practical application is missing

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practical application is missing

Postby xpansion » Fri Dec 12, 2014 3:00 am

Eckharte Tolles books seem to be very focused on the problem but give very little advise on the solution apart from vague advise such as "feel your inner body" and "be aware of your pain body" both of which are abstract concepts. After reading Power of now and New earth I had a lovely fuzzy feeling for a week or two but eventually came to realise that this man is merely talking about his own personal experience which is not necessarily true nor is it the same for everybody. I also bought a third book which was just more of the same. It was basically just a bunch of quotes repeated again from the first two books i.e. very clever marketing. After a while I began to think that this is no different to any other new age guru selling their wares and raking in the dough. Its a nice concept but without actual practical exercises besides the couple of vague ones Ive mentioned, going over and over the pitfalls comes across as quite negative after a while, particularly when you listen to the audio books which are read in such a drab monotone style. Telling people that they are possessed by some kind of malicious entity feeding off their own and everyone else's psyches and all they need to do is be aware of it is not great advise.
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Re: practical application is missing

Postby Onceler » Fri Dec 12, 2014 3:11 am

Yup, can't disagree, nor fully agree. Many here feel that Tolle is a spring board, a jumping off point to a richer spiritual and psychological understanding. That was the case for me. He seems to get the ball rolling, crack the nut, peel off the outer layer for many. It's a process that, once started, seems to have a life of its own. I find it to be a reductionist process. A peeling away of conditioning, concepts, biases, etc. It's startling to suddenly be without a long held belief. Where did it go?

As this process unfolds, Tolle begins to make sense again.
Be present, be pleasant.
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Re: practical application is missing

Postby xpansion » Fri Dec 12, 2014 3:23 am

Onceler wrote:Yup, can't disagree, nor fully agree. Many here feel that Tolle is a spring board, a jumping off point to a richer spiritual and psychological understanding. That was the case for me. He seems to get the ball rolling, crack the nut, peel off the outer layer for many. It's a process that, once started, seems to have a life of its own. I find it to be a reductionist process. A peeling away of conditioning, concepts, biases, etc. It's startling to suddenly be without a long held belief. Where did it go?

As this process unfolds, Tolle begins to make sense again.


Ok yes I can see that this might be the case. I just dont think that anything is ever as simple as "just be aware and feel your body". We all have so much entrenched conditioning, patterns and defences just from this lifetime let alone all the stuff that is the result of evolution survival instincts etc. He just kind of makes it too simplistic and for a while I was like "oh yeah, all I need to do is just be aware" but then I realised I was just grasping at a vague intellectual concept and all my "stuff" was still there. Buddha says we must work hard, slowly and diligently. Buddhist teachings seem to resonate with me more than ETs
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Re: practical application is missing

Postby ashley72 » Fri Dec 12, 2014 8:36 pm

Yep couldn't agree more.

Back in 2007-8 I started suffering from generalised anxiety, then panic disorder, followed by Agoraphobia, & finally.. a nasty bout of depersonalisation disorder, an extreme form of anxiety.

Due to my suffering I started desperately looking for cures and as a consequence came across PON. PON at first glance seem to offer a solution to my mental & emotional problems, but after reading all of Tolle's books, whilst he seem to talk a lot about mental suffering didn't offer a step-by-step fix.

Avoidance had been a big part of my own strategy since being inflicted with anxiety in 2007-08, so I started to wonder if exposure treatment may be the cure. Sure enough it was that simple... the very thing I had been doing all along was making the anxiety worse not better. Go figure!

So I started my own program of exposure treatment, and slowly started to see improvements in all my behaviours day by day, month by month, year by year. These days I'm almost back to my pre anxiety disorder level of 2007. I'm not quite the same because I experienced such suffering, you come away carrying scarred memories from the experience. But I don't avoid like the bad old days!

PON's central message says to surrender to the here & now moment. However, that isn't a solution. The solution is you need to see that when we classified something as "dangerous" even something that isn't dangerous (only imagined)... we get physical symptoms, a fear response, that can sometimes also be perceived as dangerous. It's this 2nd order of perception... the very symptoms of danger as danger that is the disorder... this leads to panic, agoraphobia and ultimately depersonalisation if left untreated. This happens because a positive feedback loop forms... whereby the output signal of fear feeds back into the input signal... causing an ever increasing fear response... which leads to avoidance and isolation.

PON doesn't tell you any of this...So in my opinion misses the heart of the problem of mental suffering.

Fear is a signal in the nervous system. And like all signals can feedback into its self causing a positive feedback circuit rather than its "stable" opposite (negative feedback circuit).

This feedback signal based approach for anxiety disorders is based on a field of science called cybernetics... this field of science studies regulatory systems... therefore the science is ideally suited to study the nervous system, which is basically the regulatory system which governs the human body.

Watch this 1965 video footage on cybernetics... I'm sure you will find interesting.

http://youtu.be/JfVWWX2s7KE
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Re: practical application is missing

Postby Phil2 » Fri Dec 12, 2014 10:16 pm

xpansion wrote:Eckharte Tolles books seem to be very focused on the problem but give very little advise on the solution apart from vague advise such as "feel your inner body" and "be aware of your pain body" both of which are abstract concepts. After reading Power of now and New earth I had a lovely fuzzy feeling for a week or two but eventually came to realise that this man is merely talking about his own personal experience which is not necessarily true nor is it the same for everybody. I also bought a third book which was just more of the same. It was basically just a bunch of quotes repeated again from the first two books i.e. very clever marketing. After a while I began to think that this is no different to any other new age guru selling their wares and raking in the dough. Its a nice concept but without actual practical exercises besides the couple of vague ones Ive mentioned, going over and over the pitfalls comes across as quite negative after a while, particularly when you listen to the audio books which are read in such a drab monotone style. Telling people that they are possessed by some kind of malicious entity feeding off their own and everyone else's psyches and all they need to do is be aware of it is not great advise.


The problem is that anything you 'do' will just feed the 'doer' (ie. ego) ... therefore the problem is not to 'do' something but to 'be' ... and this you ARE already, therefore nothing to 'do' really ... just be quiet ... and surrender to 'what is' without creating a resistance and division ... as Eckhart says 'accept the form that this moment takes' ... that's all you have to 'do' ... do not resist ... thought IS resistance ...
"What irritates us about others is an opportunity to learn on ourselves"
(Carl Jung)
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Re: practical application is missing

Postby ashley72 » Fri Dec 12, 2014 10:36 pm

Thought isn't resistance. "Thought" is a response to perception.

If you perceive something as "dangerous"... what follows is anxious thoughts. So thought is an output signal of perception. If you perceive danger... You get thoughts about that danger..."do I run, hide, freeze or fight".

Perceiving something as "dangerous" can be either a rational or irrational response to a perceived stimulus. If it's rational it is a survival mechanism to avoid danger. Avoidance is a kind of resistance, which can be a very helpful kind of resistance, that in-turn can extend life expectancy.

To say you should stop doing & just be... Is non-sense. What does that mean to stop doing? Do you want to sit around like Ramana and contribute nothing to your life experience, not raising a family, building a house, travel... experience the short transient life humans experience to its fullest.
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Re: practical application is missing

Postby Phil2 » Fri Dec 12, 2014 10:48 pm

ashley72 wrote:
To say you should stop doing & just be... Is non-sense. What does that mean to stop doing?


It means that your actions do not arise out of thought (ie. intention) ... but out of stillness and peace ... therefore there is no 'doer' ... and no 'doing' ... things just happen, no time created, no conflict ... and you experience life as it comes to you, in "the form that this now takes" ... without any resistance to 'what is' ...
"What irritates us about others is an opportunity to learn on ourselves"
(Carl Jung)
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Re: practical application is missing

Postby ashley72 » Sat Dec 13, 2014 1:43 am

Just because some "thoughts" can be anxious or irrational doesn't mean you dispense with the whole system of thought. Thought Is merely a component part of our nervous system which... is basically a control & communication regulatory system. You have a physical body which is governed by this regulatory system... and thought is part of the guiding interface that allows it to interact with the physical surroundings.

You & I could not converse ideas on this forum without thought....if you want to practice what you preach about stillness...stop using thought!
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Re: practical application is missing

Postby KathleenBrugger » Sat Dec 13, 2014 2:03 am

This is why I have never followed a guru. I don't think the complete and absolute truth is going to be found in any one individual human being. But many people have seen or experienced things which have given them insight and wisdom. What they have to share can be of help to others on their spiritual journey. ET is definitely one of those people for me, and there are many others. I agree with Onceler, use this as a springboard to find what works for you. Create your own path, with a little from here and a little from there. That's what I've done and i feel like I am making as much progress as someone I know who is a serious devotee of a guru (not that I'm making comparisons or judgments :lol: ).
We are ALL Innocent by Reason of Insanity
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