Pancha: Being in the Moment

One of my personal vices is craving, yearning for what might be, what I can imagine could be, or even what I know I enjoy. During the cleanse, I came to truly understand the Thich Naht Hanh (in Roberts and Amidon, 1996)[1] poem which lies as a reminder on my kitchen table:

Our true home is in the present moment.

To live in the present moment is a miracle.

The miracle is not to walk on water.

The miracle is to walk on the green Earth in the present moment,

to appreciate the peace and beauty that are available now.

Peace is all around us—

in the world and in nature—

and within us—

in our bodies and our spirits.

Once we learn to touch this peace,

we will be healed and transformed.

It is not a matter of faith;

it is a matter of practice. (p. 367)


During the cleanse when I had difficulty maintaining balance during yoga or had achy teeth, I came to see that these experiences were a part of the cleanse and were sufficient in themselves. I had found perfection in being right where I was, with whatever emerged. There was no sense in rushing ahead to worrying about taking
increasing quantities of ghee the next morning, for, in that very moment, I was walking my dog on a lovely fall morning around Sloan’s Lake. During the cleanse, I came to be able to better observe when my mind wandered to craving and anxiety and to gently invite myself to celebrate the miracle in that moment, of being present with exactly where I was. I continue to be blown away by the majesty of the moment when I am able to be truly present within it.

[1] Hanh, T. N. in Roberts, E., & Amidon, E., Eds. (1996). Life prayers from around the world: 365 prayers, blessings, and affirmations to celebrate the human journey. NY: HarperSanFranscisco.