Question: Is it possible to think and be present?
Leonard’s Answer: It is important to know that there are levels of Presence. It is as if Presence exists on a vertical scale or axis. As you deepen into Presence, you cross a point on the vertical axis where time disappears. Now you are in the Eternal realm. There is no time. Life does not exist outside of the moment, and you do not exist outside of the moment. You are completely absorbed into the Oneness. You are completely absorbed into the moment of Now. All sense of separation has dissolved. It is a highly exalted state.
At this level of Presence, thinking is impossible. At this level, there is no one here as an individualized Being to think. Any thought would take you out of the moment. Of course, revelations can arise out of the silence, but this is radically different from thinking. A sense of knowing arises out of the silence, but this is radically different from understanding that occurs within the mind. To experience this level, even for a few moments will transform every aspect of your life, including your sense of yourself.
But you don’t have to be at this deep level of timeless Presence all the time. As you ascend on the vertical axis of Presence, time becomes once again available. You can use your mind to think, and you can participate in the world of time, but you no longer get lost there. It is more than enough if you are fundamentally present. This means that you are more grounded in Presence than you are lost in the mind. Now you can think, without becoming reabsorbed into the mind. You think consciously, and when you are done thinking, you naturally return to Presence. You are no longer a victim of those endless thoughts that keep dragging you to somewhere in your past or somewhere in your future.
Of course, as a present and conscious being, you are free to think, remember, imagine and enjoy the world of time in any way that you like. The beautiful thing, however, is that you can move up and down the scale of Presence at will. One moment you might be choosing to consciously think. The next moment, you are at the deepest levels of eternal Presence and silence. You are no longer imprisoned within the mind. You can move freely between the world of the mind and the eternal world of Now. Your memories, beliefs, ideas and opinions still exist within the mind, but you are no longer identified with any of it. You know that only this moment is the truth, and you are relaxed in that simple truth.
You can also speak from Presence. When you speak from Presence, there is no agenda that originates from within the mind. You are not speaking from within the mind. You are speaking and expressing from the source, which is at the center of your Being. You are present as you speak. You can also create music or art from Presence. Even Einstein’s most brilliant inspirations arose from the source and not from his mind. In these creative and inspired moments, the mind is simply a clear instrument of expression.
Submit questions to author and teacher Leonard Jacobson for guidance on the path of presence by email to email@example.com, or mail your questions to: The Edge, Ask Leonard, P.O. Box 25543, Woodbury, MN 55125. Include your name and mailing address. If your letter is selected for publication, you will receive a copy of the author’s latest book, Journey to Now.