TRUST THE POWER OF NOT NOW
SOME MORE BAD ADVICE FROM THE FRUMIOUS BANDERSNATCH
We all actually live in a state of Now. But there is also the past and the future as well.
We all have a past, and most of us have a future unless lightning is about to strike you.
While it is obvious that if one lives in the moment of Now and doesn't think about the past and the future, the Now moment is usually pretty good.
The true happiness of Now is to simply enjoy whatever is going on at the moment, no matter how trivial. Like watching ants. You don't need to spend a lot of money to enjoy Nowness. You just have to be focused into Now and not think about anything else.
There is a lot of self-help therapy advice around about how to get rid of your anxieties, fears, anger, shadows, demons, and so forth so you can be happy. The problem is, if you succeed, you won't be able to relate to anyone else. And if everyone managed to do this, the economy would evaporate. We will explain that link later.
So, since the alleged majority of the country is Republican, and shopping is the way to resolve the challenges of life such as terrorists attacks on the World Trade Center, one simply cannot indulge in "now".
We have been analyzed extensively, and spent a fortune in self-help books, to conclude that the really valuable contribution that can be made to our economic prosperity is to avoid living in "now" and concentrate on living Not Now.
How to live Not Now?
LIVING IN THE PAST: The most effective way to avoid the bliss of Now is to dredge up every bad past experience from your memory.
While everyone has a treasure trove of bad past memories, there is a special category of these bad pasts that you must seek. These are the memories of events or experiences that produce an emotional response Now. This is also called Post Traumatic Stress,
If a past memory can raise your blood pressure, cause you to crawl under a table, or break out in tears, you have succeeded in obliterating any ability to accept the goodness of Now.
A good practice for developing the ability of going to the Not Now state is to be in a situation which is obviously a pretty good Now--like just starting to make love. That's when you summon up the memory of being beaten nearly half to death by your stepfather.
Another path using pastness to get to the Not Now state is to dig up a really comprehensive memory that takes you back to relive that event. Like remembering a really good baseball game. The fact that you are remembering a good time is irrelevant to destroying the good time of Now. You will lose touch with Now while you are off into your head remembering the bottom of the 9th inning with the bases loaded and two outs and Willy swung at an inside curve.
ANTICIPATING THE FUTURE:
The other major track to avoiding a happy Now state is to start ruminating on the future. It really doesn't matter whether the thought is about a happy future or the end of the world--the point is your mind is forward somewhere that hasn't happened, and is tuned out from whatever is going on around you Now.
There are two very effective paths to achieving Not Now by thinking forward--the happy future for those who are optimistic, and the end of the world scenario for the pessimists among us.
Pessimists really don't have to work on this very hard, because they are already always expecting the worst to happen.
It is harder for an optimist. But the trick is to go really overboard. You really are going to win the Power Ball and get $40 million and now plan how you would spend that money. Try this out in the middle of a really great dinner.
PAY ATTENTION TO THINGS THAT MAKE YOU FEEL BAD:
Advertising is basically designed to make you feel bad about yourself so you will feel obligated to run out and buy a different kind of makeup, or a new car, or whatever that will make you feel better.
Therefore you must really focus on advertising so you will be constantly thinking about your hemorrhoids, flaky skin, toe nail fungus, cellulite, nose hair, risk of heart disease, incontinence, flatulence, security of your investments, whether your laundry is really white, food additives that can cause cancer, nasal drip, risk of death from cars without side-impact air bags, acid reflux disease, yellow teeth, hearing loss, erectile dysfunction, vaginal itch, crotch rot, athlete's foot, hdtv, ticks on your dog, dust in the air of your home, mosquito born viruses, and gray hair.
When the sun is shining and the birds are singing and the air is mild and you are sitting on your porch, start thinking about what's wrong with you and what you need to feel better about your feet.
Another source of avoidance of Now is the nightly tv news. Wars, tidal waves, epidemics, starving children in the Sudan, murders the night before, drugs that cause heart attacks, politics attacks...the news is just filled with opportunities to ignore that roaring fire in the fireplace and that cat sitting in your lap purring.
Newspapers and books are great for this too. Sit on a beautiful beach and read a murder mystery or the New York Times from front to back. You'll never notice the dolphins swimming by.
INTERACT BADLY WITH OTHER PEOPLE:
Generally if you smile at people, they smile back. If you express genuine interest in what they are doing, wonderful experiences unfold. This must always be avoided. Snarl at people, when they ask you how are you say dying of terminal depression. Express no interest in them whatsoever. You will generate a negative aura about you which will be reflected back driving you into the deepest recess of your bio-survival circuits and prompt purely instinctive and unconscious behavior.
CONSTRUCT MULTIPLE PERSONAS AND USE THEM INAPPROPRIATELY:
We all have superficial constructed personalities we use to hide our real selves and get along with other people. Doctors, for instance look and talk like doctors, and so on. So construct a persona that has nothing whatsoever to do with anything real, and act it out. Have a variety of them to draw on, and change them randomly. The effort it will take to keep pretending to be a gifted musician while talking to your car mechanic will completely eliminate any possibility of gaining any appreciation of being a mechanic and getting your message across of what needs to be fixed so the repair will be hideously expensive and your car will never work adding to your store of bad memories to call up during happy times.
CULTIVATE YOUR SHADOWS:
Our shadows are splinters of our consciousness that are born during events when were are children, and then jump up out of the subconscious to control your reaction to whatever is going on Now. This is like primal fear.
Give your shadows names. The a shadow that was born when your first love jilted you produced a pattern of behavior at the time you could call Jilted. Not liking having been jilted, as a new relationship starts, the little Jilt shadow is always in the back of your mind saying "I wonder if she or he is going to run off on me?"
Chances are, as you grow up, that might not be the case. But, says Jilt, "how do you really know?" Let Jilt run your mind function and Jilt will always be looking for hints of the repeat of the original trauma, and as soon as Jilt finds this (which is always) she will start screaming "run!".
We all come into adulthood with lots of shadows. You can work to eliminate them and live a happy life, or you can cultivate them so that at no time can you see what is going on Now, because everything is being seen through the lens of a past disaster.
When a shadow is in full control, you will regress to the emotional maturity of whenever that show first was created. Thus your response will be immature, senseless, and destructive to the Now opportunity.
CULTIVATE YOUR GARDENS OF RESENTMENT:
Part of the going back to the past, this is a highly specialized means to reach the Not Now state.
Remember something that pissed you off greatly, and repeat the memory over and over until your anger swells and you are reacting to whatever is going on Now as though it is the thing that pissed you off in the past.
These are just a few of the ways to avoid Now and hold onto the Not Now state of mind.
We are planning to host our first Not Now Retreat in Brooklyn next summer.
Copyright 2005 by Hugh Holub