The Miracle Of Being Here
"If not Now, when?
This past week, I came across a teaching from Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh that is a powerful reminder about appreciating the miracle of being alive on this planet Earth (it's reprinted down below). This may seem difficult to do these days, given all of the challenges and uncertainty that we are going through right now, individually and collectively. Yet when we get down to it, what else are we going to do with the remaining time we have left to us? Succumb to fear? Be overwhelmed by worry and anxiety about what 'might' happen in the future?
Those of us who are walking the spiritual path eventually realize that we do indeed have a choice; to either lose ourselves in the despair and grief we see happening around, and perhaps within us, or to rise like an eagle and fly above the dream; seeing clearly that all of this is a miraculous play, and that we have been given an opportunity to celebrate the very Life that we have taken for granted for so long. This will not happen at some future date. It should be clear to everyone reading this by now; the future we thought was going to happen is now completely uncertain, and all we have - all we have ever had - is Now.
The question is; are you fully Here or are you one of those who is waiting? Waiting for the circumstances of your life to improve so that you can finally be consistently happy in your Life? The Truth is; we will either Awaken and embrace the gift of this eternal moment, and the freedom and joy it contains, or we will wait forever. And so, here is the meditation/contemplation from Thich Nhat Hanh that I mentioned at the beginning of the blog. My wish is that it moves you from a space of fear or anxiety, to a space of gratitude and celebration for every blessing that fills your life, particularly for the breath you're taking right Now. After all, if not Now, when?
"Imagine two astronauts go to the moon, and while they're there, there's an accident and their ship can't take them back to earth. They have only enough oxygen for two days. There is no hope of someone coming from Earth in time to rescue them. They have only two days to live.
If you were to ask them at that moment, "What is your deepest wish?", they would answer, "To be back home walking on our beautiful planet Earth." That would be enough for them; they wouldn't want anything else. They wouldn't think about being the head of a large corporation, a famous celebrity, or the President of the United States. They would't want anything but to be back here - walking on Earth, enjoying every breath, listening to the sounds of nature, or holding the hand of their beloved while contemplating the moon at night.
We should live every day like people who have just been rescued from dying on the moon. We are on Earth NOW, and we need to enjoy walking on this precious, beautiful planet. Zen Master Linji said, "The miracle is not to walk on water or fire. The miracle is to walk on the Earth." I cherish this teaching. I enjoy just walking like that, with each step caressing our Mother Earth, and in this way, we can inspire other people to do the same. WE CAN ENJOY EVERY MINUTE OF OUR LIVES."