May 20, 2003

The Power of Later

Eckart Tolle’s book The Power of Now seems to have caught the attention of many in Shalom Nation. I first learned about it eighteen months ago from an interview with Tolle in The Sun magazine. It made me want to read more and I ordered the book from the library. Well, I tried to read it. I forced myself through a few chapters but it just was not holding my attention. I could not focus enough on it to get anything out of it, so I abandoned Tolle and the “power of now.”

That is probably a bit of an overstatement. In order to abandon something you have to have been in its presence for a time. I cannot say that I have ever been “in the now.” It really is a simple concept to grasp, but it is much harder to implement.

This was not the first time the “power of now” has been brought to my attention. Many years ago I devoured Be Here Now by Ram Das. I thought it was a great idea back then. And I still think it is a great idea. A great idea for others. I see no sense in embracing this idea for me because it is a complete impossibility that I will attain the ability to be present in the now.

I can hear you saying, “Take small steps. You will make progress.” No I will not. I will not make progress. I will not take small silly steps. Instead I am embracing an easier method of personal advancement.

Welcome to The Power of Later, soon to be my best seller. I thought about calling it The Power of Yesterday, but I could not identify with that. I do not spend much time reviewing what happened yesterday. I know that some people do, and perhaps they will write the book. For me the future is the thing. The future is everything.

I have done a scientific study of the patterns of my mind and ninety eight percent of all of my thoughts are about the future. Of course, some of that, and I cannot reveal the exact percentage, is thoughts about sex in the future. The other two percent is about sex in the past. I am so future oriented that my anxieties have completely taken over. In fact much of my time is spent worrying about my future anxiety.

I need relief. The Power of Later will provide relief. Every time that I find myself worrying, I intone my new mantra, “Later, dude.” This allows me to put off my worrying time until later. But the brilliance of the idea is that later never comes. It is always put off. Is this a win/win situation or what?

Later, dude.