Why do we focus on the future and the past instead of the present? It seems like we have a love affair with what was and what will (or might) be. We obsess about it. We regret the past, worry about or anticipate the future, and ignore the present. Why? What’s so bad about the present? It is only when we are totally immersed in the present that we can truly enjoy being. An engrossing hobby, a beautiful landscape, delicious food, a funny joke, a great song, and lying on soft sheets are all wonderful because we are completely involved in them, not thinking about anything. Why would we give this up? Why would we turn away from the bliss of the moment?
We – our true selves – do not turn away from the moment. The ego does. The ego is not a being but a thought process. A thought process can deal only with thoughts. The past and future are thoughts. The present moment isn’t a thought, it is an experience. There is no thought in experience. Only the true self can truly experience. The ego can only think about experiences. It thinks about how past experiences affected it, how future experiences will affect it, and how the present experience is affecting it. But it cannot immerse itself in experience because the act of experiencing anything is not a thought process. As long as we live via the thought process of ego, we will continue to think and thereby fail to fully experience.