If you’ve been following this blog I’ve mentioned Eckhart Tolle several times.
To me he seems to explain in terms that we in the West understand, some of the long held wisdom of the ages. Nothing he says is new, it’s all simply a rehash of what all the great spiritual teachers have been saying for ages and I don’t think that he is anything special other than at present he is the one who has captured the minds of people who are searching. After all it’s not the messenger but the message that is important. It’s just that he is using the modern, Western systems of understanding to get the message out and he is using the modern Western mindset to explain the things that defy that very Western mindset. A very challenging task. That’s why it’s probably taken him 20 years before he published his first book, The Power of Now, as he mentions that he didn’t understand what happened to him for a long time and as he realised it he was able to then explain it, in the terms of his culture, to the advantage of we, who also live in it.
His latest book A New Earth and some of his talks get a little deep and could be somewhat overwhelming in the first instance but recently I found these three CBC interviews which I feel are a great introduction into what he is about. I’ve also recorded the audio if you just want to listen to that, the links are below each embedded YouTube clip.
Picking up from yesterdays post about 2009 and how good a year I had, I thought that it was also appropriate to consider what is ahead for 2010.
Last year I sat down with some serious consideration to goal setting and planning out my year ahead.What I hoped to have for my podcast, income, home and social life. Then as the year wore on I realised that despite my good intentions many other things were being thrown up in my path creating situations that prevented or changed the direction of things that I had set out to achieve. Some improvements some challengers but things that changed where I thought I was travelling, thereby creating a feeling in me that I didn’t have control on my life and frustration that I wasn’t able to make the goals realised as I was told would be achieved if I followed the rules of goal setting. Basically what I’m saying is that the classic western goal setting model doesn’t seem to work for this little black duck.
So as I mentioned in the last post, as I started on this exercise in May to just opt out of what is expected and make my decisions based on what is appropriate in each moment and the relative ease at which my life now seems to be evolving I’ve decided on some new goals for this new year.
Goal 1 – I intend to be fully engaged with every activity and make any decisions that need to be taken in that moment.
Goal 2 – Any time I fall into emotional considerations of the future or reminiscences of the past I’ll concentrate on Goal 1.
If you haven’t realised goal 2 is actually a variation on goal 1. It’s just that I’m still not brilliant at this and I sometimes have to remind myself to go to Goal 1.
Oh! and just in case you think this is not, or is a real goal, I don’t mind what happens anyway.
I’m just here Now.
Life is a Game
A Game to be Played
You can never Lose
You can only Win
So long as You Play. ’91
It’s now been 48 hours since I started this idea. I still don’t really know what the idea is other than to do my best to stay present, accept things as they evolve and grab any opportunities or inspirations that come along.
However in the last few hours a couple of things have happened that I find interesting.
I’ve put out another podcast and the previous post here with some excellent reactions from the tweeps out there.
I’ve had 2 hours of a screaming chainsaw next door no more than 5 m away and been unconcerned by the deafening noise.
Chris who I do two days work a week with phoned me to say that he couldn’t afford to have me work for him this week. To which I simply accepted the situation without reaction.
Then I get a call from the Red Cross Blood Service, so tomorrow I’m going in to donate platelets for the first time.
I’ve just been for an invigorating run around the city feeling strong and vital.
Nothing much really.
I’m concentrating on being very much in the moment and as I practice I notice that I’m gaining strength at it, constantly being more aware of my body and the events around me including what I’m feeling, seeing and hearing as I type this.
If I was to think about stuff, I’m very much in freefall, but right now I’m fine and that’s all I’m concentrating on this week. So as I write this I’m immensely content and happy.
Over the last few weeks I’ve been listening to quite a bit of some Eckhart Tolle lectures and interviews and it’s yet again got me thinking about the stuff that I struggle with in my life. For those who don’t know, Eckhart wrote the Power of Now which I read just after I went and did a Vipassana meditation retreat back in 2000.
The things that are outlined with both the Power of Now and Vipassana is that with our constant mind chatter we miss out on living in the moment. Therefore if we could live not thinking about the future or past but stayed present in the moment we would have a much more real experience.
So… I’ve decided to have an experiment. Just for one week, (after all how much damage can I do in one week and I currently have a lifestyle suited to it) I’m going to do all that I feel inspired to do in the moment. I will eat, sleep, drink and work as the moment takes me and I’ll see where I am at the end of the week. I’ll have a SocietyFast. No big deal. I’ll still do the things that I have planned if they are appropriate or I will respectfully contact others if affected to inform them of the changes.
Let’s see what happens… Maybe nothing… Maybe something…