- Paperback: 236 pages
- Publisher: Namaste Publishing (August 19, 2004)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1577314808
- ISBN-13: 978-1577314806
- Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 6 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 9.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 5,160 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #174 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment Paperback – August 19, 2004
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Ekhart Tolle's message is simple: living in the now is the truest path to happiness and enlightenment. And while this message may not seem stunningly original or fresh, Tolle's clear writing, supportive voice, and enthusiasm make this an excellent manual for anyone who's ever wondered what exactly "living in the now" means. Foremost, Tolle is a world-class teacher, able to explain complicated concepts in concrete language. More importantly, within a chapter of reading this book, readers are already holding the world in a different container--more conscious of how thoughts and emotions get in the way of their ability to live in genuine peace and happiness.
Tolle packs a lot of information and inspirational ideas into The Power of Now. (Topics include the source of Chi, enlightened relationships, creative use of the mind, impermanence, and the cycle of life.) Thankfully, he's added markers that symbolize "break time." This is when readers should close the book and mull over what they just read. As a result, The Power of Now reads like the highly acclaimed A Course in Miracles--a spiritual guidebook that has the potential to inspire just as many study groups and change just as many lives for the better. --Gail Hudson --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
"The Power of Now is one of the best books to come along in years. Every sentence rings with truth and power."
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The end goal here is that amidst the spiritual undertones of the book, what Tolle is really educating people about is self-awareness, which is the cornerstone of growing emotional intelligence. I was reading Daniel Goleman's book, "Emotional Intelligence" at the same time and the parallels were quite obvious. The additional benefit that Tolle offers is walking through some meditations and affirmations and presenting the information in a way that is like an easy to digest conversation.
After I was about halfway through the book, I had a moment of sitting in my car by myself, and had the thought, "I don't have to take this bulls*** anymore, I am not a victim," and then I laughed for about five minutes and many months later, still feel great about all of the things I was able to let go of.
It taught me how to disconnect from the insanity of the mind. I had spent my life reading thousands of books trying to "figure it out" to make my way to a place of happiness and functionality, what Tolle explains that trying to solve the problems of thought from the level of thought is an impossibility. When we let go of mind-consciousness we do not become a meditative vegetable, instead, we gain access to the consciousness of our whole body and a more advanced awareness. I know it sounds weird, but it works. When I can stay present everything I do becomes more effective, and my social skills are way better now then they have ever been.
I don't mean to say that this is the be-all and end-all to human growth, but it has in fact saved my life, so I figured it at least deserved a good review. I am no longer helpless in the face of crushing memories and emotions. Thank you, Mr. Tolle.
I like that the book is set up as a Q&A, which helps simplify the complex concepts into "How does this apply to me in everyday life". I would love to give this book to my family/friends but I think you really have to be in the right place, open and prepared to get the message. For the moment, I'll seek just seek practice "The Power of Now" and be a positive influence that way :)
By most accounts, as a former pastor in an evangelical denomination and someone trained as an apologist in Biblical Literature from a primarily literalistic and fundamentalist point of view, I shouldn't like this book. I should be lambasting it a "new age," "mystical" and "universalism and pantheism."
Yet I'm not. I found the book interesting and very helpful. I found the challenges within it to my own patterns of thinking to be worthwhile and I wasn't particularly threatened by the fact that it's a spiritual book (not religious) and it draws from multiple sources including the teachings of Christ, Zen, Hinduism, gnostic writings, Buddhism, Taoism etc.
That said, I recognize that there are elements of the book with which I don't and others from my traditions will not agree. In spite of that, I still highly recommend the book. While the book is undoubtedly spiritual it is also based in good psychology and it opens the reader who allows themselves to detach from themselves and take the role of an observer of their own habits and thought processes. It provides insight into how our "thought habits" take us out of the present moment and utilize our minds to either continually dwell on the past or worry about the future.
Emotions are in significant measure a product of how we think and how we condition our minds. When we lose the need to continually keep our minds "busy" with things that keep us out of the present moment, then we can live in freedom and independent of our circumstances. Our emotions become connected to the present moment and we're able to "live" freely.
These are not new or unique ideas, even in Christian Tradition. There is a long and strong tradition of mysticism that extends back to the very earliest church and church fathers. Much of what is touched in by Tolle would be considered fairly standard fare in the eastern Tradition of Christianity. It is to the Western analytical mind, that much of this is a great challenge.
So, while I don't necessarily agree with and give equal weighting to all the sources used within the book, that doesn't mean that I don't see the parallels. More than intellectually evaluating the book analytically, the point of the book is to learn how to turn off the mind and move beyond the "noise" that we create to distract ourselves from being present within the moment and enjoying life.
I find that to have been a very helpful thing and I'm glad I read the book. I likely will reread it on occasion for the reminder and reinforcement.