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Flashcards in The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle Deck (237):
1

the amazing and beneficial effects of inner body awareness, the sense of freedom that comes from letting go of self-identification with one’s personal history and life-situation, and a newfound inner peace that arises as one learns to relinquish mental/emotional resistance to the “suchness” of the present moment.156

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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I realized that nothing I ever did could possibly add anything to what I already had.200

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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“I want what you have. Can you give it to me, or show me how to get it?” And I would say: “You have it already. You just can’t feel it because your mind is making too much noise.”213

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Those who have not found their true wealth, which is the radiant joy of Being and the deep, unshakable peace that comes with it, are beggars, even if they have great material wealth. They are looking outside for scraps of pleasure or fulfillment, for validation, security, or love, while they have a treasure within that not only includes all those things but is infinitely greater than anything the world can offer.279

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your natural state of felt oneness with Being. It is a state of connectedness with something immeasurable and indestructible, something that, almost paradoxically, is essentially you and yet is much greater than you. It is finding your true nature beyond name and form.283

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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Buddha’s simple definition of enlightenment as “the end of suffering.”287

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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Being is the eternal, ever-present One Life beyond the myriad forms of life that are subject to birth and death.293

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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When you are present, when your attention is fully and intensely in the Now, Being can be felt, but it can never be understood mentally.296

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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Nobody can claim exclusive possession of Being. It is your very essence, and it is immediately accessible to you as the feeling of your own presence,311

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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This incessant mental noise prevents you from finding that realm of inner stillness that is inseparable from Being.317

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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“I think, therefore I am.” He had, in fact, given expression to the most basic error: to equate thinking with Being and identity with thinking.320

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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Thinking has become a disease. Disease happens when things get out of balance.332

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can you be free of your mind whenever you want to? Have you found the “off” button? You mean stop thinking altogether? No, I can’t, except maybe for a moment or two. Then the mind is using you. You are unconsciously identified with it, so you don’t even know that you are its slave.340

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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You have probably come across “mad” people in the street incessantly talking or muttering to themselves. Well, that’s not much different from what you and all other “normal” people do, except that you don’t do it out loud.353

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It is not uncommon for the voice to be a person’s own worst enemy. Many people live with a tormentor in their head that continuously attacks and punishes them and drains them of vital energy. It is the cause of untold misery and unhappiness, as well as of disease.360

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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Start listening to the voice in your head as often as you can. Pay particular attention to any repetitive thought patterns,363

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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So when you listen to a thought, you are aware not only of the thought but also of yourself as the witness of the thought. A new dimension of consciousness has come in. As you listen to the thought, you feel a conscious presence — your deeper self — behind or underneath the thought, as it were. The thought then loses its power over you and quickly subsides, because you are no longer energizing the mind through identification with it. This is the beginning of the end of involuntary and compulsive thinking.370

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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Instead of “watching the thinker,” you can also create a gap in the mind stream simply by directing the focus of your attention into the Now. Just become intensely conscious of the present moment.387

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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you draw consciousness away from mind activity and create a gap of no-mind in which you are highly alert and aware but not thinking. This is the essence of meditation.389

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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In your everyday life, you can practice this by taking any routine activity that normally is only a means to an end and giving it your fullest attention, so that it becomes an end in itself.390

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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So the single most vital step on your journey toward enlightenment is this: learn to disidentify from your mind.397

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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Your mind is an instrument, a tool. It is there to be used for a specific task, and when the task is completed, you lay it down. As it is, I would say about 80 to 90 percent of most people’s thinking is not only repetitive and useless, but because of its dysfunctional and often negative nature, much of it is also harmful.402

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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The term ego means different things to different people, but when I use it here it means a false self, created by unconscious identification with the mind.411

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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To the ego, the present moment hardly exists. Only past and future are considered important. This total reversal of the truth accounts for the fact that in the ego mode the mind is so dysfunctional.413

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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The present moment holds the key to liberation. But you cannot find the present moment as long as you are your mind.419

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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Thinking and consciousness are not synonymous. Thinking is only a small aspect of consciousness. Thought cannot exist without consciousness, but consciousness does not need thought.424

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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Enlightenment means rising above thought,426

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

28

All true artists, whether they know it or not, create from a place of no-mind, from inner stillness.433

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

29

Emotion arises at the place where mind and body meet. It is the body’s reaction to your mind446

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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If you really want to know your mind, the body will always give you a truthful reflection, so look at the emotion, or rather feel it in your body.463

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So observing our emotions is as important as observing our thoughts? Yes. Make it a habit to ask yourself: What’s going on inside me at this moment?472

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all emotions are modifications of one primordial, undifferentiated emotion483

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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“Fear” comes close, but apart from a continuous sense of threat, it also includes a deep sense of abandonment and incompleteness.485

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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Glimpses of love and joy or brief moments of deep peace are possible whenever a gap occurs in the stream of thought.494

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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Emotion literally means “disturbance.” The word comes from the Latin emovere, meaning “to disturb.”500

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All cravings are the mind seeking salvation or fulfillment in external things and in the future as a substitute for the joy of Being. As long as I am my mind, I am those cravings,517

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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There are two levels to your pain: the pain that you create now, and the pain from the past that still lives on in your mind and body.533

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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The greater part of human pain is unnecessary. It is self-created539

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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The mind always seeks to deny the Now and to escape from it.542

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The question “What time is it?” or “What’s the date today?” — if anybody were there to ask it — would be quite meaningless. The oak tree or the eagle would be bemused by such a question. “What time?” they would ask. “Well, of course, it’s now. The time is now. What else is there?”548

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The mind, to ensure that it remains in control, seeks continuously to cover up the present moment with past and future,552

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

42

How to stop creating time? Realize deeply that the present moment is all you ever have. Make the Now the primary focus of your life.559

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43

The pain-body wants to survive, just like every other entity in existence, and it can only survive if it gets you to unconsciously identify with it.589

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Pain can only feed on pain. Pain cannot feed on joy. It finds it quite indigestible.593

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will vehemently claim that you do not want pain. But look closely and you will find that your thinking and behavior are designed to keep the pain going, for yourself and others.596

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the pain-body doesn’t want you to observe it directly and see it for what it is. The moment you observe it, feel its energy field within you, and take your attention into it, the identification is broken. A higher dimension of consciousness has come in. I call it presence. You are now the witness or the watcher of the pain-body. This means that it cannot use you anymore by pretending to be you, and it can no longer replenish itself through you.606

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Unconsciousness creates it; consciousness transmutes it into itself.611

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summarize the process. Focus attention on the feeling inside you. Know that it is the pain-body. Accept that it is there. Don’t think about it — don’t let the feeling turn into thinking. Don’t judge or analyze. Don’t make an identity for yourself out of it. Stay present, and continue to be the observer of what is happening inside you. Become aware not only of the emotional pain but also of “the one who observes,” the silent watcher. This is the power of the Now, the power of your own conscious presence.633

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you would rather be in pain — be the pain-body — than take a leap into the unknown and risk losing the familiar unhappy self.648

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Observe the attachment to your pain. Be very alert. Observe the peculiar pleasure you derive from being unhappy.650

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Once you have disidentified from your mind, whether you are right or wrong makes no difference to your sense of self at all, so the forcefully compulsive and deeply unconscious need to be right, which is a form of violence, will no longer be there. You can state clearly and firmly how you feel or what you think, but there will be no aggressiveness or defensiveness about it. Your sense of self is then derived from a deeper and truer place within yourself, not from the mind.680

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The number of people who have gone beyond mind is as yet extremely small, so you can assume that virtually everyone you meet or know lives in a state of fear. Only the intensity of it varies.688

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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As long as the egoic mind is running your life, you cannot truly be at ease; you cannot be at peace or fulfilled except for brief intervals when you obtained what you wanted, when a craving has just been fulfilled.699

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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Since the ego is a derived sense of self, it needs to identify with external things. It needs to be both defended and fed constantly.701

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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The secret of life is to “die before you die” — and find that there is no death.707

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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The problems of the mind cannot be solved on the level of the mind.712

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the basic mechanics of the unconscious state: identification with the mind, which creates a false self, the ego, as a substitute for your true self rooted in Being.715

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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The ego’s needs are endless. It feels vulnerable and threatened and so lives in a state of fear and want.717

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When you are present, you can allow the mind to be as it is without getting entangled in it. The mind in itself is not dysfunctional. It is a wonderful tool. Dysfunction sets in when you seek your self in it and mistake it for who you are. It then becomes the egoic mind and takes over your whole life.724

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End the delusion of time. Time and mind are inseparable. Remove time from the mind and it stops — unless you choose to use it.728

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The compulsion arises because the past gives you an identity and the future holds the promise of salvation, of fulfillment in whatever form. Both are illusions.731

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Nothing ever happened in the past; it happened in the Now. Nothing will ever happen in the future; it will happen in the Now.748

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What you think of as the past is a memory trace, stored in the mind, of a former Now. When you remember the past, you reactivate a memory trace — and you do so now. The future is an imagined Now, a projection of the mind.749

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“What, at this moment, is lacking?” A powerful question that does not require an answer on the level of the mind. It is designed to take your attention deeply into the Now. A similar question in the Zen tradition is this: “If not now, when?”775

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Meister Eckhart, the thirteenth-century spiritual teacher, summed it all up beautifully: “Time is what keeps the light from reaching us. There is no greater obstacle to God than time.”780

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Whenever you are able to observe your mind, you are no longer trapped in it.804

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Identification with the mind gives it more energy; observation of the mind withdraws energy from it. Identification with the mind creates more time; observation of the mind opens up the dimension of the timeless.815

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The enlightened person’s main focus of attention is always the Now, but they are still peripherally aware of time. In other words, they continue to use clock time but are free of psychological time.829

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If you set yourself a goal and work toward it, you are using clock time. You are aware of where you want to go, but you honor and give your fullest attention to the step that you are taking at this moment. If you then become excessively focused on the goal, perhaps because you are seeking happiness, fulfillment, or a more complete sense of self in it, the Now is no longer honored. It becomes reduced to a mere stepping stone to the future, with no intrinsic value. Clock time then turns into psychological time.835

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the present moment is all you ever have. There is never a time when your life is not “this moment.”845

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Usually, the future is a replica of the past. Superficial changes are possible, but real transformation is rare and depends upon whether you can become present enough to dissolve the past by accessing the power of the Now.867

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Most people find it difficult to believe that a state of consciousness totally free of all negativity is possible. And yet this is the liberated state to which all spiritual teachings point. It is the promise of salvation, not in an illusory future but right here and now.879

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You cannot be both unhappy and fully present in the Now.894

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Your life situation exists in time. Your life is now. Your life situation is mind-stuff. Your life is real.902

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this is not about solving your problems. It’s about realizing that there are no problems. Only situations — to be dealt with now, or to be left alone and accepted as part of the “isness” of the present moment until they change or can be dealt with. Problems are mind-made and need time to survive. They cannot survive in the actuality of the Now.919

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When you create a problem, you create pain.930

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As there are no problems in the Now, there is no fear either.943

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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you cannot give your full attention to something and at the same time resist it.965

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As soon as you honor the present moment, all unhappiness and struggle dissolve, and life begins to flow with joy and ease. When you act out of present-moment awareness, whatever you do becomes imbued with a sense of quality, care, and love965

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nonattachment to the fruit of your action is called Karma Yoga.970

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When every cell of your body is so present that it feels vibrant with life, and when you can feel that life every moment as the joy of Being, then it can be said that you are free of time.995

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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to know that you are not present is a great success: That knowing is presence —1005

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The best indicator of your level of consciousness is how you deal with life’s challenges when they come. Through those challenges, an already unconscious person tends to become more deeply unconscious, and a conscious person more intensely conscious.1032

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

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Native American chief who pointed out to him that in his perception most white people have tense faces, staring eyes, and a cruel demeanor. He said: “They are always seeking something. What are they seeking? The whites always want something. They are always uneasy and restless. We don’t know what they want. We think they are mad.”1049

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Jesus asked his disciples. “Can anxious thought add a single day to your life?”1054

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Buddha taught that the root of suffering is to be found in our constant wanting and craving.1055

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Anything unconscious dissolves when you shine the light of consciousness on it.1063

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88

Make it a habit to monitor your mental-emotional state through self-observation. “Am I at ease at this moment?” is a good question to ask yourself frequently. Or you can ask: “What’s going on inside me at this moment?” Be at least as interested in what goes on inside you as what happens outside. If you get the inside right, the outside will fall into place.1066

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Primary reality is within, secondary reality without.1068

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90

The pollution of the planet is only an outward reflection of an inner psychic pollution:1084

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any negative inner state is contagious: Unhappiness spreads more easily than a physical disease.1089

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How can we drop negativity, as you suggest? By dropping it.1093

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93

To complain is always nonacceptance of what is. It invariably carries an unconscious negative charge. When you complain, you make yourself into a victim. When you speak out, you are in your power. So change the situation by taking action or by speaking out if necessary or possible; leave the situation or accept it. All else is madness.1133

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If you find your here and now intolerable and it makes you unhappy, you have three options: remove yourself from the situation, change it, or accept it totally.1138

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If you want to take responsibility for your life, you must choose one of those three options, and you must choose now. Then accept the consequences. No excuses. No negativity. No psychic pollution. Keep your inner space clear.1139

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Stress is caused by being “here” but wanting to be “there,” or being in the present but wanting to be in the future.1155

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Die to the past every moment. You don’t need it. Only refer to it when it is absolutely relevant to the present. Feel the power of this moment and the fullness of Being.1166

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98

You can always cope with the Now, but you can never cope with the future — nor do you have to. The answer, the strength, the right action or the resource will be there when you need it, not before, not after.1173

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99

Waiting is a state of mind. Basically, it means that you want the future; you don’t want the present.1182

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100

You can improve your life situation, but you cannot improve your life. Life is primary. Life is your deepest inner Being. It is already whole, complete, perfect. Your life situation consists of your circumstances and your experiences. There is nothing wrong with setting goals and striving to achieve things. The mistake lies in using it as a substitute for the feeling of life, for Being.1186

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101

Just be, and enjoy being. If you are present, there is never any need for you to wait for anything.1199

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next time somebody says, “Sorry to have kept you waiting,” you can reply, “That’s all right, I wasn’t waiting. I was just standing here enjoying myself — in joy in my self.”1200

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103

When you are on a journey, it is certainly helpful to know where you are going or at least the general direction in which you are moving, but don’t forget: The only thing that is ultimately real about your journey is the step that you are taking at this moment. That’s all there ever is.1209

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104

Your life’s journey has an outer purpose and an inner purpose. The outer purpose is to arrive at your goal or destination,1211

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the journey’s inner purpose, which has nothing to do with where you are going or what you are doing, but everything to do with how.1214

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106

It is also possible to fail completely in your outer purpose and at the same time totally succeed in your inner purpose. Or the other way around, which is actually more common:1224

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The sooner you realize that your outer purpose cannot give you lasting fulfillment, the better.1227

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108

Only the present can free you of the past.1240

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109

You cannot find yourself by going into the past. You find yourself by coming into the present.1247

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110

Try a little experiment. Close your eyes and say to yourself: “I wonder what my next thought is going to be.” Then become very alert and wait for the next thought.1260

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111

I had to wait for quite a long time before a thought came in. Exactly. As long as you are in a state of intense presence, you are free of thought.1264

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112

Zen masters use the word satori to describe a flash of insight, a moment of no-mind and total presence.1294

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113

When you become conscious of Being, what is really happening is that Being becomes conscious of itself. When Being becomes conscious of itself — that’s presence.1321

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ancient seers of India asked themselves. They saw the world as lila, a kind of divine game that God is playing.1338

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115

“The teacher and the taught together create the teaching.”1381

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116

You can substitute “Christ” for presence, if that is more meaningful to you. Christ is your God-essence or the Self,1391

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117

Thus, the man Jesus became Christ, a vehicle for pure consciousness. And what is God’s self-definition in the Bible? Did God say, “I have always been, and I always will be?” Of course not. That would have given reality to past and future. God said: “I AM THAT I AM.” No time here, just presence.1400

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118

The “second coming” of Christ is a transformation of human consciousness, a shift from time to presence, from thinking to pure consciousness, not the arrival of some man or woman.1403

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119

I am still not quite sure if I fully understand what you mean by Being. “Water? What do you mean by that? I don’t understand it.” This is what a fish would say if it had a human mind. Please stop trying to understand Being.1427

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120

If, for whatever reason, you disliked the word honey, that might prevent you from ever tasting it. If you had a strong aversion to the word God, which is a negative form of attachment, you may be denying not just the word but also the reality to which it points.1447

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if a word doesn’t work for you anymore, then drop it and replace it with one that does work. If you don’t like the word sin, then call it unconsciousness or insanity.1450

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122

To become conscious of Being, you need to reclaim consciousness from the mind. This is one of the most essential tasks on your spiritual journey.1478

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in the end you will always have to return to the body, where the essential work of transformation takes place.1517

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124

Do not turn your attention elsewhere in your search for the Truth, for it is nowhere else to be found but within your body. Do not fight against the body, for in doing so you are fighting against your own reality. You are your body.1537

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125

The body that you can see and touch is only a thin illusory veil. Underneath it lies the invisible inner body, the doorway into Being, into Life Unmanifested. Through the inner body, you are inseparably connected to this unmanifested One Life — birthless, deathless, eternally present. Through the inner body, you are forever one with God.1539

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126

The key is to be in a state of permanent connectedness with your inner body — to feel it at all times. This will rapidly deepen and transform your life.1543

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127

As long as you are in conscious contact with your inner body, you are like a tree that is deeply rooted in the earth, or a building with a deep and solid foundation.1571

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128

In a fully functional organism, an emotion has a very short life span. It is like a momentary ripple or wave on the surface of your Being.1584

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129

Forgiveness is to relinquish your grievance and so to let go of grief.1592

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130

Jesus said: “Before you enter the temple, forgive.”1597

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131

Feeling will get you closer to the truth of who you are than thinking.1613

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132

Is there any scientific evidence for this? Try it out and you will be the evidence.1627

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133

last thing at night before falling asleep and first thing in the morning before getting up, “flood” your body with consciousness. Close your eyes. Lie flat on your back. Choose different parts of your body to focus your attention on briefly at first: hands, feet, arms, legs, abdomen, chest, head, and so on. Feel the life energy inside those parts as intensely as you can. Stay with each part for fifteen seconds or so. Then let your attention run through the body like a wave a few times, from feet to head and back again.1643

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134

In any thought activity, make it a habit to go back and forth every few minutes or so between thinking and an inner kind of listening, an inner stillness.1663

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135

When listening to another person, don’t just listen with your mind, listen with your whole body.1667

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136

Most human relationships consist mainly of minds interacting with each other, not of human beings communicating, being in communion.1673

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open your eyes. Look at your surroundings for a few minutes in a meditative way — that is, without labeling them mentally — and continue to feel the inner body as you do so.1692

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138

Chi is the inner energy field of your body.1701

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139

As you go about your life, don’t give 100 percent of your attention to the external world and to your mind. Keep some within.1712

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140

You cannot be in your body without being intensely present in the Now.1734

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141

Jesus, speaking entirely from his essence or Christ identity, says in the Gospel of Thomas: “Split a piece of wood; I am there. Lift up a stone, and you will find me there.”1739

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142

Another portal into the Unmanifested is created through the cessation of thinking. This can start with a very simple thing, such as taking one conscious breath or looking, in a state of intense alertness, at a flower, so that there is no mental commentary running at the same time.1740

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143

There are many ways to create a gap in the incessant stream of thought. This is what meditation is all about.1742

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144

Your task is not to search for love but to find a portal through which love can enter.1758

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145

Pay more attention to the silence than to the sounds. Paying attention to outer silence creates inner silence: the mind becomes still. A portal is opening up.1764

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

146

Physicists tell us that the solidity of matter is an illusion. Even seemingly solid matter, including your physical body, is nearly 100 percent empty space — so vast are the distances between the atoms compared to their size. What is more, even inside every atom there is mostly empty space.1773

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Since space is “nothing,” we can say that what is not there is more important than what is there. So become aware of the space that is all around you. Don’t think about it. Feel it, as it were. Pay attention to “nothing.”1795

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if you withdraw attention from things — objects in space — you automatically withdraw attention from your mind objects as well. In other words: You cannot think and be aware of space — or of silence, for that matter.1800

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By becoming aware of the empty space around you, you simultaneously become aware of the space of no-mind, of pure consciousness: the Unmanifested.1801

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You also know that every form is destined to dissolve again and that ultimately nothing out here matters all that much. You have “overcome the world,” in the words of Jesus, or, as the Buddha put it, you have “crossed over to the other shore.”1811

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Approaching death and death itself, the dissolution of the physical form, is always a great opportunity for spiritual realization.1857

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you are waiting for an event in time to save you. Is this not the core error that we have been talking about? Salvation is not elsewhere in place or time. It is here and now.1868

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True salvation is fulfillment, peace, life in all its fullness. It is to be who you are, to feel within you the good that has no opposite, the joy of Being that depends on nothing outside itself.1877

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You “get” there by realizing that you are there already. You find God the moment you realize that you don’t need to seek God.1887

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Love as a continuous state is as yet very rare — as rare as conscious human beings.1907

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As long as you are identified with the mind, you have an externally derived sense of self. That is to say, you get your sense of who you are from things that ultimately have nothing to do with who you are: your social role, possessions, external appearance, successes and1934

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Every addiction arises from an unconscious refusal to face and move through your own pain. Every addiction starts with pain and ends with pain.1957

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Avoidance of relationships in an attempt to avoid pain is not the answer either.1965

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First you stop judging yourself; then you stop judging your partner. The greatest catalyst for change in a relationship is complete acceptance of your partner as he or she is, without needing to judge or change them in any way. That immediately takes you beyond ego.1978

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True communication is communion — the realization of oneness, which is love.1999

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every crisis represents not only danger but also opportunity.2014

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So whenever your relationship is not working, whenever it brings out the “madness” in you and in your partner, be glad. What was unconscious is being brought up to the light.2026

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If you react at all to your partner’s unconsciousness, you become unconscious yourself.2033

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When your partner behaves unconsciously, relinquish all judgment. Judgment is either to confuse someone’s unconscious behavior with who they are or to project your own unconsciousness onto another person and mistake that for who they are.2048

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To relinquish judgment does not mean that you do not recognize dysfunction and unconsciousness when you see it. It means “being the knowing” rather than “being the reaction” and the judge.2050

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Learn to give expression to what you feel without blaming. Learn to listen to your partner in an open, nondefensive way. Give your partner space for expressing himself or herself. Be present.2057

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If your partner is still identified with the mind and the pain-body while you are already free, this will represent a major challenge — not to you but to your partner. It is not easy to live with an enlightened person, or rather it is so easy that the ego finds it extremely threatening. Remember that the ego needs problems, conflict, and “enemies” to strengthen the sense of separateness on which its identity depends.2064

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it is easier for a woman to feel and be in her body, so she is naturally closer to Being and potentially closer to enlightenment than a man.2104

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the Tao, which could be translated as Being, is described as “infinite, eternally present, the mother of the universe.”2108

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The mind runs our civilization, whereas Being is in charge of all life on our planet and beyond.2123

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the major obstacle for men tends to be the thinking mind, and the major obstacle for women the pain-body,2127

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Anyone with a strong pain-body and not enough consciousness to disidentify from it will not only continuously or periodically be forced to relive their emotional pain but may also easily become either the perpetrator or the victim of violence, depending on whether their pain-body is predominantly active or passive.2134

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if you are trapped in a nightmare you will probably be more strongly motivated to awaken than someone who is just caught in the ups and downs of an ordinary dream.2137

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A victim identity is the belief that the past is more powerful than the present,2162

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Some women who are already conscious enough to have relinquished their victim identity on the personal level are still holding on to a collective victim identity: “what men did to women.” They are right — and they are also wrong. They are right inasmuch as the collective female pain-body is in large part due to male violence inflicted on women and repression of the female principle throughout the planet over millennia. They are wrong if they derive a sense of self from this fact and thereby keep themselves imprisoned in a collective victim identity.2168

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Being an outsider to some extent, someone who does not “fit in” with others or is rejected by them for whatever reason, makes life difficult, but it also places you at an advantage as far as enlightenment is concerned. It takes you out of unconsciousness almost by force.2223

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If you cannot be at ease with yourself when you are alone, you will seek a relationship to cover up your unease.2230

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When you are enlightened, there is one relationship that you no longer have: the relationship with yourself. Once you have given that up, all your other relationships will be love relationships.2239

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Whenever anything negative happens to you, there is a deep lesson concealed within it, although you may not see it at the time.2250

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Forgiveness of the present is even more important than forgiveness of the past. If you forgive every moment — allow it to be as it is — then there will be no accumulation of resentment that needs to be forgiven at some later time.2260

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Most of the so-called bad things that happen in people’s lives are due to unconsciousness. They are self-created, or rather ego-created.2286

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Ego is the unobserved mind that runs your life when you are not present as the witnessing consciousness, the watcher.2288

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The basic ego patterns are designed to combat its own deep-seated fear and sense of lack.2291

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The down cycle is absolutely essential for spiritual realization. You must have failed deeply on some level or experienced some deep loss or pain to be drawn to the spiritual dimension. Or perhaps your very success became empty and meaningless and so turned out to be failure.2326

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Failure lies concealed in every success, and success in every failure.2328

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The whole advertising industry and consumer society would collapse if people became enlightened and no longer sought to find their identity through things. The more you seek happiness in this way, the more it will elude you.2365

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A Buddhist monk once told me: “All I have learned in the twenty years that I have been a monk I can sum up in one sentence: All that arises passes away. This I know.”2375

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I have learned to offer no resistance to what is; I have learned to allow the present moment to be and to accept the impermanent nature of all things and conditions. Thus have I found peace.2376

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To offer no resistance to life is to be in a state of grace, ease, and lightness.2378

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Even if everything were to collapse and crumble all around you, you would still feel a deep inner core of peace. You may not be happy, but you will be at peace.2385

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All inner resistance is experienced as negativity in one form or another. All negativity is resistance.2387

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No other life-form on the planet knows negativity, only humans,2400

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Watch any plant or animal and let it teach you acceptance of what is, surrender to the Now. Let it teach you Being.2404

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I have lived with several Zen masters — all of them cats.2407

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Whenever you notice that some form of negativity has arisen within you, look on it not as a failure, but as a helpful signal that is telling you: “Wake up. Get out of your mind. Be present.”2424

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Instead of having a wall of resistance inside you that gets constantly and painfully hit by things that “should not be happening,” let everything pass through you.2445

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The moment you completely accept your non-peace, your non-peace becomes transmuted into peace.2457

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When you accept what is, every piece of meat — every moment — is the best. That is enlightenment.2466

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Compassion is the awareness of a deep bond between yourself and all creatures.2482

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One of the most powerful spiritual practices is to meditate deeply on the mortality of physical forms, including your own. This is called: Die before you die. Go into it deeply.2488

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Our collective human world is largely created through the level of consciousness we call mind. Even within the collective human world there are vast differences, many different “sub-worlds,” depending on the perceivers or creators of their respective worlds.2527

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the dual nature of true compassion, which is awareness of a common bond of shared mortality and immortality. At this deep level, compassion becomes healing in the widest sense. In that state, your healing influence is primarily based not on doing but on being. Everybody you come in contact with will be touched by your presence and affected by the peace that you emanate,2551

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who you are is always a more vital teaching and a more powerful transformer of the world than what you say, and more essential even than what you do.2560

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When a hungry person asks you for bread and you have some, you will give it. But as you give the bread, even though your interaction may only be very brief, what really matters is this moment of shared Being, of which the bread is only a symbol. A deep healing takes place within it. In that moment, there is no giver, no receiver.2563

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Just as you cannot fight the darkness, so you cannot fight unconsciousness. If you try to do so, the polar opposites will become strengthened and more deeply entrenched. You will become identified with one of the polarities, you will create an “enemy,” and so be drawn into unconsciousness yourself.2575

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True surrender, however, is something entirely different. It does not mean to passively put up with whatever situation you find yourself in and to do nothing about it. Nor does it mean to cease making plans or initiating positive action.2589

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Surrender is the simple but profound wisdom of yielding to rather than opposing the flow of life.2591

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to surrender is to accept the present moment unconditionally and without reservation.2592

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Resistance is the mind.2598

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For example, if you were stuck in the mud somewhere, you wouldn’t say: “Okay, I resign myself to being stuck in the mud.” Resignation is not surrender. You don’t need to accept an undesirable or unpleasant life situation. Nor do you need to deceive yourself and say that there is nothing wrong with being stuck in the mud. No. You recognize fully that you want to get out of it. You then narrow your attention down to the present moment without mentally labeling it in any way. This means that there is no judgment of the Now. Therefore, there is no resistance, no emotional negativity. You accept the “isness” of this moment. Then you take action and do all that you can to get out of the mud. Such action I call positive action. It is far more effective than negative action, which arises out of anger, despair, or frustration.2600

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Surrender is perfectly compatible with taking action, initiating change, or achieving goals. But in the surrendered state a totally different energy, a different quality, flows into your doing.2623

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In the state of surrender, you see very clearly what needs to be done, and you take action, doing one thing at a time and focusing on one thing at a time.2634

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You cannot be conscious and unhappy, conscious and in negativity. Negativity, unhappiness, or suffering in whatever form means that there is resistance, and resistance is always unconscious.2657

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You keep your unhappiness alive by giving it time. That is its lifeblood. Remove time through intense present-moment awareness and it dies.2663

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Those who run on mind energy, which is still the vast majority of the Earth’s population, remain unaware of the existence of spiritual energy.2672

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It is true that only an unconscious person will try to use or manipulate others, but it is equally true that only an unconscious person can be used and manipulated.2682

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surrender doesn’t mean that you allow yourself to be used by unconscious people. Not at all. It is perfectly possible to say “no” firmly and clearly to a person or to walk away from a situation and be in a state of complete inner nonresistance at the same time. When you say “no” to a person or a situation, let it come not from reaction but from insight, from a clear realization of what is right or not right for you at that moment. Let it be a nonreactive “no,” a high-quality “no,” a “no” that is free of all negativity and so creates no further suffering.2684

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When you become involved in an argument or some conflict situation, perhaps with a partner or someone close to you, start by observing how defensive you become2702

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Nonresistance doesn’t necessarily mean doing nothing. All it means is that any “doing” becomes nonreactive.2715

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Don’t resist the opponent’s force. Yield to overcome.2716

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221

In Taoism, there is a term called wu wei, which is usually translated as “actionless activity” or “sitting quietly doing nothing.”2718

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The ego believes that in your resistance lies your strength, whereas in truth resistance cuts you off from Being, the only place of true power.2723

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As there are no problems in the Now, there is no illness either. The belief in a label that someone attaches to your condition keeps the condition in place, empowers it, and makes a seemingly solid reality out of a temporary imbalance.2738

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Surrender does not transform what is, at least not directly. Surrender transforms you. When you are transformed, your whole world is transformed, because the world is only a reflection.2744

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Are you seriously ill and feeling angry now about what I have just said? Then that is a clear sign that the illness has become part of your sense of self and that you are now protecting your identity — as well as protecting the illness. The condition that is labeled “illness” has nothing to do with who you truly are.2754

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So whenever any kind of disaster strikes, or something goes seriously “wrong” — illness, disability, loss of home or fortune or of a socially defined identity, breakup of a close relationship, death or suffering of a loved one, or your own impending death — know that there is another side to it, that you are just one step away from something incredible:2770

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If you cannot accept what is outside, then accept what is inside. If you cannot accept the external condition, accept the internal condition.2791

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When there is no way out, there is still always a way through.2803

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Full attention is full acceptance, is surrender.2812

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God is Being itself, not a being. There can be no subject-object relationship here, no duality, no you and God. God-realization is the most natural thing there is.2832

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Enlightenment consciously chosen means to relinquish your attachment to past and future and to make the Now the main focus of your life. It means choosing to dwell in the state of presence rather than in time. It means saying yes to what is. You then don’t need pain anymore.2847

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It is misleading to say that somebody “chose” a dysfunctional relationship or any other negative situation in his or her life. Choice implies consciousness — a high degree of consciousness. Without it, you have no choice.2856

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The mind, conditioned as it is by the past, always seeks to re-create what it knows and is familiar with. Even if it is painful, at least it is familiar.2864

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Nobody chooses dysfunction, conflict, pain. Nobody chooses insanity. They happen because there is not enough presence in you to dissolve the past, not enough light to dispel the darkness. You are not fully here.2876

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issue with their parents, if you still harbor resentment about something they did or did not do, then you still believe that they had a choice — that they could have acted differently. It always looks as if people had a choice, but that is an illusion. As long as your mind with its conditioned patterns runs your life, as long as you are your mind, what choice do you have? None. You are not even there.2879

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If you are run by your mind, although you have no choice you will still suffer the consequences of your unconsciousness, and you will create further suffering.2885

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And how do I get to that point of realization? When you surrender to what is and so become fully present, the past ceases to have any power. You do not need it anymore. Presence is the key. The Now is the key.2893

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

Decks in Book Notes Class (70):