Eckhart Tolle

The Egoic Mind (excerpt) THE NEW EARTH by Eckhart Tolle (Oprah #61 - Awakening to Your Life's Purpose)

Most people are so completely identified with the voice in the head—the incessant stream of involuntary and compulsive thinking and the emotions that accompany it—that we may describe them as being possessed by their mind. Read More...
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"National and Racial Pain-Bodies" (excerpt) The New Earth by Eckhart Tolle

Certain countries in which many acts of collective violence were suffered or perpetrated have a heavier collective pain-body than others. This is why older nations tend to have stronger pain-bodies. It is also why younger countries, such as Canada or Australia, and those that have remained more sheltered from the surrounding madness, such as Switzerland, tend to have lighter collective pain-bodies. Read More...
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"The Collective Female Pain-Body" (excerpt) The New Earth by Eckhart Tolle

The collective dimension of the pain-body* has different strains in it. Tribes, nations and races, all have their own collective pain-body, some heavier than others, and most members of that tribe, nation, or race have a share in it to a greater or lesser degree.
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"The End of Your Life Drama" (excerpt: p.150-51) — THE POWER OF NOW

…Ego is the unobserved mind that runs your life when you are not present as the witnessing consciousness, the watcher. The ego perceives itself as a separate fragment in a hostile universe, with no real inner connection to any other being, surrounded by other egos which it either sees as a potential threat or which it will attempt to use for its own ends. Read More...
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"The Collective Ego" (excerpt) THE NEW EARTH by Eckhart Tolle

How hard is it to live with yourself? One of the ways in which the ego attempts to escape the unsatisfactoriness of personal selfhood is to enlarge and strengthen its sense of self by identifying with a group – a nation, political party, corporation, institution, sect, club, gang, football team.
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"Identification With Things" (excerpt) The New Earth by Eckhart Tolle

The people in the advertising industry know very well that in order to sell things that people don't really need, they must convince them that those things will add something to how they see themselves or are seen by others; in other words, add something to their sense of self. Read More...
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"Tolle on Religion" - REVISITED (excerpt) A New Earth

The greatest achievement of humanity is not its works of art, science, or technology, but the recognition of its own dysfunction, its own madness. In the distant past, this recognition already came to a few individuals. Read More...
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"The Art of Listening" from 'Power of Now' (and Commentary)


listening-under-summer-skies- by jacqueline-lovesey
---Listening Under Summer Skies by Jacqueline Lovesey

When listening to another person, don't just listen with your mind, listen with your whole body.  Feel the energy field of your inner body as you listen.  That takes attention away from thinking and creates a still space that enables you to truly listen without the mind interfering. You are giving the other person space — space to be.  It is the most precious gift you can give. Most people don't know how to listen because the major part of their attention is taken up by thinking.  They pay more attention to that than to what the other person is saying, and none at all to what really matters: the Being of the other person underneath the words and the mind.  Of course, you cannot feel someone else's Being except through your own.  This is the beginning of the realization of oneness, which is love.  At the deepest level of Being, you are one with all that is. Most human relationships consist mainly of minds interacting with each other, not of human beings communicating, being in communion.  No relationship can thrive in that way, and that is why there is so much conflict in relationships.  When the mind is running your life, conflict, strife and problems are inevitable. Being in touch with your inner body creates a clear space of no-mind within which the relationship can flower.  

—Eckhart Tolle

Commentary:
Personal vanity and the hypnotic state set by the illusory self may be our biggest enemies to genuinely hear and connect with others.  It’s as if there’s a constant “low frequency hum,” like dampened power lines on a cold wet Spring morning, buzzing and distracting us even when we are seemingly lucid, in control of our actions and wits . With such a deafening distraction it is near impossible to listen to anyone, let alone the "still small voice within.” In this chaotic state [‘monkey mind’], self-obsessing thoughts paralyze any form of real interaction with others. And to finalize our self induced madness, we calculably pass judgement on others — sometimes even the dearest of friends!  Our minds, now crystalized like industrial  strength adhesive, simply will not budge from this lifeless quandary!  It's as if we're operating in a sensory disabled static — that disconnects us from the universe, our connectivity with others, and our own inner-stillness.  

So if we fail to know how to listen, or consciously choose not to, then what in fact are we doing?  As Tolle points out, "most people don't know how to listen because the major part of their existence is taken up by thinking."  So… a preoccupation with our mental selves?  A inner-blindness to others that separates us from their and our Being? The obvious answer to both questions is “yes.”   The real tragedy emanating from this disconnection is our utter failure to engage, to care, to show compassion, and to love. Herein lies the crux of not just our individual mania, but also the dysfunction that grips our world. It is time to put aside prideful fear, self-righteous attitudes and all mental controls and simply listen; to humble ourselves and warmly allow others hearts to speak and touch our own. In such a energized place life is lived.

—Bei Kuan-tu


If your mind habitually wanders and you’d like to consider or explore new dimensions of thought or non-thought, here’s a YouTube video that may be helpful:

“Mindfulness" by Jon Kabat-Zinn
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AS WITHOUT, SO WITHIN (excerpt) A NEW EARTH by Eckhart Tolle

Peter Churcher, Aus, Winter, Barcelona, 115 x 130 cm
---Painting by Peter Churcher


When you look up at the clear sky at night, you may easily realize a truth at once utterly simple and extraordinarily profound. What is it that you see? The moon, planets, stars, the luminous band of the Milky Way, perhaps a comet or even the neighboring Andromeda Galaxy two million light years away. Yes, but if you simplify even more, what do you see? Objects floating in space. So what does the universe consist of? Objects and space.

If you don't become speechless when looking out into space on a clear night, you are not really looking, not aware of the totality of what is there. You are probably only looking at the objects and perhaps seeking to name them. If you have ever experienced a sense of awe when looking into space, perhaps even felt a deep reverence in the face of this: incomprehensible mystery, it means you must have relinquished for a moment your desire to explain and label and" have become aware not only of the objects in space but of the infinite depth of space itself. You must have become still enough inside to notice the vastness in which these countless worlds exist. The feeling of awe is not derived from the fact that there are billions of worlds out there, but the depth that contains them all.

You cannot see space, of course, nor can you hear, touch, taste, or smell it, so how do you even know it exists? This logical-sounding question already contains a fundamental error. The essence of space is no-thingness, so it doesn't "exist" in the normal sense of the word. Only I things—forms—exist. Even calling it space can be mislead-ing because by naming it, you make it into an object. Let us put it like this: There is something within you that
has an affinity with space; that is why you can be aware of it. Aware of it? That's not totally true either because how
can you be aware of space if there is nothing there to be aware of?

The answer is both simple and profound. When you are aware of space, you are not really aware of anything, except awareness itself—the inner space of consciousness. Through you, the universe is becoming aware of itself!

When the eye finds nothing to see, that no-thingness is perceived as space. When the ear finds nothing to hear, that no-thingness is perceived as stillness. When the senses, which are designed to perceive form, meet an absence of form, the formless consciousness that lies behind perception and makes all perception, all experience, possible, is no longer obscured by form. When you contemplate the unfathomable depth of space or listen to the silence in the early hours just before sunrise, something within you resonates with it as if in recognition. You then sense the vast depth of space as your own depth, and you know that precious stillness that has no form to be more deeply who you are than any of the things that make up the content of your life.

The Upanishads, the ancient scriptures of India, point to the same truth with these words:

What cannot be seen with the eye, but that whereby the eye can see: know that alone to be Brahman the Spirit and not what people here adore. What cannot be heard with the ear but that whereby the ear can hear: know that alone to be Brahman the Spirit and not what people here adore... What cannot be thought with the mind, but that whereby the mind can think: know that alone to be Brahman the Spirit and not what people here adore.7

God, the scripture is saying, is formless consciousness and the essence of who you are. Everything else is form, is "what people here adore."

The twofold reality of the universe, which consists of things and space—thingness and no-thingness—is also your own. A sane, balanced, and fruitful human life is a dance between the two dimensions that make up reality: form and space. Most people are so identified with the dimension of form, with sense perceptions, thoughts, and emotion, that the vital hidden half is missing from their lives. Their identification with form keeps them trapped in ego.

What you see, hear, feel, touch, or think about is only one half of reality, so to speak. It is form. In the teaching of Jesus, it is simply called "the world," and the other dimension is "the kingdom of heaven or eternal life."

Just as space enables all things to exist and just as without silence there could be no sound, you would not exist without the vital formless dimension that is the essence of who you are. We could say "God" if the word had not been so misused. I prefer to call it Being. Being is prior to existence. Existence is form, content, "what happens." Existence is the foreground of life; Being is the background, as it were.

The collective disease of humanity is that people are so engrossed in what happens, so hypnotized by the world of fluctuating forms, so absorbed in the content of their lives, they have forgotten the essence, that which is beyond content, beyond form, beyond thought. They are so consumed by time that they have forgotten eternity, which is their origin, their home, their destiny. Eternity is the living I reality of who you are.

Some years ago when visiting China, I came upon a stupa on a mountaintop near Guilin. It had writing embossed in gold on it, and I asked my Chinese host what it meant. "It means 'Buddha,' " he said. "Why are there two characters rather than one?" I asked. "One," he explained, means 'man.' The other means 'no.' And the two together means 'Buddha.' " I stood there in awe. The character for Buddha already contained the whole teaching of the Buddha, and for those who have eyes to see, the secret of life. Here are the two dimensions that make up reality, thingness and no-thingness, form and the denial of form, which is the recognition that form is not who you are.

BUY: A NEW EARTH — Tolle

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"OUR INHERITED DYSFUNCTION" — Eckhart Tolle's — A NEW EARTH (excerpt p.8-13)

If we look more deeply into humanity's ancient religions and spiritual traditions, we will find that underneath the many surface differences there are two core insights that most of them agree on. The words they use to describe those insights differ, yet they all point to a twofold fundamental truth. The first part of this truth is the realization that the "normal" state of mind… Read More...
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"Three Spiritual Lessons in Eight Years" by Eckhart Tolle

It’s Not a Damned Race
No matter how often I tell myself I wont read more than one or two books at a time, I always find myself in the middle of three or four books. Why? Because I think I am being productive by consuming and cruising through more and more information. Am I? No. The money is in the practice and its effects not what you can quote and recite line by line, word for word. Read More...
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"Tolle on Religion" - (excerpt) A New Earth

The greatest achievement of humanity is not its works of art, science, or technology, but the recognition of its own dysfunction, its own madness. In the distant past, this recognition already came to a few individuals. A man called Gautama Siddhartha, who lived 2,600 years ago in India, was perhaps the first who saw it with absolute clarity… Read More...
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"Finding Balance" By Eckhart Tolle

Question: How do we find balance between our individual will and the natural flow of life? Read More...
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