As anyone who’s done a bit of meditating knows, getting a glimpse of stillness and serenity isn’t that difficult. It’s knowing what to do with it, connecting with it and applying it to your life that’s a challenge. You’ve got to learn to surf the equanimic ether of flux that is “now.” Given that, the idea of becoming a sort of nowness expert is almost an oxymoron. How do you master something that is, by it’s very definition, in a constant state of change?
Let’s stick with the surfing analogy. Even the world’s best surfers don’t control the ocean. They merely cope with its flow. They manage to adjust and adapt to it just quickly enough to stay on the board. This is exactly what the mindfulness practitioner does when the flow of “now” presents a personal challenge. It could be anything. Maybe it’s something minor like being cutoff in traffic. Maybe it’s an incredibly serious issue that will impact the rest of your life. Either way, when the waters of “now” become aggressive, how will you stay on the board, or in this case, hold on to a bit of perspective and equanimity beyond the grasp of your ego? Doing so requires the maturation of mental mantra muscle that you have to nurture over time. It’s a faculty that acts as a psychic anchor to the present. Yes, when things get rough the ego will yank and even break the tether from time to time, but as long as you’re conscious you can start again.
You know people who’ve developed this when you meet them. It’s palpable. They maintain a sort of hyper-presence that eludes most humans. My good friend Cory Allen is one of them.