Eckhart Tolle Tuesday: “If not now, when?”

The whole essence of Zen consists in walking along the razor’s edge of Now—to be so utterly, so completely present that no problem, no suffering, nothing that is not who you are in your essence, can survive in you. In the Now, in the absence of time, all your problems dissolve. Suffering needs time; it cannot survive in the Now.

The great Zen Master Rinzai, in order to take his students’ attention away from time, would often raise his finger and slowly ask: “What, at this moment, is lacking?” A powerful question that does not require an answer on the level of the mind. It is designed to take your attention deeply into the Now. A similar question in the Zen tradition is this: “If not now, when?”

—Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now

Eckhart Tolle Tuesday: “Causes of Negativity”

All negativity is caused by an accumulation of psychological time and denial of the present. Unease, anxiety, tension, stress, worry—all forms of fear—are caused by too much future, and not enough presence. Guilt, regret, resentment, grievances, sadness, bitterness, and all forms of nonforgiveness are caused by too much past, and not enough presence.

—Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now

Eckhart Tolle Tuesday: “Say ‘Yes’ to Life”

Realize deeply that the present moment is all you have. Make the Now the primary focus of your life. Whereas before you dwelt in time and paid brief visits to the Now, have your dwelling place in the Now and pay brief visits to the past and future when required to deal with the practical aspects of your life situation. Always say “yes” to the present moment. What could be more futile, more insane, than to create inner resistance to what already is? What could be more insane than to oppose life itself, which is now and always now. Surrender to what is. Say “yes” to life—and see how life suddenly starts working for you rather than against you.

—Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now