Notes from “The Secret of Life” (2017) by Eckhart Tolle

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=atCYBU7_YsIeckharttolle5.jpg

I am a fan of Eckhart Tolle and have read many of his books, including The Power of NOW, so here are a few notes from this video titled “The Secret of LIFE”. I found that he elaborates on Presence and the concept of being present better here than in other videos I’ve seen from him. The actual YouTube version is listed above if you are interested:

“…There are two dimensions to you—to who you are—one that you are very familiar with—the person—the personal entity with a past and a future, ….including the physical body—the entity of ME—its life situation. That is usually the limit to people’s perceptions of themselves, not realizing that there is a deeper dimension in them that is…the Light of Consciousness—so that any moment you are both a person and you are the Light of lightofconsciousness6.jpgConsciousness that has nothing to do with your person or personal history….when the Light of Consciousness predominates over the personal sense of self, I call that being Present. There is a presence which you cannot touch or see or make into an object of consciousness. ….Because the Presence is an eternal subject not an object to your consciousness. …

“So in any situation—in the NOW—when you can sense the Presence rather than the personal, ….who are you really? Are you the Light of Consciousness seeing others around you without judgment, …or can you only operate as the Person of YOU with your psychological makeup—your sense of limited perception?  How do you feel, ….how do you sense, …the deeper Consciousness itself (of which you are only a minute part)?… At preeentmomentallthis moment (when you are in Presence) your problems have NO reality… you have only Presence. Therefore, you have no problem. …(Only when you start thinking about things do you perceive ‘problems’.  Problems do not exist in Presence. There may be situations and interactions occurring, ..but that is only what they are…situations and interactions occurring around you, …you can observe them in Presence. When you judge them and designate them as deleterious to you, then you make them ‘problems.’)

“The transcendent dimension can be experienced at any time as the simple powerful fact of the Light of Consciousness that you are.  …before the Light of Consciousness turns into a thought.  ..So you transcend your life situation and see your life situation as a timeless self immersed in the Light of Consciousness.  ..So then you can either be present or you can be immersed in your own stuff (that you judge and perceive as problems).

“…You carry the world inside your head with you,…so you cannot escape it. So you must bring the Presence into your daily existence so you can see thru the gaps in your daily life and simply be the Light of Consciousness… simply BE the Presence (without judgment or emotion).   When you are lost in your thoughts, you are lost in an illusory state of existence …unaware of who you really are.  livein now ekWhen you are Present, you can sense the peace of who you are in essence …you are not totally trapped in the personal sense of self.  A simple sense perception can take you out of your (thinking) mind and into your sense of just being.  This is when you can occupy two dimensions simultaneously: the formed and the formless—the personal and the Light of Consciousness itself.

“The fact that you are conscious at this moment is beyond doubt, but anything else could be a dream. …When you can know yourself as that Light of Consciousness (recognizing the illusory matter you call LIFE for the illusion that it is), …it is called self-realizationdeath and die ek

“You are the LIGHT from the projector, ….NOT the projection on the screen,…you are just the light.

“Challenges may distract us from our Presence, ….but then we wake up again to who we really are, …the Light of Consciousness, ..(not the projected image on the screen, ….we are just the Light behind it).

evolution ofconsciousness.jpg“We may experience challenging situations, but we do NOT have to suffer because of them, …because suffering is a choice. Suffering is how we choose to view any situation. Things happen to us, yes, …but SUFFERING because of those situations, is optional.”

 

“It’s wonderful to see you liberated from your personality.  To simply be your Presence without your rigid thought patterns or beliefs, …that is to be liberated.  And as you awaken there is a freedom in that, even though you may have your own particular characteristics, ….there is a transcendent consciousness that persists through it. That is who you are.”

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Final Mention of the Psychotherapy and Spirituality Summit

Before I start the new year of 2018, I want to wrap a few more of the speakers from the 2017 Psychotherapy & Spirituality Summit mentioned previously.dianeheller.jpg

I also found these folks very interesting:

Diane Poole Heller, PhD, who often worked with Peter Levine on attachment theories and trauma resolution—especially working on relationship trauma, was very worth hearing.

She claims that attachment template starts in utero…it is the earliest blueprint for our sense of relationship and how we “attach” to others, which in this sense is the birth mother.

Each attachment style requires a different kind of interface with the client to work through it.

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The four attachment styles are secure attachment, avoidant attachment, ambivalent attachment, and disorganized attachment.

Secure attachment:  Biologically designed in all of us. It is the ideal of what constitutes security and safety—this is the baseline of desired attachment—feeling protected and loved, playfulness, confident. Have a capacity to trust, and this is when we feel accepted for who we are. The ideal state.

Avoidant attachment: One of parents may be distant and unattached or unapproachable. When this occurs there is not as much development of the baby’s right brain–the child seems to be living in an isolated bubble of existence.  The child becomes more independent and reliant on self rather than others because s/he had to be this way to survive. As adults, the person tends to dismiss relationships and feel more isolated in life—became more ambivalent toward others. Couldn’t relax into love because they were waiting for the rug to be pulled out from under them—hyper-alertness. As an adult they tend to avoid disappointment that felt inevitable in a relationship–so they avoid relationships.hellerblurb.jpg

Ambivalent attachment is being too focused on others. Too dependent on others for sense of well-being and acceptance–too clingy–too needy–feeling too weak to make it alone.

Disorganized attachment: This style is the result of parents who do “paradoxical injunction” with the child—the “Come here! No, go away!” “I love you—I can’t stand you.”  “You are so good. You are so bad.”  The child may be in a double-bind of never being able to please the parent or to know which behavior is the correct one that is rewarded rather than punished because rewards and punishments are confused to the point of not knowing if intimacy is a good thing or a bad thing. Is it pleasant or painful? Or is it both?

Heller cites a collaborative treatment method for trauma therapy that involves healing attachment issues, using Levine’s somatic trauma resolution, the Diamond approach of psychology mixed with spiritual inquiry, and the New Autonomic NS Understanding by Steven Porge, along with the latest innovations in neuroscience.

***

grof6.jpgThe one other presenter I will mention from that summit is Stanislov Grof who still is one of the most influential transpersonal realm explorers of the last 40 years. The transpersonal realms deal with ordinary and non-ordinary states of reality.

Stan Grof is far too important to contain in a paragraph or two here, but he is one of the main psychiatrists who explored the alternate reality experiences of LSD, shamanic trance, Kundalini activation, Near-death experiences, possessions states, channeling other spirits, etc.

At the end of the 20th century he helped to give those extra-sensory experiences a sense of legitimacy and professional acknowledgment. The bonafide mystical experience was his holy grail of inquiry and exploration. He made it a mainstream exploration for psychiatrists.grofquote2.jpg

Holotropic states of consciousness became his life’s work, and he and his wife Christina, created the “holotropic breath work” treatment to substitute for the psychedelic drugs of mescaline, LSD, or ayahuasca experience.

He still offers training in some of those techniques and provides great historical research into non-ordinary reality.

Thanks again Sounds True for allowing me to listen to these presenters for free!

The Beautiful Mystery

This title could be referring to LIFE itself, but here it refers to a book I just finished by Louise Penny called The Beautiful Mystery: A Chief Inspector Gamache Novel.beautiful mystery.jpg

Why I mention it is because it describes a fictional, secluded Canadian monastery of Saint-Gilbert-Entre-les-Loups (Saint Gilbert Among the Wolves) where an ancient order of Gilbertine monks reside and produce the most transcendent Gregorian chants imaginable in the modern world.

The book was okay—no literary masterpiece, but it did inspire me to look for my old CD of Gregorian Chants just to recall hearing the actual sounds of harmonious devotion sung in lower keys.

No luck.  Not even in Billy Joel’s hidden location. So I went online to Amazon to hear a few samples just to remember the vibrational feel of the monk’s chanting. Back when I first purchased my set of Gregorian Chants, I remembered them as interesting, but not awe-inspiring or ephemerally transcendent—or trance inducing as the book had claimed. I’m sure if they had been, I’d still be listening to them.

But I was at least inspired to keep playing Amazon samples of various Gregorian chants and other choral music until I heard some that did feel more ascendant and heavenly. ericwhitacher gold.jpgHowever, they weren’t Gregorian. They were in Eric Whitacher’s hauntingly-beautiful choral album called Light and Gold.

Check that out on Amazon if you get a chance. The very first song sample sold me. It was called “Lux Aurumque” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D7o7BrlbaDs) .  This Virtual Choir has to be the most amazing thing in the world. The sound on the album Light and Gold is beyond ethereal, but the YouTube version is pretty close to it as well.

Just wanted to share that little discovery I made today with anyone if interested.

This time of year with our political situation in the states, we need all the ethereal assistance we can muster to shift our energies higher and beyond the level of these far lesser beings controlling our world.

The FIXER

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Over the years I’ve seen my role in my own life’s drama change: I’ve believed myself to be many things to many people.

Today I actually have no idea what I am to anyone other than to myself, and even to me, I’m an enigma that is constantly evolving—transforming into something other than the role(s) I once held.

That was hard to accept for awhile—that I wasn’t this ONE thing that I’d truly believed myself to be.

But I slowly began to realize that my perception of myself and my role in humanity’s slow-unfolding progression was at best a delusion and at worse, an egoic fallacy.

Even now—this very morning, little egoic ME thought: “What should I do to help them?”

And the “them” here doesn’t even matter, because to believe that I could be the ONE to help, was the problem. It’s not up to me to FIX the situation or the people involved in the situation. It never was up to ME, and it never will be.

Part of my own spiritual evolution is in the final fixyourselfrealization that I, in all my illusions of grandeur, am NOT the FIXER of those perceived problems, because perhaps it is my perception instead that is the actual problem. And the only one who can change that faulty perception is ME, so if I want to FIX something—FIX that!

When I fully comprehended what I was at first contemplating and then resolving NOT to do in my own mind, I realized that there is nothing for me to FIX. Everything is all illusion and all perspective, and ALL situations are resolvable in some way without my interference and/or assistance.

So there ego-mind!  The FIXER is at peace with not fixing anything but her perception of any situation.

Us control freaks have a hard time letting go of affecting processes and outcomes. But this time it feels like an awakening for this control wrenchman.jpgfreak to let go of my attachment to perceiving that there is a problem. If there is no real problem, then there is no need of fixing it.  I’m not ignoring the situation; I’m simply allowing it to resolve without my interference.

So, …I now take a deep breath and choose to let go and let the Universe decide the next course of action in this situation and in all others as I think that’s the smartest and most sane thing I can do.

Perhaps it’s about time that I got smart enough to realize it.

“To Make You Feel My Love”

BJ song album.jpgI had this Billy Joel song (Bob Dylan lyrics) looping through my head this morning and couldn’t find it in my MP3 files on the computer, so I had to search for the old CDs.

Three searched locations later, I found the Billy Joel set from twenty years ago, which led me to think two things: One, how could I forget where I had last stashed all those old CDs since I have quite a collection? And two, how could they not be on my computer since I know I’ve copied them prior and nearly everything else was there?

By now I’ve forgotten why I wanted to hear the song. It had something to do with the thoughts going through my head when I considered writing this morning: “To make you feel my love.” Those same tuneful lyrics kept replaying between my ears.

Then it dawned on me. I was getting a message from the ethers. This is often how Spirit/departed loved ones communicate with us—in little song snippets.BJ MYFML.jpg

That possibility made me reflective of who it might be. Could even be angels or guides. So I listened closely to the song.

“When the rain is blowing in your face and the whole world is on your case, I can offer you a warm embrace, to make you feel my love.

When the evening shadows and stars appear, and there is no one there to dry your tears, I could hold you for a million years, to make you feel my love.

I know you haven’t made your mind up yet, but I would never do you wrong. I’ve known it from the moment that we’ve met, no doubt in my mind where you belong.

I’d go hungry, I’d go black and blue, I’d go crawling down the avenue. There is nothing that I wouldn’t do, to make you feel my love.

The storms are raging on the rolling sea, down on the highway of regret. The winds of change are blowing wild and free—you ain’t seen nothing like me yet.

I can make you happy—make your dreams come true. There is nothing that I would not do. Go to the ends of the earth for you, to make you feel my love.

There is nothing that I would not do, to make you feel my love.”

3writerssongs.jpgNice message on a morning when I needed it.Adele_-_Make_You_Feel_My_Love

Maybe I just need to listen to more Billy Joel (or Adele’s or Garth Brook’s version).

Maybe we ALL do.

Growing a NEW Culture

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Dig out your old petri dish, we are going to grow a culture.

Us little bacteria (and there are GOOD symbiotic bacteria such as those that help you digest your food) are replicating and spreading out now with NEW intention over that glass surface. And when we’re done replicating, that petri dish will actually walk away under its own power.

In saying that, I just wanted to mention that another series of speakers are gathering online December 5-7 to discuss the future of our society and what we need to do to build new lines of communication, to create new pathways for peace and prosperity, and to encourage new cohesion among all of us in general to make this present dysfunctional world function as it should.

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It is called Shift’s Vision 2020: Illuminating Our Path to a Brighter Future, and it includes many well-known visionaries discussing the present state of our society and what needs to change within it to build a better future together.

I’ve been mentioning these other info sources in post-broadcast form, but this one is yet to come. Why I mention it here without even hearing it is that this online summit offers a FREE-listening for the 48-hours following each speaker, so you have the opportunity to hear them without cost if you catch it during that time frame. You can go to this page to sign up for FREE and to see the schedule of speakers and what they intend to discuss online. http://vision2020summit.us/

I might not catch them all but I do intend to hear a few to see what tendrils that new bacterium is spreading for us.

Here is a sample of the presenters:

Here’s some of what our brilliant Vision 2020 speakers will be sharing with you…

 DeloresHuerta Dolores Huerta focuses on the power to end racism and create a nation of equality and true freedom. Each person truly can make a difference!
 MarianneWilliamson.jpg Marianne Williamson calls us forward to step in and stand up for our country’s founding principles, and the sacred commitment that ALL people are created equal.
 JenniferSiebelNewsom.jpg Jennifer Siebel Newsom calls on you to find and use your voice to stand up for what you passionately believe — to challenge stereotypes and cultural norms, and create equality for all.
 SisterJenna.jpg Sister Jenna offers a dynamic, enlightening transmission on how our thoughts have the power to create our reality — demonstrating that the awakening and shift in our country requires the transformation of our inner world.
 StephenDinan.jpg Stephen Dinan discusses Vision 2020, a powerful movement to educate ourselves and each other — a solution-focused resource for designing and activating the more beautiful world we all know is possible.
 angelKyodowilliams.jpg Rev. Angel Kyodo williams shows how the “American Dream” has been a nightmare for all non-Caucasian people throughout our country’s history… while inspiring you to envision and create a brave, inclusive NEW American Dream!
 JoanBlades.jpgJohnGable.jpg Joan Blades with John Gable introduce a powerful practice for healing relationships that are broken or diminished because of divergent political orientations — offering communication techniques that build understanding across divides.
 ShariffAbdullah.jpg Shariff Abdullah addresses the complex topic of racial injustice… and expresses a vision for a future of equality and economic stability for all socioeconomic classes.
 MichaelLerner.jpgCatZavis.jpg Michael Lerner with Cat J Zavis emphasize the importance of creating social change movements grounded in empathy and infused with love, compassion and spiritual wisdom and practices.
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Andrew Harvey offers insights on sacred activism and how it can lead to deep shifts in our political evolution.

 

So now you have the opportunity to hear it firsthand for yourselves.

Change is possible!—REAL change!—DEEP change!—change that benefits all of us as loving and caring people.  These folks are going to speak about those grow-able changes petri handthat CAN occur if folks are willing to put the time and effort into creating them—and to create our NEW and BETTER WORLD in the process.

 

Second Part on Pat Ogden, PhD from the S & P Summit

I wanted to complete this Pat Ogden review before more “info” comes through that I feel compelled to share. As mentioned in my earlier review of the summit itself, one of the patogden 5.jpgthings I liked most about some of these spiritual psychotherapy approaches was the more collaborative methods of therapy between client and therapist.  Pat Ogden was a main example of that.

Her stated belief was that you must trust your client’s inner wisdom (which the client may not be overtly aware of) to desire to heal non-harmonious aspects of themselves, so there is no need to push or force change with the client. You simply allow what needs to change to unveil itself as you work together. But you need to create a safe-haven (a safe and comfortable environment) for the work to unfold.

She believed in the principles of mindfulness and presence, meaning that mindfulness is an actual state of consciousness—where the observer and the observed are united within that state of mind; while presence is a state of beingness.

Being mindful is the ability to focus awareness within and outside the person all at same time, which is desirable at times, but it actually prevents you from being fully present in the body.  Mindfulness may be more the out-of-body experience while being present, is being well-grounded and right here, right now.

traumainterventions.jpgOgden’s work is a unity-focused therapy of client and therapist working together for better client outcomes.  She uses language reflective of the intention of unity— lak’ech-“I am another you.”   It’s a collaborative language of “we”ness in the client’s discovery process where you give the client an option, a say in what they will do together to help the client.  Frame it for them in ways that are easy to understand, and then give them the chance to say yes or no, let’s pursue that suggested exploration or let’s wait a week or so before we do.

Her focus is on holism. Her Sensorimotor Psychotherapy goal is to harness the wisdom of the body to liberate human potential, and the body holds tremendous potential for sensoimotor psy.jpgwisdom. She simply says to honor the intelligence of the body. Watch how a client is presenting herself.  What is the body language stating that the spoken words are not? Hunched shoulders means she is holding fear….so ask about that body message you are seeing.  “Why are you sitting so scrunched together? Are you hiding within yourself or unconsciously defending yourself from something you perceive around you?…Is there something you are afraid of—something you fear about this situation or about exploring those memories? Let’s get it out and look at it. Let’s see if it truly is threatening or just seemed that way for awhile.” (paraphrased)

She says one of the greatest gifts you can ever give is helping the client discover important things about themselves—what is meaningful to them.  Her goal is to help reveal the client to themselves—it’s all about self-discovery.

Ogden avoids diagnosis of a client and especially labeling them with a disorder because they too readily identify with the diagnosis and then become it.  Her stated example was Dissociative Identity Disorder…. It may not be a good thing to call someone this. It limits them—limits how they perceive themselves.

She believes in non-violent approaches. Don’t try to force a client toward an outcome. They resist and it may not be the right outcome anyway. Try another way if possible—make it more exploratory.  A lot of this involves more “undoing” bodypatternsthan doing—unlearning old ways of thinking and being, to allow new ones to emerge.

In her practice mindfulness is a critical skill that supports our way of being, and supports the importance of presence.  When we are focused on our bodies by using our minds to assess what we are feeling in the moment, and when we examine how we are executing the actions that we take in our lives, it establishes the principle of self-engagement. These are all building blocks of the “being present” experience.

Teaching clients how to pay attention to their own bodies and to learn to recognize their own body cues is important for recognizing what the body is telling them it actually needs for optimum mental and physical health. The client might misinterpret a current situation as to whether or not it is threatening, so you look for the natural body cues as to what their body, not their mind, is saying about it?bodyleadsushome.jpg

Helping clients look for their own body-reactions in situations helps them learn what is really happening to them as opposed to what is simply being triggered by a childhood memory, etc.   How we organize our experience—those earliest patterns of inner organization—are often how we first see a situation; and it starts with how we felt about a similar situation in our childhood—like whether or not we felt helplessness or fearfulness in that similar situation.

She believes that if we go in deeply enough to the inner depths of the client, the client’s natural higher consciousness will spontaneously reorganize them toward health.  Uncovering what is emotionally hiding within the client and preventing them from realizing their wholeness allows them to self-reveal and then to self-heal.

She simply becomes a container for love for the client—holding them in acceptance and process until their health is revealed.po7.jpg

Interesting lady, Pat Ogden. Good interview.

Thanks Sounds True for this psychotherapy/spirituality summit.