Eckhart on Loneliness?

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 :)
Post Reply
Learner
Posts: 117
Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 9:13 pm

Eckhart on Loneliness?

Post by Learner » Wed Nov 23, 2011 10:25 am

Does anyone know which video Eckhart talks specifically about loneliness? There used to be a video called "Eckhart Tolle on Loneliness" on YouTube but it got taken down due to copyright infringement and now I can't find it anywhere. I just want to know which video it came off of so that I can perhaps buy it.

While on the subject, I just broke up with my girlfriend due to some lifestyle differences that we had. Neither of us were mad with each other but I definitely feel that it was the right choice... However, I'm having a hard time adjusting to not talking to her. I was with her for 2 years and we literally texted or talked every day and going from that to nothing is hard for me to adjust to. I keep wanting to talk to her, cook for her, and I often think of her... I guess this is because I literally just broke up with her yesterday, but anyway, do you guys have any advice for me to ease some of this distress? In other words, it's not just that I miss her but I miss having a person there to talk to because I'm an only child and my mom and dad are usually busy.

User avatar
Kutso
Posts: 884
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 6:27 pm
Location: Gothenburg, Sweden

Re: Eckhart on Loneliness?

Post by Kutso » Wed Nov 23, 2011 11:15 am

Learner wrote:but anyway, do you guys have any advice for me to ease some of this distress?
I've been through this as well. My ex-girlfriend dumped me three years ago (we had been together for 5 years and had a son together), and let me tell you that there's really nothing you can do about it. Well, sure, you could get drunk or drug yourself, but that will only delay the inevitable.
It may sound cliché, but it will get better with time. And actually, I believe, you will get over it faster if you don't try to find a way to do anything about the pain.
Not that. Not that. Not that. Not that. Not that. Not that. Not that. Not that.

magicbutterfly
Posts: 242
Joined: Wed Nov 09, 2011 5:32 am

Re: Eckhart on Loneliness?

Post by magicbutterfly » Fri Nov 25, 2011 9:56 am

Kutso wrote:And actually, I believe, you will get over it faster if you don't try to find a way to do anything about the pain.
I agree. Go into the pain and become aware of how it feels in your body. Become the observing presence of the pain. There is you, the observer, and there is the pain. Watch the waves of pain without judging them as bad. The pain is as it is; don't label it, just observe. Accept the pain just as it is because it is. You will find that it will transmute into peace. 8)
"As soon as you honor the present moment, all unhappiness and struggle dissolve, and life begins to flow with joy and ease." Ekhart Tolle, The Power of Now

Learner
Posts: 117
Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 9:13 pm

Re: Eckhart on Loneliness?

Post by Learner » Sun Nov 27, 2011 10:57 am

Well thanks. Does anyone happen to know where Eckhart talks about loneliness? I really miss that video!

peleke4
Posts: 223
Joined: Sat Sep 20, 2008 8:52 am

Re: Eckhart on Loneliness?

Post by peleke4 » Sun Nov 27, 2011 10:36 pm

Funny I was just listening to Realizing the Power of Now, the very last track in the program and he hit on this subject:

"suffering does not arise from loneliness but from the fear of loneliness... that's a mental projection that says, 'you are going to be alone for the rest of your life.' And it's added to the story of me... the one who is now without a relationship, completely alone. That gets incorporated into the conceptualized sense of self. And then you can think about how lonely it is not to have a partner... probably not going to find anybody ever again. Staying with what is... single out this moment... just this... you may be alone, but not lonely. Lonely is a concept, a story. you can't be lonely without a story... you can't be alone without a story. Lonely is already a little story.. "I am lonely" is a story. "I'm alone" is a fact. And the fact is neutral, fine. I'm alone here and even that is not absolutely true... you're not really alone in the deepest level... I am lonely is already the beginning of a story... see that, and return to the simplicity of this moment."

Learner
Posts: 117
Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 9:13 pm

Re: Eckhart on Loneliness?

Post by Learner » Mon Nov 28, 2011 7:05 am

peleke4, thank you I greatly appreciate that... While on this subject, and since I am now "single," I've thought about going out alone sometimes. I personally have no problem with it because I am a pretty independent guy but I know some people in society create labels for it like "loner" "loser" and etc... But I have a full-time job, I go to school, and I have friends (those things don't really matter anyway as they are OBJECTS and not truly me). I just honestly find it relaxing and sometimes less distracting to go out alone and possibly meet a girl. A lot of times friends get in the way by wanting to leave the place, getting in the way, etc... There seems to be 2 points of view on this: 1. Someone who has the confidence and peace to go out alone is attractive. 2. People who go out alone are "losers."

What do you think?

spikyface
Posts: 383
Joined: Fri Sep 21, 2007 11:40 am
Location: Sheffield, England

Re: Eckhart on Loneliness?

Post by spikyface » Tue Dec 06, 2011 8:58 pm

"suffering does not arise from loneliness but from the fear of loneliness... that's a mental projection that says, 'you are going to be alone for the rest of your life.' And it's added to the story of me... the one who is now without a relationship, completely alone. That gets incorporated into the conceptualized sense of self.
Thanks for this very pointed reminder peleke, I was feeling like this lately but kept thinking there was a good reason why this didn't use to bother me before (although I couldn't remember why at the time)

I was unconsciously creating a story and getting caught up in it, but at the same time not quite believing the story :?
Do not take anyone as an authority on what you are. Ultimately all the answers lie within

rontant
Posts: 101
Joined: Sun Oct 02, 2011 1:01 pm

Re: Eckhart on Loneliness?

Post by rontant » Wed Dec 07, 2011 3:01 pm

Learner wrote:There seems to be 2 points of view on this: 1. Someone who has the confidence and peace to go out alone is attractive. 2. People who go out alone are "losers."
What do you think?
These are just concepts and ideas. If you truly buy into any of them, you would just be creating unnecessary sufferings. :mrgreen:

presence97533
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2012 2:29 am

Re: Eckhart on Loneliness?

Post by presence97533 » Thu Feb 23, 2012 2:47 am

Hi Learner. Your post is very similar to my current situation, and I find myself asking the same questions. I stumbled upon this thread from a Google search, so Google is definitely getting eerily good at sending queries to the right place.

So I also just broke up with my girlfriend of 2 years, and I also still miss her, miss being together, miss everything we had. I do think I made the right choice, there were too many aspects where we weren't compatible, and yet I still love her and want us to be in each others lives in some capacity once the dust has settled. We feel it is best to give each other time right now (it has been a month), and I feel that she may still be "in love" and she may have hopes for us to get back together, so I want to be sure we have given each other enough time so that we don't try to be friends too soon and ruin that possibility.

And yes, like you, I also struggle with loneliness now. This desire to not be single comes quite often, and it comes as a judgement of myself with an underlying feeling that society expects me to not be single and that I am flawed until that gets rectified. This leads me to search for wholeness in a relationship, and to feel that I am not whole right now. Intellectually I know that this is false, and that I can be whole right now, on my own. But I don't truly feel it or live it yet. I really liked the Tolle quote posted as a reply in this thread, thank you to peleke4 for posting it.

But it is indeed hard to be single when you would indeed enjoy the company of a woman, but you are not the type to go out picking up girls in a bar. There's online dating sites, but again there it feels like it would be grasping out to solve a problem that isn't really a problem. If I could truly not see it as a problem I guess I would simply be content to be single and let life unfold. But my resistance to that seems to suggest I am not there yet. That I still believe I am not whole, not right, until I meet a new woman and we become a couple. Then, in time, this couple will become the norm, I will feel normal in the eyes of society, I may have a family and the rest of it, and then what? This current feeling of lack, of incompleteness, will have transformed into some other feeling of lack. And then I would try to deal with that one in a similar way. And so on.

So to stop it all, right now. To be alone, but not start the story in my head of "I am lonely", indeed seems like the path. But it is hard. There is a feeling inside of loneliness that is real. It may be a bit of nostalgia for my ex, it may be simple sexual energy buildup, but it is there. And it in itself makes living this present moment of being alone difficult, since I have difficulty dis-identifying from this as just a story in my head.

I think I am just venting more than anything at this stage, but hopefully this either helps someone, or someone can help me!

spikyface
Posts: 383
Joined: Fri Sep 21, 2007 11:40 am
Location: Sheffield, England

Re: Eckhart on Loneliness?

Post by spikyface » Thu Feb 23, 2012 12:15 pm

presence97533 wrote:There is a feeling inside of loneliness that is real.

I think I am just venting more than anything at this stage, but hopefully this either helps someone, or someone can help me!
If you were hungry you would find something to eat right? So logically since you're lonely why not try to take some practical steps to find a partner (via online dating or whatever method you prefer) ? Although if it's just venting then never mind

In the meantime there's no need to feel disconnected from the rest of the world because of the story that's playing your head
And yes, like you, I also struggle with loneliness now. This desire to not be single comes quite often, and it comes as a judgement of myself with an underlying feeling that society expects me to not be single and that I am flawed until that gets rectified. This leads me to search for wholeness in a relationship, and to feel that I am not whole right now. Intellectually I know that this is false, and that I can be whole right now, on my own. But I don't truly feel it or live it yet. I really liked the Tolle quote posted as a reply in this thread, thank you to peleke4 for posting it.
You seem to be having trouble accepting that you don't feel whole now, but you can accept that you don't feel whole now and that this feeling will pass. This is a very basic stumbling block towards acceptance/surrender; you always have two chances for acceptance, the first is to accept your current situation, the second is to accept that you cannot accept your current situation right now. By doing the latter, you're treating your "self" with compassion and patience and most importantly, not resisting what is

At least this way you're not resisting your current situation and it should put some figurative distance between you and this thought
It's only because this thought is at the forefront of your mind that it's become part of your self-image
By resisting it, you only energise that thought pattern and grant it further momentum. Once you can accept your current situation without judgement, this lonely self-image gradually loses energy until it unravels completely
Do not take anyone as an authority on what you are. Ultimately all the answers lie within

presence97533
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2012 2:29 am

Re: Eckhart on Loneliness?

Post by presence97533 » Thu Feb 23, 2012 4:56 pm

spikyface wrote: If you were hungry you would find something to eat right? So logically since you're lonely why not try to take some practical steps to find a partner (via online dating or whatever method you prefer) ?
Thanks for the helpful reply spikyface (I can't help picturing you with a spiky face!)

Taking practical steps to find a partner does feel like something I want to do, so your comments helped. Yet at the same time, I question my motivations. I recently ended a 2-year relationship that wasn't the right fit, and so the loneliness right now is particularly strong and may be clouding my judgement. I have a sense that my desire for a relationship is partly based on feeling that I am incomplete if I'm not in one, and that I am judged as such by society. These aren't the thoughts I want to have guiding my actions. So I have doubts about which path to follow: to stay single while I wait for a (possible) time when I will feel truly whole and complete regardless of my relationship status, or to accept that at this stage I do indeed want a relationship and do indeed want to take a path to find a partner.
spikyface wrote: You seem to be having trouble accepting that you don't feel whole now, but you can accept that you don't feel whole now and that this feeling will pass. This is a very basic stumbling block towards acceptance/surrender; you always have two chances for acceptance, the first is to accept your current situation, the second is to accept that you cannot accept your current situation right now. By doing the latter, you're treating your "self" with compassion and patience and most importantly, not resisting what is

At least this way you're not resisting your current situation and it should put some figurative distance between you and this thought
It's only because this thought is at the forefront of your mind that it's become part of your self-image
By resisting it, you only energise that thought pattern and grant it further momentum. Once you can accept your current situation without judgement, this lonely self-image gradually loses energy until it unravels completely
Very wise words and very helpful to read. A sincere thanks for taking the time to share. That "second" chance to accept is one which I all too often forget about, but is indeed a powerful one. Thanks again.

BJA28
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Feb 15, 2012 8:14 pm

Re: Eckhart on Loneliness?

Post by BJA28 » Fri Feb 24, 2012 7:09 pm

I have it somewhere. I just have collected so much ET videos that it would take me forever to find it. But since we are on this topic, I do remember ET saying that there is a difference between being alone and solitude. If I remember correctly - if one is in solitude, then that person is at peace with him or herself. If one is alone, they are not at peace and are looking for company. Well, something to that extent. Probably not accurate, if so, someone can shed some light on that. :)

spikyface
Posts: 383
Joined: Fri Sep 21, 2007 11:40 am
Location: Sheffield, England

Re: Eckhart on Loneliness?

Post by spikyface » Fri Feb 24, 2012 10:02 pm

presence97533 wrote: Thanks for the helpful reply spikyface (I can't help picturing you with a spiky face!)

Taking practical steps to find a partner does feel like something I want to do, so your comments helped. Yet at the same time, I question my motivations. I recently ended a 2-year relationship that wasn't the right fit, and so the loneliness right now is particularly strong and may be clouding my judgement. I have a sense that my desire for a relationship is partly based on feeling that I am incomplete if I'm not in one, and that I am judged as such by society. These aren't the thoughts I want to have guiding my actions. So I have doubts about which path to follow: to stay single while I wait for a (possible) time when I will feel truly whole and complete regardless of my relationship status, or to accept that at this stage I do indeed want a relationship and do indeed want to take a path to find a partner.
My face was kinda spiky the day I came up with that name (cos I needed a shave) so that's where it came from :lol:

I see your point though, maybe the following will help:

When I was meditating, when all the distracting thoughts had boiled off I'd sometimes be left with a sense of longing for union, it was a desire to connect with someone on that same level, to share this experience
At the same time however, I would feel connected on a very basic level, like I could never really be alone as long as I was conscious of my connection to everything else

In the normal unconscious state of feeling alone, the desire to find a partner seems more visceral and stronger, like a goal to be accomplished rather than wanting to share something precious
There is also an element of wanting what others have, whereas with the conscious longing there wasn't really any sense of this
Do not take anyone as an authority on what you are. Ultimately all the answers lie within

Post Reply