Is Eckhart Tolle teaching Mindfulness or Non-Duality?

This is the place to post whatever questions you have related to the teachings of Eckhart Tolle. The rest of us will do whatever we can to help you achieve a better understanding :)
cobra22
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Re: Is Eckhart Tolle teaching Mindfulness or Non-Duality?

Post by cobra22 » Sun Nov 18, 2018 4:52 am

It seems Eckhart believes in non-duality. The problem with this is that if non-dualism is real then what does it really matter whether we are present/conscious or not?

I haven't done much research into the non-dualism philosophy but it seems to me if it's true then we as human beings are basically 'souless'. That we are robots and our self-awareness goes when we die or the parts of the brain responsible for self-awareness stop functioning. I don't like this philosophy as it seems very cold.

Eckhart though seems to have quite a warm view over things. He says that if we get in touch with our 'non-dualistic' nature then we end suffering and experience pure joy. But then what is this individual self-aware entity experiencing this moment of presence and joy?

If we remove our past and future and our individual identity then what are we? What is the point to all this? What is the point of becoming present as a human being? Why do we even have self-awareness built into us?

Dcdc
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Re: Is Eckhart Tolle teaching Mindfulness or Non-Duality?

Post by Dcdc » Tue Nov 20, 2018 9:03 pm

cobra22 wrote:
Sun Nov 18, 2018 4:52 am
It seems Eckhart believes in non-duality. The problem with this is that if non-dualism is real then what does it really matter whether we are present/conscious or not?

I haven't done much research into the non-dualism philosophy but it seems to me if it's true then we as human beings are basically 'souless'. That we are robots and our self-awareness goes when we die or the parts of the brain responsible for self-awareness stop functioning. I don't like this philosophy as it seems very cold.

Eckhart though seems to have quite a warm view over things. He says that if we get in touch with our 'non-dualistic' nature then we end suffering and experience pure joy. But then what is this individual self-aware entity experiencing this moment of presence and joy?

If we remove our past and future and our individual identity then what are we? What is the point to all this? What is the point of becoming present as a human being? Why do we even have self-awareness built into us?
Hello, my friend. I'm not a teacher, and I'm not talking for others. But in order to adding to the discussion, I'm going to write something. I don't know if this is going to help you, but at least I promise it will be written with presence. Oh, and I'm sorry for my english, it's not my first language :-)
cobra22 wrote:
Sun Nov 18, 2018 4:52 am
If we remove our past and future and our individual identity then what are we?
You are a natural phenomenon that is 'being' right now.

You think that you are the voice in your head and that ego (with a name, a "story", someone that likes doing the activity A, doesn't like to do the activity B, and so on) because we have the skill to remember a little bit of the presents moments that have already happened. If you think with zealously, you'll notice that we remember just a fraction of the things that happened (try to remember which were the colors of the t-shirts of the people you talked yesterday, for example, and all the minimal features of the places you went, and I guess you'll see that our brain just show to us some moments of perception; in some cases, we even complete the rest of the scene to be easier to understand).

Don't get me wrong, there's not wrong with that; it is a skill that our brain have, and probably (in my opinion, although 'I' don't exist, hehehehe) for our survival.

The thing is: that skill give us the ability to "look to" the past, "project" what happened in our mind; and, because of that, we can "create" some scenarios in the future as well. That is absolutely precious and beautiful, because we can do a lot of good things using that, but we usually start to use this to create imaginary scenes during the day, and our body, that doesn't know this very well, "reacts" to what is going on in that scenes as well - even if we don't notice. It is similar to when we are dreaming: "our body" can release cortisol and accelerate the beats, for example, if "it" thinks we are in danger, even if we are not (because we are in our bed, hehehehe).

The point is: if you had a disease that made you forget absolutely everything, including language (which is also a creation/form), would you die? No, because you are not your ego; you are a natural phenomenon that is happening, with or without memory and scenarios that our mind can create.

The bubble inside a bottle dies when we open it? No, just transform it self into another thing. That "bubble" never exist as something "solid" and/or "real". We, using our skill, that created a "concept" of bubble; and in another language is not "bubble", for example, and, although it's not the case of the bubble, a lot of words and ideas that exist in some language don't necessary exist and other languages. In my language, for example, we have a specific word for the feeling of "missing" someone in a specific form that in english doesn't exist (you guys use "missing" to this specific feeling too, but it's different, it's not possible to explain in english, hehehehe).
cobra22 wrote:
Sun Nov 18, 2018 4:52 am
I don't like this philosophy as it seems very cold.
It's not a 'philosophy'. Philisophy - and your products - are forms made by language, that is also a form.

All of these are concepts, creations of mind. Again: it's not wrong with that, it's a wonderful - and, to us, necessary - skill to have in order to survive and even to live, but we are just bubbles: we are a phenomenon that is happening, but with the ilusion (for some of us) that we are permanent and "solid". If you increases the sample size of time, you'll see that we were other things, like iron and carbon for example, and, now, we are this.
cobra22 wrote:
Sun Nov 18, 2018 4:52 am
But then what is this individual self-aware entity experiencing this moment of presence and joy?
You know, I don't know if I'm right, but I guess something is going to be very clear to you right now because it was what happened with me in that point. A zen master (that I know, from my country) someday asked to your teacher (at that time): "If language is just another form, why we teach and write using it?". Then, his master smiled and said: "Because it's everything we have."

So, try to think: language is form, and the "subject" that ET - and we - are talking about is beyond form. So, it's just impossible to explain in a way that is 100% "closed" (I don't know if you are going to understand what I ment with this). What ET said was an attempt to give you a taste of what he really is talking about, you know? Because of that, he - and Buddha as well - said: "Don't trust me; experience it".

"You" are not going to have "joy", because "you" don't exist (not as your ego), and "joy" is a word that tries to explain a feeling/experience.

The point is: if you are presence, "you" can "enjoy" (but try to think that these are just words, and english it's just a language that we created to facilitate a little bit the communication of us) the natural phenomenon that "you" are, that is happening here and now. And this is wonderful! It is calm and peaceful.

We are not so special because our egos don't exist; but, at the same time, we are so special because we all (not just human beings, or living beings, but all the material) are just one, and this is beautiful :-)

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Re: Is Eckhart Tolle teaching Mindfulness or Non-Duality?

Post by Sighclone » Fri Nov 23, 2018 7:48 pm

Thanks for joining, dcs and cobra!

Fundamentally, Buddha was talking about ending suffering through expanding awareness. While the first recognition of Self, Brahaman, etc can be startling, the embodiment of that initial experience continues to evolve while the body-mind lives. "Owning" the experience of joy or peace is not necessary, because that implies "an owner." But acknowledging an experience that is "happening to me and not to the guy at the front of the bus" is just another way of recognizing that,in the relative world, we are all separate and unique. "My" body is not your "your" body and my experience is not your experience. If that were not true, then all that would be necessary is for ET or Buddha to have an experience and then we all would be having that experience. The ultimate discovery as self-awareness expands is that the "deeper" we go, the less we are separate. And at the deepest level, there is not only no separation between you and me, but no separation between you and me and the "rest of" the Universe. That observation is felt, and can only be proved by experience.

The concept of "soul" is that some separate entity we know as "me" survives independently after the body dies. Having not died yet, like Eckhart, I cannot comment from direct experience. But there are a large number of NDE narratives and psychic reports that suggest that something unique can survive death. I'll report back, if I can, after I die...

Andy
A person is not a thing or a process, but an opening through which the universe manifests. - Martin Heidegger
There is not past, no future; everything flows in an eternal present. - James Joyce

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