It was the first day of work of a new year, and I have already started to put in my heart and should into work. From morning till noon, other than smoking, I spent my time managing my emails and projects.
After lunch, it started to drizzle but yet I proceeded as planned to walk around the office vicinity as part of my new plan – walking meditation.
As it was drizzling, there was not many people in the streets and I took a slow pace and counted my breath as I walk.
Breathe in – I said to myself in my heart:”Peace”
Breathe out – I said to myself in my heart:”Freedom”
Observing the drizzles in front of me, I didn’t feel bored or bothered, only thoughts that came into my mind once in a while that disturbed the peace within me.
I believed I have attracted some curious attention but I have ignored them. And by the time I made a big round, an hour has passed and I was perspiring despite the drizzle.
After work, I had dinner at Bishan Interchange alone before I took the bus back to my house.
As usual, I lighted a cigarette upon reaching my block and began puffing away and for whatever reason, an emotion rushed into my heart and I could feel a flow of “energy” in the middle of my chest. (In ancient China, they called it “Huang ting”. A small area smack right in the middle of the chest where energy forms and affects our emotions. I do not know exactly what it is called in English).
I knew at that very moment that my emotion has arisen and it was working on me. I could feel something twirling in that small area, as if it was trapped and trying to get out of that place. I have once termed it as “heartache” but now I know it’s just an emotion that has gone out of control.
Ah! My negative emotion has come, which could be caused by a thought, a memory or a scene.
I looked at the cigarette in my hand and saw how the smoke disappear into thin air. Then I closed my eyes and said to myself:”My dear, I can see that you are seeking to be hurt and deserted. It’s ok my dear. If you feel like letting out, just do it. Experience the pain, go through it, accept it, and then let it go, ok?”
I did what I told myself and I could feel that energy reducing in my “Huang ting” and gradually it began to pulsate slowly. I knew I have subdued it with the little practice.
Next, I began to talk to the lost soul within me:
“My dear Francis, do not blame yourself. You have done well. Whatever that you can do, you have done it. Whatever you can’t do, you have also tried your best. There are things beyond your control, only heaven can decide. Do not worry about other people’s problems, let them be responsible for their own lives. Their happiness lie in their own hands. For years, you have shouldered as much as you can and you have also given your sincerity and heart and soul to people whom you love. You have done better than many people. And don’t forget, they have received happiness and joy from your love….”
Tears gathered in my eyes but peace began to fill my heart.
I went home and showered and ended the day with peace.
So, have I lived in the present moment?
Yes and no.
But I believe, I will become better and better……