is by Susan Werner, and is on YouTube. Thanks for a beautifully written reminder to appreciate each moment.

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      1. Nothing fancy or woo woo. To me it just means being present, giving the people or situstions I am interacting with my full attention without going into some fantasy territory

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          1. I remember reading a great book by psychologist Peter Outspensky entitled “the Psychology of Man’s Possible Evolution” which says in a nutshell that “man is like a machine”, he runs on autopilot and hardly possesses any awareness. This is the single most important thing we need to work on…if we managed to increase our mindfulness and awareness by at least a tiny tiny percentage the quality of our life, our relationships, our health and well being would dramatically increase. I find it very frustrating to notice that as much as I study this and theorize about this I am still a machine-like creature

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            1. Perhaps there is a limit to how much we can grow our awareness by means of studying it. Studying and theorizing is always the mind looking at itself, in its machine-like way. So we can’t rely on the mind, which is inherently conceptual, to take us beyond the world of concepts.

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              1. Indeed, it is like eating our own tail.
                Body awareness is certainly more effective than learning more and more about our lack of presence. I do the 4-7-8 breathing 3 times a day and it helps but I need to do more…but, again, that would be more “doing” and less being

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                  1. There is an interesting concept in the book of Philippians: the peace of God that surpasses all thought…sounds like the idea of raising above thought. Right now I am descending below thought because I have had two glasses of Limoncello and two of Prosecco…

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                    1. Yes, if done once in a bluemoon. Self-actualization & spirituality don’t agree much with alcohol. But one or two glasses of red wine a day don’t seem to get in the way

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  9. Very thought-provoking. For me, more important than letting go of the past, is not worrying about the future. I think that kind of worry gets in the way of living in the present. What if this happens? What if that happens? So many scenarios to dream up and worry about. It’s easier to let go of the past because it’s done and you can’t change it.

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    1. That is a very good point. Strictly speaking though, isn’t it also true that you can’t do anything about the future? The only thing we can do anything about is the present. I know what you mean, though. What helps me with worries about the future is focussing on my senses. I might be sitting in my chair, hearing noises from the outside, smelling the air coming in from an open window – and suddenly everything is OK, because my senses don’t perceive anything threatening. This is doubly effective because senses know no past or future, only the here and now.

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      1. You’re right. The only thing we can do about the future is create a plan and try to make the right decisions to set ourselves up for success. Even that doesn’t stop worry from creeping in. Right now, I’m sitting here worrying about all the things that can go wrong when my daughter does her driving test later this morning. I need to take your advice. LOL

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        1. People say that the opposite of fear is faith (not necessarily in a religious sense). Yes, lots of things can go wrong while driving – there is no denying that and no use in trying to suppress that knowledge. But I’m sure there is reason to have faith in your daughter, in that she will be able to handle these things should they come up. I hope everything went well!

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  10. These are very deep thoughts indeed! What age did you say you were? I think I need to do my meditation now, I’ll be back later 🙏

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