“And if I don’t kiss you, this kiss will be untasted, I’ll never, no never get it back.
But why should I worry, there’ll be a next moment. Sweet lover, sweet lover it is now.”
[The Incredible String Band "Each Moment" 1969]
Walking along the deserted beach early in the morning. Beige streaked sand littered with lines of shells is warm underfoot. It is hot and humid. The rain cloud lurks over not so distant hills which are covered by the rainforest. In the pre storm air there is a crispness of excitement as the pressure changes and suddenly in view, two long tracks, gouged out of wet sand, weave their way into the water. For a second the heart stops beating. No matter how warm the temperature, an ice pick of fear and trepidation pierces the veins. Unmistakeable crocodile tracks. Eyes scan the scrubland beyond the sand dunes just in case, but this is not mangrove and the tracks are an anomaly. The crocodile is no longer on the beach. In truth, there can be no accurate awareness of this crocodile. There are only the slide tracks on the beach to suggest a crocodile was even on the beach at some stage.
So it is with memories. The past no longer exists, just the present and from certain markers in our present we can infer that different things have happened, adventures were experienced and lives were lived.
Because of this, it is impossible to be aware of the past event of the crocodile. It is only possible to think about the crocodile as having walked on the beach in terms of the present moment and that thought can only exist in the present moment.
What if all of life was viewed in the same way?
What if we viewed each experience as being only momentary? Not just in theory but in actuality. Moments being fleeting, with simply glimpse after glimpse of emotion or understanding. Some might say that these moments are so swift in mind and body that it is only possible to think about them in retrospect. If this is the case, then it might be impossible to consider it until it has actually gone completely. Love cannot be felt or seen until after the fact. Hate cannot be experienced unless there is a space in the sky and a cold light of clarity being shone upon it.
What freedom might it afford if this idea was to be adopted and lived? Time is subjective anyway. Each experience, emotion or thought dies as quickly as it is born, millisecond after millisecond and the next is born at the same time, from the future.
The future. The unknown, the challenging without guarantee of the type of existence for which we yearn. If fear is attached to the unknown, to tomorrow, then that too will only be momentary. Perhaps it is worth considering most important part of the future is that is brings with it, promise, hope and the chance of something new and exciting.
This is not a new idea or concept but to hold on to the premise of it, is to surely free ourselves of stress, fear and regret, leaving us with the absolute purity of promise and potential of each breath, each moment, each life. Happy 2015.
Text: © JL Nash, 2015