Today I realized that my memories are old and stale

View on Vancouver on October 1, 2005
Image via Wikipedia

Today we were driving through some of my old neighbourhoods I used to frequent when I lived in Vancouver. At one point I had a small epiphany. My memories of the area are old. They really aren’t to be trusted.

I was reading a book on Buddhism a while ago as I’ve mentioned here before. One concept that struck me as odd was the part on always living in the now, and not really trusting our memories. They lie.

Today I really noticed that. I saw buildings that had aged over the 16-17 years since I’ve lived nearby. They looked different. Like they had aged like a human does, yet I recognized them like I would a person I haven’t seen in 20 years. Familiar yet different. The buildings had moved on since our last encounter, yet my brain had not. My brain was stuck in the past.

That was until the moment I saw them again. Now I have a new impression of them that is far more accurate. The closer I get to seeing the buildings now, the greater the possibility of seeing reality, and less likely that my memory will deceive me.

This all makes sense when it comes to buildings, but what else do we hang on to that is simply an in-accurate memory? A memory that we think is reality? I remember people and places that I’ve met and been to. How much of it really happened? Luckily for me, I think most of what I recall is a fairly accurate interpretation of events.But as I age, the more I need to realize that my recollection of events will become more and more skewed.

One of my challenges, if I choose to accept it, is to live more in the now, and less on the events of my past.

I think I have more reading to do…

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Photo of the day – Light as a feather

I was going to write about my thoughts on September 11th today, however I have nothing new to add to the commentary. The entire day has been filled with heroic and tearful stories.

So, instead I thought I would share with you a feather. Sometimes the world comes crashing down on you and the weight of the world is on your shoulders. I have felt like that as of late.

The majority of the problem for me is the heat of summer. This is a time of the year that my exercise goes to hell in a hand basket. I can’t ride in 30 degree heat, and I can’t wait for the changing colours of the leaves. Cooler weather usually brings with it perfect trail conditions, and for me a healthy body and mind.

I have to confess that when I don’t exercise, the stress of everyday life starts to build.

I read a Buddhism book recently and though I had a hard time with accepting some of the concepts, one of the things stuck with me…

All that stress. All that worry. All that emotion. It’s all in our heads. One of the things that I want to achieve mentally is to have my every day problems weigh on me like a feather.

Tonight, after a fun time at the beach, I tucked my boys to bed, and went on a run in the dark. It was still quite warm out, but at the end, I felt good. I decided to sit down and live in the moment and do some breathing exercises(some people call it meditation). Ten minutes past in no time. I felt rested, alive, and light as a feather.

I must remember this the next time I feel like I have too much weighing on my shoulders…

 

I’m just not smart enough for Buddhism

Main image of Śākyamuni Buddha within the Maha...
Image via Wikipedia

I finished reading the book, Buddhism, Plain & Simple today, and wanted to tell you what I thought about it.

When I was in university, I recall many an occasion where I would be sitting in the Pub during the day involved in conversation, and heated debates about reality, consciousness, and the big questions like eternity and mortality. There were eye-opening times for me as a young man and helped me understand the world better. It helped me question the concept of god, and embrace evolution.

This book reminded me of those times. Continue reading “I’m just not smart enough for Buddhism”

Buddhism – What I’ve learned so far

I mentioned yesterday that I picked up an interesting book my wife had in her stack of readings. It is called, Buddhism, Plain & Simple – by Steve Hagen.

I’m about half way through it, and wanted to bring up something I find to be a theme from many people I’ve talked to over my life. I have heard many times before to appreciate what I have. To not dwell on the past, but appreciate the NOW. To appreciate the things and people around you. To forgive yourself. Continue reading “Buddhism – What I’ve learned so far”

Photo of the day Aug 13, 2011- Reading a book?


Today, a friend of mine posted a comment of Google+ that she was reading a book about vaccinations. I can’t explain the reason why, but whenever someone tells me they are reading a book, I get jealous. Perhaps it is because I ‘think’ I don’t have the time to sit and read. Truthfully, I don’t make the time. I probably read 2 or 3 books a year.

Books take dedication. Time. Concentration. Patience. They also provide a sense of calm, use of imagination, and the opposite experience we get with computers, the internet, and technology, which is always looking for the quick solution, and answer.

Later in the day, my wife and I were looking for a baby names book stashed in a bunch of boxes in the corner of the living room. I came across the book above. It is my wife’s, but I never knew she owned it.

As many of you know, I’m an agnostic atheist. In other words, I am absolutely certain there is no god from what I understand of the world, but can accept that I may be wrong. I live my life as an atheist, and don’t have any need to try and find any other explanation of the creation of human life. I believe I know, and have piece of mind in this belief.

One thing that I have had an interest is called ‘atheistic buddhism’. From my brief look at the topic, buddhism at it’s core is not about what happens before or after life, but deals with living in the now. It has nothing to do with gods, praying, or worship. It deals with, well, I guess I’m going to find out what it is really about…

This really interests me, so tonight I’m going to start reading “Buddhism. Plain & Simple” – The Practice of being aware, right now, every day. – by Steve Hagen

If I become enlightened, I’ll blog all about it… 😉