In the summer of 2017, I reached my lowest point. I could not sleep, talk, or understand what people were saying; walking was difficult, and opening my eyes was too painful. I remember lying in bed and becoming aware of all my thoughts. I still had a busy mind, but I started to see its uselessness. There was nothing I could do with all of it. It was at that moment that I decided to give up on all my thoughts. I developed the ‘here now self method’ and completely surrendered to the present moment. I started using my senses, and my mind calmed down really fast. After 45 minutes in that state, I could open my eyes, and I even went for a little walk. I loved the calmness of that state of presence, and I committed to it for a full six months. I declined every thought and focused only on ‘here now, self’. I don’t recommend doing this for anyone, as I was too extreme with it.

I was still very weak and dependent on sleep medication, but things started improving rapidly. Within 6 months, I booked a trip to Thailand. I thought I had fully healed at that time. Unfortunately for younger Daniel, I was just starting to.

During this state, I wrote the following blog:

Falling in love with the present moment

When do you dance to a song? When is it playing, or when is it finished? What if life is supposed to be like music, and you should dance while it’s playing? If 1st grade merely serves as a preparation for 2nd grade, and school in general serves as a preparation for your career, where you must meet milestones to eventually support your old age, you will eventually realize that life was meant to be a dance. Life is not a to-do list that you can feel relieved from when it crosses off the list.

Some people say life flies away before their eyes. Of course, this is an illusion, as time doesn’t exist. What causes the illusion of time flying more rapidly as we grow older?

Thousands of years ago, the mixture of two ancient gods from the old Greeks and the old Egyptians, Hermes Trismegistus, said the following: “He who doesn’t take the time to admire the beautiful flower next to the road will be punished; he will find that the time will fly away. But he who still allows himself the beauty of existence will be rewarded with infinity.”

The mind creates the illusion of time. In the present moment, there are circular movements; if a timeline existed, it would be a time circle. A circle where everything is repeating. Life comes and slowly falls apart. Your current shape is now; in the future, death is waiting for the shape that you identify with. Becoming present in the present moment is the way to get rid of the illusion of time, thus becoming more aligned with our own being and allowing the void to come into our awareness. You will stop relying on stress hormones, and you may even look younger.

In the present, we experience every thought about the future and the past. There is neither a beginning nor an end to the present moment. You have never been in the past, and you have never been in the future. Nobody has ever been there. That is because it doesn’t exist. Even if you went back in time, you would still experience the past in the present moment.

The eternal now has several qualities: it is peaceful and full of acceptance; it is timeless, joyous, spacious, allowing, caring, and non-judgemental; it has the touch of oneness; it brings satisfaction, gratification, grace, and compassion; it makes you feel pleasurable and delightful; and everything feels softly. All together in a deep presence. These aspects, when combined, could be characterized as unconditional love. This is the kind of love that is the building block of what we call life. It is like there is always an ocean inside of you, influenced by waves and storms, and all of a sudden the water becomes completely flat, without a wrinkle.

I wonder why people don’t worship ‘the now’ massively. If you cannot allow yourself to be in this state, you are missing out. Of course, for the stressed mind, this moment can rarely exist, and if it does, it’s merely an obstacle to overcome.

Become present, and maybe all it takes is one moment to make you fall out of your stressful habits. Our habits were intended to keep us away from the stress in our bodies. After you have addressed most of it, you probably won’t change right away. Habits are too strong to allow that to happen. But sometimes you will have a short moment where everything that you normally see looks weird. Perhaps these moments are fleeting, but they gradually intensify, leading to a gradual descent into grace. It is not a special experience; it is so random that it’s easily overlooked and filled up with clouds of thoughts. Are you starting to see more colors?

Maybe I had to lose touch with it so that I would appreciate it even more once I was back to myself, whatever that may be. In the state of newness, your thoughts become more relaxed as you realize the pointlessness of theories, desires, concepts, and strategies for the future. This is because you already possess the outcome your mind envisions for the future. This way, you are going beyond your thoughts. Most thoughts we have are a way to escape from our body and its difficult feelings. A busy mind indicates the presence of a stressor that requires a release. After a release, your mind calms down naturally, and you will experience the qualities of the eternal now again.

In order to seek these beautiful qualities in this non-existent frame of time, our mind has to come up with fakes. A fraud to produce a feeling of happiness. Of course, they cannot even come close to the experience of ‘the now’. But one can say that people often talk about joy that they haven’t experienced. If a small glimpse of now shines through, the ego likes to claim the victory.

Some of the ego’s substitutions for now are possession, rituals, and accomplishments. When you want to own something you once enjoyed, it will be your prison. A ritual can give you a glimpse of the world beyond the mind, but by giving the ritual power, you will become enslaved by the ritual. You would want to become someone in the world in the form of accomplishments, but every accomplishment, ritual, or possession can only give you a short release of the mind’s cramped condition. If you don’t know the real experience of joy, life will become small and petty. The mind will come up with projects like marriage, getting children, getting a promotion, buying a new bathroom or kitchen, or escapism strategies like binge-watching, intellectual amusement, holidays, alcohol and drugs, and so on. Life will become shallow. It’s a trap, like being caught in a maze without exits. You will find yourself in a brand new bathroom without enjoyment. You will find yourself on a beach without the ability to enjoy it. Maybe you will start making pictures to capture a moment you were never in in the first place. And if you still haven’t found what you were looking for after your mid-life crisis, you might become numb. The only way to escape the maze is to get into the moment and find out what you really are—the opposite of ratio. Become present, and it will be like a two-dimensional body that was trying to escape the two-dimensional maze. It will become a three-dimensional body and step out of the maze without any effort.

If you emerge now, you will find yourself falling deeper and deeper into your own being. It’s a lovely process—what we were meant to do in a lifetime. Life doesn’t stop; it is merely the beginning. From that point on, you are really playing the game. When you emerge into the now, you will feel like you are in love. Nobody can tell, yet you know everything has changed. Do you still take time to admire birds, ducks, or trees? Or has your mind succeeded in keeping you away from yourself and the present moment? We will dive deeper into the mind’s strategy in the rest of the program.