BY URVIL JAMES VILLARUEL
Mar. 2, 2016, Toronto, ON - Take a moment. Take a breath. Hold it for just a second. Then, fully let it go. Choose one object in the room that you are currently sitting in and train your attention towards that. Come to realize that, no matter what it is, it came about from some raw material that had expertly been pieced together by both skillful and knowledgable hands. If it’s a book, see the paper from the trees; see the writer toiling away at their craft. If it’s a glass bottle, see the sand; see the effort and the heart that went into sculpting it. If it’s your Mac Book Pro, see the electricity; see the metals and the countless hours of coding behind its ease-of-use. Then, take another breath.
Now, think of a moment in your life that you are most proud of. See your effort; see the energy that you put in; see the fact that if you weren’t here, that moment would not exist, either. Then, let it go.
Close your eyes (preferably after having read this section beforehand). Begin to scan the body and just notice how it feels in this moment. Is it tired? Is it sad? Depressed? Anxious? Angry? Happy? Jovial? Exhilarated? Attentive? Awake? Just watch it for a moment. Try and see where all of these feelings have originated from. Then, slowly begin to open your eyes.
You are on a giant rock, floating in space, orbiting around a big, burning yellow star --- AND you can feel things. Far too often, in our hurried existence, we take our lives for granted. Moving from one moment to the next, never fully appreciating where we are. The inner-ramblings of our “sophisticated” society, poking and prodding away at us; urging us to keep moving forward. To develop the most novel and innovative new product or service. To solve a problem. Yet, how often do we set aside our own analytical problem solving skills and just appreciate all the problems that have already been solved? All of the manifestations of energy from this thing that we call the "universe", making their way into our physical plane of existence.
Incessantly, we continue to drudge forward; never stopping to appreciate who we are or how far we’ve come. We can become so over-worked on finding the next big thing, that we are left to wonder how it is that we were never really “here” in the first place. Granted, looking forward isn’t always a bad thing. A lot of good attention has been placed on getting us to where we are today. But, in a world that is so hurried towards always moving forward, it is important to just s-t-o-p once in a while and practice this simple exercise in Mindful Self Awareness. Appreciating who we are and what we are; where we’ve been and where we’re going; because, in the end, if life is the one thing we can experience for sure --- we might as well appreciate the ride while we still can...