There is no past. There is no future. These aren’t just words. They don’t point to something at a mysterious or quantum level. They are much more valuable than nearly all words in any language but you need to go deeper than a mental understanding to grok what they offer. You have to go into the feel of it.
When I look for the past it is only available in the form of thoughts. I can’t go there. There is no point along a line that I can visit. I can’t use the normal suspects: touch, smell, taste and sight. I can’t even feel it. I can see and feel my stories, my thoughts about it, but that’s about all. It’s the same for the future. At least with the past the story is based on recollection. Recollection though, is always skewed, not just because this supposed thing called time has passed, but because our experience is always skewed. We see through the glass darkly, rarely seeing the truth of it, let alone the facts.
It has long been proven that we look through the lens of our thoughts and concretized thoughts — beliefs. We can’t see what we don’t believe. That’s the reason a friend can see how much someone cares about you while you think the same person always disses you and they’re a jerk who doesn’t care about you at all. Once you are willing to admit that maybe, just maybe you don’t know what’s going on here, you have an opportunity to explore past and future, to feel into what they are, whether they exist at all.
If past is a box of thoughts, generally anchored with emotional barbwire, is it real? What would it mean if it wasn’t?
What about future? I know I have tormented myself about something that was going to happen in the future. Death is a good example. I think we can all cop to that one. What if there is no future? What does that mean for death? And … if there is no past and no future, what does that mean for you? What are you without the goal posts of past and future stabilizing your storyline?
No past, no future: that means my exes are passing thoughts, as are the last two years of health issues. Estrangement with family members doesn’t require a storyline for the storyline. It also means that all the good, precious memories — my life with Kenny, the person I’ve become, my love for my sons, and all the other cherished memories are simply thoughts too. Yikes! What am I but a thought in the mind of God? No past, no future, nothing but Now, but This luminous awareness — leaves little room for any thing else.
I think that’s why most avoid looking too close. It’s a bit direct and cuts through all the self-help self-reinforcing self-savior-ing propaganda out there. It does not leave much in its wake.
What does it leave? Experiencing, pure and simple. Freedom from doubt and judgement. Wide-eyed wonder at the miracle of life in all its forms. It frees its expressions (that’s you and me) of the need to make sense of it and open to simply live It. It doesn’t make you non-existent. It opens your eyes and heart, body and soul to what This has always been, will always be — The Divine Activity, Life Life-ing, the precious display of God experiencing itself as human, as this glorious world.