It is important to take into account the stresses, strains and incessant changes that characterize our society. The conscious and unconscious anxieties, which grip us, are both the source and the outcome of an increasingly complex and complicated world. For example, the news media does not serve us well with its rapid-fire bombardment of information, whether truthful or not, that bring instant disaster and tragedy into our homes. There is an unrelenting viewing of images that distort our perceptions of social mores and human values that has the potential to cultivate continuous unrest by emphasizing the need to acquire ever more material possessions. It seems more and more we are in a frantic search for tranquility and respite because we are losing our grip on our thoughts, emotions and behaviors. So where can we begin?
“Think of something quiet.”
We have a responsibility to ask ourselves, how often during the day do we feel distracted, fragmented or hurried? As we move beyond the rapid beat of our culture and to the ever-present stresses in our personal lives, we must believe with every ounce of our being that the answer is within us. We control the stillness or lack of stillness in our body, minds and spirit. We can let go of troubling, worrisome thoughts that clutter and distract our mind. We can pull back from the chaos of a hectic external world and turn inward to the world of harmony and balance. All it requires is being still and shifting our focus, even if for brief moments. In your mind, imagine the smell of fresh cut grass, the sound of seagulls, the taste of your favorite dessert, the sight of a majestic sunset, or the grandeur of a snowcapped mountain.
“Mindfulness is the miracle by which we call back in a flash our dispersed mind and restore it to wellness.”
Thich Nhah Hanh
So now is the time to be gentle with us. Now it our time to slow down, enjoy the present, and leave the past behind, while letting the future unfold. One of the greatest teachers we will ever have is sitting inside our own hearts. Now is the time to appreciate and celebrate the wisdom of the heart’s lessons. The time is NOW!
Owner, The Fitzgerald Institute Of Lifelong Learning.