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The Gift Of The Present

Jan 282014

According to the yogis, our deepest desire is the desire for connection. We yearn to feel oneness – with each other, with ourselves, and with all that is.

Yet, everywhere I go, I witness how we’re forgetting, or ignoring what’s really important in our lives. During my trip to Bali last year, I observed a young couple by the pool, surrounded by lush plants, an aquamarine pool of crystal clear water, and breathtaking views out across the rice paddies – but instead of admiring their beautiful surrounding, or even being present with each other, they spent literally hours playing on their mobile phones, barely talking and not once lifting their heads to look around them.

I’m sometimes as guilty of this feeling of disconnectedness as the next person. Have you ever been travelling, visiting some far-off corner of the world, and gone on a trip to visit a popular tourist spot – a temple, or an ancient ruin or a cave – only to come away with a slight feeling of emptiness after the experience? Perhaps you stood and took your photos alongside the other tourists, maybe you stopped off at the gift shop afterwards to buy a postcard. But I’m sure I’m not alone in confessing that after such a visit, I’ve sometimes felt like there was something missing in the whole experience. It’s as if our tv-watching, smart-phone-obsessed generation has forgotten how to listen, observe and really see what’s right in front of our eyes.

There’s an online video doing the rounds currently, which is a great reminder of how obsessed we’ve become with our mobile phones.
View it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OINa46HeWg8.
Technology may be there to serve us – but we’ve become slaves to the very thing that was meant to liberate us and make our lives richer. And when we spend so much of our time involved in what’s going on on our phone screens, rather than what’s happening in real time, in the here and now, with the people we love, we miss out on the gift of the present.

So, here’s your challenge, should you choose to accept it! Put your phone down, and don’t pick it up again for the rest of the day. Even better, switch it off completely and take some time to reconnect with yourself, your surroundings and the people you love.

Ask yourself when you last spent a moment observing a tree, a flower, or a cloud in the sky. When did you last step out into a shower of warm raindrops, throw yourself headfirst in to a wild frothing ocean, or bask in the warmth of the sun’s rays? When did you last sit in pure silence, listening, sharing, and offering your love?

Right now is all we ever have – so let’s observe and be more present with ourselves, our surroundings, and each other. That way we won’t miss out on the precious gifts offered in each and every moment.

In love and light,