A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose

By Eckhart Tolle –

1. “This book’s main purpose is to bring about a shift in consciousness, to awaken… If the awakening process has begun in you, this book will accelerate and intensify it.”

2. “This book is about you.”

3. “There is a realization that the ‘normal’ state of mind of most human beings contains a strong element of what we might call dysfunction or even madness… This dysfunction is a form of collective mental madness; Hinduism calls it maya, the veil of delusion.”

4. “Buddhism sees suffering (dukkha) as a characteristic of the human condition.”

5. “Wars, motivated by fear, greed, and the desire for power, have been common occurrences throughout human history, as have slavery, torture, and widespread violence inflicted for religious and ideological reasons.”

6. “By the end of the 20th century, the number of people who died a violent death at the hand of their fellow humans would rise to more than one hundred million… And the madness has not abated… Driven by greed, ignorant of their connectedness to the whole, humans persist in behavior that, if continued unchecked, can only result in their own destruction.”

7. “Fear, greed, and the desire for power are the psychological motivating forces behind, and the cause of, incessant conflict in personal relationships.”

8. “The blueprint for dysfunction that every human being carries within is THE EGO.”

9. “Most ancient religions and spiritual traditions share the common insight – that our ‘normal’ state of mind is marred by a fundamental defect. However, out of this insight into the nature of the human condition arises a second insight: the possibility of a radical
transformation of human consciousness… This transformation is variously called enlightenment, the end of suffering, liberation, or awakening.”

10. “To recognize one’s own insanity is, of course, the arising of sanity, the beginning of healing and transcendence.”

11. “Throughout history religions, to a large extent, became divisive rather than unifying forces… they could make themselves ‘right’ and others ‘wrong’ – and the ‘nonbelievers’ they not infrequently saw as justified in killing.”

12. “The more you make your thoughts (beliefs) into your identity, the more cut off you are from the spiritual dimension within yourself.”

13. *”The new spirituality, the transformation of consciousness, is arising to a large extent outside of the structures of the existing institutionalized religions.”

14. “How ‘spiritual’ you are has nothing to do with what you believe but everything to do with your state of consciousness.”

15. “If the structures of the human mind remain unchanged, we will always end up recreating fundamentally the same world, the same evils, the same dysfunction.”

16. “Heaven is not a location but refers to the inner realm of consciousness… ‘A new heaven’ is the emergence of a transformed state of human consciousness, and ‘a new earth’ is its reflection in the physical realm.”

17. “All we can perceive, experience, think about, is the surface layer of reality, less than the tip of the iceberg… Everything is connected with everything else.”

18. “An illusory sense of identity – this is the ego… The good news is: If you can recognize illusion as illusion, it dissolves. The recognition of illusion is also its ending.”

19. “… thinking without awareness is the main dilemma of human existence.”

20. “Ego-identification with things creates attachment to things, obsession with things, which in turn creates our consumer society and economic structures where the only measure of progress is always more. The unchecked striving for more is a dysfunction
and a disease.”

21. “A large part of many people’s lives is consumed by an obsession with things… As a spiritual practice, I suggest that you investigate your relationship with the world of things through self-observation.

22. “Sometimes letting things go is an act of far greater power than defending or hanging on… The decision to make the present moment into your friend is the end of the ego.”

23. “… with each thing she gave away, her joy deepened.” “Renouncing all possessions has been an ancient spiritual practice in both East and West.”

24. “The ego tends to equate having with Being… the more I have, the more I am. The ego lives through comparison. How you are seen by others turns into how you see yourself…The ego’s sense of self-worth is in most cases bound up with the worth you have in the eyes of others. You need others to give you a sense of self.”

25. “The need for more – wanting – keeps the ego alive much more than having.”

26. “Basic comforts could be easily met for all humans on the planet, were it not for the imbalance of resources created by the insane ‘need’ for more, the greed of the ego.”

27. “Whenever tragic loss occurs, you either resist or you yield. Some people become bitter or deeply resentful, others become compassionate, wise and loving. Yielding means inner acceptance of what is. You are open to life.”

28. *”Complaining is one of the ego’s favorite strategies for strengthening itself… Some egos that perhaps don’t have much else to identify with easily survive on complaining alone.” “Resentment is often the emotion that goes with complaining.”

29. “Resentment adds even more energy to the ego.” “By not reacting to the ego, you will often be able to bring out the sanity in others.”

30. “The ego loves to complain and feel resentful not only about other people but also about situations.”

31. “The facts are always neutral” – what’s important is our reaction to the facts; and this is totally within our ability to do in a positive (or less negative) way.

32. “Sometimes it becomes obvious that the ego doesn’t really want change so it can go on complaining.”

33. “Ego implies unawareness.” “Ego takes everything personally… Ego confuses opinions and viewpoints with facts. Every ego is a master of selective perception and distorted interpretation.”

34. “Complaining as well as faultfinding and reactivity strengthen the ego.” “When you complain, by implication you are right and the person or situation you complain about or react against is wrong… You need to make others wrong in order to get a stronger sense of who you are.”

35. “A long-standing resentment is called a grievance. One strong grievance is enough to contaminate large areas of your life and keep you in the grip of ego.”

36. “Trying to let go, to forgive, does not work. Forgiveness happens naturally when you see that it has no purpose other than to strengthen a false sense of self.”

37. “The certainty that ‘I am right and you are wrong’ is a dangerous thing in personal relationships as well as in interactions between nations, tribes and religions.”

38. “If you believe only your religion is the Truth, you are using it in the service of ego.”

39. “The human ego in its collective aspect as ‘us’ against ‘them’ is even more insane than the ‘me’, the individual ego, although the mechanism is the same. By far the greater part of violence that humans have inflicted on each other is not the work of criminals or the
mentally deranged, but of normal, respectable citizens in the service of the collective ego.”

40. “Greed, selfishness, exploitation, cruelty and violence are still all-pervasive on this planet.”

41. “Anything that you resent and strongly react to in another is also in you.”

42. “War is a mind-set. When you are in the grip of a mind-set such as war, you will see only what you want to see and then misinterpret it.”

43. *”All that is required to become free of the ego is to be aware of it, since awareness and ego are incompatible. Awareness is the power.”

44. “The unconscious drive behind ego is to strengthen the image of who I think I am… The hidden motivating force is always the same; the need to stand out, be special, be in control; the need for power, for attention… for opposition, enemies.”

45. “The underlying emotion that governs all the activity of the ego is fear. The fear of being nobody the fear of nonexistence, the fear of death.”

46. “A genuine relationship is one that is not dominated by the ego.”

47. “The source of all energy is within you.”

48. “The ego does not want an end to its ‘problems’ because they are part of its identity…Feeling sorry for yourself, you have an identity as someone who is being treated unfairly by life or other people, fate or God.”

49. “In many cases, happiness is a role people play, and behind the smiling façade, there is a great deal of pain.” “The primary cause of unhappiness is never the situation but your thoughts about it.”

50. “Be aware that what you think, to a large extent, creates the emotions that you feel.”

51. *”Don’t seek happiness. If you seek it, you won’t find it.” It is an outcome, not an objective.

52. “Awareness is the greatest agent of change.”

53. “You are neither inferior nor superior to anyone. True self-esteem and true humility arise out of that realization.”

54. “The extent of the ego’s inability to recognize itself and see what it is doing is staggering and unbelievable.”

55. “To become free of the ego is not really a big job. All you need to do is be aware of your thoughts and emotions – as they happen.”

56. “The stronger the ego in you, the more likely it is that in your perception other people are the main source of problems in your life.”

57. Those people who work without ego are extraordinarily successful in what they do. Anybody who is one with what he or she does is building the new earth.”

58. “A collective ego manifests the same characteristics as the personal ego, such as the need for conflict and enemies, the need for more, the need to be right against others who are wrong.”

59. “Kafka, Camus, TS Eliot, James Joyce: they recognize alienation as the universal dilemma of human existence.”

60. “We are a species that has lost its way.”

61. “The only place of power: the present moment.” (Very Buddhist) “The majority of people on our planet: what a heavy burden of past they carry around with them in their minds.”

62. “Any negative emotion that is not fully faced and seen for what it is in the moment it arises does not completely dissolve. It leaves behind a remnant of pain… Children in particular find strong negative emotions too overwhelming to cope with and tend to try
not to feel them.”

63. “It’s not so much that you cannot stop your train of negative thoughts, but that you don’t want to.”

64. “What you do to others, you do to yourself.”

65. “Know Thyself. These words ere inscribed above the entrance to the temple of Apollo at Delphi, site of the sacred Oracle… Before you ask any other question, first ask the most fundamental question of your life: Who am I?”

66. “Knowing yourself goes far deeper than the adoption of a set of ideas and beliefs… it has nothing to do with whatever ideas are floating around in your mind. Knowing yourself is to be rooted in Being, instead of lost in your mind… Your sense of who you are determines what you perceive as your needs and what matters to you… What matters to you is not necessarily what you say or believe, but what your actions and reactions
reveal as important and serious to you.”

67. “If peace is really what you want, then you will choose peace.”

68. “How you react to people and situations, especially when challenges arise, is the best indicator of how deeply you know yourself… Nobody can tell you who you are.”

69. “You cannot receive what you do not give… Ask yourself often: ‘What can I give here; how can I be of service to this person, this situation?”

70. “Both abundance and scarcity are inner states.”

71. “Don’t confuse knowing about yourself with knowing yourself.”

72. “Nature can help you become realigned with the wholeness of life.”

73. “Only if you resist what happens are you at the mercy of what happens, and the world will determine your happiness and unhappiness.”

74. “There are two ways of being (making yourself) unhappy. Not getting what you want is one. Getting what you want is the other.”

75. “Unhappiness or negativity is a disease on our planet. What pollution is on the outer lever is negativity on the inner.”

76. “The affluent world is trapped in ego.”

77. “People believe themselves to be dependent on what happens for their happiness.” (As opposed to creating their own happiness.)

78. “One of the most common ego-repair mechanisms is anger, which causes a temporary but huge ego inflation.”

79. “If you don’t become speechless when looking out into space on a clear night, you are not really looking, not aware of the totality of what is there.”

80. “’This, too, will pass.’ Simple words; so powerful… Be at one with what happens; there is a wisdom in non-judgment.”

81. “Winston Churchill defined the history of humanity as ‘one damn thing after another.’”

82. “Laughter is extraordinarily liberating as well as healing.”

83. What the ancient sages of India called ananda is the bliss of Being: the ability to see beauty; to appreciate simple things, to enjoy your own company, or to relate to other people with loving kindness.”

84. “If you take credit for what you have accomplished, the ego has returned.”

85. “Some people feel more alive when they travel… They become more present.”

86. “As soon as you rise above mere survival, the question of meaning and purpose becomes of paramount importance in your life… There is no substitute for finding true purpose.”

87. “Outer purpose alone is always relative, unstable, impermanent… You should connect your outer focus to your inner, primary purpose, so that a deeper meaning flows into what you do… Fulfilling your primary purpose is laying the foundation for a new collective
reality, a new earth.”

88. “The mind has a deep-seated habit of seeking the fullness of life in the future where it cannot be found; the only point of access to it is the present moment.”

89. “Be true to life by being true to your inner purpose.”

90. “Personal tragedy carries great potential for spiritual awakening… Nothing happens that is not part of the greater whole and its purpose.”

91. “Not what you do, but how you do what you do determines whether you are fulfilling your destiny.”

92. “If you are not in the state of either acceptance, enjoyment, or enthusiasm, look closely and you will find that you are creating suffering for yourself and others… If you can neither enjoy or bring acceptance to what you do – stop.”

93. “Joy does not come from what you do, it flows into what you do and thus into this world from deep within you.”

94. “Enthusiasm means there is deep enjoyment in what you do plus the added element of a goal or a vision that you work towards… Enjoy the journey.” “Emerson: ‘Nothing great has ever been achieved without enthusiasm’… Enthusiasm brings an enormous empowerment into what you do.”

95. “To sum up: Enjoyment of what you are doing, combined with a goal or vision that you work toward, becomes enthusiasm.”

Glenn Detrick