Eckhart Tolle

Infobox Writer
name = Eckhart Tolle

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birthdate = birth date and age|1948|02|16
birthplace = Dortmund, Germany
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occupation = Author, motivational speaker
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genre =Spirituality, Psychology
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Eckhart Tolle (born February 16 1948) is a German/ Canadian spiritual teacher, motivational speaker, and writer. He has studied literature, languages and philosophy. [ Dialogues With Emerging Spiritual Teachers, by John W. Parker] "Sagewood Press", 2000.]


Born Ulrich Tolle in Dortmund, Germany, Eckhart Tolle lived with his father in Spain from about the age of thirteen to nineteen, approximately between the years 1961 and 1967, after which he moved to England. [ Dialogues With Emerging Spiritual Teachers] , by John W. Parker, Sagewood Press, 2000.] He had no formal education between the ages of thirteen and twenty-two, refusing to go to school because of its "hostile environment"; but he pursued his own "particular interests". [ Dialogues With Emerging Spiritual Teachers, by John W. Parker] "Sagewood Press", 2000.] Tolle graduated from the University of London and completed research at Cambridge University, [ Eckhart Tolle Biography] "New York Times", Times Topics, March 5, 2008.] having studied literature, languages and philosophy. [ Dialogues With Emerging Spiritual Teachers, by John W. Parker] "Sagewood Press", 2000.] At the age of twenty-nine, Tolle experienced what he calls an "inner transformation", after suffering long periods of suicidal [ Ripples on the Surface of Being, "What is Enlightenment".] depression. [ Eckhart Tolle Biography] "New York Times", Times Topics, March 5, 2008.] Since 1996, he has lived in Vancouver, Canada. [ [ Spreading the Change] "The Vancouver Sun", February 2, 2008.] [cite web|url=|title=Eckhart Biography|accessdate=2008-01-10]

=Teachings= Tolle's non-fiction bestseller "The Power of Now" emphasizes the importance of being aware of the present moment as a way of not being caught up in thoughts of the past and future. His later book "A New Earth" further explores the structure of the human ego and how this acts to distract people from their present experience of the world. It is the feeding of the human ego that is thought to be the source of inner and outer conflict. Only in examining one's ego may people begin to see beyond it and obtain a sense of spiritual enlightening or a new outlook on reality. In Tolle's view, the present is the gateway to a heightened sense of peace. He states that "being in the now" brings about an awareness that is beyond the mind, an awareness which helps in transcending the ego. The ego means here the false identification with forms and labels: body, mind, thoughts, memories, social roles, life-story, opinions, emotions, material possessions, name, nationality, religion, likes and dislikes, desires, fears, etc. If one is present, one recognizes oneself as the space of consciousness in which the thought or impulse arises. One doesn’t lose the self in thought, nor does one become the impulse. Being present is being the space, rather than what happens. He says that the mind is to be used as a tool, but not let the mind use the person. In Tolle's view, the "pain-body" is the emotional component of ego; it is created by the accumulation of suppressed emotions, the suffering of non-acceptance of what is. The size of "the pain-body" differs from person to person; it originates in the person’s past conditioning, usually early childhood. Tolle says that our true "identity" is the underlying sense of "I Am", which is consciousness itself. Awareness of Being is self-realization and true happiness. He states that we people are very important, because we are here to enable the divine purpose of the universe to unfold. In Tolle's view, all wanting implies that the future is more desirable than the present. As long as you want something, you are seeking to reach some point in the future that promises fulfillment. Thereby you are making the present moment, as well as other persons, into a means to an end. You don't need the future, or future lives, to find yourself, and you need to add nothing to you to find yourself.

Tolle believes that the New Testament contains deep spiritual truth, as well as distortions, which are due to a misunderstanding of Jesus’ teaching. He teaches that when you are present, you access your inner knowing and you will sense what is true and what was added on or distorted. [ Eckhart Tolle's official website. Dear Eckhart] ]

In Tolle's view, love comes into existence when you know who you are in your essence and then recognize the "other" as yourself. It is the end of the delusion of separation, which is created by excessive reliance on thinking.

In Tolle's view, this shift in consciousness for most people is not a single event, but a process, a gradual disidentification from thoughts and emotions through the arising of awareness.


Tolle is aligned with the teachings of an emerging religion which has been called interspirituality or New Age. In the book "Dialogues with Emerging Spiritual Teachers" by John W. Parker, he has acknowledged a strong connection to J Krishnamurti and Ramana Maharshi and stated that his teaching is a coming together of the teachings of both those teachers, and it is a continuation of that. In addition, he states that by listening to and speaking with the spiritual teacher Barry Long, he understood things more deeply. [cite web|url=|title=Eckhart Tolle Interview|accessdate=2008-03-07]

At about the age of fifteen he received five books that were written by a German mystic, Joseph Anton Schneiderfranken, also known as Bô Yin Râ. Tolle responded "very deeply" to those books. [ Dialogues With Emerging Spiritual Teachers, by John W. Parker] Sagewood Press, 2000.] He said the first texts with which he came in contact after the awakening and in which he found deep understanding were the New Testament, the Bhagavad Gita, the Tao Te Ching and teachings of The Buddha. [ Dialogues With Emerging Spiritual Teachers, by John W. Parker] Sagewood Press, 2000.] In "The Power of Now", he mentioned the writings of Meister Eckhart, Advaita Vedanta, A Course in Miracles, the Bible, mystical Islam, Sufism, and Rumi's poetry, as well as Zen Buddhism's Lin-chi (Linji in pinyin ) (Rinzai) school.


The first of his four books was "The Power of Now", a #1 "New York Times" best-seller that has been translated into over 33 languages. He has also recorded numerous audio interviews and a video. American talk-show host Oprah Winfrey considers "The Power of Now" to be one of her favorite books. [ [ Oprah's Favourite Books] ] Tolle's most recent book, "A New Earth", also topped the "Times" chart in March, 2008. [ [ Best Sellers] "New York Times", March 2008.]

In January 2008, Winfrey selected "A New Earth" as her Oprah's Book Club selection, accompanied by a 10-week live online seminar (or "webinar") with Tolle, which started on March 3, 2008. [ [ Oprah Winfrey has made "A New Earth"..] "New York Times", January 31, 2008.] [ [ Tolle's 'Earth], March 2008.]



*"The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment", New World Library, October, 1999 ISBN 1-57731-152-3 (HC) ISBN 1-57731-480-8 (PB)
*"Practicing the Power of Now: Essential Teachings, Meditations, and Exercises from The Power of Now", New World Library, October 10 2001 ISBN 1-57731-195-7 (HC)
*"Stillness Speaks: Whispers of Now", New World Library, August, 2003 ISBN 1-57731-400-X
*"", Dutton, October 11 2005 ISBN 0-525-94802-3

Audio Books

*"What is Meditation?"
*"Practicing the Power of Now"
*"Companion to the Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment", June 2001
*"Living the Liberated Life and Dealing With the Pain Body", October 2001
*"The Realization of Being: A Guide to Experiencing Your True Identity", October 2001
*"Know That "I Am", January 1 2002
*"Even the Sun Will Die: An Interview With Eckhart Tolle", September 2001
*"The Eckhart Tolle Audio Collection", September 2002
*"The Essence of Now", 2002
*"Choose to Awaken Now", 2002
*"In the Presence of a Great Mystery", 2002
*"Realizing the Power of Now: An In-Depth Retreat With Eckhart Tolle", June 2003
*"Entering the Now", August 2003
*"Gateways to Now", September 1 2003
*"Whispers", January 1 2004
*"The Flowering of Human Consciousness", May 2004
*"Living a Life of Inner Peace", October 10 2004
*"Practicing Presence: A Guide for the Spiritual Teacher and Health Practitioner", November 1 2004
*"Eckhart Tolle's Findhorn Retreat: Stillness Amidst the World", October 10 2005
*"Through the Open Door: Journey to the Vastness of Your True Being", January 30 2006


External links

* [ Eckhart Tolle's official website]

* [ 3 part interview with Eckhart Tolle]

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