By Jamahl Hokstam
The past, future, and present moment are all connected and impact one another in significant ways. The past shapes our experiences and beliefs, while the future provides us with aspirations and goals. However, it is the present moment where we truly live and make our choices that shape our lives.
As the famous philosopher, Marcus Aurelius, once said, “The present is all that you have, make the most of it.” Living in the present moment means embracing what is happening right now, rather than dwelling on the past or worrying about the future. By focusing on the present, we can experience life more fully, find peace and contentment, and make the most of our experiences.
However, it can be difficult to stay in the present moment, especially in a world that is constantly moving and changing. Our minds are often pulled in different directions, and it can be easy to get caught up in thoughts of the past or future. This is why mindfulness and meditation practices have become increasingly popular, as they can help us to quiet our minds and stay focused on the present moment.
One of the most famous quotes about the present moment is by the spiritual teacher, Thich Nhat Hanh, who said, “The past is gone, the future is not yet here, and if we do not go back to ourselves in the present moment, we cannot be in touch with life.” By being in touch with the present moment, we can find peace and joy in the simple things and appreciate the beauty of life as it is right now.
In contrast if we start living in the past or future it can cause a great deal of anxiety and depression because it takes us away from the present moment, where life is happening. When we constantly dwell on the past, we may become stuck in feelings of regret or bitterness and find it difficult to move forward. Similarly, when we are overly focused on the future, we may become filled with worry and fear about what is to come, and this can also lead to feelings of anxiety and depression.
Anxiety and depression can have a major impact on our lives, causing us to feel overwhelmed, exhausted, and unable to enjoy the present moment. This can lead to a vicious cycle, where the more we worry and focus on the past or future, the more anxious and depressed we become, and the more difficult it becomes to live in the present moment.
When we are able to live in the present moment, we are more able to find peace and contentment, even in the face of life’s challenges. This is because when we are present, we are able to see things more clearly, make better decisions, and respond to difficult situations in a more balanced and effective way.
As the famous psychiatrist, Carl Jung, said, “Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.” By looking inside and focusing on the present moment, we can awaken to the beauty of life and find peace, even in the midst of challenges.
In conclusion, the past, future, and present moment are all connected and impact one another, but it is the present moment where we truly live and make our choices. By embracing the present moment and focusing on what is happening right now, we can experience life more fully, find peace and contentment, and make the most of our experiences. As the famous philosopher, Lao Tzu, said, “The past and future are a dream, but the present moment is a reality.”