Nothing ever happened in the past or future; it happened in the NOW.
I’m going to start this review by saying that this is a book I never thought I would read. What I mean is that it’s not one that I’d be inclined to seek out at a bookstore (and I LOVE bookstores!)
I first heard about this book on my Facebook news feed. I know, of all places, right?! But alas, there is some good stuff on there if you take some time to defriend or hide all the negative people/garbage that tends to saturate your newsfeed.
The Power of Now, by Eckhart Tolle, is a book about spiritual enlightenment. At first, I was skeptical. I’m NOT spiritual. In fact, I never go to church, and when my parents made me go when I was younger, I’d throw a tantrum in the pew just to spite them. Or I’d embarrass them by falling asleep. Or singing off-key. Or not singing. You get the point.
However, Tolle’s book is not preaching religion. In fact, it’s doing something much more – teaching us how to live in the NOW, or the present. He discusses many things that resonated with me, specifically how we are identified with our minds, which are rarely living in the present moment. This struck a chord with me, being that I often worry about the future. I also use past experiences to project future ones. As long as I can remember, I’ve been too busy worrying about things to really enjoy being in the present moment. This has caused me anxiety, panic attacks, irritability, and much more strife. And what for? What did my worrying accomplish? NOTHING!
This is just one of the things I learned from “The Power of Now.” Trust me, I made at least 100 highlights in the book, then copied the most salient ones into a little notebook so I can refer to them daily, as a reminder to myself to “be present.” Already, I’ve found that I am happier, less irritable and less stressed in my daily life, which is a major improvement! But, I still have a ways to go.
Seriously, even if you think you are already living in the present and have nothing to gain, give this book a try. As we get older, we tend to fall into our routines – work, exercise, social outings, etc., which we may be content with, but are we really enjoying every moment? Or just going through the motions of life? Are you always looking forward to the “next big thing” instead of savoring the moment in which you are currently present? I was, until I read this book.
I know what you’re thinking – reading this book means that I need mental help, that I don’t have a grip on my life. People will think that I’m crazy! I had similar thoughts at first, but it was more that my mind was trying to tell me that I didn’t need to read a book like this – I was fine as I was. Truth is, my ego is often too proud. I listened to my heart on this one, got the book on my Iphone and never looked back (except to the thousands of highlights I made in the book!) I have a grip on my life, in fact, a much better one now thanks to “The Power of Now.” I did not need “mental help” (although there is nothing wrong with that!), but I did need to be enlightened – and I was and will continue to seek out ways to be so.
I will end with one of my favorite quotes from Tolle’s book. I think it really puts into perspective one of my major issues, one I will continue to work on each day.
To be identified with your mind is to be trapped in time: the compulsion to live almost exclusively through memory and anticipation. This creates an endless preoccupation with the past and future and an unwillingness to honor and acknowledge the present moment and allow it to be.