Book Club Meeting: The Power Of Now

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As I mentioned last week, I experienced my first breakthrough into the Now last week while reading chapter three of Eckhart Tolle’s The Power Of Now.  But if you have yet to experience yours, don’t worry! Just knowing that there is a difference between being present and not being present is half the battle – acknowledging that you are not fully present is a step in the right direction. Before you are able to fully grasp living in the now, you will go through a period of moving back and forth between the mind and the Now. Tolle explains at the start of Chapter four, that “most humans alternate not between consciousness and unconsciousness but only between different levels of consciousness.”

Tolle explains that when we sleep, we move between dreamless sleep and dream state, and when we are awake, most people move between ordinary unconsciousness and deep unconsciousness. Ordinary unconsciousness is most people’s normal state – they are not in the present and are run by the mind/ego. They feel that tug of uneasiness that was discussed back in chapter one. When the unease intensifies and becomes pain, leading to deep suffering and unhappiness, it is the state of deep unconsciousness, and this is the state that can lead to dangerous things like violence.

“The best indicator of your level of consciousness is how you deal with life’s challenges when they come.”

A challenge can flip a switch and wake you up or it can send you deeper into unconsciousness. For example, say someone says something that makes you feel uneasy. You may not even be aware of the unease at first, but it starts to rear its head in the form of anger or jealousy directed towards that person, and you end up fighting with them.  Instead of responding this way, acknowledge the unease and make it conscious. Ask yourself why it is there and accept why it is there. Shine a light on it and you will instantly feel better.

“Make it a habit to monitor your mental-emotional state through self-observation. ‘Am I at ease in this moment?’ is a good question to ask yourself frequently.”

Be as interested in what goes on inside you as what happens outside. I found this line so poignant.  I hate to admit it but it is so true…we tend to get so caught up in everything going on around us, what other people are doing, how other people think or feel about us – but it is so important to spend as much time thinking about what is going on inside us. When we carry this negative energy around we are not only harming ourselves but civilization as a whole.

I came across this quote a little while back and it immediately came to mind while reading this chapter:

It certainly isn’t easy, but make this your challenge for the next week. When you feel the urge to complain about something, stop yourself. Ask yourself if it is something that you feel strongly enough about to approach a person or situation and act on your feelings. If not, forget it. Just let it go – and when you do, it will feel really good. Knowing that you’ve risen above something, that’ you’ve chosen to let it go and be present, is incredibly empowering.

What do you guys think, do you find it hard to just let things go? Share your thoughts on the book so far below!

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Comments

b -February 7, 2013, 10:14AM

really enjoy your review of this book always, i gave my friend this book as b-day gift, and have not read it yet, but have been following tolle’s web etc for a while, it’s a very powerful teaching, and I’ve been practicing daily whenever I remember or frustrated then I try to turn my mind off and feel everything around me in the present, as well my inner state. I feel like I’ve been using mainly my head to live for many years, it’s time to use my heart to live, of course it did not start from Tolle’s teaching, but this is where I came across and feel the most present teaching. thanks to your blog! looking forward for more!

Anthea -February 7, 2013, 10:15AM

My whole family had read practically every single one of Eckhart Tolle’s books AND all of his recorded videos. I myself haven’t read or listened to them, but now that I see someone else on this planet has also read the book, I think I might take a swing at it!

K -February 7, 2013, 11:12AM

off topic, but dying to know if you sell those sunglasses?

Leanne -February 7, 2013, 12:32PM

Hi, my thoughts on the book are that you need to throw it out. Literally.. I’m serious. You are life itself, there’s no one like you. The only way to deal with life and living it freely is to deal with your past, and your loss and have a genuine relationship with yourself and you alone. If you trust yourself, you won’t have to think about who you can and can not trust. The world solely revolves around you.
If you try to grasp a NOW concept, it will already be gone. It doesn’t exist. It’s all you. If you feel life deeply instead of fretting about the rest of the planet, then you’ll find peace because you can experience loss without running away from yourself. You have to be selfish because no one can take your place. You have to make yourself matter to you, no one can do that in your place. I could go on and on.
And lastly, Eckhart Tolle is making money by talking A LOT! Words will not make you feel. The only person who can give you true and real answers is you, because you’ll feel them and experience them. There’s just no shortcut. No one will ever live the way that you can. So stop reading and start dealing with your past. Look at all the darkest inside of you and realize that you need that just as much as the positive things in life.
Life and love and you are the same thing. It needs a dynamic. You need to be able to bad without being evil, being positive all the time is just running away from yourself. It gives us free will and free choice.
Life is not meant to be solved, it’s just meant to be lived. And you can do that by freeing yourself from your past and all the times you’ve lost yourself along the way.
I’d say start trusting in yourself instead of listening to a man who comes off completely repressed himself.
If you can be vulnerable as a baby again and still feel strong and above all value your integrity, than that’s freedom.
OK, I’m done with my unwanted advice rant.

catherine -February 7, 2013, 8:47PM

My mom recommended this book to me so I was so excited to see you guys list it for your book club!

Hans -February 7, 2013, 9:27PM

Great book! Awesome sunglasses… who are they by?

Monique -February 7, 2013, 10:58PM

I know I am a little late but I finally got my copy from the library and I can’t wait to get started.

Roxy -February 8, 2013, 12:49AM

This book could’ve not come at a better timing in my life

fp julia -February 8, 2013, 9:09AM

Hey! the sunglasses are FP but looks like that exact pair is sold out – these are very similar though! http://www.freepeople.com/metal-temple-round-frames/

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