Lately, we’ve found ourselves saying an unusual mantra when we hit difficult situations: Right now, it’s like this. We read about in Quartz one morning, and found it coming to mind during trying times. It affords an instant, very interesting shift of view.
Luang Por Sumedho, a former US Navy medic who became the senior Western disciple of Thai forest meditation tradition of Theravada Buddhism, is credited with popularizing the mantra among English-speaking Buddhists, including Vinny Ferraro, a teacher of insight meditation. He explains its appeal in the Buddhist Magazine Lion’s Roar:
“Right now, it’s like this” is an invitation to explore what is present. At the same time, it clearly reassures us that impermanence is hard at work. So even though the mind threatens me with the idea that “it’s going to be like this forever,” this phrase helps me call bullshit on that. It helps me let go of the main message from the mind, “that something has to be done.”
We’ve found that thinking Right now it’s like this. is a good way to come into the present —
what Buddhists call direct experience — and to contemplate a difficulty calmly while holding in awareness that it will change, as change is central to life. There’s something about the phrasing that is innately non-judgmental and not-personal. It’s like this NOT I’m like this. It has the effect of showing a bigger view of the situation and then what actions, or none at all, to take.
We found this unusual mantra about the time we stumbled on #ahimsamandalas instagram of handmade flower mandalas: a lovely pairing.