We live a lot of the time in the future

A nice reminder here from Joseph Goldstein as to how the mind continually falls  into the trap of raising expectations about future events, even though it sees that not all events in the past lived up to their hype. Wisdom lies in a balanced understanding of the true nature of things. Practice consists of staying in the now and letting things unfold without an agenda, staying open to how they actually are when they arrive in the present.

When we look back at our experience, we can see so clearly its ephemeral, dreamlike nature. Yet when we look ahead, when we look to the future, somehow (and this is the great enchantment) we get dazzled by all the possibilities that are there waiting for us as if the next event in our lives, the next situation, the next project, the next relationship, the next meal, even on meditation the next breath … we live our lives in anticipation of the next hit of experience as if the one that’s coming will finally do it for us. What’s so strange is that nothing up ’til now has brought that sense of real completion or fulfillment. So why are we so seduced into thinking that the next one will? This is a very strange phenomena.

Joseph Goldstein

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