COMING to the theatre of life we foolishly sit with our back to the stage. We see the gilded pillars and decorations, we watch the coming and going of the crowd; and when the light is put out at the end, we ask ourselves in bewilderment, what is the meaning of it all? If we paid attention to the inner stage, we could witness the eternal love drama of the soul and be assured that it has pauses, but no end, and that the gorgeous world-preparations are not a magnificent delirium of things.
— Rabindranath Tagore – Thought Relics
Our self is ever-present now and we do not experience a succession of nows. This present now is the only now there is. The now in which the body was born is the very same now in which these words are appearing. It is the only now there ever truly is.
For this reason our own being is said to be eternal. This doesn’t mean that we last forever in time. It indicates that we are ever-present now. There is simply no time ever actually present in our experience in which our self could exist, other that this present now.
Our self did not appear at a particular time and will not disappear at a particular time. There is no time present in our actual experience in which something could appear or disappear. There is just this ever-present now and this now is not a moment in time; it is timeless awareness, our true nature.
Our culture has lost this knowledge and therefore equates the eternal with the everlasting. However, these two belong to completely different realms, one real and one imaginary. ‘Everlasting’ is related to time and denotes something that supposedly lasts forever. ‘Eternal’ is related to the timeless and denotes that which is ever-present now. It is not about life everlasting. It is about eternal life.
— Rupert Spira – Presence: The Art of Peace and Happiness
Die in this love!
If you die in this love
your soul will be renewed
Don’t fear the death
of that which is known
If you die to the temporal
you will become timeless
Cut off those chains
that hold you prisoner
to the world of attachment
Die to the deathless
and you will be eternal
and come out of this cloud
When you leave the cloud
you will be in the effulgent moon
Die to the din and the noise
of mundane concerns
In the silence of love
you will find the spark of life
— Jalāl ad-Dīn Muḥammad Balkhī (Rumi) – Love Poems of Rumi (edited by Deepak Chopra)