Have you ever heard of the book A New Earth: Awakening to your Life’s Purpose by Eckhart Tolle? Some say the publication of the book and the online classes held by Oprah Winfrey and Tolle is fueling the new age revival – those days when it is hip to be a hippie and free. I thought this book is revolutionary in the sense that it will rattle your current state of consciousness (“ego”). I haven’t read the book yet but last night I happen to have the time to watch Oprah’s and Tolle’s first class on podcast.
I was amazed by the discussion and the depth of the Tolle’s thoughts (and Oprah’s of course) as embodied in the book. The class tackled the first chapter which basically discusses what the ‘new earth’ is all about.
I am particularly struck by some of the insights, stories and remarks in that podcast:
1. “I am a Christian who believes that there are certainly more paths to God than Christianity.” With what’s going with my life now, I would certainly agree with Oprah. But the current consciousness or conditioning of my mind tells me it should not be. I am a Christian too and a Catholic at that. Christians believe that Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life. But to say you are a Christian and yet you believe that there are other paths leading to God besides Jesus then I think that would be confusing. So if this is the way it goes, then I should not call myself a Christian anymore since, with my experiences, I would like to believe that there are CERTAINLY other paths. Am I awakened? Or am I just validating my current Christian beliefs?
2. Live the Present. Awakening of the consciousness is living the present, the NOW. I would like to cite the simple exercise done by Tolle in that class: try to stop for around 10 seconds and feel and listen to your breathing, just focusing on your breathing. Well, this is a form of meditation, of being aware of your surroundings and current state. What I like about it is the appreciation of life and being one with yourself…at that moment, where the past and future are lessened. Life is actually NOW. Taking away the haunts of the past and the worries of the future would make you appreciate more things about you, your surroundings and life in general. Experience the stillness.
3. I had a similar experience with Tolle before he wrote the book and his other book The Power of Now. He was so depressed and tried to end his life. What struck me with the experience is the twist in those moments that changed the whole thing, including your perspectives. What happened to me was the worst in my life but the ‘awakening’ came and I was ‘still’ and mostly shifted the pathways of life’s journey. I am more appreciative of life now.
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