The most popular spiritual author in the United States. Depressed for much of his life until age 29, when he underwent an “inner transformation”. Spent several years wandering “in a state of deep bliss” before becoming a spiritual teacher.
The Power of Now
- Inner Peace: exist in the present, the now. Worrying about the past and future has no benefit since everything happens in a continuous stream of present moments.
- Pain: is self-created inner resistance to external things that you cannot change which creates a negative feeling. It can become “pain body” where part of the self needs pain to survive because it becomes an essential part of you. You are afraid to let go of the pain.
- Ego: stops you from being happy. Destructive part of the human mind. Ego wants to be the most important part of you and with gained control it will bring much suffering.
- Separate From Your Mind: and focus on your body. Your mind brings up pain from memories of the past and anxiety for the future. Shift our focus from the mind to the body.
- No Judgement: Observe the mind without judgement. Be fully conscious of your mind and the power it has over you. “What will my next thought be?” It takes awhile before the next clear thought arrives. Observe without judgement and listen to your body. Expect the voices in your head and make no attempt to follow the advice.
- Permanent Alertness: active waiting means your attention is focused on the now.
- Relationships: ego of the “normal” person feeds on problems while the person who is present, calm and at peace is experienced as a threat. Darkness cannot survive near the light. If you can live in the present you’ll be able to stop judging, criticizing or trying to change your partner and instead see him or her as an independent person. Inner peace that being present brings enables you to hear your partner without judging.
- Sadness and Pain is Unavoidable: when experiencing something traumatic, which causes you real pain, you can just accept it for what it is. Allowing yourself to feel what you need to feel without guilt or shame. Accepting instead wishing things were different.
- Not Passive Life: inner peace is not worth much if your outer life situation is bad. Living in the present can give you clarity and strength to change for the better. Instead of creating problems you are solving problems.