Book – The Power of Now (Summary)
Author – Eckhart Tolle
Genre – Self- help Book
Originally published in – 1997
Most of the time we are either beating ourselves for past mistakes or constantly anxious about future. Even when things are good there are always times when mind wander in to unknown and before we realize we have virtually taken a trip to worst situation before we come back in present moment.
Teachings in The Power of Now comes as a great hope of living with peace in now. Eckhart Tolle is able to do what all the great masters have done: to show us, in simple and clear language that the way, the truth, and the light is within us.
About the Author –
Eckhart Tolle is a spiritual teacher and best-selling author. He is best known for his best-selling books, The Power of Now, The New Earth.
Both these books have sold millions of copies. Tolle is not identified with any particular religion, but he has been influenced by a wide range of spiritual works.
About the Book –
Eckhart Tolle claims that what he is sharing is not new and it is within all of us, however we have forgotten its presence and identify ourselves with lots of things we are not.
He further explains enlightenment in simple words and makes it attainable in current moment (NOW) than some far fetched dream, which is the normal notion around this word. He praises Buddha’s definition of enlightenment “End of Suffering.”
The book is written in question & answer form. These questions are compilation of questions Eckhart Tolle has answered in his different seminars, meditation classes, or in one to one session.
He has also generalized answer of many questions which points to the same direction.
Few Points that You May Consider in Your Spiritual Journey
1) His Thoughts on Word God/Being –
- No word can define infinite being, because words often creates hindrance more that it helps in experience.
- Neither God nor Being nor any other word can define or explain the ineffable reality behind the word, so the only important question is whether the word is a help or a hindrance in enabling you to experience that toward which it points.
- A belief may be comforting, however it is only through your own experience, does it become liberating.
2) Idea of Mind –
- We are constantly identified with mind and are constantly thinking that we are using the mind, however in reality being used by it.
- Author conveys this by asking can you stop thinking at will for any length of time, if no than you are being used by mind.
- Not to be able to stop thinking is a dreadful affliction, but we don’t realize this because almost everybody is suffering from it, so it is considered normal.
- Meditation is one way where you draw consciousness away from mind activity and create a gap of no-mind in which you are highly alert and aware, yet not thinking.
- There is one certain criterion by which you can measure your success in this practice: the degree of peace that you feel within.
3) Two Level of Pain that We Suffer From –
- One that we create in present and one of the past that still lives in body and mind.
- Memory and anticipation – dwelling constantly in memory or anticipating tomorrow, which completely robs us of now.
- We can always deal with our present but we can never deal with our future and that’s why anxiety is difficult to bit.
- Bring your future worries in present and you will know you can deal with it as you are dealing with many things in present.
- Learn from past. Set goal for future. But focus and honor NOW. Engrossed in NOW. As, you take care of this moment, so you take care of next.
4) Author Defines Psychological Time as Mental Disease –
- You will not have any doubt that psychological time is a mental disease if you look at its collective manifestations. They occur, for example, in the form of ideologies such as communism, national socialism or any nationalism, or rigid religious belief systems, which operate under the implicit assumption that the highest good lies in the future and that therefore the end justifies the means.
- The end is an idea, a point in the mind-projected future, when salvation in whatever form happiness, fulfillment, equality, liberation, and so on — will be attained. Not infrequently, the means of getting there are the enslavement, torture, and murder of people in the present.
5) Go Beyond the Level of Word –
- Don’t get attached to words, see the direction it points you in to. Don’t get stuck on the level of words. A word is no more than a means to an end. It’s an abstraction.
- The word honey isn’t honey. You can study and talk about honey for as long as you like, but you won’t really know it until you taste it.
6) Forgiveness –
- Forgiveness is to relinquish your grievance and so to let go of grief. It happens naturally once you realize that your grievance serves no purpose except to strengthen a false sense of self.
- Forgiveness is to offer no resistance to life — to allow life to live through you. The alternatives are pain and suffering, a greatly restricted flow of life energy, and in many cases physical disease.
7) Relationship –
- Especially intimate relationship and all its challenges have been explained in detail with the simplest explanation I have ever read. Love is unconditional. And if it is based on other person’s behavior than it’s not love.
- All the problems in relations – They do not cause pain and unhappiness. They bring out the pain and unhappiness that is already in you.
8) Embracing Impermanence of Things –
- The acceptance of impermanence of everything that we own and desire is put across well. Sooner we let go our identification with them and dependence on them to make us happy, the better.
- As, everything that arise will pass. While we are free to appreciate everything and enjoy them, we should only see that as gift and passing away of those shouldn’t make us unhappy.
9) Loved This Experiment to Feel No-Thought State –
Pose this question often and you will feel thoughtless state. Question – I wonder, what is going to be my next thought? Then wait and you will see space before any thoughts occurs.
I have also created video of few quotes from the book – Hope you like it. Please do subscribe to my You tube channel – Myread4change
You will certainly feel light and consider letting go of lot of unnecessary emotions, feelings, thoughts and many things that you might have hold up in mind, as you realize those things making your life unpleasant and removal can enrich to a whole another level.
Please share your feedback/suggestion of this post in the comment or if you have any questions and I would gladly respond.
I encourage you to read and embrace the power of now.