This whole thing about living in the moment doesn’t preclude any future, or suggest that plans shouldn’t be made for the future, only that the moment you exist in is currently the only moment, and unless you’re currently writing up a five-year plan for your life, then you shouldn’t be mentally living the next five years of your life.
You should be paying attention to the moment you have, because really, it is the only thing that currently exists. The only things that existed in my walk this morning were the many things I wasn’t paying attention to because I easily get pulled out of moments by my very busy, buzz-about bossy mind which, as far as I can tell, is not the aspect of my mind which has gotten me anywhere far in life, and is the least reliable part of my mind.
Today I noticed that I wasn’t paying attention to the speed of our walk, because when I came home, my calves were a little sorer than normal, strange considering I normally run that walk.
I noticed my not noticing that we passed by two dog-owners walking their dogs early in the morning, and my friend made a point to say hi, while I smiled awkwardly and moved on. I rarely go with a 'hi' and prefer the subtle nod of the head and half-smile with strangers.
I noticed the water of the creek ran low and slow and the ground is still mostly brown. I noticed while not noticing that my friend was moved by the sunrise behind us in the East, while I was moved by the soft pink hue of the mountains in the west.
I did notice the pink hues, though, and that image has stayed in my mind all day, the mountains looking like a mirage or an illusion as the sun seemed to rise and set simultaneously.
The mountains out here are my silent partners. They help me stay in the moment, help me put things in perspective, and provide a guide, something to move toward, when I’m not quite sure where I’m going. A lot of times, I’ll choose a run or a bike ride toward the west specifically so I’ll be able to see the mountains, to use them as a personal base. I put a lot on those mountains, but I’m pretty sure they’re completely indifferent to me.
I’m pulled to them because they are immovable; their surface may always be changing, seasons come and go, fires ravage their forests, new forests grow, roads are built, people and animals traipse about, but still, they are at their core, immovable. So when the pink hue of the mountains meeting the sky caught my eye, I looked and remembered that no matter what silliness I have going on, whatever I’m thinking, planning, doing, contemplating or whining about, is of little consequence in the lifetime of these mountains, of little consequence to my own lifetime even, but my entire life is nothing in the timeline of a mountain, what of it all, they would ask, if they could speak. What of these small things you talk of? Suddenly, in a glance to the west, t the circumstances are not so insurmountable, the urgency not so much of a rush. The mountains remind me that there is time in life to live life, if life is lived truly. I noticed all of this while not paying attention to the things I was noticing.