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A Simple Tool for Living in the Moment

A simple tool for living in the moment

In ancient Tibet there was a practice. A particular festival was celebrated by creating a Yantra - a mystical symbol in a temple. The whole monastery was involved. There was a complex calculation that went into creating this mystical symbol, the yantra. This would take many days. After creating the yantra and offering prayers, the yantra would be wiped off. Can you imagine this? The design of the yantra was created out of so much care and yet, it would be wiped off in a few moments.

One should not be attached to anything. In the practice of yoga, after performing a variety of asanas or yogic postures, one takes rest in the posture called shavasana. This posture is called the ‘corpse pose’. It is one of the main relaxation positions. Shavasana shows an understanding that the body will die at the end of one’s life. We must learn to be detached from it. Everything undergoes a change, so have the attitude of letting go.

You will not lose anything in letting go. One of India’s greatest thinkers, Sri Adi Shankaracharaya, unfolds in many verses that the world is covered in maya - illusion. Our infatuations and attachments create an illusion that removes us from reality. We must learn to detach from the projected reality of a mind lost in its own psychological drama.

When we say detach from a projected world, we do not mean that you must avoid it altogether and shut yourself up in a room. Detaching from the world without any understanding is foolishness. If we detach from the world without understanding, our foolish mind will continue to play out its illusions. It is like wearing a pair of dirty socks. Even if one goes to a clean place with dirty socks, the place will smell. It stinks not because one has visited newer places but because of the socks.

 Rather, detach from infatuations and desires. Know what true detachment is. The world is not giving us unhappiness but rather our mind is, filled as it is with likes and dislikes.

To be detached means to be inwardly simple. In other words, it means living moment to moment with spontaneity and not according to one’s ego, but rather according to one’s inner intuition.

Our suffering stems not from the world but from our expectations of the world. Our mind is filled with likes and dislikes. We expect the whole world to abide by our expectations and dogmas. If the world does not fit into our map of likes and dislikes, we feel disappointed and hurt. We blame the world for our sorrow.

One needs to be simple, inwardly dropping expectations. It requires a special effort to just see life as it is, allowing one’s inner self to guide. This is true simplicity. We need to trust that there is an intuitive power within ourselves that is guiding us in the right direction. Detachment teaches us to live in the moment.

 

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