The main focus of Buddhism is to live in the present moment completely, realizing through “experience” (by meditating and helping others) our interconnectedness and interdependence with all sentient beings and all things down to the subatomic particles (science knows this as quantum entanglement). Though this can be the hardest thing that you’ll ever do, it is essential to focus on the present moment gently. Don’t rush, follow your breath, take your time, and if you find yourself thinking of something simply let it go and return to the breath.
Do not dwell in the past,
do not dream of the future,
concentrate the mind on the present moment.
– Shakyamuni Buddha
I find the following meditation practice to be helpful and it also shows how difficult it is to stay present:
Find a comfortable position sitting down (preferably on a cushion, but you can use a chair if you need to) with the spine straight like a flagpole. When you’re doing it right, the muscles in your torso will be relaxed.
Close your eyes halfway but don’t directly concentrate on your immediate surroundings and begin to breathe deeply to settle yourself.
When you’re ready let your breath come and go naturally, no judgement, just observe
With each inhale and exhale count 1-10, but if you find yourself thinking about something go back to 1. If you do have meditative superpowers and do get to 10 then go back to 1 and repeat.
I’ve observed the following in “myself” while doing this practice: Inhale 1, Exhale 1, Inhale 2, Observe myself thinking about the future, then back to one.
If you can’t seem to get past 1, don’t take it personally, and just start again. No need to feel down or beat yourself up over it.
May you and I attain Buddhahood for the benefit of all sentient beings!!!
If you would please share your thoughts or insights in the comments below.
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I look forward to a very interesting discussion!