Yesterday I read something from one of Eckhart Tolle's books that led me to believe that I am approaching meditation the wrong way.

He said that you should actually be more aware of your environment when you are in a meditative state, not less, and that your ego should be the servant, not the master.

I had always imagined meditation as a "cutting off of the senses," and a "cutting off of thought," and so I approached meditation from a "stilling of the mind" and a "quieting of the senses" approach.

Eckhart doesn't see it this way. He characterizes it instead as being in the now moment, the present moment, where there is no past and no future, but only the eternal now. In this condition, objects around you should appear more vivid, not less (as they would obviously be if your eyes were closed). He describes it as a very joyous, almost ecstatic, experience.

How do I enter this "now moment?" Or, to put it another way, how do I temporarily turn off the ego (if that's how it works)?

asked 24 Jun '10, 20:07

Vesuvius's gravatar image


You are meditating correctly when you find joy and peace...when you are refreshed afterward. I think that can mean different methods for different people.

I do not quiet my mind when meditating. In fact, I do much interior work while in a meditative state. I use the Silva method. Yes, I am very relaxed, but my mind is not at all stilled; even though that may work well for others!

"Being in the now moment" doesn't require a meditative state, it can happen throughout the day, but can also be found while meditating if one desires to.

I don't think there is a right or wrong way to meditate if one is gaining benefit from it. And for some people, even more than one method may work well!


answered 25 Jun '10, 23:05

LeeAnn%201's gravatar image

LeeAnn 1

You kind of made me laugh with this statement - Or,to put it another way,how do I temporarily turn off the ego (if that's how it works)? and I sincerely mean no disrespect.If we all had an immediate solution to that question I think we'd pretty much be living lives of bliss and the planet would be a much happier place.

The only way to turn off the ego is to become aware of when it is playing the role of master. Most of us lead lives with the ego at the helm steering the ship or as Eckhart Tolle says with the ego being the master.

The most effective way I have found of creating this awareness or in other words being able to witness my own ego in action is by meditation and as I've said before there is no wrong or right way to do it and for each individual the experience will be different.

There are many different types of meditation and I think what Eckhart Tolle is referring to is mindful meditation. One can make drinking a cup of coffee a meditation, or taking a walk - when it is done mindfully where one endeavours to be with the experience as fully as possible, then it becomes a meditation.

Personally, I still like to have those quiet moments where I at least try to still the mind and feel a deeper connection to All That Is. I think it is because of these moments that I begin to notice my Growing Awareness and when my ego is trying to be the Master. I've found I'm able to readdress a situation much more quickly because I can often see or feel immediately when my ego is trying to take over and as opposed to trying to get rid of the ego which I know some practices suggest, I usually quietly mollify it ( a bit like an errant child ) and it becomes relegated to the role of servant. It is still a tool we need in this human experience but when we let it become the Master, that's when problems arise.


answered 25 Jun '10, 12:21

Michaela's gravatar image


Hi Vesuvius.
I have been working on something that my inner guidance has been constantly been trying to awaken within me. I'm sure everyone here can relate to that statement in some way or another.

The guidance I received was that there is something to be discovered in being completely silent while still fully participating in life. Connected to this idea I have also constantly received this feeling that Thinking is the problem or that thinking is a trap. I am only starting to unravel what that means. I still don't know where this idea, or awakening, is taking me. But there is a strong sense of urgency to work on this problem.

So here is what I am trying to work on (it is also the reason that I hardly participate at this forum for now). I am trying to maintain the “meditative” mind while fully awake. Or as you put it “to be more aware of the environment while in a meditative state”

It is not that hard to reach and hold a state of mind where there is no thought (for short moments). Because the truth is, if you are brutally honest with your observations, you will find that nothing really happens. There is no great awakening, or bliss, or any other wonderful miracle.(or, at least, I haven't experienced it in a way that I could describe it in such fantastic words). But there is something in that silence. I can only describe it as an intuition of your own existence before you think a thought.

I am only speaking for myself when I say this. It is important that we work on ourselves in silence. In a way this forum is gift and a distraction. A gift because you are not alone and you can compare notes with others. A distraction because the endless question after question after question after question has the same effect upon your consciousness as watching T.V all day. The inquisitive mind is actually stuck in a prison of endless questions.

We are so hung up on “what is the right answer” or who has the “right answer” or which answer should get the best votes, etc. I think that none of that is as important as your willingness to trust in the presence within you to awaken you with the right guidance and right answer to what you need to know when you need to know it.

You can memorize the answer to every question in this forum and probably still be in a state of panic in a crisis. Or you can choose the path of trusting the self to awaken within silence, silence of thought, silence of ego, and feel this sense of an inner point of reference that is more dependable than all the memorized answers or external depositories of great knowledge.

I'm not sure but I think that this awakening that I'm mentioning is not a transition to a new state of mind . It seems to be more of discovering that you can exist in the absence of thought and that this habitual and continuous need to think something is a behavior that is keeping us from being fully awake to our own presence which is more instinctive and completely present in the “Now”.


answered 29 Jun '10, 06:07

The%20Traveller's gravatar image

The Traveller

Hello again Traveller :) Yes, the forum can be a distraction but I would have to say that can apply to anything in your life that you put more attention on than you are comfortable with. We're all in different vibrational places...none better or worse than others, just different. For many years, I lived in virtual isolation - it was what I needed at the time - but now that need has gone and I quite happily maintain a personal balance even in the midst of distractions like this forum and my life in general.

(29 Jun '10, 06:32) Stingray

So I see it as question of personal balance for the individual rather than anything to do with this forum in particular. The forum just is...what we see in it is perhaps a reflection of what we are? Just a thought. Anyway, nice to see you again :)

(29 Jun '10, 06:32) Stingray

Thanks for your comment Stingray. It brings a bit more balance to an otherwise biased point of view. It wasn't meant to be that way but I can see that it is. so thanks!

(29 Jun '10, 06:40) The Traveller
showing 2 of 3 show 1 more comments

Meditation, contemplation, communion; Eckhardt Tolle's technique is more of an in the moment contemplation. James Redfield described it in the Celestine Prophecy. It is more than just staring at something and more than just the power of concentration. I like to think of it as a skilled observation (you train yourself) while in communion with your soul. The Soul is where the highest love and joy imagined comes from.

You are right on with the definition and practice of Meditation. There are so many ways and techniques as there are experiences and freedom of choice. My personal experience is in communion and the feeling of expectancy and love mixed up together. When I am in this vibrational tone I know things just before they manifest, simple things but joy giving outcomes. This is difficult to share because words are limited and just yesterday I was thinking how could I share this feeling with the group here at Inward Quest.

Thanks for opening up the way to express something we need to have. This communion cannot be maintain all the time we have a mind that has to be use but a balance between the beauty of the soul and the mind. What a way to live. I have a feeling this Love/Expectancy is a powerful key. At least I want to believe it because I like it.


answered 24 Jun '10, 21:07

G16's gravatar image


edited 24 Jun '10, 22:04

Vesuvius's gravatar image


Like LeeAnn Said, I like the Silvia Method too. I think there are soo many ways to meditate I'm sure there are scores of methods in Buddhism alone. If you look at Hinduism and factor in the mantras there must be hundreds of ways to do it.

If you are looking for spiritual growth through meditation I guess you'll just need to select a technique, learn it well and stick with it. Cause I don't think there is any right or wrong way to meditate as such, but, there are be right or wrong ways of doing it, if, you are following a certain technique.

If, like me, you're just interested in calming the mind and nothing more. There is a technique called 'The Calm Technique' - Its very simple, straightforward and beautiful.


answered 26 Jun '10, 07:39

xyz's gravatar image


I believe theres a right way to practice stillness as Eckhart says and the way is to quiet the mind and focus on the temple inside you. I mean to focus on the wave length, the vibe, the calm inside the body offers if you would just but feel it. After coming out of being in a meditative state then, you are more aware of your surroundings. That is what he meant. It is when you practice stillness regularly is when you notice big changes in and around yourself. MAY THE FORCE BE WITH YOU


answered 27 Jun '10, 17:49

Hank%201's gravatar image

Hank 1

May the 4th be with you to brother

(27 Jun '10, 18:43) ursixx

So does meditation and teachings in Buddhism. Being mindful and aware, mindful and aware even if your mind wanders.

I guess there are probably many techniques or methods. Importantly, you should feel light and of high energy spiritually. We can't be too technical about these things, or try to set a goal to reach a state of what another person describes.

Take a moment and ask yourself if you observe any changes in you after each meditation. Observe what you experience.

In loving kindness and light. :)


answered 16 Jan '13, 23:37

mskityin's gravatar image


very short answer to the question:how do you know when you are meditating correctly? the answer is when you stop asking question on the outside. meditation is a inner search,a way to find in you,it is a narrow gate or way like jesus be in truth and out of duality,to be born of water and spirit and make the 2 become one. yoga means do you find unity0 in duality(),by seing how the dual part relate to each other in truth.

Jesus saw infants being suckled. He said to his disciples, "These infants being suckled are like those who enter the kingdom." They said to him, "Shall we then, as children, enter the kingdom?" Jesus said to them, "When you make the two one, and when you make the inside like the outside and the outside like the inside, and the above like the below, and when you make the male and the female one and the same, so that the male not be male nor the female female; and when you fashion eyes in the place of an eye, and a hand in place of a hand, and a foot in place of a foot, and a likeness in place of a likeness; then will you enter the kingdom."


answered 17 Jan '13, 02:51

white%20tiger's gravatar image

white tiger

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Asked: 24 Jun '10, 20:07

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Last updated: 17 Jan '13, 02:51

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