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There Is No Present, Only Past (Thailand Meditation Journal)

A journal entry I found from a long time ago…

Thailand Meditation Journal Date: 12/18/95

I was looking outside Fern’s apt. Towards the lake and saw some guys playing basketball. As I watched them dribble I heard the dribble come a little later. This made me realize that not only is everything that we hear in the past, but everything that we see is in the past as well.

Are there any experiences that are in real-time besides thoughts?

No, because each bit of sensory input needs to travel the pathway of neurons to the brain before the experience can be experienced by us.

It’s kind of strange to think that nothing any human being has ever experienced outside his body has happened at the exact instant the individual perceived it to happen. We are viewing EVERYTHING as it has existed at one point in time, nothing is in REAL TIME though. If we could take slices out of time that were 1/10,000ths of a second then we could see the different time periods that our senses and stimuli take to travel to reach us (sound, light, vibration).

July 11, 2023 Update: Well after this observation after I had meditated a while, I noticed that time can be split into very small pieces of 1/10,000th of a second or something similar. There is a state of mind that happens with advanced meditators where they can suddenly become aware of the movement of the mind to these very small bits of reality. It’s like machine-gun fire really. That’s how fast the mind moves between objects of the mind’s awareness. It’s a bizarre state, and thankfully it didn’t last for more than a few days before I was able to let it go.

It still happens occasionally now (2023) but it isn’t annoying because it doesn’t go on and on for hours anymore.

More Thailand Meditation Journal entries >

If you would like to see the meditation retreats Buddhist temples offer in Thailand, check out this page: Thailand Meditation Retreats >

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If you’re coming to Krabi and would like to know some good places where you can meditate, here is a helpful page on Krabi Meditation practice.

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