Living the continuous moment

We live most of our lives biographically, inhabiting stories or narratives on short, medium, and long-term timeframes. But our consciousness exists in a continuous moment.

In the continuous moment we can simply be, feel, and let our subconscious processes work themselves out through us.

And yet instead we mostly subscribe to stories about ourselves, others, and life in general. Within these stories we tax our bodies and minds for the sake of narrative conflicts and goals.

It is possible to stop telling stories and instead anchor ourselves in the continuous moment. But there’s a catch: even if we stop telling stories right now, our body and mind needs time and space to unwind from all the tension and contortions forced upon them.

In most of our stories we have feelings as incentive. The carrot and stick of positive and negative emotion. But if we continue trying to avoid negative emotion instead of letting it run its course, we cannot escape from story-land.

If “negative” emotion is something we have to avoid, then we cannot sit still in the continuous moment so long as negative emotion is present. Negative emotion becomes a cause of conflict and the conflict draws us into another story.

To live in the continuous moment we must stop telling stories, and become willing and (with practice) able to undergo all our emotions without closing down or running away. As we practice feeling our feelings we increase our emotional bandwidth and thereby allow our mind and body to return to their original nature.

Life has caused us to take a warp, and reverting to our original form can be uncomfortable. Learn to be okay with discomfort, and enjoy the profound relief of letting all that stress, conflict and tension depart our minds and bodies.

Why do we do things we don’t want to do? Stories and fear of uncomfortable feelings. Why do we endure things we don’t want to endure? Stories and fear of uncomfortable feelings. Stop telling the stories, get comfortable with the uncomfortable feelings, and with time we can live truly authentic lives that fully align with our own values and desires.

2 thoughts on “Living the continuous moment

  1. “To live in the continuous moment we must stop telling stories,”

    Neuroscience suggests that cognition ‘fills in the gaps’ at a fundamental level. The continuous moment is itself a story because you have made up a story of the space around you, what happened when you blinked, etc. You can’t stop telling stories, and it’s debatable whether you should try.

    Instead, maybe know what stories you tell. And be open to telling better ones.

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