Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Tolle's Lack of Ethics / Insight into Rumi's field

The two primary spiritual systems I subscribe to,
Yoga and Buddhism,
both convey a strong suggestion
to live an ethical life.

In Yoga, it is the Yamas and Niyamas.
In Buddhism, it is Right Speech, Action, and Livelihood.

I have really inspired lately
by listening to the teachings of Eckhart Tolle.

Out of the entire aggregate Mind-Field
Tolle's method is to examine all the problems of the egoic mind,
then practice as follows:

Sensations and Perceptions: notice them, in the here/now
Cognitive mind: Notice thoughts, then find some stillness and give it a rest!
Emotions/Feelings: notice them in the here/now
Affect: Allow and do not resist your experience.

No ethics in Tolle's work!

I have not been able to find much of a discussion of ethics
anywhere in Tolle's work. I even found a spot where
he specifically mentions he tends to avoid telling people
what they should or shouldn't do.

Does he not think ethics are important?
Does Tolle subscribe to an amoral philosophy
of personal happiness without any personal responsibility?

No... To my mind, Tolle is clearly the real deal.
So how can we explain his avoidance of ethics?

Tolle says to understand what to do,
we need to simply listen to our bodies.

Perhaps there is an organic/natural ethic which
is based on serving life, which we all share innately.

But perhaps it is subtle, and the reason we haven't been
listening is because we have been asleep, unconscious.

Also, 500 years of laws and ethics have not seemed to
have produced a non-violent culture.
Perhaps when ethics are discussed,
people hear judgments and demands,
and then stop listening.

So while we all desire a non-violent world,
perhaps a focus on ethics directly
is not the best approach?

... and I keep coming back to this...

``Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing,
there is a field.  I'll meet you there.

When the soul lies down in that grass,
the world is too full to talk about.
Ideas, language, even the phrase each other
doesn't make any sense.``

-- Rumi

Bill Huston          
Binghamton NY             Phone: 607-321-7846

Binghamton-area discussion; spirituality topics:
Watch for Open-To-Everyone TV!        

No comments: