Learnings from Teachings of Eckhart Tolle and Others
This is a compiled list of thoughts and concepts from the teachings of Eckhart Tolle and other spiritual gurus on the idea of mindfulness and being in the present moment. It is shared to be a resource during times of stress and uncertainty, but also as a way of life in order to ease suffering for you and others.
- Understand and acknowledge that you are neither this body nor this mind. You are not your thoughts and feelings. You are the presence that observes and understands those things. Be the observer, the witness.
- Accept any situation as it is at this moment. Accept it moment by moment. Accept it as you had chosen it. Work with it, not against it. Make it your friend and ally, not your enemy. Do not resist it. Say to yourself: It is as it is.
- Understand that there is no past, there is no future, there is only ever now. Anger, hurt, and resentment are products of the past. If you find you’re feeling them, you’re living in the past. Hope and living for some point in time when everything will be better is living in the future. Both living in the past and living in the future deny living in the present moment. The present moment is the “better”. Embrace it.
- Recognize and identify your feelings — don’t judge or reject them. Just let them be and observe them. Watch them come and go without accepting they’re real or “the truth”. Allow them to go. They are only your mind; the voice in your head is your ego and unobserved mind. Don’t believe everything you think. True thoughts arise from the observer. Be aware.
- Don’t engage in the story making of your mind. When someone speaks harshly about you or someone else, you can respond neutrally with “Is that so?” When someone does or doesn’t do something, don’t take it personally. Accept that it is as it is and leave it at that; don’t build a story around it.
- When you observe yourself feeling anxious, fearful, sad, or angry, say to yourself: “I’m not at peace and that’s ok.” or “That’s anger expressing itself.” Accept your current state as it is. Don’t resist it. By shining a light on it and not trying to resist it, you remove its power. Anxiety, fear, sadness, and anger come from the ego, not the observer. I have found it helpful in those moments to ask if the thoughts are useful or joyful (just as I do with the material things in my life); when the answer is no to both, then my mind lets go.
- Accept, then act if necessary. It’s not personal. This is the other person’s issue; don’t make it yours. Accept it as it is; don’t try to resist or change it. You retain the power to leave; the choice and option are yours. It can be helpful to think: “They just need more time.” That more time is more time to awaken and realize they’re operating out of ego.
Quiet the mind and the soul will speak.
“In a controversy, the instant we feel anger, we have already ceased striving for the truth and have begun striving for ourselves (ego).” -Buddha
See also: Collection of Mindfulness Quotes