For a while, i suppose, all i have been doing is existing. In the sense that what tomorrow brings no longer seems to fascinate me. I remember, it was not always so.
I still remember the sunny morning i woke up to, over fifteen years ago, when my legs weren't tall enough to touch the floor. There have been innumerable mornings ever since, but very few stand out. The older i get, the less fascinating things are. I suppose i could keep myself busy searching for new experience but why do the older ones seem to be less significant? I could easily spend a couple of hours blowing soap bubbles into the air a few years back but now, my enthusiasm for it seems to have waned. If this is what is called growing up, i wonder why anybody would want to?
I ruminated over this as i jogged last night. I suppose jogging got me thinking about this in the first place. When i started out running, every jog was an experience to cherish. Now, it is akin to brushing my teeth. I decided to take a detour, through a neighbourhood i had never been before. The sky was really clear and since the street didn't have any lighting, it looked all the more mysterious. Out of nowhere, like an illusion in the desert, a lovely house came up. My view had been obstructed by trees and suddenly i was looking upon a well lit house with burning candles at every window and a neat and well manicured garden. Following this one were many more houses, each one lovely in its own way. As i jogged past them, i felt strangely good.
Then it dawned upon me. This was probably what according to zen is called thisness. Commonly, it is called being in the moment. I realized the older i get and the more routine my task, my mind seems to fly away. Events and occurences become no longer significant because i was never there in the first place. My mind wasn't present. If you think this is easy, try not thinking about anything. No thought in the head, total silence, just observing what is around. See how long you last. If you did that even for five minutes, i assure you, those five minutes will seem like no other five minutes you have lived through before! Apparently that is what meditation is all about.
It is so easy to be present during what i can only term as moments of beauty. Driving down a beautiful stretch along a highway, a quiet evening with a loved one, a good meal or a jog along lovely homes; they have one thing in common: beauty. It is a concept that a word cannot aptly describe but something you will instantly recognize when you experience it.
I suppose the easiest way, without too much mental strain, to be present is to appreciate the beauty in all that is around. I know people who look up to the sky and smile when they see an aircraft fly overhead. How do you get there?