Cultivating a liberated relationship
to the past, present and future...
with Andrew Cohen
Our conscious and unconscious relationship to time affects our life’s journey in so many profound ways. Yet we rarely stop to consider the deeper implications of how we experience time, and whether there is a more awakened and liberated relationship to the past, the present and the future.
Many of us are so deeply and unconsciously conditioned by the past that the present moment is more or less defined by it. This could be in positive or negative ways, but more often than not it is our negative past experiences that shape our relationship to the present.
If we’re not paying attention, the future can become a manifestation of a conscious or unconscious preoccupation with the past, and we can be caught in a vicious cycle in which we seem incapable of giving rise to anything that is authentically new.
In spiritual circles, many focus unwaveringly on the present moment, freeing themselves from attachment to both the past and the future. But while living in and for only the eternal present may be profoundly liberating, it can also severely limit our capacity to experience any deeper and more awakened relationship to the totality of life itself.
Some of us are instinctively more future-oriented, always seeking to give rise to new possibilities and potentials. From this perspective, the present moment is always charged with aspiration and latent promise. But if our gaze is always just over the next horizon, we can forget to appropriately mark and cherish what has come before, and lose sight of the enormous gifts the past has granted us.
Andrew Cohen invites us to explore our relationship to time with clear eyes and open hearts, asking us to consider what an evolutionarily awakened relationship to the past, present and future would actually look like. He highlights the importance of cultivating a conscious relationship to the significance of time, timelessness, and history – and points to the possibility of a future that embraces what has brought us to this moment while remaining radically unbound and free.