On the Path to Enlightenment: Living in the Moment

One of the things I learned last weekend from my extensive study of Buddhism and other forms of Eastern spirituality is that there is a real tendency in our Western outlook on life to constantly be living in the past and in the future, rather than “in the moment.” Personally, I think it is difficult to live in the moment, because the neighbourhood is not what it once was, and the rents have gone sky high. In my never-ending quest for true spiritual enlightenment, however, I have resolved to transcend the anti-spiritual bias of our Western rationalist-scientific hegemony, even if it means going so far as to look up the actual definition of “hegemony.”

The first thing I intend to do in order to address the problem of not living in the moment, is to eliminate the temptation of living in the future. I will do this via a technique I like to call “aversion therapy.” How it works is, I will systematically plan a variety of unpleasant, even obnoxious events for myself throughout the day. First thing in the morning, for instance, I will drop a ball-peen hammer on my right toe. This will be followed by an hour-long meeting with a life insurance salesman, to be followed in turn by stuffing uncomfortably warm semolina pudding down my shorts, etc. Basically, my life will be a never-ending series of minor traumas and calamities, stretching far forward into the foreseeable future. This, of course, will eliminate the possibility that I will be tempted to live in the future.

To eliminate the temptation of living in the past, I will undergo extensive psychotherapy in order to erase every trace of a positive memory from my mind. I will work with hypnotherapists, Jungian psychologists, psychiatrists, dental hygienists, and each and every professional that I feel has the capacity to help me. Slowly but surely, all remembrances of my past will be reduced to the most mundane, tedious, painful and downright humiliating moments of my life. Gone will be the memory of my first kiss, my hot-dog eating championship in grade six, the glorious memory of the time last winter that my doofus neighbour Cedric Idris Idris Jones slid off his roof while installing Christmas lights. Instead, I will recall only the times that I spent my summer vacation helping to trim Uncle Rufus’s nostril hair.

If everything goes as I suspect it will, by this time next year, I’ll be livin’ in the moment, baby! I can hardly wait.