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1. The power of now

By Eckhart Tolle

2. Summary

- Do not focus on the past or the future... Live in the present and try to separate yourself from the over-thinking mind. You need pain to survive and most pain is through experiences you have had.

  • The Ego stops you from being happy, so seperate yourself from your mind and focus on your body. When you separate yourself from your ego (mind) you will separate yourself from pain.

3. Focus on the Present Moment and Surrender

- The only moment fully available to us is NOW... not what has happened or what hasn't happened (Regret, Reminiscing, Planning, or Worrying) are all things we can't control.

  • Things happen only in a continuous stream of present moments.

  • Stop clinging to the past and stop fearing the future. 

  • Someone who doesn't live in the present tend to feed off problems, while someone who lives in the present are more calm and peaceful which is experienced as a threat.

  • Relationships: Strong opposites cannot exist in close proximity. Like a candle in the darkness, the darkness disappears. Like water on fire, the flame extinguishes.

  • Living in the present though will help you stop judging others, criticizing, or trying to change your partner, and instead see him or her as an independent person. 

  • When living in the present moment, you see problems only as individual, manageable situations that you can solve, one by one. Become Effective.

4. Observe the Mind without Judgment or Pain

- Ego: a part of your mind that controls your thoughts and behavior without you noticing.

- Separate yourself from your Mind/ Ego and Focus on your Body. Since you can't alter the past or the future, you constantly worry about things you can't possibly change... that leads to pain and anxiety.

  • Your body knows what is best for you, and listen to your body...

    • "Your body is a temple". Jesus spoke of his body missing from the grave and that his body ascended with him to heaven.

    • Buddha's six-year abstinence, when he separated his mind from his body he didn't feel more at peace, he found enlightenment when he felt at one with his body not his mind.  

  • When you overreact in a conversation, this is because of your ego. Your ego is hard to observe. Your Ego always tries to gain control over your behavior and thinking. When two egos come in contact, drama ensues. 

  • The Ego wants to control and be destructive, it knows no limits,it will bring you much suffering.  

- The Mind is your "Ego" and the Ego causes you pain by thinking about what you should have been or could have been and living for only what the future holds. 

- Pain is a self-created inner resistance to external things that you cannot change.

  • You experience pain when you are unsatisfied, but powerless to fix it. This can make you feel emotional and Negative.

  • Feeling pain however will happen, as a defense mechanism to help survive, grow, and strengthen. Be aware if pain happens for an extended period of time, it will start identifying who you are and just accepting the pain will actually make you afraid to let the pain go because you will feel like your putting your identity at risk.

  • Being that pain is mostly self-created, you can do something about it. 

  • If your body wants something, listen to it. Accept your thoughts not as bad or as good, just smile at them. If you want to observe your mind, ask yourself "What will my next thought be?"... It takes a while for your next thought to arrive. Through observing you have created a gap in flow of thinking.

5. Exist in a State of Permanent Alertness

- Active Waiting. When you're aware that something important or serious could happen at any moment, all of your focus is on the NOW. No time to daydream, plan, or remember, these are all distractions from the now.

  • When you are Actively waiting you focus on your body, thus becoming more alert to your surroundings. 

    • Jesus said to his disciples "Be like a servant waiting for the return of the master" Since they didn't know when the master would come, they become in a permanent alert state of waiting so that they don't miss the return of the master.​