aware of every moment

English: Solitary Raindrop, Hedon, East Riding...
English: Solitary Raindrop, Hedon, East Riding of Yorkshire, England. This raindrop acted as a crude lens, focussing and inverting the trees behind it! (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

How much of our lives pass us by and is wasted because we exist on auto-pilot? Most of us are either focused on the past or future and are not aware of what we are doing most of the time. Our modern (American) lives are so hectic and fast paced that our diets and sleep patterns leave many of us in a haze. I am reminded of a Zen parable…..

After ten years of apprenticeship, Tenno achieved the rank of Zen teacher. One rainy day, he went to visit the famous master Nan-in. When he walked in, the master greeted him with a question, “Did you leave your wooden clogs and umbrella on the porch?”

“Yes,” Tenno replied.

“Tell me,” the master continued, “did you place your umbrella to the left of your shoes, or to the right?”

Tenno did not know the answer, and realized that he had not yet attained full awareness. So he became Nan-in’s apprentice and studied under him for ten more years.

Can you imagine living a life where you were aware of every moment?

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3 thoughts on “aware of every moment”

  1. Nice blog! I live a life where I can barely keep up with the moments! I went from the prison system to graduate school and onto academia. Now I spend my days worrying about politics and the metaphorical shanks that infect most universities.

    At least in prison I knew who the good guys and bad guys were.


  2. Breathing, breathing, breathing.

    I notice that when I have committed to this hectic life, I feel like I can’t get out. That is really a choice, or really a series of choices that I have made. When I focus on deep breathing, it doesn’t fix the problem, but it does clear my head, buy me a short mental vacation, and put me in a more effective state of mind to cope with things that can’t be changed and/or come up with solutions that are more likely to work.

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