PARAMAHAMSA SRI NITHYANANDA on The Secret of Living DO YOU know that when you sleep, you are actually not sleeping? You will not know how to sleep well until you learn to live in the present. Psychologists say that a person living in western countries never sleeps for more than 14 minutes at a stretch — more often it is less. After 14 minutes he comes back to the dream state or wakeful consciousness or just floats in the dream level. Again he goes back to sleep for a maximum of 14 minutes. Then he comes back to the dream level. Again he goes back to sleep. They call this the rapid eye movement or REM sleep pattern. You never sleep totally even when you sleep. There are levels of mind in which you will never have dreams. You never need to have any dreams. You can directly enter into deep sleep, if you know how to live in the now, the present moment. If you know how to live in now, you will know the art of eating, the art of sleeping, and the art of doing everything. That is the art of living. Can you try to remember one incident from your day in complete detail? You are more dead than alive even when you are awake. You almost live like a man in half sleep. You do things without fully knowing what you do. You do recall brushing your teeth; but do you remember the sensation of cold water in your mouth? Do you remember the feel of the taste of the toothpaste in your mouth or the pressure of your toothbrush upon your gums? And how did you feel after brushing? Or how was the water being poured on your body in the shower? How did the whole thing happen? What is happening after you have eaten your food? Look at your life; look at your face; you are all almost bored. Somehow you are pulling along. Life is just a drag. Why? Because, all you do, all that you know to do for everything is how to postpone. Your mind never sits with your being. Your mind never lives in the same moment that you are in. You are always in the space of tomorrow or in the space of yesterday. It is never in the space of today, now, the present. Live in the present. This is the secret art of living.