Power of Now was in my to-read list for 3 years. All I knew about it was the story of a man who went from suicidal feelings to a joyous life. In my pursuit of mindfulness, I ended up picking this as the first book.
The entire book revolves around one concept “Now”. The past is for regrets and the future is for anxiety. The only moment you have control over is now. But you are wasting it away in the past or future.
Why should you read this book?
I felt motivated to stay in the present after reading the book. There are a few instances in the book where Tolle questions you and gives you tips to stay in the present which are quite helpful. Apart from that the book is mainly theory on mindfulness which helps you catch yourself from drifting.
Two main concepts which influenced my life.
We measure time in seconds but when you stay in the present is when you go into timelessness. It sounds absurd but at the same time means so much.
2.Giving energy to an emotion
After reading the book, whenever I experience a negative emotion, I keep a check on what are the thoughts I am holding to which is providing energy to the emotion and fueling it. I don’t live in the present like Tolle but this sort of awareness will definitely help me get closer to it.
This book is not for someone who is looking for readymade solutions. It is like the textbook on mindfulness concepts.
“Have you found the off button?”
That’s a very strong question to which a lot of us have a wrong answer. We don’t switch off. We switch the channel. If only we learn how to off our minds whenever we wish our lives are so much under our control.
“Just become intensely conscious of the present moment”
This sounds like a very tough job. But he gives a practical way to do this. If you are walking, pay your complete attention to the steps, movement and breathing.
“Everytime you create a gap in the stream of mind, the light of your consciousness grows stronger”
If you have 100 thoughts bombarding you at the moment, if you can let go off the 101th thought, it is a little success to celebrate.
“80 to 90 percent of most people’s thinking is not only repetitive and useless but because its dysfunctional and often negative nature, much of it is also harmful”
When I did my thought tracker exercise a few years ago, I realised how I was wasting away my life worrying about the same things daily.
“To the ego, the present moment hardly exists. Only past and future are considered important.”
The very reason why we are either regretful or anxious.
“No-mind is consciousness without thought. Only in the way is it possible to think creatively, because only in that way does thought have real power”
Tolle explains the creative artists and scientists get their breakthroughs in no-mind state.
“Emotion arises at the place where mind and body meet”
“Research shows that strong emotions even cause changes in the biochemistry of the body”
“If you cannot feel your emotions, if you are cut off from them, you will eventually experience them on a purely physical level, as a physical problem or symptom”
It is one of the signs of the negative energy which is stuck in your head and shoulders as tension.
“What’s going on inside me at this moment? That question will point you in the right direction.”
“If there is no emotion present, take your attention more deeply into the inner energy field of your body”
This is one of the practical tip which helps you deal with identifying how emotion is affecting your body.
“Vibrational energy of the emotion keeps feeding the original thought pattern”
The very reason why you should be aware of that you and your mind are different entities and everything your mind says should not be bought.
“Pleasure is always derived from something outside you whereas joy comes from within.”
The reason why you are never satisfied with pleasure but joy makes you satisfied.
“The greatest part of human pain is unnecessary. It is self created as long as the unobserved mind runs your life.”
If your mind dictates how you should feel, you have no control over your happiness.
“All negativity is caused by an accumulation of psychological time and denial of the present”
When you stay in a state of denial, you are stuck in the same thoughts which broods negativity.
“To complain is always non acceptance of what is”
A simple truth which is very difficult to follow.
“You attract and manifest whatever corresponds to your inner state”
While other self-help books simply tell this, here he explains how to check the sanity of your inner state.
“Feeling sorry for yourself and telling others your story will keep you stuck in suffering”
I definitely noticed how self-pity reduced once I stopped complaining about how bad my life is.
Happy staying in the present!