"Fearlessness is the first requirement of spirituality. Cowards can never be moral." -- Mahatma Gandhi

Thursday, June 2, 2011

The Ego, Collective Insanity and Awakening

"What is it," spiritual teacher and author, Eckhart Tolle asks, "that impels humans to violence? Not just the obvious violence . . . but also (the) violence in relationships that may not even be physical violence - the violence at work, the fighting battles for a little bit of power, a little bit more position, more power, a little bit more money, (to be) more right than you. Where does that come from," he asks, "that self-inflicted suffering?"

"It comes," Tolle suggests, "from not knowing yourself beyond the needy little entity that is the mind-identified 'me' with its story. Not only does it meed more," Tolle observes, "it also needs conflict."

"What," he asks, "is the mind-identified 'self' that needs conflict? Why does it need it?"

"Look at a simple thing like the need to be right," he suggests. "A lot of the conflict in relationships is based on the need to assert my position as right, for 'me' to be right. Which implies, I need you to be wrong. And an enormous amount of emotional force goes into defending one's mental position, and proving that:  'I am right and you are wrong'. This is one of the ways in which that the mind-made 'me' strengthens itself. Because if I can be right, I have added a little bit to my sense of 'self'.'"

"Collective identities need to be right, too," Tolle notes. In an additional video clip (below) featuring both Tolle and the late Jiddu Krishnamurti, both spiritual teachers talk about our collective insanity and the possibility of an emergence of spirituality in modern society, as well as what the consequences may be if no such emergence takes place.

"For humanity to take responsibility, primarily you have to take responsibility for your consciousness," Tolle observes. Our collective consciousness, he suggests, is going through "a transitional process." "Your state of consciousness," he notes, "determines what kind of world you create, what kind of action you take, and what consequences your actions have."

"I don't think anybody who reads history can doubt (that) there is a deep-seated dysfunction in humans (which) has been there for thousands of years. And," he warns, "if there is no shift in that, then the dysfunction will destroy us."

"Either you are not serious," Krishnamurti notes,  "and (you) want to live a very, very superficial life - and that superficiality temporarily satisfies you - or you really don't care, as long as your immediate pleasures (and) immediate satisfactions (are seen to)."


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