There is a method to it....

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Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The good side of Eckhart Tolle

Ok so just in case some may think I am a narrow minded fundamentalist basher of other religous views here is my upside to Eckhart Tolle's book. I think the church can take some lessons from his overall approach in presenting his brand of spirituality. Eckhart Tolle's New Earth has become popular and has drawn people in for several reasons and I think he has a beat on the spiritual terrain of our society.

1. Newness vs Old dogma

In the book he presents spirituality as an evolution and this is the next new step in that evolution. We are fascinated by the new, We have thrived off of an economy of new and improved and upgrades and yet we still want to connect with the old and so the book repackages the teachings of different religions into something new that everyone can benefit from.

2. Secret/Esoteric vs. Open Accessibility

He presents this new spirituality as a secret that has emerged in many faith traditions and we just need to tap into it. This spirituality is not as simple as Four spiritual laws or five simple steps. There is a sense of mystery to it and an appeal to those who want to be part of the group that is "in on the secret".

3. Rest vs. Activity

The main point of the book is letting go of the ego and not striving or complaining. This is what America is longing for. We are suffering from overload on all fronts. Whether it is work overload, school overload, information overload or even church overload we are screaming to get off this rollercoaster of activity and so The New Earth is giving the option of at least having peace and rest in an inner sense.

4. Holistic vs. Individualistic

The New Earth is the title and I think it is apropo because it is not just focused on just you as an individual getting better or being at peace. The book proposes that if everyone lived this way we would all be at peace. There would be an alleviation of hunger and war and rampant suffering. So it looks at spirituality holistically as something that affects not only you but the world you live in. It is a far cry from what the modern evangelical church is focused on. Most of what you hear is about pie in the sky, a good marriage, great finances and guess what? It's all for you!!!

So those are my thoughts on it. I wonder how we can incorporate these approaches in evangelism or disicpleship or preaching? Hmmmmmm....

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