I’m sure we’re all used to hearing that standard line that every day is a new day, so no matter what happened in the past, we can start fresh with every day.
And of course, natural reaction against it, well, you know, everything in the past went into putting me into this position that I wake up with today.
So it’s not like the past somehow doesn’t matter.
But it does seem valuable to be able to just accept that, as much as the past led to where you are now, in this day itself it is only about what you do this day.
You can’t change the past, therefore, it’s in the past, it’s into making the beginning of the day, it’s maybe setting the course, the momentum, and yet we still can do anything with this new day that we have.
It’s still possible, and it seems like it is valuable to remember that.
Now, when I hear this, one of the things that gets in the way for me is this idea of remembering the past versus forgetting it.
Some people talk about how it’s a blessing to be able to forget, and maybe there’s something to that.
Because I find there’s something in me that doesn’t want to forget the past, almost like it feels like if I forget the past I’m kind of losing some part of my life, that I want to remember the whole story.
Well, maybe not certain parts.
I mean, we all have parts that we’d rather forget about.
But overall, it seems like there’s this kind of automatic action that I have of just trying to store everything into memory and place it as part of this whole narrative and fit in everything that’s happened.
But imagine not doing that.
Imagine not trying to hold on to your past as if it’s part of some story that you’re chronicling.
What if you stop chronicling the things that happen in your life, and just let today be like it’s the only day? And just anything that’s in the past is just completely done, and it’s only about this day and maybe preparing for future days.
I have a hard time accepting this, because I don’t want to just forget everything.
It feels like somehow I’m losing something if I forget it.
Maybe that’s one case for writing things down.
When we write it down, it helps to overcome that feeling that we have to hold on to it.
Therefore we can maybe have an easier time letting go.
But I like this as a thought experiment, to just imagine that the past doesn’t exist.
There’s so many things that are just crying out against this.
It’s like, well, what about all the good memories? What about everything that we can learn from our past? So all these things are valuable too, and I think I can’t say it’s a good plan to just completely forget about the entire past.
But there’s something about the ability to forget that can be very powerful.
To be able to have a fresh start with every new day.
Maybe we can think of memory as being like this big library that we can go into, but it’s not something we’re carrying around with us at all times.
Like we’re driving around in the bookmobile, portable library.
We have this library of all our memories and we’re going around everywhere with it.
Instead we could just think of it as this is the big archive, the big library, that we can visit when we want to go in and look into our past, look into the lessons of our past.
But the rest of the time, we don’t need to be inside this hall of memory, this library of memory, this chronicle of our lives.
We don’t need to live inside that.
We don’t need to see each day as adding to this big collection of memories.
We don’t need to process the present in a way like we process the past.
Imagine leaving all that to designated times, where we we dive in on purpose, but as the default, as our everyday way of living, imagine just waking up with this new day as if it is completely new, completely free.
The story of it will be written later.
That’s not even a concern right now.
The blessing of forgetting: we can just leave everything that happened before behind and make something new with the new day.
#nopast #forgetthepast #newday