Each Precious Moment
How many times have you felt something deep in your heart that you really wanted to tell another and, yet, you might have told twenty or thirty other people, but never that one? Though many excuses could justify the avoidance, there is only one true reason: Fear of intimacy.
What do you suppose might happen if you quieted the mind and the emotional body and delivered the compliment to the one who most deserves to hear it? You might (both) start to cry and hug each other. Maybe your friend will say that he loves you, leaving you with a new predicament—having to receive pure, unconditional love from another. All sorts of fears arise from this thought: “What will I say? What will I do? Will I now be obligated? What will come next, now that we have crossed the forbidden bridge?” These fears can drive you to great lengths to avoid being intimate with the ones with whom you really need and long to be.
The best place to begin this conversation is with your parents. How many of you have a parent who passed on before you had a chance to say something to him/her that you really wanted to say? How many of you still have moments when you feel a lump in your throat, a knot in your chest, or tears in your eyes over it? How many of you wished, at the very least, “God, if I had her back for even one minute, I would run to her, throw myself at her feet, and tell her how much I love her and how grateful I am to have her as my mother.” But instead of telling her, you told everyone else or no one at all. And for those whose parents are still embodied, why wait? Tell them now and every chance you get.
Time is the most precious commodity on the planet. No moment lives beyond the confines of itself. And no moment can ever be lived twice. Knowing this, would you be willing to make a promise to yourself? Will you live each moment of your life as though it were your last? Because it is. Tomorrow is promised to no one. Although many are quick to make this promise, few keep it because, soon after each Epiphany or spiritual renewal, they allow themselves to get sucked back in by the groaning machine of life’s daily routines.
The first, and most powerful, place to apply this promise is in your relationships with others. What if you treated every encounter with every human being—friend, foe, lover, brother, boss, stranger—as the very last time you will ever have together. How would your behavior differ in those encounters if you truly knew you would never see them again? How would it differ if you knew it was your last day on the planet?
Any human being who could be fully present to that truth would cry a river of tears in most all of those moments. You would also laugh, hug, hold, compliment, and share your love profusely. The reason this scenario rarely plays out is because being present to that level of truth is excruciating. Why? It brings up the all-pervasive, all-encompassing, human fear of death, of that person and (more importantly) of your own. Human life is predicated upon the fear of death, from the very first moment of living, because of the conscious and unconscious belief in mortality.
Fear of intimacy leaches into many different corners of one’s life. What about couples who have been married twenty or thirty years? None would argue that certain things do become rote after all those years. “Honey comes home from work each night at six o’clock. Dinner is at six-thirty. We dine out on Saturday. Our children come to visit every Thanksgiving.” Life finds that it has settled into a groove. Things are taken for granted. You make gross assumptions that are totally illusory. “It just happens” is the excuse most commonly used and accepted. In truth, nothing just “happens.” Everything you do, and everything that happens to you, occurs solely by way of your own conscious, or unconscious, free-willed choice.
Have you ever been driving home and heard sirens as you neared your house and felt your heart start pounding with, “Oh, my God, please don’t let it be my house!” What if you drove home one day only to find your house charred to the ground? You were expecting to have dinner with your wife and children, and you find out from the fireman that they are all dead. After wailing and mourning for weeks or months or years, where is the first place your mind will take you? To the last time you saw them. “What did I say? What space was I in? Did I say ‘I love you?’”
These “wake up” calls obviously come to those who directly experienced them, but they also happen for the benefit of all those who, in any way, witnessed or gained awareness of the incidents. Ironically, it is most always those who say “Yes, I know that” who insist on learning the lesson and receiving the gift only after tragedy has struck their own lives, rather than doing so, vicariously, through the experiences of others.
Does that mean to live in fear? No, it means the opposite. Live in passion. Claim every moment. Seize each moment and promise yourself you will never avoid an opportunity to tell someone you love him or her and that you care. That is “living in the moment,” living in mastery. Unfortunately, so many minds become consumed by such putrefied thoughts as, “When am I going to ascend? When am I going to do my life’s work? What level initiate am I? I am in the twelfth overtone of the third octave twice removed on Sundays.” What does that mean? Can anyone tell me? Does it matter? Does any of it matter?
What matters is how much you are loving the person who is sitting next to you right now. That is what matters. Do you take a genuine, human interest in the lives of those who are serving you, or do “Thank You’s” carelessly roll off your tongue like grains of salt falling out of a shaker? Always take the time to look deep into the eyes of one who has just served you, to sincerely express your gratitude and love. Why not ask if your server is comfortable? Ask if there is anything you can get for him. Have fun with it. Surprise people. Do something for someone who does not expect it. That is where and when the magic of life really starts to happen.
Life is not about knowing everything or having all the right things to say. It is about filling each moment with passion, adventure, love, and joy. Look in your heart. The heart knows everything about everything all the time. “Christedness” means choosing that which serves the highest good for the greatest number of people in any given moment. Combine this principle with “living each moment as your last” and you will experience the heights of intimacy and ecstasy in communion with all those you meet, all the days of your life.
- Louix Dor Dempriey