young man sitting on the railroad tracks looking at the pictures in his camera
Image by Aravind kumar 

We don’t usually come to the present moment free of thoughts and concerns. And we don’t travel light. As a matter of fact, we pack more than we need no matter where we go, and I’m talking about mental baggage. To show up somewhere with just you, and nothing else, is not easy to do. 

The moments of our lives matter. We don’t want to waste them. Not a   single one. But we will because sometimes we can’t help it. We get so involved in life, and distracted, and busy. So busy that we become too busy to stop. We can’t stop being busy in the moment. We just can’t unless we choose to stop and do things like meditate, and even in meditation our mind can remain active.  

Mindfulness Helps and We Need It

Mindfulness helps us, and we need it. We must not be so arrogant to think we can stay present and alert in every moment. We can’t. Sometimes we can, if we really make a concerted effort to be present, but for the most part it’s challenging.  

We are, as philosopher Pierre Teilhard de Chardin said, “Spiritual beings having a human experience.” It’s complicated. Being human is not simple or easy, and it challenges us daily to show up for life, or at least, wanting to show up for life.  

Many people don’t even want to do that because life is too hard, painful, and even unbearable. It’s just too much all the time. So, we escape the moments. We don’t want them. We want them to go away. We want them to stop reminding us of how difficult life is, and they do, again and again.

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What Can We Do With Such A Difficult Life?

What can we do with so much of our pain and suffering? Escape? Check out? Die? That’s what millions of people do. They escape, either through drugs and alcohol, the overuse and dependency of their devices, or even choose to die through suicide when they can’t take it anymore. They want out. And they want out desperately.  

How can you explain to someone who doesn’t want to be here that this is heaven on earth? Yes, it can be hellish, but that can be overcome if we change the way we look at all of this, and Mindfulness helps us look at life differently. More heaven, and a lot less hell.  

Here’s how:

Stand in front of the mirror and look at yourself. What do you see? Did you immediately judge yourself? Did you immediately criticize yourself? Did you immediately tell yourself that you’re unattractive, or overweight, or unlovable, or unworthy? Or did you look deep into your eyes and get lost? Look into those eyes of yours.  

Let them invite you in where you can meet yourself. Go ahead. Don’t be afraid to go deeper into you. You have nothing to be afraid of. You just think that you do, and that is part of the problem, what we think. We think ourselves right out of the moment by telling ourselves how inadequate we are in it.  

This mind of ours never stops. Thousands and thousands of thoughts are going through our minds daily, and we do very little to regulate its activity. That’s like allowing thousands of ants to traipse through your house without doing something about it, and we know how insidious ants can be. You look away, and the next thing you know, they’ve multiplied in droves.  

Being present means we not only see the ants but we also mindfully take care of the problem. And, if the problem keeps recurring, which an ant problem most certainly can, we become even more mindful of what can solve that problem in the best way possible. And we do it with a very clear mind. You have a problem, and you take care of it with a clear-thinking mind.  

This is a mind that is uncluttered, unfettered, and that doesn’t get lost in distraction or in thinking about something that happened yesterday, or worrying about what’s going to happen next. You don’t want to take care of an ant problem by wishing they weren’t there or by worrying about more ants coming into your home. That’s a complete waste of time.  

Where the Mind Can Go

I use the ant analogy because it shows where our mind can go, and how prone it is to want to go out of the moment. You can’t go out of the moment if you have an infestation of ants in your home. You need to stay right there and fix it.  

Mindfulness helps us stay right there, even when it’s uncomfortable staying right there, and this is something very important for us to learn. We must discipline our mind to be present, aware, and focused, even when we would rather do anything but that.

©2021 by Ora Nadrich. All Rights Reserved.
Excerpted from Mindfulness and Mysticism,
published by  IFTT Press.

Article Source:

Mindfulness and Mysticism

Mindfulness and Mysticism: Connecting Present Moment Awareness with Higher States of Consciousness
by Ora Nadrich.

book cover: Mindfulness and Mysticism: Connecting Present Moment Awareness with Higher States of Consciousness by Ora Nadrich.At a time when chaos in our culture is staggeringly upsetting, and millions are sensing there must be something 'more' but have no idea what it is, a book like Mindfulness and Mysticism paves a path beyond confusion. It speaks to the mind as well as to the heart, both explaining the mystical and leading us into it where we can realize a connection to something greater - the divine within us.

Ora Nadrich provides a traveler's companion from the delusional maze of a desacralized world, to the calm and inner peace that Mindfulness can offer.

Click here for more info and/or to order this book. Also available as a Kindle edition and as a hardcover. 

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About the Author

photo of Ora NadrichOra Nadrich is founder and president of the Institute for Transformational Thinking and author of Live True: A Mindfulness Guide to Authenticity, named as one of the 100 Best Mindfulness Books of All Time by BookAuthority. She is also the author of Says Who? How One Simple Question Can Change.

A certified life coach and mindfulness teacher, she specializes in transformational thinking, self-discovery, and mentoring new coaches.

Contact her at