Here's how I've come to look upon now: its the best place to live out my life, because it is the simplest and least complex residence my psyche can reside in.
Also, my inescapable home.
So I might as well embrace what is impossible to be separate from. During my waking hours, I always have to deal in one way or another with what is happening now.
Even if I'm lying down doing nothing, that doing nothing is something.
Question is, how much extra do I add to the inescapable now? Dealing with now is an irreducible minimum experience; adding on some past and future seemingly is optional. (I say "seemingly" because how much free will we have, if any, is unknown.)
There I am, walking along in the Oregon countryside. Moving my legs, choosing where to step, aware of the sights, sounds, and other sensations my senses convey.
Pretty simple stuff to handle.
The only thing that can complicate my walking-along experience is how much my mind drifts into the future or the past, anticipating what is to come, remembering what has happened before.
Yes, it can be argued that those anticipations and rememberings also are happening now. But not in the same way that my walking-along is. I am conjuring up a future and past within my own mind. By contrast, what I experience now has a quality of simply being given to me.
Like they say, the present is a gift.
I'm happiest when life seems clear, simple, straightforward, uncomplicated. That's why I'm so attracted to now. The more I stick with it, the happier I am. Most of my anxieties arise from anticipations and remembrances.
Now, like I said, is inescapable.
I can always deal with it, because I have to. Now is impossible to run away from, to add anything to, to subtract anything from. Even if I'm in a dentist's chair, getting a root canal, that's now. I may not like it; I may feel horrible about it; but whatever now brings, it's something I can handle, since I must.
I've started reading Dzogchen Ponlop's "Rebel Buddha." Looks to be a good book. Buddhism without the religious and cultural bullshit. This section helped stimulate my thoughts about now.
Normally our mind is a whirlwind of thought, so "peace" is the calming down of the mental agitation and stress caused by this whirlwind.
Not only are our minds busy thinking, our thoughts are usually aimed backward or forward, as we relive past events or obsessively imagine and prepare for the future. We usually don't experience the present moment at all.
As long as this process continues, our mind never comes to rest. It's difficult to feel any sense of contentment or satisfaction living in a remembered past or in a future that's mostly projection and speculation.
If we ever do arrive at a moment we've imagined, we're already preparing for another future -- a better, brighter one... When we're not being pulled into the past or future, we can relax and begin to genuinely experience the present moment.