The Power Of NOW: Problem With Eckhart Tolle's TeachingsteemCreated with Sketch.

in #philosophy3 years ago (edited)

After talking about mind and contents like motivation, anticipation and flow, I want to write about Eckhart Tolle. He is the writer of some famous books like The Power of Now and A New Earth. I red both of these books and made some research about his teachings. His teachings are about the consciousness, freeing from ego, letting go etc... I really recommend you to check his books. Maybe stop reading this post right now, and come back after you read the books(you won't).

Modern Monk

Eckhart Tolle states that, the talking voice in our heads aren't really who we are. It's our ego. He supports his idea by asking a question "If the talking voice in my head is me, then who is listening?". He claims that he almost never think about past or future, his mind is focused constantly on the moment. He calls this state "just being". He also conceptualizes many different human behavior. He says we also have a pain body and it makes us seek more pain and drama into our lives. He believes human suffers because of this dysfunctional state of mind, and the solution is letting go and being present. He uses many metaphors to make some good points.

So what's wrong?

The problem I see with his teachings is, he sees all these negative emotions like anger, jealousy, anxiety etc... as something completely unnecessary and only causes suffering. His solution is just "letting go". Ultimate surrender to find ultimate peace in life. He believes we are some sacred souls, bound to the whole existence and our purpose of living is finding the peace. I completely disagree. You can read my opinion on the subject in my previous post Meaning of Life???. Please check it.

What is the lesson for me?

I think letting go is very important. It's a skill that can be strengthened by practice. And it can be applied to any negative thing in life. You can really just let go anything and everything, if you really try. But is that what we really need? I want ups and downs, I want to feel sad, angry, scared and I want to express my emotions. These emotions, these sufferings Eckhart Tolle talk about is not the actual problem, they are the reflections of the real problems. And we feel them to do something about it! But of course, if you deal with such problems that you can not solve, like losing somebody you love it's important to learn how to let go.

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There is some benefit to quiting the mind and meditation. Also realizing sometimes the stories in our heads cause us more suffering than the actual thing. Tolle is a parrot echoing dead peoples ideas. When it comes to $piritual teachers just ask how much it cost, for the supposed love truth they want to give.

agreed. honestly, anyone going full Oprah! about consciousness is just stealing from the old masters.

Who went "full Oprah"? And who are the old masters?

Letting go of a dearly loved one is always a rough road to ride on!
strong heart needed anyway!

I watched a few of his videos. He is right on a few things but I see him as a pseudo-spiritualist mostly full of wishful thinking.

Can you expand on what you mean by "mostly full of wishful thinking"? What is it that Eckhart is wishfully thinking about?

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Nice post. Read the Power of Now when I was a young lad and yeah it resonated but you are right about living these emotions - makes you feel alive and In this world, and less of a window licker watching it pass by without getting involved.

I have never read a book on the subject better than Mr. Tolle & Krishnamurti (Krishnamurti's books are actually made from his talks, by the way.)

I've read Eckhart extensively and listened to many of his talks too. Naturally, not every teacher will resonate with every student; but as for me I have understood him to say on several occasions that ALL emotions are quite necessary (including negative ones). All emotions are a part of the "human" experience. He encourages us all to be aware of our emotions and to "give them space". . . . in other words, to just let them be. Regardless of whether they are positive or negative - which, ps - even the concept of "positive" or "negative" is only a construct of your thoughts :) Like you mention - to experience life fully, including it's ups and downs. His suggestions on how to end suffering will most likely not resonate with someone like yourself who fully embraces all aspects of life. I feel like his words are directed at people who are stuck very firmly inside of their egoic minds and suffer deeply....people who experience long lasting depression, anxiety, or any other conditions which keep them from functioning well within the frame work of this world. The ideas of "acceptance" or "letting go" are tools to help people become better able to care for themselves, to relate to others, and to also experience joy and peace when they haven't ever felt those emotions (or perhaps havent felt them in a very long time). This is the Awakening. As to the comments and responses that indicate they feel Eckhart is just "parroting" "echoing" or "stealing" from others before him . . . . well in the introduction to Stillness Speaks, he - in his own words - says: the form of the book is nothing more than a revival of the oldest recorded spiritual teachings - Sutras; Vedas; Upanishads; and even the words of Jesus (outside the narrative of the modern Bible) and also the Tao Te Ching. . . . so to summarize, I have never seen him try to represent himself as something new, different, or better. I have only seen him admit that he nothing more than a "modern day" human being who has been transformed by the Consciousness within himself and by the concepts and teaching of the ancients; and that his only intention is to try to share that wisdom in ways that other modern day humans can understand. To act as a signpost to help guide us all toward that which is already within us. Our own divinity. I really enjoyed reading your post and considering your unique opinion, thank you for sharing. I wish you, and everyone on this thread, Namaste.

I totally agree with you.