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How to Use Meditation To Time Travel

Kerry Fantelli
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Time travel. It carries such a mystique. Who among us has not dreamt of going to the future or the past? It has such an allure, doesn’t it? Are you someone who dreams of going back to a time in history that you would love to experience? Or are you more interested in what amazing technology there will be years from now?
 

Well guess what? . . . We time travel every single day!

Wait, what?! You may be reading this and wondering if this writer has lost her mind, because when we think of time travel, we think of some sci-fi trickery of the imagination.
 
Well, you see lovely readers, what I mean when I say that we all time travel every single damn day is this: We journey to our pasts. Get lost in the memories, the quagmire quicksand that sucks you under. The what if’s, shoulda, coulda, woulda’s. The slow motion replays. The do-overs we long for.
 
And then off we go into the future with our projections and expectations. We create hopes and desires for ourselves and for those in our lives. Sometimes we even create conversations in our heads that haven’t even happened yet. Our own mental time travel.
 

We All Time Travel Every Day

We toggle back and forth between past and future in one quick moment. We watch the slideshow of our lives play out in an instant. Our brains are the most potent projector there is. Forget technology when you have this 3-pound organ that holds such power.
 
Our brains can create thoughts that seem so real that we start believing them – we start living as our thoughts dictate we should. We all do this. We can try to escape, but the lure of our time traveling brains beckons us back.
 
Ponder Carl Jung’s quote: “What we resist, persists.” When we hold onto our pasts with the longing grasp of regret, we keep reliving the very stories that bring us pain. And what you are remembering are just that: memories – they are no longer ‘real.’
 
The heart does not ‘think,’ per se – our hearts are meant to feel. I believe feelings are real. You feel something, and there it is. It is different than a thought – thoughts are not real at all. Sometimes thoughts vs. feelings seem as if they are the same, but if you tease them apart, you will start to see the vast difference between them.
 
Ask Yourself – Do You Want to Live in the Past, Imprisoned by Your Emotions?
 

Ask Yourself – Do You Want to Live in the Past, Imprisoned by Your Emotions?

 
Have you ever said the sentence, “I think sad”? It sounds funny when you hear it that way, doesn’t it?!
 
You may be thinking about something that makes you feel sad, but the thoughts and the feelings are indeed very different.
 
What you are feeling is probably about something that has already happened. So how can you move into the present moment and feel yourself settle there?
 

The Other, Much More Powerful Form of Time Travel

Meditation truly allows us to be present and the more you practice, the more you find yourself remaining present. The replays and the fantasies begin to lose their pull, their attraction. Presently living, consciously breathing, and simply being (as opposed to doing) becomes easier and easier.
 
Remaining present is a daily challenge. We get very caught up in our stories (getting stuck in the past again!). We project. We forecast, set expectations (getting stuck in the future again!) and get disappointed.
 
It is a journey, this staying still. Just sitting and staying in the moment is the most exhausting work there is. Or at least it is at first . . .
 
As it is with most things, practice and more practice makes staying in the present moment much easier. Meditation takes away our reactivity and allows us to mindfully respond (rather than impulsively react) to things and people.
 
Instead of pouncing on someone that may have said or done something that hurt us, we are able to recognize and become aware: where am I triggered and why? So often, something that happened many years ago will cling to us and create a pattern that then becomes our way of relating to others. With work, meditation, and mindfulness, we can start looking at our history with a softer eye and allow it to not dictate our present or future.
 
So there we sit, or walk, or run, or do yoga, or surf, or whatever it is that brings you to your present moment, and we gain the power of being truly in the moment.
 
This is where our “time travel” theme flips the script! Now we’re talking about a more “controlled” time travel where we have the ability to transcend time (a form of time travel) via meditation . . .
 
Meditation does not have to mean sitting in lotus, although that is a lovely image! It can mean all sorts of things. Where do you find yourself becoming still, with your mind quieting? Where do you feel connected to your breath and body in a way that is so full and at peace? I invite you to close your eyes, take a deep breath, and imagine what it is that brings you to this place of connectivity with your true self.
 

This is where our “time travel” theme flips the script! Now we’re talking about a more “controlled” time travel where we have the ability to transcend time (a form of time travel) via meditation . . .

 

 

The Takeaway

Breathe and listen to just that: the inhale and the exhale. Become aware. Start there and see where it leads you. This is the present moment! And this, my friends, is the power of meditation to anchor you into the present moment – the only time there is!
 
The present moment can never be replicated. I ask us all to enjoy each moment, just as it is, and go through our days being more mindful, enjoying each moment, savoring all that each day has to bring.
 
Will you still think of things that have happened? Of course! Will you still dream of things to come? I am sure you will. But meditation softens regrets, and loosens the grip of expectations. It allows the moment that you are in, right here, right now, to be lived fully, mindfully and with joy.
 

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Kerry Fantelli

Kerry Fantelli is a medical professional, yoga practitioner, and instructor. Recently, Kerry has been reading her writing after her yoga classes and also has shared poems with her patients that she hopes may find solace in her words. She is a healer and loves to write with the theme of helping, easing, and understanding emotions. She lives in Burlington, Vermont with her beautiful daughter, Thabitha, who is a source of constant inspiration.

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