Eckhart Tolle on christmas

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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby Karma Dondrup Tashi » Tue Jan 08, 2013 3:38 pm

gregkavarnos wrote:Yes, it is quite a flattering photo, I'm really quite grotesque in real life! :tongue:

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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby Sherab Dorje » Tue Jan 08, 2013 5:52 pm

lowlydog wrote:I admit I am not very familiar with Vajrayana practices, but I thought the satipathana sutta was to be taken as the direct word of the buddha for all the different traditions.
It is and it is! :smile: One of my lama made me translate it into Greek for the benefit of the Greek Sangha. A fantastically practical teaching.
Is a realized teacher deluded?
They have realised they are deluded, that is one of the things that makes them realized.
Is there a certificate issued in Vajrayana tradition?
No.
...people would become more interested in recognition than actually practicing.
Well, to get recognition you have to be realised. To become realised you have to practice. So if their interest in getting recognised lead them to practice more then it wouldn't be so bad now would it? :tongue: But seriously, I know what you mean. You see this problem arising quite often in the tulku system.
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Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby lowlydog » Wed Jan 09, 2013 12:21 am

tobes wrote: If the Now is Being, that sounds pretty luscious and sweet, but if it's Being, it cannot be empty!


Hi tobes,

Being(pure consciousness or God) is not an it, and is eternal, and empty.

Hi all,

I would like to clarify that I am not stating that Eckhart Tolle's books are a substitute for practcing the 8-fold path as taught by Gotama the Buddha.

I am not stating that Eckhart Tolle's technique is a substitute for practicing the 8-fold path as taught by Gotama the Buddha.

I am not stating that Eckharts technique is not a alternative to the 8-fold path, it may well be, but I've never experienced one of his retreats and do not know how he structures and teaches in a retreat environment.

I am stating that I have found nothing in Eckharts books and online teachings that does not 100% line up with the teaching of the Buddha, you must however familiarise yourself with the language he uses to describe aparent and ultimate realities.
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby lowlydog » Wed Jan 09, 2013 12:36 am

Hey Greg,

If your practice is in line with the suttas where does the Buddha state that one must examine a teacher for 12 years, what is the significance of 12 years why not 8 or 25.

Why would it take 12 years to know you are practicing what the Buddha taught, we all have different karma one may progress much quicker than another, but if you truly commit to practicing the 8-fold path insights should arise much quicker than 12 years. In the buddhas time people were becoming arahants at the drop of a few words. :smile:
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby tobes » Wed Jan 09, 2013 2:09 am

lowlydog wrote:
tobes wrote: If the Now is Being, that sounds pretty luscious and sweet, but if it's Being, it cannot be empty!


Hi tobes,

Being(pure consciousness or God) is not an it, and is eternal, and empty.

Hi all,

I would like to clarify that I am not stating that Eckhart Tolle's books are a substitute for practcing the 8-fold path as taught by Gotama the Buddha.

I am not stating that Eckhart Tolle's technique is a substitute for practicing the 8-fold path as taught by Gotama the Buddha.

I am not stating that Eckharts technique is not a alternative to the 8-fold path, it may well be, but I've never experienced one of his retreats and do not know how he structures and teaches in a retreat environment.

I am stating that I have found nothing in Eckharts books and online teachings that does not 100% line up with the teaching of the Buddha, you must however familiarise yourself with the language he uses to describe aparent and ultimate realities.



Thanks for your clarification lowlydog.

If you don't mind me pressing you a little further, how can something (anything) be eternal and empty?

This seems to me to be both a logical and metaphysical impossibility.

I'll grant you that the problem here could be a problem with language - but these are not arbitrary or meaningless issues. They are very central to Buddhist philosophy and practice.

Of course there are many disputes and differences within Buddhism on the question of apparent and ultimate realities, but it seems to me that Tolle is far closer to Vedanta than Buddhism on this critical question. But I am open to the idea that I have not understood his language game.

Maybe you could tell us more about the relationship between apparent and ultimate realities? Some statements from Tolle might be useful.

:anjali:
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby muni » Wed Jan 09, 2013 10:27 am

lowlydog wrote:What is the truth about Christmas?

In the history of Christianity, if you believe you are the sole possessor of the truth then that belief has the power to corrupt your actions, even to the point of insanity – whether it’s the Catholic Inquisition or a big shopping spree. The Truth is inseparable from who you are. If you look for it in ideas, beliefs, or even gifts from the store, you will be deceived every time.

The true meaning of Christmas is that the very Being that you are is Truth. This is what Jesus meant when he said, “I am the way and the truth and the life.”

Jesus speaks of the inner essence identity of every human being. Some Christian writers call this the “Christ within”. The real meaning of Christmas is to find that essential self that is universally experienced as the Christ within no matter what your cultural or religious upbringing is. As we approach the ceremonial date of the birth of Christ and as many of you gather with friends and family, perhaps standing in the silence of the Christ within can keep bringing you back to Being - the eternal life that Christ promised human kind.


I find this very Buddhist. :smile:

*As Eckhart has been said to have found alot of his teachings from the Zen tradition I placed this here, no disrespect intended. Feel free to move this if it is not appropriate.


Hello Lowlydog,

I am not going to share my opinion. I suppose an opinion box is never filled in samsara.

My opinion is that how all appear and are in clarity in own being is indeed the clarity there is.

If sharing is through clarity or not is not going to help me if that very sharing appears in my looking through spectacles composed by my grasping veils. Own clarity is making the only useful spectacles for everyone and everything. Therefore I need teaching in which I can wash veils away first.
Last edited by muni on Wed Jan 09, 2013 10:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Jan 09, 2013 10:30 am

lowlydog wrote:If your practice is in line with the suttas where does the Buddha state that one must examine a teacher for 12 years, what is the significance of 12 years why not 8 or 25.
My practice is in line with the sutras AS WELL. Where does the Buddha say that when approaching a cross road intersection one must give way to all vehicles travelling from right to left? He doesn't. Both are common sense practical rules to ensure that there are no accidents and things flow smoothly. Why 12 years and not...? Actually, I don't know. It may seem arbitrary to us, but those who have tried and tested the rule over the past few hundred years have found that it works well. If they reckon it's cool, then I will take their word for it.
Why would it take 12 years to know you are practicing what the Buddha taught...
I never said anything of the sort. The "12 years examining the teacher" thing applies to Vajrayana, not to Sutta and Sutra traditions. According to my Vajrayana teachers Sutta and Sutra techniques do not require the presence of a teacher anyway, they can be practiced straight from the texts (Sutta/Sutra).
:namaste:
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby lowlydog » Wed Jan 09, 2013 11:46 am

gregkavarnos wrote:
lowlydog wrote:If your practice is in line with the suttas where does the Buddha state that one must examine a teacher for 12 years, what is the significance of 12 years why not 8 or 25.
My practice is in line with the sutras AS WELL. Where does the Buddha say that when approaching a cross road intersection one must give way to all vehicles travelling from right to left? He doesn't. Both are common sense practical rules to ensure that there are no accidents and things flow smoothly. Why 12 years and not...? Actually, I don't know. It may seem arbitrary to us, but those who have tried and tested the rule over the past few hundred years have found that it works well. If they reckon it's cool, then I will take their word for it.
Why would it take 12 years to know you are practicing what the Buddha taught...
I never said anything of the sort. The "12 years examining the teacher" thing applies to Vajrayana, not to Sutta and Sutra traditions. According to my Vajrayana teachers Sutta and Sutra techniques do not require the presence of a teacher anyway, they can be practiced straight from the texts (Sutta/Sutra).
:namaste:


Thanks for the clarification. :smile:
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby lowlydog » Wed Jan 09, 2013 3:26 pm

tobes wrote:If you don't mind me pressing you a little further, how can something (anything) be eternal and empty?

No pressure at all tobes, feel free to ask away.
Maybe I was not clear, when I said that being, God, pure consciousness was not an it(defined as something) therefore not impermanent and thus eternal.

tobes wrote: But I am open to the idea that I have not understood his language game.

I appreciate what you are saying.
I wouldn't call the use of his language a game, I think he is trying to use simple language so a vast majority of people can understand the teachings, The dharma/dhamma should be made available free of charge to all individuals of all social and economic status, the teachings should always be expessed in simple language so all may understand and feel welcome discussing.


tobes wrote:Maybe you could tell us more about the relationship between apparent and ultimate realities? Some statements from Tolle might be useful.



Better to watch this video http://youtu.be/hPUuIBd5V6M he discusses what we are talking about in the first 20mins. of this talk. I found it very helpful and practical. :smile:
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Wed Jan 09, 2013 6:37 pm

I watched some of the video, thanks for posting it. It's hard because his terminology is so different. Things like using one of the five aggregates to describe this ultimate state..I know they are just words of course, but the vocabulary differences are striking, and should not be ignored I think.

I found a link that I think actually does a really good job of explaining where what Tolle is teaching might be different from Buddhism:
http://newbuddhist.com/discussion/5741/eckhart-tolle

The user "Xabir" writes a somewhat lengthy, but IMO pretty good bit about the differences. Notice though, he is not condemning Tolle and even mentions recommending his books, only pointing out where the philosophy seems to diverge from Dharma.

To make a long story short, when it is taught that there is a "real self" underneath an illusory self, this is different than Buddhism I suspect. The reason is that it creates a dualistic notion that thoughts, emotions, etc. are somehow less than this True Self is, that one contains more "me" than the other. In Buddhism (generalizing I know) it seems that "me" (or inherent existence generally) isn't really on the table, period - that is Anatta or Sunyata - a non-affiriming negation, it is an assertion of what is not not that something else (a self) is. The idea I get from Eckhart's teaching is that discursive thoughts and emotions are something to be avoided and dispensed with, while this True Self should be cultivated. It might seem like a subtle distinction to some but I have the feeling it may be important.

If you read the words of many Buddhists, it seems this kind of thinking is considered to be a pitfall, i've even heard this mentioned as a "straying from the path" in a couple of places. Discursive thought is not something apart from, nor removed from luminous mind, they are not two different things but are "of one taste" as some teachers say. To me this is an important distinction.
"Just as a lotus does not grow out of a well-levelled soil but from the mire, in the same way the awakening mind
is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby martin123 » Wed Jan 09, 2013 8:12 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:I watched some
of the video, thanks for posting it. It's hard because his terminology
is so different. Things like using one of the five aggregates to
describe this ultimate state..I know they are just words of course, but
the vocabulary differences are striking, and should not be ignored I
think.

I found a link that I think actually does a really good job of
explaining where what Tolle is teaching might be different from
Buddhism:
http://newbuddhist.com/discussion/5741/eckhart-tolle

The user "Xabir" writes a somewhat lengthy, but IMO pretty good bit
about the differences. Notice though, he is not condemning Tolle and
even mentions recommending his books, only pointing out where the
philosophy seems to diverge from Dharma.

To make a long story short, when it is taught that there is a "real
self" underneath an illusory self, this is different than Buddhism I
suspect. The reason is that it creates a dualistic notion that thoughts,
emotions, etc. are somehow less than this True Self is, that one
contains more "me" than the other. In Buddhism (generalizing I know) it
seems that "me" (or inherent existence generally) isn't really on the
table, period - that is Anatta or Sunyata - a non-affiriming negation,
it is an assertion of what is not not that something else (a
self) is. The idea I get from Eckhart's teaching is that discursive
thoughts and emotions are something to be avoided and dispensed with,
while this True Self should be cultivated. It might seem like a subtle
distinction to some but I have the feeling it may be important.

If you read the words of many Buddhists, it seems this kind of thinking
is considered to be a pitfall, i've even heard this mentioned as a
"straying from the path" in a couple of places. Discursive thought is
not something apart from, nor removed from luminous mind, they are not
two different things but are "of one taste" as some teachers say. To me
this is an important distinction.

who is saying there is a 'real self' under an illusory self? Tolle is certainly not saying this!
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Wed Jan 09, 2013 8:22 pm

When someone says something like "this is YOU, but this isn't" that is the same thing as asserting a real, existing self, it's just a different self than the conventional one. It sounds to me like that is a part of his teachings..that this"now" is actually "you" - this is an important distinction I think. it doesn't seem trivial to me.
"Just as a lotus does not grow out of a well-levelled soil but from the mire, in the same way the awakening mind
is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby lowlydog » Wed Jan 09, 2013 8:50 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
To make a long story short, when it is taught that there is a "real self" underneath an illusory self, this is different than Buddhism I suspect.


I know what you are saying, and understand the difficulties you are having with Tolle. Tolle does not suggest that there is a self(thing) existing beneath the aparant self we percieve through the sense doors. Our true self(being, consciousness, god, pure mind awareness) is not a thing and is eternal, but which we can have access to in our day to day lives.

Tolle uses the terms manifested and unmanifested:

Tolle distinguishes life manifested, "the myriad forms of life that are subject to birth and death," from the Unmanifested, "the One Life beyond form. This he calls Being, "the eternal, ever-present One Life" which "is not only beyond but also deep within every form as its innermost invisible and indestructible essence. Occasionally he uses the term God, but he prefers Being as "an open concept," something "it is impossible to form a mental image of" and which "does not reduce the infinite invisible to a finite entity. He also speaks of the Unmanifested. This he says is the same as Being, but while Being is a positive term, "Unmanifested attempts, by way of negation, to express That which cannot be spoken, thought or imagined.

I don't know about you but this seems alot like samsara(manifested) and nirvana(unmanifested). :smile:

Also, I read xabir's sub-link to the 7 stages and don't know what he is talking about exactly, the early stages he describes do not seem to be very difficult to experience, there seems to be much attatchment and importance placed on experiencing bliss. :shrug:
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby martin123 » Wed Jan 09, 2013 9:04 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:When someone says something like "this is YOU, but this isn't" that is the same thing as asserting a real, existing self, it's just a different self than the conventional one. It sounds to me like that is a part of his teachings..that this"now" is actually "you" - this is an important distinction I think. it doesn't seem trivial to me.

I feel what tolle is saying is Between nihilism and eternalism.He is pointing to a deathless unmanifested one life,but not a forever seperate 'self'
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Wed Jan 09, 2013 9:06 pm

http://www.buddhanet.net/pdf_file/bm7insight.pdf

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... gress.html

martin123 wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:When someone says something like "this is YOU, but this isn't" that is the same thing as asserting a real, existing self, it's just a different self than the conventional one. It sounds to me like that is a part of his teachings..that this"now" is actually "you" - this is an important distinction I think. it doesn't seem trivial to me.

I feel what tolle is saying is Between nihilism and eternalism.He is pointing to a deathless unmanifested one life,but not a forever seperate 'self'


Calling it "one life", unitary, non-unitary..whatever. Terms like these are often viewed with suspicion by some in Buddhism for a reason. Part of progress on the path is supposed to be (my own take here, this is all just to the best of my knowledge of course) letting go of dualistic notions like these. I recognize that language is limited to communicate this stuff by nature, but when the language used is so much about "me", it seems reasonable to think those teachings might lead one in a different direction.

Which brings me back to my original question, if you guys think that the truths Eckhart teaches are basically indivisible from Buddhism, then what do you believe they are exactly? If they are not different in the ways I suspect that they are different, then surely what he is teaching is simply "stealth Dharma" for some reason unknown to us right?

It's it is just Stealth Dharma, then why is it equivalent, or better than actual Dharma? For instance why is it better than the "statue worshipping/sutra reading" form of Buddhsim mentioned by Lowlydog earlier - which I add still has yet to be defined. Surely if it is not different at all from Dharma there is no reason to not call it Buddhism, right?

I know this conversation is going in all kinds of directions, and maybe at this point it seems to be getting absurd in places, but I simply don't understand some of the things that have been said with what you guys think about these teachings in relationship to Dharma. On an intellectual level I find it really unsatisfying to say something "is in line with Dharma" with no real reason for doing so other than the fact that you like both things.
Last edited by Johnny Dangerous on Wed Jan 09, 2013 9:24 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby martin123 » Wed Jan 09, 2013 9:16 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:http://www.buddhanet.net/pdf_file/bm7insight.pdf

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... gress.html

martin123 wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:When someone says something like "this is YOU, but this isn't" that is the same thing as asserting a real, existing self, it's just a different self than the conventional one. It sounds to me like that is a part of his teachings..that this"now" is actually "you" - this is an important distinction I think. it doesn't seem trivial to me.

I feel what tolle is saying is Between nihilism and eternalism.He is pointing to a deathless unmanifested one life,but not a forever seperate 'self'


Calling it "one life", unitary, non-unitary..whatever. Terms like these are often viewed with suspicion in Buddhism for a reason, there are whole sutras explaining why - Lankavatara for instance. Part of progress on the path is supposed to be (my own take here, this is all just to the best of my knowledge of course) letting go of dualistic notions like these. I recognize that language is limited to communicate this stuff by nature, but when the language used is so much about "me", it seems reasonable to think it leads one in a different direction.

i dont see any dualistic notions.
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Wed Jan 09, 2013 9:28 pm

You don't see dualism when someone posits a really existing reality outside of conventional reality that they define with terms like "one", or "being"?
It might as well be flesh and spirit, it definitely seems like more dualistic language to me.
"Just as a lotus does not grow out of a well-levelled soil but from the mire, in the same way the awakening mind
is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby martin123 » Wed Jan 09, 2013 9:31 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:You don't see
dualism when someone posits a really existing reality outside of
conventional reality that they define with terms like "one", or "being"?
It might as well be flesh and spirit, it definitely seems like more
dualistic language to me.

who is saying it is outside of conventional reality?
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Wed Jan 09, 2013 9:37 pm

martin123 wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:You don't see
dualism when someone posits a really existing reality outside of
conventional reality that they define with terms like "one", or "being"?
It might as well be flesh and spirit, it definitely seems like more
dualistic language to me.

who is saying it is outside of conventional reality?


You know what, i'm done with focusing about what he is or isn't saying because you guys are constantly moving the target, how about just answering the other thing:

If it's the same as Buddhism, why isn't it called Buddhism, and why would he teach Buddhism without calling it that? What qualities does it share with Buddhism that make it worth the time of Buddhists to incorporate? What qualities does it not share?

If it isn't quite the same as Buddhism, why do you object to the fact that I suspect it's different from Buddhism?
"Just as a lotus does not grow out of a well-levelled soil but from the mire, in the same way the awakening mind
is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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Re: Eckhart Tolle on christmas

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Jan 09, 2013 9:53 pm

Coz it is not Buddhism and they don't want to admit it?
:namaste:
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
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