51 years and 6 months
April 21, 2011
51 years and 6 months, that’s what it took to finally get rid of my past. I know, I know this sounds pretty cryptic, I mean isn’t this a Paleo blog? Paleo was just a stepping stone to get where I am today.
Eating Paleo meant taking charge of my life. Who am I going to trust about my health? Well, until recently my past would dictate whatever beliefs I had about nutrition. These were acquired from my family, passed down to me, as well as the many unspoken social truths, like about calories and cholesterol. What is real and what is not? In the end it comes down to a simple question of personal responsability.
In my last post I made the point that going Paleo implied considering evolution and our origins as a species. One had to consider the apparition of life itself, of our sun, planet and the whole universe. We are the children of reality itself, an integral part of it’s whole history. Once the cover is lifted you end up with a real Pandora’s box of treasures. This is what this post is about. The last one was about Nitty Gritty Existentialism, this one is plain old meta-physical.
What I am going to say, what I am going to write about is more than an idea or a concept. These are words I actually live by, every day, every moment, because that’s the point, there is actually just … the moment.
There is no past
That’s it, it’s out! Headline news, the past doesn’t exist! When it’s gone, baby, it’s gone for good! I could tell you there is no future (there is….none) but I’ll wait. Let me rephrase this before you tune me out. Our general conscencus (meaning all agreeing at the same time) at one time was that there was such a thing as the past, and we’ve been repeating the same thing over and over, a bit like the calories- in calories-out mantra, or the cholesterol theory. Repeat it long enough and it becomes a truth. So give me a chance to prove you wrong.
Focus for a moment on a memory, of someone you loved a long time ago, let’s say 20 years ago. You know, one that you look with nostalgie and regret at the same time, selecting only the good times and forgeting the rest. Ok, got it? You do feel it, right? Now think of something that happened 10 years ago, another feeling, another place in time. Now 5 years ago, now 2 years ago. Can you see that they are all the same, they all have the same ethereal quality of not being the present, they are not in the here and now, they have no interaction or presence in the here and now. Where are they then, what are they? Use your own words. I think we can all agree on this.
Now follow me one step further, we went from 20 years to 10, 5, 2 years, now go last year, last week, yesterday, this morning. There is no difference (that’s gotta grab you somewhere!). Whatever you did an hour ago has as much substance and reality as what you did 20 years ago, or 40 years ago for that matter. It doesn’t exist, it’s gone, nada, vanished, extinguished. It is all ethereal and has no hold in the present moment.
What does it mean?
It means so many things. One thing it means is that you can change your life in an instant because the past has no hold whatsoever on the present. Each instant you create your life, the past is totally irrelevant. Now the thing is that everyone around you is going to hold you accountable to your past because that’s what they do to themselves, it’s their belief system. You are a pionner when you leave your past behind.
So not only can you change your life in an instant, it also means that your past in no way defines who you are in the present. The past is totally irrelevant. Whatever you lived through, whatever you’ve experienced or survived is totally irrelevant. This is a hard one to swallow and to give up, because we have been taught to define ourselves by what we’ve lived through. No wonder so many people die only a few years after retirement, they have lost their sense of self, they were ‘past defined’ and not living in the present in the here and now.
One last thing, because I don’t want this post to be too long, is that it also means that the past doesn’t define the future! There is no connection whatsoever between the past and the future. The past doesn’t exist, and so neither does the future. You are free to do and be whatever you want. Doesn’t mean you are going to achieve it, no way!!!! Again I repeat it: You are free to do and be whatever you want. Doesn’t mean you are going to achieve it, no way!!!! Achieving it or not as nothing to do with the past, there is no past.
As John Lennon said “Life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans” Yep, while you are focusing on an illusionnary past or future, life trickles away. You are missing the point. there is only one life, only one, yours. There is no past. Sorry. And there is no future. Sorry. So how do you live without a past and a future? You live fully, and that’s for another post…. (à suivre)