”Your present circumstances dont determine where you can go; they merely determine where you start.”
An ever growing world can be a very exciting yet, a scary place. As Margaret wheatley puts it this way,” hope and fear have been in the news .We watch for years as the future disappeared under disabling clouds of fear, then suddenly we again could see the sky, with hope and the possibility of change”.
This is pretty much how things have been since humankind had realised consciousness, from periods of great joy and prosperity to times of deep pain and suffering.
The world is a big bad place, a deep mix of both fearful fear and dead devotion. With this thought in mind, Albert Camuss hero-Sisyphus holds voice in each persons heart and as firmly put in his essay “there is but, one truly serious philosophical problem and that is suicide, judging whether life is or is not worth living that is the fundamental question of philosophy”
In the grander scheme, life can be pointless as many existentialists put it, when solid hope is taken away by constant endless evil as our lives will be forgotten and our species being constantly corrupt and violent.
Despite all this, we should endure none the less. We must cope with whatever we can with whatever we are supposed to do, we must acknowledge the absurd background of our existence and triumph above the constant hopelessness. Life is worth enduring.
Once you properly realise the absurdity of life, you may be on the edge of despair but, also have a desire to live life more intensely. When motivated by hope, but then further confronted by fear and failure, we become depressed and demoralised.
At such a time, we learn the price of hope and the paralysing nature of fear. Rather than inspiring and motivating us, hope has become a burden made heavy by death and all of its friends.
According to Wheatley, to have a meaningful life means, we have to abandon extreme hope, all of us, and learn how to find the place “beyond hope and fear.” She believes this is the present.
Being present should quicken us into action, this is a better way of planning a progressive or self-driven life as this is a first step in creating a meaningful one. We create a clear vision for the future we want, by relating and doing what’s needed to be done instantly now, as this breaks the wall between strategy and action (which can be a big issue for humanity as history evidently repeats itself).
We focus strategically on doing only those things that have a high probability of success and also embrace failure in all its forms. As long as we are present and work smart, our endeavours will at best create the world we want.
How could we do our work, if we don’t take pride in our work presently?
As Wheatly puts it this way “all fear and hope arise from looking forward or backward.” The present moment is the only place clear to see the uncloudedness done by hope or fear. Both are necessary as tools and not as a master.
Fear is the necessary consequence of feeling hopeful again. Contrary to our belief that hope and fear are opposites where one trumps the other, they are a single package, bundled together as intimate, eternal partners. You can’t have one without the other.
To be present means mastering both, living life in pain and pleasure, seeing life as worth living, having a purpose, building self-value, self-esteem, overcoming one’s feelings of doubt and shame, having the ability to love and mean it, embracing self-knowledge as an essential to building a future and having the courage to keep fighting.
Being present makes us make the most out of all moments, small or big, it makes us less self-centred, it makes us learn to care and not be small minded. It makes us appreciate others and ourselves. It ultimately helps us cope with the bad times rather than run or reminisce in the good old days.
“The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, not to worry about the future, nor to anticipate troubles, but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.”