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Stillness Speaks Hardcover – Abridged, August 26, 2003
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Expanding on his mantraGet out of your head and into the momentEckhart Tolle offers this new book on living in the now. Here Tolle emphasizes the art of "inner stillness"--the place where thoughts, ego and attachments fall always and we are left only with what the moment has to offer: "When you lose touch with inner stillness, you lose touch with yourself. When you lose touch with yourself, you lose yourself in the world." Don't expect this to be a quick skim or even a straight-through read. Like his previous bestselling book The Power of Now, Tolle uses brief entries and numerous white spaces to give readers easy in-and-out access into enticing spiritual insights that expound on inner stillness, such as learning the difference between surrender and resignation, overcoming the fear death, and how to end suffering. In fact, this is designed to be an ongoing conversation. Pick it up any time or any place, but be sure to allow for plenty of breaks for serious contemplation. Even as you occasionally abandon the book, don't abandon the teachings, pleads Tolle. Embracing and practicing inner stillness is no longer a luxury, he writes, "but a necessity if humankind is not to destroy itself. At the present time the dysfunction of the old consciousness and the arising of the new are both accelerating. Paradoxically things are getting worse and bett! er at the same time, although 'the worse' is more apparent because it makes so much noise." Devotees who have read all of Tolle's books and audio tapes probably won't find new ideas or information here. But they may appreciate the refresher course --revisiting familiar concepts in a slightly different package. --Gail Hudson
From Publishers Weekly
Some readers of this slim follow-up to the bestselling The Power of Now may be alarmed that the seemingly wise and gentle Tolle writes in the introduction that his new work "can be seen as a revival for the present age of the oldest form of recorded spiritual teachings: the sutras of ancient India." Tolle explains that the Vedas and Upanishads, as well as the words of the Buddha, the parables of Jesus and the wisdom of the Tao Te Ching can be thought of as sutras in the sense that they share a brevity that "does not engage the thinking mind more than is necessary." Like those great sacred works, Tolle continues, his writings come from inner stillness. "Unlike those ancient sutras, however, they don't belong to any one religion or spiritual tradition, but are immediately accessible to the whole of humanity." Repeating what has become a familiar if no less ominous note in contemporary spiritual life, he adds that this unprecedented accessibility is due to the urgent need for humanity to wake up if we are not to destroy ourselves. It is the stillness that is our common Being-which is the formless container for what is happening in the now-"that will save and transform the world." In the brief chapters that follow, Tolle describes stillness with eloquent economy. Beautiful stand-alone paragraphs offer insight into the defensive nature of the ego versus what he sees as our true being, the attentive, receptive mind behind thought, the spaciousness and peace that blossoms inside when we accept what is, including death. "Your unhappiness ultimately arises not from the circumstances of your life but from the conditioning of your mind." No one will doubt that Tolle has freed himself from nagging thoughts and fears. But the rest of us?
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Recently I read an outstanding book called Stillpower: The Inner Source of Athletic Excellence by Garret Kramer. He indicated his epiphany came from author Sydney Banks' book The Missing Link: Reflections on Philosophy and Spirit. That too was a great book.
Mesmerized by the first two books, while reading other reviews, I discovered Eckhart Tolle's Stillness Speaks and decided that I would give him another try. I am glad I did.
Like Stillpower and The Missing Link, Tolle's 127-page book on the same subject matter was both insightful and enjoyable. He too talks about the mind chatter we recognize as thought and the equivalent of external noise as inner stillness or gap between thoughts where creativity and solutions to problems are found. It is the object of alertness and awareness of what others are saying without a thought of response. This stillness of thought removes barriers to listening beyond auditory perception to connection with another's consciousness.
Stillness of thought is the surrender to the moment and the recognition that you are life. As such, all living things are connected and sacred.
Tolle alludes to the Mind, Consciousness and Thought and separating one's self from the ego. If we break our unconscious identification to thoughts that lead to unhappiness the mindset will release suffering through the realization that our thoughts created it.
These books, as well as the others, promote mental health, improved relationships and needless suffering. They question reality and truth and encourage acceptance of life as we experience it in now as opposed to worrying about the past or future.
I hope you enjoyed this quick thought evoking read as I did.
This book is not meant to be read in one or two or three reading sessions. It's meant to be read very slowly and mindfully. Read only a page or paragraph at a time. These spiritual Sutra's are meant to shock you into being aware of your true spiritual nature waiting to emerge.
With this separation of our thoughts from our true selves has given us the opportunity to view our lives and actions with more objectivity resulting in our ability to see life more clearly and with less thought based judgement AKA resistance AKA pain.
Life is so much easier to live and so much more fun too. We highly recommend this book and his other writings as well.