The Power of Now, by Eckhart Tolle, is a masterpiece in spiritual writings. It seems that the title explains it all, but actually there is an amazing structure of new concepts in every chapter. In fact, so much has been written about it that I need to add no more.
In this whole framework of Now, it is often possible to overlook an important fact. From a summary of the book,
Tolle’s basic law is that the more we resist our current situation, the more painful it is. Obviously, if we are thinking “This can’t be happening”, the fact that it is makes it unbearable. Waiting and looking forward to the day when you will be happy or prosperous, for instance, only makes resistance to the present situation stronger. The thought that we could be somewhere else, be with someone else, doing something else can turn our life into a living hell.
My feeling is that this pain can be both good and bad for the soul.
If our discontent about the current situation is giving us pain and a sense of sympathy with our own self, then Tolle’s solution is perfect. Don’t do it and reside in the Now.
However, if our discontent about the current situation is creating a healthy determination to succeed against odds, it is a blessing. All the advancement in the world originated from a stimulating dissatisfaction.
In other words,
The dissatisfaction with Now is like fuel in a vehicle. The fuel has to burn by nature. If it is burning inside the body of the vehicle, it must be stopped at any cost. But if it is burning inside the engine, let it burn high and strong. It is there to propel us in success space.
Recently, I found a nice explanation of the power of NOW in the following video. The main concept here is that happiness neither lies in residing at the basecamp of a mountain, nor in being dropped off at the top through a helicopter. Happiness lies in the journey itself. Plan for success and be present in the moment while doing the work.
“Attaining lasting happiness requires that we enjoy the journey on our way toward a destination we deem valuable. Happiness, therefore, is not about making it to the peak of the mountain, nor is it about climbing aimlessly around the mountain: happiness is the experience of climbing toward the peak” – Tal Ben-Shahar