Been doing a little late night reading lately. Don’t you love stealing a moment to indulge in a thought provoking read?
No matter how much life seems to throws at me, how it provokes focus on mundane & worldly matters, it takes but an instant to pause and introspect. In that gentle moment a disconnect brings me to a place where my thoughts are clear and I connect with a higher state of being.
The latest collection in my recipe for higher living comes from the Eckhart Tolle’s latest “A New Earth, Awakening To Your Life’s Purpose”.
Eckhart expands on an original theme in “The Power of Now”, delivering that which he believes the root cause of human suffering.
Tolle says that living in a state of unawareness towards the true nature of what we are is cause for the human misery seen on Earth. He accuses the ego as cause and character playing a leading role in keeping us ignorant of the truth.
I believe Tolle’s writing sets the stage where we can begin exploring to discover the very presence of a ‘veil of illusion’ created by our egos to protect us from the harsh existence of living. Unfortunately, like an overprotective guardian (however well intentioned) the ego becomes the obstacle keeping us from experiencing the true significance of what it means to be human and to be vulnerable.
Like a gatekeeper, it stands between us and the simple act of living to distort all that we perceive as reality. Thus, ego keeps us from realizing the very nature of our own existence.
The ego chooses to believe in a world of duality creating the illusion of a sense of being a separate living entity; a sense that we are separate and ‘apart’ from all other entities around us. Interestingly, we observe that the very word is made of not one, but two run-on words; thus pointing to our misperception that not only are we not ‘apart’ from anything but rather are “a part” of everything.
To borrow from wikipedia in getting a fuller understanding of the origins of ‘ego’ …”In modern-day society, ego has many meanings. It could mean one’s self-esteem; an inflated sense of self-worth; or in philosophical terms, one’s self. However, according to Freud, the ego is the part of the mind which contains the consciousness. Originally, Freud had associated the word ego to meaning a sense of self; however, he later revised it to mean a set of psychic functions such as judgment, tolerance, reality-testing, control, planning, defense, synthesis of information, intellectual functioning, and memory.
Another interesting point is Tolle’s description of humanity’s inherited dysfunction. He states that underneath many world religions there’s the core belief that the ‘normal’ state of most human minds contain a strong element of dysfunction, perhaps even madness.
His strong and compelling argument includes Hindus references to this dysfunction as a state of “maya” or collective mental illness whereby man lives in a state of illusory perception of the reality they misperceive. In Christianity this abnormal collective state of humanity is known as “original sin”.
Interestingly, to explore origin of the word ‘sin’ shows that we have greatly misunderstood and misinterpreted its meaning in scripture.
Tolle points out that (sin is) “… Literally translated from the ancient Greek in which the New Testament was written, to sin means to miss the mark, as an archer who misses the target, so to sin means to miss the point of human existence. It means to live unskillfully, blindly, and thus to suffer and cause suffering.”
Stripped of the wrongful interpretations given this word through time, we come to understand that the scriptures of Christianity point also to our ego as root cause of human suffering.
Thus, the inheritance of an ‘egoic’ rooted dysfunction pervades the human condition and is the cause of man’s misinterpretation for the very act of being human. And this in turn, is the root cause of human suffering here on Earth.