Distractions distractions – I’ve had a lot of pesky distractions in my life lately. Some of them have been blessings in disguise. For instance the complete freaking out of DS. I thought that was a nasty bump in the road. It actually was a catalyst for change.
I had spent the previous month or so walking around in denial. Telling myself things weren’t THAT bad and that I could cope. Once I realized how hard his father’s deterioration was for our son, I recognized that it was beyond hard for me too. I also realized it is very hard for DH.
Now we’re on a path to remedy the situation. It is too hard for our son and I to take care of DH at home. He requires 24/7 care and we’ve not been able to provide the care we’d like. DH is not happy about the thought of living in a nursing home but seemed better able to accept this when his doctor agreed it is time and let him know why it is time.
Attention. Where was my attention for the last month? It was there in the moment. Except for those moments I knew I couldn’t cope with the change I saw. And I need to be paying attention in every moment.
Attention is a spiritual state. For me, attention means being in the moment. It also means doing what is in front of you. If a man is hungry, feed him. If you see a soul in pain, relieve the pain. If you see someone traumatized by the fear of death, remove that fear. It is being present.
I have found that being present in the moment is a miraculous thing. I am always happy – when I allow myself to be here now. I have no obstacles and there are no emergencies in the moment. The emergencies are mind creations of possibilities in the future or ghosts of guilt, remorse and regrets of the past. The what happens if and the if only I’d done that ………. killer thoughts.
We are in an exciting time for our personal and world spiritual development. More people are giving up the search for satisfaction and happiness through material means. They are recognizing that a new home, a vacation, a new car and new clothes – that even with all these things – they are not happy. They feel betrayed because our society here in America has promised them they will be happy if only they get this one thing. They get the “one” thing and another desire takes its place. The thing once desired isn’t as shiny and new and exciting – must have something else. They don’t realize that the wanting is the fun part – the getting is an anticlimax. And they feel saddened because they thought that one thing and more one things would make happiness appear and stay.
The “life, liberty and pursuit of happiness” phrase in our American psyche has always made us strive to be happy. We have the life and we recognize at the foundation of our soul the liberty with which we were blessed by our birth in or immigration to our beloved country. Most of us see happiness as an elusive goal. A state of mind that goes more than it comes. We just haven’t figured out where happiness lives.
Happiness and life only exist in the moment. They do not exist in the past although memories may try to make us compare then and now – and they don’t exist in the future with thoughts of “If only I get this job – this house – move there – buy this.” Happiness and life exist now.
There is nothing you need to do. No-thing. Sitting meditation maybe, although not necessary. A few minutes contemplation in silence will direct you to happiness and life. Keeping a journal – writing to yourself your goals and your wants and desires will help. Setting a Sankalpa will help (Meditation and Yoga Nidra with Dr. Shankardev). The only true requirement for happiness to come to you and never leave – is paying attention in the moment. Do the dishes with awareness, mop the floor knowing that you are mopping the floor – not rushing through your life to get somewhere else – just doing what is in front of you. That is blessed happiness.