I've practiced meditation, and a lot of it seems to be about not dwelling in the past, or waiting for a future which may not arrive as we expect.

But what about the present?

The deal is relatively trivial or trite; I want someone to say something: apologise. Actually, any sane person would want the same, given the (past) behaviour or this person. All the same, it seems of overwhelming importance whenever I let my thoughts wander.

And while it is pretty trivial, when my thoughts do wander in this way, I believe that everything in my life is great just as it is, except this, which is making me want to give up completely.

It seems a little wrong to say just don't think about it. Is there any other option?

3 Answers 3


There is only now, the present moment. There are thoughts about the past, fantasies about the future that are arising in the present moment.

What must be done is to become aware when such a thought do arise, and to observe that thought, objectively. Without investigation or analysis, without reacting, by simply turning, holding and sustaining your attention to what has just appeared, just at time of its duration.

You will realize that when you do this, the thought will simply disappear, it will vanish.

Ultimately it is only a thought, nothing more. The problem is that we create more out of it. The desire to control what is out there will only lead to your own misery. Let it go, give it up.

Have you ever heard about satipatthana / vipassana ?

This should help you, friend. http://en.dhammadana.org/vipassana/what_is_it.htm

  • 2
    Very relaxing comment :) +1 for the simplistic yet clear message. Commented Sep 29, 2016 at 17:56

Your idea of not being able to change things in the present is not quite correct.

You can always change yourself in the present moment. Always.

It may be difficult, or seem impossible, but the entire practice of Buddhism and Meditation is about this one, simple thing.

My answer to your question is "Change Yourself". This is not to say you should either accept OR reject any condition your are currently experiencing.. this is to say change and then see how that affects your view of your experience.

Rinse, repeat. This is The Path.


One simple, effective, answer would be to ask why you think this way. Are you e.g. using it as an excuse?

Trying to find out why you want to change something may be one everyday way in which you can then learn to do otherwise.

  • 1
    How does this answer the question "What can be done about wanting to change things in the present that you can't?"
    – user2424
    Commented Sep 29, 2016 at 11:02
  • @anon I deleted your other answer, which was a dupe of this. If you want to add to the original answer, you can click the edit link. The other users will undo the downvotes if they see the answer improved.
    – Andriy Volkov
    Commented Sep 29, 2016 at 16:20

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .