Living in the Now - Laugh Now, Cry Later

Excerpt from Chapter 5 - Spiritual Traps & Treadmills

Without a long-term plan, one usually attempts to live in the moment. This sounds good, and many New Age teachers recommend it. A major problem arises, however, when confronted by the choice either to temporarily feel good in the moment or to feel/heal/face the inner pain/hurt from our pasts.

Living in the Now Trap. Many New Age teachers are rather vehement in stating that an examination of your painful past is both unnecessary and perhaps likely to cause you to be stuck in that past. When I read such words, images of millions of folks acting like babies with real pacifiers in their mouths come to my mind. However, that does not happen, even with those psychotherapies that focus primarily upon childhood issues. What I do see happening repeatedly with New Age people is that favorite spiritual systems and ideas become major, hidden, addictive pacifiers because they feel good and help us avoid our pasts. I have yet to see or hear any New Age (or religious) teacher talk about the possible addictive qualities of their teachings. Do they ever examine their "spiritual" pacifiers (such as meditation, prayer, rituals, groups and beliefs) for possible abuse?

Yes, I do believe that most of the time you and I need to be in the moment, living in the now. But a few hours a week examining and looking at the past will not harm anything. In fact, I believe such self-examination is essential if we are to face and let go our raw primal fear. I do not recommend covering over such fears with New Age pacifiers.

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© 2008 by Thayer White
Finding Your Soul in the Spirituality Maze
Table of Contents for this Online Spiritual Book


This Chapter
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Excerpt from Be Your Own Therapist: "Because our emotional happiness is so interconnected with bodily health, ease and comfort, few of us will experience emotional happiness and contentment if we neglect our bodies."