Archive for March 27th, 2009

Eckhart Tolle on Alleviating the Suffering of the World

March 27, 2009
eckhart-tolle-black-and-white

Eckhart Tolle







So many people are so eager and passionate about helping those who are suffering that they lose themselves in others’ pain and end up suffering themselves. The answer? I like this Q&A excerpt from Eckhart Tolle‘s masterpiece, The Power of Now.








But there shouldn’t be any hunger and starvation in the first place. How can we create a better world without tackling evils such as hunger and violence first?

All evils are the effect of unconsciousness. You can alleviate the effects of unconsciousness, but you cannot eliminate them unless you eliminate their cause. True change happens within, not without.

If you feel called upon to alleviate suffering in the world, that is a very noble thing to do, but remember not to focus exclusively on the outer. Otherwise, you will encounter frustration and despair. Without a profound change in human consciousness, the world’s suffering is a bottomless pit. So don’t let your compassion become one-sided.

Empathy with someone else’s pain or lack and a desire to help must be balanced with a deeper realization of the eternal nature of all life and the ultimate illusion of all pain. Then let your peace flow into whatever you do and you will be working on the levels of effect and cause simultaneously.


Is pain truly an illusion? Is suffering a choice? Clearly, any attempt to understand the horrors of war, the injustice of tyranny, and the ravages of disease has its limits; and any purpose behind such incomprehensible suffering may remain beyond the capacity of human beings to grasp. But a purpose we cannot wrap our minds around is a purpose nonetheless.

It is insensitive at best and cruel at worst to (more…)