And, here is what I learned....
(actually, I learned more than this, but I'll save the rest for another day, or maybe I won't)
Anway, here is what I learned,
Your purpose in life......
WHATEVER YOU ARE DOING ***RIGHT NOW*** !!!
How cool is that?!?!?!!?!...YOUR purpose in life is to read MY blog. I'm so honored. :)
LOL!!! Ok, seriously though, it makes a lot of sense and if you can do it, what a great way to live!
His opinion is that *right now*, is the only thing that is real. The past and the future are just thoughts in your brain. They don't exist, the present is the only reality.
Therefore, when I am driving my kids to piano lessons, the main purpose in my life, at that moment, is not to get them to piano lessons??? Apparently, piano lessons will happen at a point in the future, so that is not reality. I guess that my reality is that I am driving my van.....and driving my van is my whole purpose in life, at that moment.
My first thought was that guy is wacko. First of all, I am a pretty impatient driver and have been known to get pretty upset that it seems that everyone else on the road doesn't seem to have any place to be....I always have some place to be! Now, this guy is saying that my whole purpose in life is to drive my van. How ridiculous is that?!?!?!
After I got over the "he's nutso" thought, I really started to consider what he was saying. I decided to give him the benefit of the doubt and really think about it the next time that I was driving the boys to piano lessons. I started with thinking 'wow, if driving this van is my purpose in life, I better pay more attention'. Lucky for this Tolle guy and his *point*, it was a beautiful spring day. I rolled the window down a bit and the breeze felt really good. I noticed that there was also a pretty good song on the radio....I hadn't even realized that the radio was on. Charlie was jibber-jabbering something in the back seat so, I looked in my rear-view mirror and he had apparently seen a bird or something that he thought was pretty cool. The boys were being goofy with their newest Happy Meal toys. It was really an interesting drive though.
I figure that this whole experience was a bit of a fluke, but I will admit that he makes a good point. Some days it feels like I am just rushing from here to there and just anticipating what is next. I'm waiting for lunchtime, or time to pick the boys up from school, or BEDTIME. But, by rushing and being preoccupied with "life", I am missing some of life.
To go back to my piano lessons analogy, I pick the boys up from school on Fridays with the mind set "must get the boys to piano by 1:15", we eat lunch and I am thinking "must get to piano by 1:15", we are stuck on 75th street in construction and I am thinking "must get to piano NOW!". How stupid is that? We walk in the door of piano "whew, we make it". My purpose in life on Friday mornings/afternoons is not to get the boys to piano. My purpose was to pick them up from school and to eat lunch with them and to ride in the car with them and to experience everything that goes along with doing those things.
So, I guess that I have been *converted*. Don't worry, I am still Catholic. :) But, this does make sense to me. The time that I spent anticipating the future, takes away from the present. I'm looking forward to vacation, holidays, birthdays, nice weather, school, summer vacation, when my house gets pained, when the boys are old enough to take a shower on their own. I need to refocus that energy to enjoying the *right now*.
I think the same can be said for people spending time re-living the past, in their minds. It seems like there are so many people out there that are missing out on life because they are all caught up in when they were in this relationship, or had this job, or when their kids were in school, or babies.
I know it is impossible to do it completely, but I am going to put more effort into living in the now. We'll see how it goes.
*** Disclaimer*** This post was about a book that I read. The book was kind of deep...and long, in my opinion. It was also very thought provoking. If you want to know exactly what the author said, read the book. I read the book mostly late at night and have also spent quite a bit of time thinking about what the author said and how I think it applies to my life and life, in general. Because it took me so long to read the book and I have spent time thinking about the author's ideas, I have kind of forgotten where the author left off and my own thoughts took over. So, be aware that my comments are not directly from the book, but rather, they are my conclusions based on reading the book and adding my own thoughts. If you read the book, you may come to completely different conclusions.