A Peace of the Present!

Date posted: October 21, 2013


Published in Identity Magazine – October 2013

A Peace of the Present!

If you are depressed, you are living in the past;

If you are anxious, you are living in the future;

If you are at peace, you are living in the present!

Lao Tzu

The series of revolutions, frequent ousting of presidents, and a lot of bloodshed in between have led me to voluntarily put on a pair of horse blinders that totally block the distracting events that aim at ruining the peace of my present moment. I do not want to look at the ugliness behind and around me and I do not want politics to rob me of my present.

Looking back at the emotional roller coaster that has taken most Egyptians for a nauseous 3 year ride, reminiscing on the ship-wrecked hopes and aspirations for a better country for us and for our kids, and thinking of the loss that we have all experienced on one level or the other with the death of all those young ones – the ones who were killed in clashes or the ones whose lives were taken in blind revenge! Looking back at all this heartache is just depressing!

Thinking of the future has acquired a Halloween-ish feel to it; thinking of the future involves thinking of dead bodies, ghosts, haunted houses, witches, evil spells, and a predominant sense of fear and anxiety. Which door to open and which door to close; who to vote for and who to vote against; what to embrace and what to reject; who to believe and what to discredit; what does the future hide behind this monstrous mist?

If you feel the same way … if you are tired of being depressed and anxious … listen to Lao Tzu and live in peace … live the present.

There are a few things that could ruin what could have been a beautiful moment … here are a few things to avoid:

1)   Twitter – eliminate twitter or limit your timeline to quotes, movie stars, and unpoliticized individuals; I personally follow a bunch of American and Australian mothers who only blog and tweet about their kids and how to have more fun with them every day.

2)   Facebook – avoid Facebook unless you are posting funny pictures and inspirational quotes! I personally only use Facebook to share great adventures with Adam (my edible baby)

3)   TV – National Geographic is really cool!

4)   News alerts – please unsubscribe from all news alerts! If something terrible happens, you will find out! Trust me! You will find out!

5)   Political disputes – why do people waste their energy on such aimless discussions! Talk about work, love, and travels … and kids!

There are a few other things that I have done to make the present more beautiful!

Adam … my God-sent Adam! Bless his lovely little hands! Everything about a baby is heartwarming … he has opened my eyes to an undiscovered treasure of a well-kept secret called "now"! Adam does not care about tomorrow yet! He does not care about yesterday either! He is only interested in what we are doing right now! If I mention the farm, he wants to go now! If I mention my father, he wants to call him right now, and if he sees a picture of my aunt, he wants her to come over this very moment!

It has become my job to make his every waking minute pleasurable and by doing so, I have succeeded in finding peace! Every moment is an experience in itself! This is the lesson that baby Adam has taught me! Eating is an experience, cooking is an experience, shopping is an experience, mall-hopping is an experience, bathing is an experience, taking a walk is an experience, every game is an experience, taking the car out is an experience, etc. We are not automated automatons; why do we act like ones? We do we operate in check-list mode? Children have so much wisdom to teach us – adults!

No matter where we are going, who we are with, or what we were originally doing, time stops when Adam stops to watch an ant running in and out of the cracks; time stops when Adam decides that he wants to go up and down the stairs; time stops when Adam wants me to give him a hug; time comes to a complete stand still when Adam glues his baby lips to my cheek and gives me a long slobbery kiss followed by a squeak!

Children stop and listen! They stop and watch! They stop to feel and touch! They take their time to taste and savor! They stop and inhale the different aromas of life … and what do we do? Ignorantly and arrogantly, we urge them to hurry up! We want to rush them through the present into the future and at times we want to ground them in a past moment instead of letting them grow into their own present. This is the answer to your question my dear reader! If you want to find peace … live in the present! Learn from an infant following a sunbeam with his eyes before his hands could reach out and touch the particles of colored dust in the ceiling! Learn from a toddler who is totally absorbed in an experiment of his own creation! Learn from a child who is integrating into nature!

As adults, our only escape from the misery of our current time is to regain the wisdom we once had when we were children; we were wise enough to let go of yesterday's pains and we had no interest in the day after today! Let's regress back into childhood! Let's embrace nature with the passion that we once had as blossoming youngsters! Let's laugh, run, joke, and have fun with our loved ones – not for the fear of losing them but because we truly want to enjoy our time! We need a paradigm shift from inhibition to liberation; from constant worrying about one thing or another to cherishing the precious moments and creating happy memories; from zooming into the sad events taking place in Egypt these days to faith, gratitude, and optimism! Let's grab a peace of our present:)

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