Definition – A study of “Now”

It would be a presumptuous yet fair statement, to say that we all have a preconceived notion of what we want from our time in this life that we perceive as ours. An idea of what it would take for us to reach the plenum of existence, and consider ourselves “fulfilled”.

And yet, if you were to stop for a moment; put a pause of your life as best you could, and write a list of exactly what it is that you want from your time on this Earth, and make a conviction and a promise not to change that, you would run into two distinct problems.

One: while it is perfectly easy to suggest you pause your life, you obviously and unfortunately cannot. If you were to take your time and write this list, with the intention of completing it in totality and never changing it, you would encounter a problem based on an assumption you would have had to have made, in order to even begin writing the list. The assumption would have been that you, unlike everything else in the universe; are static. An assumption that while your body grows old and tires, YOU are always YOU.

When in reality, YOU are changing all the time. You are not some steadfast rock grounded into foundation which a river works around, rather you are part of its water. It just becomes difficult to define the water part, in the same way you can point to the whole river and say “water”, or pick out a single molecule and say “this too is water”.

It’s a result of a struggle to separate the “I” of the mind and the “I” of the body. Assuming they are not one thing, because one part thinks, and the other part is physical matter. We forget the physical matter provides the means by which the conscious thinks, and can therefore perceive the physical part.

The two are cyclical; perfectly chicken and egg. And the two are changing at every second of the day as you flow from one moment to the next. A great example of how ever fluctuating both your mind and body are; is you may have a memory of a time you were brave, and so you could define yourself as courageous – that you put your body in harms way to save another in some form. And yet, you will probably also remember a time when you were cowardly. When you stood and watched a bully, rather than intervene, for fear of reprocusion. So are you brave, or are you cowardly?

Or were you simply brave in one moment, and cowardly in another?

But while you think of that; you will come to:

The second of the two problems: you can write down the words, “I want to be happy” or “I want to have wealth”; but you must remember that these are just words, not the feeling as they are themselves.

That is to say, that to physically say the words, “I am happy.” is not the same as being happy itself. Being happy is an indescribable feeling, because once you are in a moment of happiness, you’re not thinking about how happy you are; you just are. Like all else, it’s like a flow. You lose track of time, and you simply are the experience you are living, and it’s one which through one way or another evokes happiness. If you are to stop and think “why am I happy?” or “how happy am I?” you have begun to detract from the experience, and may actually think “how could I be more happy?” which decreases the intensity of the experience further so that actually you can’t describe your feeling of happiness just now, because you’ve lost yourself trying to define it, and by comparing it to future or further happiness it’s now not as happy as you imagine you could be.

So you’re defining nothing.

In the same way you could say you “want wealth” and in one moment mean “money” and in the next mean “purpose.”

In summary; what this effectively means, is a “You” which is no longer “You”, is defining an experience of say, “Happiness” which you cannot define, because the “Happiness” you are trying to define has passed to the variation of “You” than you were, and the “You” that you are now because you spent the time to define it.

Classification and definition are traits of the intelligent entity; perhaps experience is the trait of the wise entity.

To live the moment; is better than to define it, for in defining it, you surrender it.

And while you could define a moment, retroactively, this is defining a memory of a moment, and not the moment itself. So it is subject to infinite complications and inaccuracies.

Definition enables comparison. Rather than experiencing temperature, you are now experiencing hot or cold, or hotter or colder. This applies to happiness and sadness.

Rather, live in the moment as it is. Do not fear it or long for changing of circumstances, simply bask in what is. And while you can choose to define, at least understand what you are doing to the moment by categorising it. Take the moment as it comes, as it is in its purest form. Do not long for more or less of it, or a greater or lesser intensity of it. Simply; be.

Regardless of what you do; I hope the moment you find yourself in now, is a happy one. Just try not to think about it.


Shorts: You Don’t Have To Be Diamond, Everyday

Diamonds are the hardest substance on Earth. They’re considered the magnum opus of mineral. Their integrity is strong, and their beauty is astonishing. A sight to behold, and a desire to be. But this; you know.

For a lot of us, we use this as an example, as a standard in which to conduct ourselves. In fact those who strive to be good, to do their best have probably at one point of another considered, or assigned themselves the mantra:

“Diamonds are formed under pressure.”

Which makes sense. The strong are only formed through adversity. Arguably anything is only shaped through adversity. If you already fit the mould, you probably aren’t going to change. We keep life long friends who have helped us through tough times, whereas friends we see only in celebration, come and go as fleeting as those times of jest.

However, there is something easily overlooked, or perhaps misunderstood with our comparison to the gem in question. Diamonds may be formed under pressure… but being the hardest substance on Earth, does not make it indestructible.

Jewellers still shape diamonds into pretty cuts. A sharp knock in the right weak spot, and they will break, and shatter into tiny little shards of un-salvageable. Expensive dust, on the floor.

And while fragmented diamond can be replaced; you cannot. Snowflakes will repeat their patterns, long before a you that is not you will be found.

So take care of yourself.

You should strive to be good. Aspire to be great. But remember to take sixty minutes. Everyday that is. At least. Have a bath, or a cup of tea. Listen to music, read a book, or watch a “nothing” TV show. Let nothing distract you. Do not feel guilt, do not think of what needs to be done. Think only of you, for sixty minutes.

And if that which you are striving for, is ultimately unattainable. Forgive yourself. Allow yourself a mistake or two. Allow yourself a mistake or two, regularly.

Not everything you do, has to succeed. Not everything you do has to be flawless. Not everything you do has to be great. Not every word must be well placed, not every syllable well said, and not every emotion entirely due.

Not everything you do has to be completed, and finished, and perfect.

There is no rule; there is no contract you’ve signed your name on to to say you can’t just stop whatever you’re doing, right in the mid-

Shorts: The Little Things

It’s the small details, that are by far the most important.

I sit in work, the room is dark for the light hurts the eyes of some other co-workers. I enjoy listening to them jokingly bicker and banter with one another, but now they leave to grab some lunch. The sounds of their voices drift into the background and beyond the door.

And so I sit, with my favourite meal for lunch. On my lap I have Of Mice And Men by John Steinbeck, and with no one but myself left in the office, I play some soft music from my Spotify.

I know this will only last for a few moments. If I’m lucky I’ll have fifteen minutes.

But what a fifteen minutes it will be. When I look back on the day, no matter what happens, I will look upon the small details, which are by far the most important. And when I look upon them and judge, I will say with a gentle sigh,

“Today has been a good day.”