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The poet Lew Welch wrote a short piece called "Small Sentence to Drive Yourself Sane." He suggested that the next time you do something absolutely ordinary, such as making love, shaving, washing the dishes or cleaning the room, say to yourself this phrase: "So it's all come to this!"

This. This very ordinary moment is it. We don't need to seek the extraordinary because when we allow ourselves to be fully at home in the ordinary, it becomes extraordinary and full of wonder.

When we think this is not it, not good enough, not the right time, not the right place, not the right person—when we think happiness is in the future, after we lose 20 pounds, after we find the right lover, after we get a better job—then we are in constant hoping, waiting, scheming and seeking, living our lives in a time warp, disconnected from here and now.

This is it reminds us that we can find the magic, the spiritual and the sublime in the ordinary, in this next breath, in this chair, in this body. This is not just another philosophy orsomething else to believe. Instead, it is something to experience, and I invite you to try it out. Make it an experiment. Try it anywhere and anytime.

This is it. This is the only life that you are living. This moment, as you read these words—your life is completely unfolding. This body is the Buddha. This land is the pure land. Nirvana is here and now.


Former Zen priest and well-known communications consultant Josh Baran is the author of The Tao of Now: Daily Wisdom from Mystics, Sages, Poets and Saints. He was recently featured on Oprah's Soul Series on SiriusXM.


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