S. How can I be or live in present moment?
T. Are you not living in present moment?
S. No, I am always either in past or future.
T. Is it so?
T. Okay, tell me how come you have come to this conclusion?
S. It is known to everyone. I have read many books and heard from many learned people, and they all suggest that somehow we should remain in the present and for that many techniques too are available in spiritual systems.
T. What do you mean by being in the past or future?
S. I mean either the thoughts related to past keeps on welling up, running through my mind, or projections based on these past thoughts keep coming.
T. You mean it’s a matter related to mind. Is not it?
T. Leave this issue aside for the time being. Let us discuss something else. Okay?
T. Do you know who are you and where are you?
S. Are you joking or what? I am sitting before you and I am very much inside my body.
T. Okay, now tell me does any of the functions happening inside the body or any activity, including thinking you think you do, happen in past or future?
S. How can they happen in the past or future? They always happen in present.
T. Okay, this means the body is living in the present. Okay?
T. The other part is mind, is it not?
T. Have you ever tried to know what is mind, how does it originate, what is its function?
S. In my view the mind is the sum total of thoughts.
T. Okay, I will not go into the various aspects of mind, but tell me do you own those thoughts or are you those thoughts ?
S. They are my thoughts, but I am not the thoughts.
T. Okay, that would mean you have the mind but you are not the mind.
S. Yes, that makes sense.
T. Then tell me, if you are not the mind, then how can your original question “how to be in the present” have any value? Whether the mind is in the past or present or future, why would you be concerned? You have already known that the body has no option but to be in the present.
S. Yes, it does make sense. I had not understood this.
T. Okay, let us assume you are mind and we will examine whether it is in the past or present, okay?
T. Let me slightly elaborate the issue of mind. It is nothing but impressions of all the experiences left in the body in the form of bio-chemical reactions or in some other form somewhere else. It may or may not be in the body as this is still unknown to science. When these impressions are somehow subjected to energy, what they give rise to is known as thoughts, but that happens per conditioning of the nervous system. This is exactly similar to when energy is applied upon impressions in any tape, CD, hard drive or any other form of storage, there arises what we perceive as audio or video or audio visual depending upon the programs, the conditioning being used. When the brain is at full rest, during deep sleep non-REM state, unconscious or in comatose state, these impressions are not subjected to our energy. The moot point is this: when the impressions are subjected to energy, thoughts arise. This energy can never be applied in past or future and accordingly the production of thoughts can never happen in past or future. It is always happening in the moment. So where is the issue of the so-called mind being in the past or present? Do you get it?
S. Yes, the mind too is always active in present only.
T. Now we come back to your idea that the thoughts are yours. Would you agree that all the impressions of experiences that you or the body carries, happen due to external stimuli, information in the form of light, sound, touch, taste and smell?
S. Yes, all are external only.
T. Then, how can the thoughts originating from these impressions when subjected to energy, be yours? They too are external only, or you can say borrowed. They are not yours, but definitely useful for you in daily life. In a sense they are subtle tools the body has acquired or has been given for its smooth functioning in society. Is it clear?
S. Yes, very clear.
T. Now, what is your question?
S. My question? It has dissolved and is no more.