Our 50th Year Icon

“Be here now.”

If any phrase can be seen as a distillation of spiritual teacher Ram Dass’s worldview, it’s this one. The kind of phrase that gets printed on tie-dyed T-shirts with his picture in the middle, the title of his most famous book, a notion that inspired even an ex-Beatle, “Be here now” is a sort of yin to the yang of Timothy Leary’s mid-sixties maxim “Turn on, tune in, drop out.” Not so much a call to arms as a sobering entreaty to exist in the present, continually, over and over and over.