Physical suffering (i.e. pain, illness, and disease) is caused by too much negative emotion building up in the body. When a person is overwhelmed by negative emotions such as anger, hatred, fear or jealousy, then vital energy is diverted from the normal functioning of the body. In this state, the physiology of your body changes, your heart beats faster, adrenaline is released, you lose sleep, and your body starts to malfunction. If this is your normal state, then disease is likely.
But is it possible to change your emotions, to change the way you feel? Can this really be the antidote to suffering? Yes, of course. The first step toward solving a problem is becoming aware of the problem. There are several levels of awareness:
Level 1: Physical awareness—you are aware of your overall state of health, whether you are in pain, whether you are tired, etc. If you are aware of yourself only on this first level of awareness, then you are unaware that your physical state is your body's reaction to your emotional state. You don’t believe there is anything you can do in your inner realm to improve your physical state.
Level 2: Emotional awareness—you are constantly aware of whether you are in a positive emotional state (excited, blissful, happy, inspired) or negative (fearful, angry, jealous). If you are aware of yourself on both the physical and emotional level, then you will be able to dissolve negative emotions; thus preventing physical illness. However, you remain stressed or unhappy much of the time because you are letting your ego run your mind and are unaware of what causes your emotions.
Level 3: Mind awareness—in this state you are fully aware of your thoughts most of the time. If you are mind-aware, then you have some ability to control emotions because you can try to change your thoughts. Awareness on this level will allow you to live in a more positive state and maintain good physical health. However, you may sometimes fail to control your negative thoughts or fears because you are unaware of your true identity.
Level 4: Essence awareness—in this highest state of being you are conscious, enlightened, awakened. You are aware that you are not your thoughts, and you occasionally exist in the blissful realm of no thought. In this state, negative emotion is no longer present in your being and neither is pain, disease or illness. You cut it off at the top so that your body can remain in its natural, perfect state. You are aligned with a higher intelligence and your life flows beautifully without much effort.
Essence awareness is only possible when you have mastered the other levels. Mastering any level requires full acceptance of what is. Accept everything about your pain, your emotional state, your crazy thoughts, everything going on within you. Accept everything in your life as it is, even if it is painful at first. Now, watch your problems begin to dissolve as you increase awareness one level at a time.
Transformation is the process whereby you first become aware of yourself on the physical level, then the emotional, then the mental. Finally, you discover your true identity, your true essence. When this journey is complete, you become pure love and you are a source of light to the world. We continue tomorrow and each day after that.
Emotion is a reflection of the mind in the body.
The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment by Eckhart Tolle
Image by Darren Kall
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Give fully in work to receive enough money. Give fully as a parent to receive the gift of wonderful children. Give fully in sex and romance to receive ecstasy. Give fully in kindness to receive kindness.
But giving is not enough. Now we learn to receive just as fully as we give.
By fully receiving each precious gift we are given by the people in our lives, we remove the false perception that there is any difference between giving and receiving. Without someone to receive, giving is impossible and nothing happens.
Giving and receiving are not two separate things. What we are describing is a single act that takes place between two people in the present moment. When two people become open and willing to engage fully in this act, then life can flourish, happiness can flow, energy and abundance is unleashed, and you become engaged in a virtuous cycle of value creation that expands the universe.
So now we remove all sense of sacrifice. We give fully—but only what we deeply desire to give. We receive fully—and feel no shame in enjoying the depths of each gift. This is enjoying life. We continue tomorrow and each day after that.
Now you can relax. You can smile at other people’s drama—even the stuff directed at you—knowing it isn’t about you and doesn’t mean anything.
Now you can feel safe. You can stop regretting the past or worrying about the future—even the serious stuff—knowing that if you are always present, then you are channeling all the power and wisdom of the universe, and everything is okay.
Now you can completely enjoy yourself. You are free to love without fear. Free to plunge right into the adventures that excite you. Even as you step into that realm beyond what was previously fantasy, there is no drama—just a fully-experienced, blissful excitement within.
Now there is nothing to decide and nothing to control. It is enough to be true, be real, be honest, be your crazy self—knowing that the world around you will effortlessly adjust. Now you are illuminating reality with your light.
This is the good which has no opposite. The ego offers nothing in comparison, and only gets in the way. We continue tomorrow and each day after that.
To undo the disastrous effects of tyranny, we need only awaken to being and recondition the mind to love.
We have fought the system for centuries and have been ignored. We have engaged in our so-called democracies only to watch government corruption and oppression increase while the faces change. We’ve tried to ignore it. We’ve complained about it. We know the truth about it. Still nothing changes.
But there is something we haven’t tried yet: a consciousness revolution. It is the only true and lasting revolution because it is the only loving one. If the problem is a system based on fear, then the solution is a movement based on love.
Each person who awakens—there are already millions of us around the world and growing—becomes a revolutionary without any risk or effort at all. We cannot be manipulated because we are not fearful. We cannot be lied to because anything that is not love is easily ignored. We don’t respond to threat and intimidation because we are perfectly peaceful and cause no harm. We don’t engage much with the institutions because external form doesn’t really matter. Perfect health and happiness is already present within, so the cycle of additions are broken and destructive consumption decreases.
The only problem in this world is ego. To doubt this is to believe in the system. All centralized institutions are egoic in their functioning. To engage with them is to engage in ego. No change and no victory can be found here.
Freedom is decentralized. Authority comes from within. The solutions come from us—but only when we escape our egos and ignore ego anywhere and everywhere it exists. Only our light can change the world—not through doing; rather, through being. Spread the word. Teach.
To seek happiness in the external is to experience life as a series of highs and lows. However high you rise, you’ll fall just as far.
We think that, by learning to effectively control events, the lows can be avoided. But even after a lifetime spent reaching for the good in external situations or events, we only continue to slip further away from lasting happiness.
What we want is lasting happiness. Moments of beauty, bliss and fun are nice…but not so much if they are always followed by equally dramatic lows. We want a good which has no opposite. This can only be found within. External situations and events do not determine the way you feel or how you experience the present moment. Do not give them this power.
Nothing external can take away your ability to breath calmly, to take a moment for yourself in meditation, to focus awareness on the totality of the present moment.
Nothing external can prevent you from aligning with the thought system of perfect love.
Nothing external is preventing you from forgiving everyone and everything always.
Nothing external is taking away your freedom to make new choices.
Nothing external prevents you from creating loving value by shining your light in service of the good which has no opposite.
We stop fighting for victory in the external. Victory is found within and then effortlessly extended to the external.
External events are not that important. It doesn’t mean we won’t face challenges, that we won’t get sad, that we won’t miss someone…it means that we make peace even with this. Beneath the external events, there is always an oasis of calm, good energy, love and beauty. We continue tomorrow and each day after that.
Announcing the first series of I Am Meetups. The purpose of this event is to bring people together in a spirit of openness and acceptance. Everyone is encouraged to make friendly conversation with anyone about anything.
We plan to hold this event monthly in venues around the world. Join the group on Meetup.com and we'll organize one near you!
Whenever anything negative happens to you, there is a deep lesson concealed within it; although you may not see it at the time. (Eckhart Tolle)
The mind sees things in terms of good/bad, like/dislike, or love/hate. But to stop here is to miss the lesson behind what is happening and then be forced to repeat it again and again as the same problem escalates.
Situations arise in our lives because we’re ready for them. When something happens that feels negative, the purpose is to strengthen you. You are being forced to deal with the challenging situation as a spiritual being.
I don’t know whether challenges are given to us by the universe or whether they spontaneously arise as an inevitable consequence of our errors—but each one of us does have a life curriculum that cannot be avoided.
The challenges are unique, but the starting point is always acceptance. The correct response is always love and presence. The lesson is spiritual growth. Life challenges are the best spiritual teachers. Resist spiritual growth and life becomes increasingly difficult. Learn the lesson, however, and move forward in peace.
“There is only a higher good, which contains the bad.” -Eckhart Tolle
We continue tomorrow and each day after that.