New Orleans (Hurricane Katrina)

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 :)

New Orleans (Hurricane Katrina)

Postby summer » Sun Sep 11, 2005 5:28 am

Ever since the the Hurricane warnings were heard, I have been deeply concerned about the tragedy that has occurred in New Orleans. For someone who never watches the News, it has been very upsetting to hear all of the stories about what life has been like for these people over the past few weeks. And of course, the poor way that the political governments have handled the situation, has left many of us wondering?

When I go to spiritual boards such as this one, either no one seems to want to talk about it, or they say "focus on the Light, your energy goes where your attention is" type of advice.

I wonder what Eckhart would have to say about this situation?

Sometimes it feels like just ignoring the painful situations that so many people are suffering through, is like burrowing my head in the sand and blindly pretending that if I don't see it, it doesn't exist.

How does pure love respond to the suffering of others?
User avatar
summer
 
Posts: 466
Joined: Wed Dec 22, 2004 12:42 am
Location: California

Postby lakeswimr » Sun Sep 11, 2005 9:37 pm

Hi Summer,

I posted about this at TPON message board. Do you know that board?

Eckhart Tolle has a great audio interview called 'Even the Sun Will Die' taped on and just after Sept 11 when the twin towers fell and the Pentagon was crashed into, etc. I remember thinking, 'ha, I wonder what he will say to all this! Will it turn me off to ET?' But I ended up feeling even more that he is speaking truth. I think he would say the same things about this and every other similar situation. I can't remember the details of it, though, since I listened to it over a year ago. I have been thinking to re-listen to it now.

I think that ET would say that when we listen to the news reports it is important to do so from presence. Observe any pain body and mind activity this listening generates. He would say the false self/little me can not feel true compassion but the reality of who we are can. We can not offer true love from a place of unconsciousness. We must be present to do that. If we allow this type of news to make us unconscious we do not contrubite to the healing as much as if we act to help from a place of conscious presence.

He would not say to stick one's head in the sand, I'm sure. He would say to feel what we feel fully and allow it.

I found that my obcession with the news on this subject was actually related to *not* allowing the pain of it. I stayed in my mind and that helped me not to feel it. When I stopped that and allowed the pain it helped me become more present.

Gangaji, in 'The Diamond in your pocket' talks about letting world events break our hearts wide open so that we can experience the peace that lies beneath or something like that.

Tolle talks about great loss being an opportunity for great awakening. He says that it is best (maybe best isn't the right word) to surrender to a given experience of loss. If the pain is too great and we can not accept the loss then surrender to this non-acceptance and by doing so we become present. So, in this case say I am so upset by the slow response which caused unnecessary death and suffering and I can not accept that it happened due to incompetence and poor planning on the part of the government. I hurt too much and can't let it go. My mind is running the show and my pain body is active. I'm angry. I'm pissed! I'm in disbelief. If I can step back and observe this and allow my pain and fully feel it I become present again and from this place I can allow the pain and keep feeling it and transmute it so I don't create more pain body to carry with me into the future.

Tolle also talks about either accepting a situation, or acting to change it. If we can't change it we must accept at least NOW. And from this place of acceptance we are then more effective at making any change.

Talked enough. lol
lakeswimr
 
Posts: 191
Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2005 10:23 pm
Location: Centrally located in the middle of nowhere

Postby NTD » Sun Sep 11, 2005 11:13 pm

Remember that the news will always try to tell the 'objective' perspective. It will try to tell the story of someone's life/experience. In reality, there is no such perspective. For example, the way the news is presented, it would seem that the suffering is as bad as thousands of people's suffering. In reality, one person can only suffer a certain amount. Stories have us 'adding up' everyone's individual suffering, when really, nobody ever has any more than their own suffering to deal with.

It is very uplifting to hear so many of the victims in New Orleans sounding exactly like ET. They are discovering the importance of living in the now. It is one good thing that has come out of all of this. You also hear others start to tell their story of suffering, then cause themselves more suffering right then. It is a lesson for us all.
NTD
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Aug 31, 2005 6:05 pm

Postby summer » Mon Sep 12, 2005 1:35 am

Dear Lakeswimr and NDT,
thank you so much for your in depth answers. I can relate to all of the points that you raise, and feel more peaceful again :)

Lakeswimr, in another post to Lydian you said

I find it helpful to observe my mind and emotions and pain body in difficult experiences like what you described. I may not be able to do so as much as when things are going "well" but I think that makes it more effective, too. Even if you can be present for short times it will be good.


I would say this sums up a lot of my questions about this whole ordeal.
On the one hand, I was trying to be present with a very challenging situation, and many times the pain body would become active. My mind would start racing, and there would be anger, and sadness, and lots of tears. But I felt it was important to just allow myself to feel very upset.

I listened to a short audio by Gangaji entitled "Having the courage to give up hope" and that really brought me back into presence. Being able to face the horrors of life, and really feel them deeply, we discover an emptiness again.

I chuckled when she said that her path would never be popular or becone a cult. Because unlike religions she doesn't offer the hope of the continuation of me, and my story in another reincarnation, or an after life in Heaven. She doesn't even offer us hope in a better future.

I am not familiar with the message board that you mention, but it sounds interesting.

Thanks again,
summer
User avatar
summer
 
Posts: 466
Joined: Wed Dec 22, 2004 12:42 am
Location: California

Postby BillyPLed » Mon Sep 12, 2005 2:04 am

How does pure love respond to the suffering of others?


I really think that ET's new book will address this question. I am also looking forward to Pema Chodron's new book called No Time To Lose. It is about the Bodhisattva and the vow to end suffering for all sentient beings.

I think one factor to consider is a person's state of consciousness. I think of Maslow's "Hierarchy of Needs." The base of the hierarchy has to do with survival needs and then progresses up through belonging needs, self-esteem needs, etc. until you reach "self-actualization needs" at the peak. Those of us who read books by such individuals as ET, Pema Chodron, Gangaji, etc. are obviously taking care of our self-actualization needs. We, for the most part, have our other needs met. Part of our "mission" (if you want to call it that) would be to help those who are trying to get their lower level needs met -- helping them to meet those needs before they can even consider meeting their higher level needs.

In other words, if you are talking with an individual from N.O. who is homeless, just lost all possessions, had to leave behind their dog and is not sure where they are going to stay when they have to leave the shelter, they are not going to be interested in hearing what you have to say about "presence" or "being" or any other "ethereal" topic. In that case love would respond by doing all that it can to help this person get their basic survival needs met and then working on belonging, etc.

I find this to be very useful in the work that I do and is good to keep in mind for those of us who would like to believe that everyone should be ready for ET. Unfortunately, that is not the case.

Love would respond to suffering with love, compassion, patience, presence. It would start where the person is and not expect them to jump to "self-actualization." I believe It would also be relentless. It will not give up until all beings are "free."
Billy in Lousiana
User avatar
BillyPLed
 
Posts: 80
Joined: Tue Dec 28, 2004 12:10 am
Location: West Monroe, Louisiana

Postby summer » Mon Sep 12, 2005 3:45 am

Your words are like music to my ears, Billy,

Love always responds to the very special needs of everyone in the best way that we know how. Often it seems like a small gesture. Offering food or a hug, or honestly listening to some one else.

Maybe because I don't live in New Orleans, I have felt very frustrated that I couldn't help these people more. But as I went through my day here in California, I certainly listened to others, in a way that I may not usually do when everything seemed to be going just fine.

And one thing I noticed was how empty so much of the "spiritual" talk is when it comes to a real crisis. You mention that most of the people who are interested in Eckhart, already have their basic needs met. It makes me wonder if we imagine that we are some kind of elitist group?

And yet, as NLT mentions, many of these people who seemingly have been reduced to nothing, are more aware of presence than ever. Stripped of all their egoic identities comforts, they are aware that their pure inner essence is still here and now.

I just don't know what to say about this whole experience we are all going through. It is putting me through the ringer, and time will tell. Meanwhile, I really appreciate all of your different insights and experiences.
User avatar
summer
 
Posts: 466
Joined: Wed Dec 22, 2004 12:42 am
Location: California

Postby gina » Mon Sep 12, 2005 7:07 pm

...
Last edited by gina on Sat May 06, 2006 11:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
gina
 
Posts: 387
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2005 2:07 am
Location: texas

Postby DiannaLee » Mon Sep 12, 2005 8:57 pm

lakeswimr wrote:
I found that my obcession with the news on this subject was actually related to *not* allowing the pain of it. I stayed in my mind and that helped me not to feel it. When I stopped that and allowed the pain it helped me become more present.


This is exactly what I needed to read. I have been living in a place where I allowed very little to touch me. I have been dead inside (punctuated by brief periods of overwhelming pain) for most of the last 20 years. There was a time when I allowed my feelings to be and they did transmute into compassion, understanding, love. My mom died when I was 7 yrs. old and along with deep sorrow, I felt an inner peace and sense of well being, even joy, though I later dismissed that experience as just being in shock. Dysfunction set in not because my mother died but, among other reasons, because I bought into the social conditioning of my family and society that we should not express, or even feel our pain and sadness.






BillyPLed wrote:
In other words, if you are talking with an individual from N.O. who is homeless, just lost all possessions, had to leave behind their dog and is not sure where they are going to stay when they have to leave the shelter, they are not going to be interested in hearing what you have to say about "presence" or "being" or any other "ethereal" topic. In that case love would respond by doing all that it can to help this person get their basic survival needs met and then working on belonging, etc.


Countless numbers of times I have been on the receiving or giving end of advice not appropriate for the level I or that person was at.

Thanks,
Dianne
DiannaLee
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat Sep 10, 2005 8:03 pm

Postby lakeswimr » Tue Sep 13, 2005 2:58 am

summer wrote:Dear Lakeswimr and NDT,
thank you so much for your in depth answers. I can relate to all of the points that you raise, and feel more peaceful again :)

Lakeswimr, in another post to Lydian you said

I find it helpful to observe my mind and emotions and pain body in difficult experiences like what you described. I may not be able to do so as much as when things are going "well" but I think that makes it more effective, too. Even if you can be present for short times it will be good.


I would say this sums up a lot of my questions about this whole ordeal.
On the one hand, I was trying to be present with a very challenging situation, and many times the pain body would become active. My mind would start racing, and there would be anger, and sadness, and lots of tears. But I felt it was important to just allow myself to feel very upset.

I listened to a short audio by Gangaji entitled "Having the courage to give up hope" and that really brought me back into presence. Being able to face the horrors of life, and really feel them deeply, we discover an emptiness again.

I chuckled when she said that her path would never be popular or becone a cult. Because unlike religions she doesn't offer the hope of the continuation of me, and my story in another reincarnation, or an after life in Heaven. She doesn't even offer us hope in a better future.

I am not familiar with the message board that you mention, but it sounds interesting.

Thanks again,
summer


Yes, Gangaji can seem bleak if I'm not present! lol No happiness, no hope, no reincarnation, etc. :) I would like to listen to her audio sometime. I have only read her book. It was actually hard for me to get through in parts for this reason. When I was less present I avoided it.

The board I mentioned is The Power of Now MSN Message Board. If you google that you will find it. :)
lakeswimr
 
Posts: 191
Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2005 10:23 pm
Location: Centrally located in the middle of nowhere

Postby summer » Tue Sep 13, 2005 4:11 am

Hi Lakeswimr,
here is a link to check out Gangaji's audios
http://www.gangaji.org/satsang/library/listening.asp
She truly speaks from the same presence that Eckhart does, and often what seems very grim to our suffering selves, is like a brightly lit sky filled with stars and moonlight to our souls. :D

Hi Gina,
thanks for your reminder about how much of all these "natural" disasters, we are creating ourselves. It saddens me to see how disconnected so many people are from the natural world that supports us all.
Living in harmony with our Earth seems like kindergarten awareness to me.

Yet, we are all paying a big price because so many businessmen and politicians live in their private jets looking for the next money making deal.

I pray that I wake up. And that all of my brothers and sisters wake up to beauty and love that is already here and now.
User avatar
summer
 
Posts: 466
Joined: Wed Dec 22, 2004 12:42 am
Location: California

Postby lakeswimr » Sat Sep 17, 2005 3:40 am

Thank you, Summer! I have enjoyed listening some! Plan to listen more. :) She has a wonderful sense of humor.
lakeswimr
 
Posts: 191
Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2005 10:23 pm
Location: Centrally located in the middle of nowhere

Postby DAKO » Sun Sep 25, 2005 4:56 am

Yoheway, I agree that the spirit of many has become infested with ego and all that entales. I also grew up in a matriarchal society and there was great peace, but somehow we have to go past gender. We have to realize we are ALL one and connected whether male or female. And I may be misinterrupting your meaning??? I do understand about the energies you speak of. If we raise our positive energies to the highest levels, no negativity can enter. When a disaster accures we need to feel the suffering and then absorb and change that negative engergy into positive energy and ACTION. In this way we can draw a circle that takes them in, for it is all apart of us.
DAKO
 
Posts: 10
Joined: Sun Sep 18, 2005 8:51 am


Return to Questions

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests