Thursday, May 30, 2013

How to survive the present: Being unattached to the past

“The past is just something that's over.” - A Single Man by Christopher Isherwood

Sometimes, the past seems to be like a haunting, lurking ghost. Instead of letting the present take place with one hundred percent of your attention, its echoes always seem to be within earshot. You cannot flee from your past. Still, often we are the once that cling to it. That is understandable, as we are created by our experience, our knowledge and taught skills. It seems so easy, you learn by mistake, you do what makes you happy and will not put your hand on the oven once it got hurt by the fire.

As you all remember, I officially abandoned all the grudges I held to who ever hurt me, who ever had bad influence in my life and who ever did me wrong. It is true, it is a part of cutting the strings that held me back to my past. Still, I will always be defined by my past, by my academic grade, by my actions, what I did at which date and what I did not do. People will always remember me for who I was. It is all about expectations: The hypothesis that people are not random, they follow a route, a course. People desire to be determined and predictable. People desire to construct a possible outcome about any kind of action. They do fear the unknown, as I once mentioned before.

"It will not end, you know. Not until you acknowledge what you are." - Jon Irenicus
 Will you always run from your past? Or will you always keep it in mind and not live in the present? In my eyes, both are the same. When you run away, when you fear something, you have it always in present thought. Running away is the second step that happens when you lived in your past for too long and want to escape. My friends, I just can recommend, make peace with your past. The past is over, it was beautiful, it was painful, you suffered and laughed.... but you survived, you still live. Will you always keep on telling yourself: Wow! Look what I went through?

To me, the past is a gift and a curse. I been in all these dark and bright places, I battled myself all through it. I did not get lost somewhere, I did not become one with the forgotten realms of time. I am still here, and yes, I have my past. I survived, and maybe I can proud of myself. Still, I should not keep my wounds all so green. I battled, and my wounds have healed or become scars. I stand here and now and I do only talk about my past when being asked about it, even I sometimes have the kind of flashbacks that always remind me of the old stories of war heroes, that I heard before. 

I know, the future will be different to the past, I cannot call anything back, and there is no need to. Who wanted to leave left, who wanted to stay, stayed. I dance my dance in a fancy pair of shoes. The grey curtain falls softly on my past and I see the future more or less clear.

Living in the present is an important teaching in Buddhism, and I think that it is an important fact for every Existentialist. The opportunity is NOW. No matter how many failures or victories are behind you. You can raise or you can fall. You are your own master of destiny. Your hero in disguise.

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