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Stillness Speaks

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Eckhart Tolle shows you how to become your true self by embracing stillness and silence. When we are no longer limited by our thinking mind, suffering and pain disappears and we are able to move forward towards a new understanding of our relationships, of nature and of the profound wisdom that is to be found in stillness.

144 pages, Paperback

First published January 1, 2003

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About the author

Eckhart Tolle

214 books8,697 followers
Eckhart Tolle is a teacher, author, and entrepreneur. He is a German-born resident of Canada best known as the author of The Power of Now and A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose. Tolle does not identify with any specific religion, but he has been influenced by multiple spiritual works.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 867 reviews
Profile Image for Heidi The Reader.
1,372 reviews1,421 followers
April 19, 2017
Shorter and simpler than his other books, Stillness Speaks is the essence of Eckhart Tolle. If you're interested in his teaching, but don't feel up to some of his more far-out ideas, this would be a good place to start.

Waking up to who you really are: "When you recognize that there is a voice in your head that pretends to be you and never stops speaking, you are awakening out of your unconscious identification with the stream of thinking. When you notice that voice, you realize that who you are is not the voice- the thinker- but the one who is aware of it. Knowing yourself as the awareness behind the voice is freedom." pg 29.

If you feel like things are out of your control, Eckhart Tolle hands the reins of power back to you: "Your thoughts make you unhappy. Your interpretations, the stories you tell yourself make you unhappy. "The thoughts I am thinking right now are making me unhappy." This realization breaks your unconscious identification with those thoughts." pg 120.

This book is filled with mind-blowing moments. Take this one (I underlined it in my copy): "Death is not the opposite of life. Life has no opposite. The opposite of death is birth. Life is eternal." pg 103. Eckhart Tolle mic drop.

I've always loved his thoughts about the relationship between nature and man: "Nature can bring you to stillness. That is its gift to you. When you perceive and join with nature in the field of stillness, that field becomes permeated with your awareness. That is your gift to nature. Through you nature becomes aware of itself. Nature has been waiting for you, as it were, for millions of years." pgs 85-86. So, go hug a tree today. :)

This book is an experience which is hard to describe. Read it and let me know what you think.

If you enjoy Stillness Speaks, you may want to give The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment or A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose a go. They are more difficult to get through than this offering, but I found them to be worth it.
Profile Image for Amethyst.
185 reviews336 followers
July 15, 2020
چقدر جذاب بود و سبک جالب و دلنشینی داشت و به قول خود اکهارت تول سبکش به سوترا میمانست ، کتاب صوتی اش که توسط هما بازگو شده بود رو در این چند وقت اهسته اهسته گوش میدادم و کیف میکردم و جدا بعضی کتاب ها نباید زود به اخر برسن بلکه باید در رگ و ریشه ی ما جای بگیرن و با ما یکی بشن ، گوش دادن به این کتاب مزیت های زیادی برای من داشته ، ارامشی که از صدای راوی اش میگرفتم تا خود متن کتاب و اگاهی که بهم منتقل میکرد و... همه و همه با هم اوقات خوشی رو بهم هدیه دادن و من هم از شدت زیبایی و ارامش و اگاهی که در متن اش میشنیدم ،صوت این کتاب رو برای عزیزانم میفرستادم و تشویق به گوش دادنش میکردمشون ، اگر تا به امروز نخوانده اید حتما به صوتی اش گوش بدید ....
Profile Image for Rami Abdullah.
4 reviews7 followers
April 13, 2017
اول واهم كتب ايكهارت

عندما قرأته اول مره , اخبرني انه لنخب تميز النور حال ابصاره,
قال لي ان هناك من سيعبره كبوابه لا رجوع للخلف بعدها
وان الآخر سيسقط حتى قبل اكمال صفحاته المعدودة
وان البعض تكفيه بضع ورقات ليعبر , البعض الآخر لن يجهز في هذه الحياة

اخبرني ان في هذه اللحظة مايكفي من (الجنه). وان العمر يقاس بحضور صاحبه فيه !. مما دعاني بقوة لأن يخرج هذا الكتاب باللغة العربية
رغم تجاوز معانية اي لغة بأشواط
Profile Image for Steve Wilson.
179 reviews10 followers
August 10, 2011
I digested this one slowly over about a year and a half (and it's a TINY book!). I love the part where the author says it's more important to set the book down often, as the present moment is more important than anything that he could say on the page.
Profile Image for Chelsea.
449 reviews2 followers
May 20, 2009
Everyone should read this book. I wish I had money to buy it. But, it is from the library. This book jumped off the shelf and it was meant for me to read this bad boy! So just read a sentence and set the book down and then pick it up again. It has some very wise words to ponder in your life. I need to read this book about 40 more times and I would enjoy it every time.
October 3, 2012

 ﻫﺬﺍ ﺍﻟﻜﺘﺎﺏ ﺭﺍﺋﻊ ﻷ‌ﻧﻪ ﺑﻜﻞ ﺑﺴﺎﻃﺔ ﻳﺴﻌﻰ ﻟﺘﺤﻘﻴﻖ ﺍﻟﺴﻼ‌ﻡ ﺍﻟﺪﺍﺧﻠﻲ..

ﺍﺳﺘﻌﺎﻥ ﺍﻟﻜﺎﺗﺐ ﺃﺣﺪ ﻃﺮﻕ ﺍﻟﺘﻌﻠﻴﻢ ﺍﻟﺮﻭﺣﺎﻧﻲ ﻟﺪﻯ ﺍﻟﻬﻨﻮﺩ ﺍﻟﻘﺪﻣﺎﺀ ﻭﺍﻟﺬﻱ ﻳﻌﺮﻑ ﺏ ﺳﻮﺗﺮﺍ ، ﻭﺳﻮﺗﺮﺍ ﺑﺈﺧﺘﺼﺎﺭ ﻋﺒﺎﺭﺍﺕ ﻣﻮﺟﺰﺓ ﺗﺤﻤﻞ ﻓﻲ ﻃﻴﺎﺕها ﻛﻠﻤﺎﺗ ذات ﻣﻌﺎﻧﻲ ﺃﻋﻤﻖ ﺗﺪﻓﻊ ﺍﻟﻘﺎﺭﺉ ﻟﺘﺄﻣﻠﻬﺎ ، ﻓﻬﻮ ﺃﺷﺒﻪ ﺑﺄﻣﺜﺎﻝ ﺷﻌﺒﻴﻪ ﺫﺍﺕ ﻏﺎﻳﺎﺕ ﺃﺻﻴﻠﺔ ..

ﻭﻗﺪ ﺻﺪﻕ ﻛﺎﺗﺒﻪ ﻓﺎﻟﻜﺘﺎﺏ ﺭﻏﻢ ﺃﻧﻪ ﻟﻢ ﻳﺼﻞ ﺣﺘﻰ ﻟﻤﺎﺋﺔ ﺻﻔﺤﺔ ﺇلا ﺃﻧﻪ ﻣﻦ ﺍﻟﻜﺘﺐ ﺗﻠﻚ ﺍﻟﺘﻲ ﺗﺮﺟﻊ ﺇﻟﻴﻬﺎ ﻷ‌ﻛﺜﺮ ﻣﻦ ﻣﺮﻩ ﻭﺭﺑﻤﺎ ﻗﺪ ﻳﺴﺘﻐﺮﻕ ﺇﻧﻬﺎﺀ ﺍﻟﻘﺮﺍﺀﺓ ﻟﻤﺪﺓ ﺃﻃﻮﻝ ﻣﻤﺎ ﺗﺘﺼﻮﺭ ..!

ﺟﻤﻴﻞ ﺃﻥ ﻧﺼﻔﻲ ﺃﺫﻫﺎﻧﻨﺎ ﻣﻦ اﻷ‌ﻓﻜﺎﺭ ﻭﺍﻟﻤﻔﺎﻫﻴﻢ ﺍﻟﺨﺎﻃﺌﺔ ﻋﻦا وعن الآخرين ، ﻭﻛﻢ ﻧﺤﻦ ﺑﺄﻣﺲ ﺍﻟﺤﺎﺟﺔ ﻟﻠﺘﺄﻣﻞ ﻭالإ‌ﺻﻐﺎﺀ ﻷ‌ﻣﻮﺍﺝ ﺍﻟﺒﺤﺮ ﻣﻦ ﺩﻭﻥ ﺍﻟﺘﺸﺒﺚ ﺑﺬﻛﺮﻳﺎﺕ ﺍﻟﻤﺎﺿﻲ ﻭﺍﻧﺘﻈﺎﺭ ﺍﻟﻤﺴﺘﻘﺒﻞ ، ﺑﻤﻌﻨﻰ ﺁﺧﺮ ﺃﻥ ﻧﻌﻴﺶ ﺍﻟﻠﺤﻈﺔ ﺫﺍﺗﻬﺎ ﻭﻧﺘﺤﺮﺭ ﻣﻦ ﻛﻞ ﺷﻲﺀ ﻳﻌﻜﺮ ﻣﺘﻌﺔ ﺍﻟﻄﺒﻴﻌﺔ ﻭالأهم من ذلك البحث عن اﻟﺴﻜﻮﻥ ﺍﻟﺬﻱ ﻳﺴﻜﻦ ذواتنا والإصغاء إليه ..!

ممتنة للبائعة التي رغم أن تعريفها للكتاب كان دون الجيد إلا أن رقتها دفعتني بإقتناءه مجاملة :) !
Profile Image for Zyra .
203 reviews79 followers
May 30, 2017
words fall short to express these books. lets see what i can say great, beautiful, enlightening. all the words are not enough. everyone should read these books by eckhart tolle at least once & see for themselves.
Profile Image for Greg Bae.
50 reviews9 followers
October 14, 2019
A short but powerful book from Tolle, whose wisdom and depth leaves me in awe. The central premise is that stillness in our lives is the key to unlock the quiet that is already, the quiet that is drowned out by our incessant thoughts. I find with Tolle’s books that the messages are so cutting and so profound that you have to read it many times - sometimes in pieces, sometimes as a whole - to fully grasp the layers of nuance and meaningful. A five star book in my mind is worth reading multiple times and this is certainly one of those books.
Profile Image for Mark Bennett.
101 reviews19 followers
January 28, 2012
No words. Tolle reminds me of Krishnamurti. It's a small book and very short. But the gems within get you to slow it all down and ease right into the moment you're in. Anyone looking to find ways to grab on to life and enjoy it more intensely and contemplatively, Eckhart Tolle may be the one for you.

Three gems from the chapter "Acceptance & Surrender":

- "Surrender is surrender to THIS MOMENT, not to a story through which you INTERPRET this moment and then try to resign yourself to it."

- "Acceptance of the unacceptable is the greatest source of grace in the world."

- "Sometimes surrender means giving up trying to understand and becoming comfortable with not knowing."
Profile Image for شروق مباركي .
76 reviews40 followers
April 16, 2012
السلام الداخلي هو الرفيق الأسمى للإنسانية
وهذا كل ما تحتاجه لتبتدأ حياتك حقا
وهذا ما يوفره لك إيكارت تول
أعظم أنواع الحروب تلك التي تخوضها مع ذاتك ,
و أعظم انواع المحبة تلك التي تخوضها بينك وبين ذاتك ايضا
هذا الكتاب بمثابة دليل قلبك العميق نحو نفسك والعالم , فسلام

يستحق تدوينة قريبا أفضل من هذا الاقتضاب
Profile Image for Chriss.
Author 1 book14 followers
June 25, 2008
Like Tolle's other books, this has the insight you expect and the tools are in how you use what has been printed on the pages. He makes it very clear that there is no magic in words and they've all been derived from various teachings including those of Jesus and Budda. The book is set up as short statements or paragraphs with a specific theme, not chapters in a book that you would read through. He expects you to stop reading and think about each one. Although a short book in length, the lessons are intended to be much longer and life changing but that involves active participation from the reader. Don't read if you aren't ready to get involved in your own life.
Profile Image for Bharath.
570 reviews434 followers
January 11, 2016
This is a small, simple and unpretentious book. For those in pursuit of understanding themselves and seeking to be more mindful - this is a good read. It, however, does not instruct one on how to be mindful by way of techniques, it rather explains the conceptual framework and key concepts in short paragraphs. The paragraphs are neatly organized and each one abstracts a concept to mull over and practise. I realize now that in some cases, it makes sense to read books in a particular order. Stillness Speaks should be one of the earlier mindfulness books one should read (after Eckhart Tolle's "The Power of Now", "A New Earth"), before moving on to more advanced meditation techniques.

A recommended read......
December 7, 2012
I listened to the audiobook, a chapter at a time, to let it sink in. Tolle has truly influenced how I'm approaching my daily life, taking time to embrace moments of stillness. He asks thought-provoking questions of self-exploration, which lead to opportunities for reflection and changing thought patterns. In a couple short weeks, I've begun to identify when I'm making a situation into a sad story that I tell myself and others to soothe my ego, and I'm working on letting go of those stories. Great book for introspection.
Author 3 books1 follower
November 12, 2014
"I am not my thoughts, emotions, sense perceptions, and experiences. I am not the content of my life.... I am consciousness."

In the introduction to his succinct yet powerful book Stillness Speaks, Eckhart Tolle advises the reader that the essence of its message is expounded in the first chapter, and may be all that some require to assimilate. However, it is the foregoing dictum from the fourth chapter which, in my opinion, has the power to singlehandedly transform the life of the reader ravenous enough to forsake everything in order to pursue it.

The decision to explicate this potentially transformative book grew from a personal resolve to carve a path to enlightenment for the empirical mind. Unlike Tolle and other enlightened figures, my awakening occurred in the trail of a methodical albeit manic inquisition into the scientific soul of mankind. While I do not doubt that Tolle and other neo-Buddhist teachers have inspired many people through their books and seminars, there is much in many modern teachings that leaves the rationally inclined high and dry.

With so many books that promise spiritual transformation, I believe it is difficult for many modern readers to follow a single philosophy on faith. That is not to say that Stillness Speaks or others like it have no logic to their guiding light, but it is often found, and Tolle's books are no exception, that the light is somewhat dimmed by unfounded yet emphatic platitudes which shut the skeptic's door to the life-changing truths glinting in the midst.

I do not wish to dwell upon the unsubstantiated tenets of Tolle's books; rather I am anxious to emphasize and vindicate those gems laden with the profound yet simple secret to inner peace. I will merely state that the over-averred and under-demonstrated concepts are the ones which stroke our egos and assuage our fears, by telling us, for example, that the world is on the verge of a new spiritual era, or that death is an illusion (though I confidently assure you that it is misconceived and fallaciously feared). It isn't that these ideas aren't pleasant to believe, but they are irrelevant to finding true inner peace, and because of their groundlessness and their enticement to the susceptible mind, they may even serve as an obstinate diversion on the path to spiritual freedom.

Although I experienced an awakening akin to Tolle's, nothing in my philosophy or aspired teachings is grounded in faith. There is a rational, atheistic path to enlightenment, and I will attempt to delineate it through a sequence of passages from his book:

"Stillness is the only thing in this world that has no form. But then, it is not really a thing, and it is not of this world."

Tolle uses words like "stillness" and "Being" which are abstruse and awkward for the rational mind to translate. Scientifically speaking, what Tolle and every other spiritual teacher is referring to as the essence beyond our thoughts, bodies, and experiences is simply consciousness. Consciousness is the only thing in this world without form. And it is not really a thing. But, contrary to Tolle's adage, it is of this world.

Every phenomenon in this world can be scientifically reduced to physical processes. The words which I type in this moment arise from a convoluted and determined chain of physical atoms acting by physical laws. From the conceptualization in my brain, down to the movement of my fingers on the keyboard, to the circuits and signals which convey letters to the screen: everything is physics. But what about the consciousness which enables me to witness this process unfold? There is no doubt in the minds of neuroscientists that consciousness arises from tangible, albeit undeciphered, neuronal processes, analogous to those which beget our thoughts, emotions, and behavior. But unlike these other phenomena, consciousness is a subjective realm, which no amount of physical reductionism can desecrate. No matter how much we explain consciousness in material terms, we will continue to be subjective witnesses of a physically unfolding universe. Thus, though of the physical world, consciousness rises above it, to become a sacred kingdom of its own.

"The Now is as it is because it cannot be otherwise. What Buddhists have always known, physicists now confirm: there are no isolated things or events. Underneath the surface appearance, all things are interconnected, are part of the totality of the cosmos that has brought about the form that this moment takes."

We live in a deterministic universe. Though initially a difficult pill to swallow, it is a principle intrinsic to the Buddhist doctrine, however implicit, and an essential concession on the path to true enlightenment. To accept that this moment, in all its forms, is the destiny of physical Existence, and that our bodies and minds are merely constituents of that destiny, is the secret to enlightenment.

"As you go about your life can you be aware of yourself as the awareness in which the entire content of your life unfolds?"

If your thoughts, feelings, actions, and circumstances in every moment are inevitable manifestations of the eternally unfolding physical Universe, then what is left for you to identify with? What is left for you to be?

"Nothing that comes or goes is you....You are the knowing, not the condition that is known."

You are Consciousness. You are the eyes behind Existence. Though a product of physics, and a component of the Universe, Consciousness prevails as a distinctive and mystical domain. It is as if the Universe evolved an entity with the intention of becoming witness to its own evolution! Of course there is no way to substantiate this, and consciousness is almost certainly a product of natural selection in the evolution of life. Nevertheless, it is a miracle, and identifying ourselves with it opens up our minds like a spring blossom, and beauty, peace, and compassion shine steadily into our lives.

"If you can recognize...the thoughts that go through your mind as simply thoughts, if you can witness your own mental-emotional reactive patterns as they happen..."

...then you are on the miraculous path to spiritual freedom. When you learn to embrace a deterministic universe, and concede that your body and mind are physical entities entirely beyond your will to control, you understand that you are not your thoughts, feelings, appearances, or actions--you are, by default, the awareness which dwells ever beneath them. It is out of this transformative confession that you learn to "accept whatever arises in the Now--within and without" (emphasis added).

"By knowing yourself as the awareness in which phenomenal existence happens, you become free of dependency on phenomena and free of self-seeking in situations, places, and conditions. In other words: what happens or doesn't happen is not that important anymore. Things lose their heaviness, their seriousness. A playfulness comes into your life. You recognize this world as a cosmic dance, the dance of form--no more and no less."

Acknowledging yourself as nothing more than a witness to the world unfolding within and without your body and mind, implants a small but unimaginably potent seed of acceptance into your brain. From this pivotal moment forward, nothing unfortunate will occur in your life that you will not soon recover from, and every negative event that has happened in your past will begin to heal. No matter how chaotic or restless your world becomes, you will always possess an air of serene and stoic resignation. You learn to surrender to what is in every moment, not only on the outside, but to what you feel and think within. Slowly but surely your resistance will wither, and a sense of harmony and compassion will envelop your being.

"When you say `yes' to the `isness' of life, when you accept this moment as it is, you can feel a sense of spaciousness within you that is deeply peaceful. On the surface, you may still be happy when it's sunny and not so happy when it's rainy; you may be happy at winning a million dollars and unhappy at losing all your possessions. Neither happiness nor unhappiness, however, go all that deep anymore. They are ripples on the surface of your Being. The background peace within you remains undisturbed regardless of the nature of the outside condition. The `yes' to what is reveals a dimension of depth within you that is dependent neither on external conditions nor on the internal conditions of constantly fluctuating thoughts and emotions."

Dependent on nothing to sustain a deep sense of self, or a profound connection with the world, you will be composed in the face of any trial or tragedy. Even when you do lose your head--for enlightenment is not synonymous with dispassion--you will never lose your sense of self, and you will always be at home in your heart. As Tolle so eloquently and sagely extends it:

"Even within the seemingly most unacceptable and painful situation is concealed a deeper good, and within every disaster is contained the seed of grace."

- Akira Sieben / www.SatoriWitness.org

Profile Image for موضي.
27 reviews14 followers
December 4, 2013
هذا كتاب أحلامي كما ذكرت، بنفس الموضوعات، بنفس طريقة العرض، بنفس عدد الصفحات. لمست التغيير في روحي منذ أن بدأت القراءة، مقطع أو صفحة واحدة كفيلة بأن تكون بوابة لروحك. فهمت معه الكثير من ردات الفعل التي قمت بها أو قام بها أحدهم، عرفت منشأها. ممتنة أنا لإيكارت تول، للمترجمين سارة ورامي، لأختي التي أعارتني نسختها من غيرما طلب مباشر. ممتنة للكون الذي يستجيب لرغباتي العميقة. هذا هو الكتاب الذي يستحق الخمسة نجوم. كلكم، اقرؤا الكتاب من دون تردد. الآن احجزوا نسخكم! أنا لا أوصي فقط بقرائته، بل إن من دواعي حبي لكم، أطلب منكم قرائته. اقرأوه حبا لأنفسكم، شكراً.
Profile Image for Vaishali.
1,032 reviews260 followers
December 19, 2021
Just great. My words won’t capture the essence, so here are the words themselves :)

“The form of this book can be seen as a revival for the present age of the oldest form of recorded spiritual teachings, the sutras of ancient India.”

“The words are no more than signposts. That to which they point is not to be found within the realm of thought but a dimension within yourself that is deeper, and infinitely vaster than thought. A vibrantly alive peace is one of the characteristics of that dimension.”

“Just like every true spiritual teachers, just like the ancient sutras, the thoughts within this book don't say “look at me", but “look beyond me.” Because the thoughts came out of stillness, they have power, the power to take you back into the same stillness from which they arose. That stillness is also inner peace. And that stillness and peace is the essence of your being. It is the stillness that will save and transform the world.”

“When you lose touch with inner stillness, you lose touch with yourself. When you lose touch with yourself, you lose yourself in the world.“

“You are that awareness, disguised as a person.”

“You feel a oneness with whatever you perceive in and through stillness. Feeling the oneness of yourself with all things is love.”

“Even when there is noise, you can be aware of the stillness underneath the noise, of the space in which the noise arises. That is the inner space of pure awareness, consciousness itself.”

“When you pay attention to those gaps, awareness of something becomes — just awareness. The formless dimension of pure consciousness arises from within you and replaces identification with form.”

“True intelligence operates silently. Stillness is where creativity and solutions to problems are found.”

“Is stillness just the absence of noise and content? No, it is intelligence itself — the underlying consciousness out of which every form is born. And how could that be separate from who you are? The form that you think you are came out of that and is being sustained by it.”

“Stillness is the only thing in this world that has no form. But then, it is not really a thing, and it is not of this world.”

“Love, joy, creative expansion, and lasting inner peace cannot come into your life except through that unconditioned dimension of consciousness.”

“The stream of thinking has enormous momentum that can easily drag you along with it.”

“Spiritual awakening is awakening from the dream of thought.”

“When you are identified with mind, you get bored and restless very easily. Boredom means the mind is hungry for more stimulus, more food for thought, and its hunger is not being satisfied.”

“Prejudice of any kind implies that you are identified with the thinking mind.”

“Thinking that is not rooted in awareness becomes self-serving and dysfunctional. Cleverness devoid of wisdom is extremely dangerous and destructive. That is the current state of most of humanity.”

“The next step in human evolution is to transcend thought. This is now our urgent task. It doesn’t mean not to think anymore, but simply not to be completely identified with thought, possessed by thought.”

“Become at ease with the state of not knowing. This takes you beyond mind because the mind is always trying to conclude and interpret. It is afraid of not knowing. So, when you can be at ease with not knowing, you have already gone beyond the mind. A deeper knowing that is non-conceptual then arises out of that state.”

“Mastery of life is the opposite of control. You become aligned with the greater consciousness. It acts, speaks, does the works.”

“I am not my thoughts, emotions, sense perceptions, and experiences. I am not the content of my life. I am Life. I am the space in which all things happen. I am consciousness. I am the Now. I Am.”

“As you go about your life, can you be aware of yourself as the awareness in which the entire content of your life unfolds?”

“Neither happiness nor unhappiness, however, go all that deep anymore. They are ripples on the surface of your Being.”

“And the miracle is that when you are no longer placing an impossible demand on it, every situation, person, place, or event becomes not only satisfying but also more harmonious, more peaceful.”

“This state of inner nonresistance opens you to the unconditioned consciousness that is infinitely greater than the human mind. This vast intelligence can then express itself through you and assist you, both from within and from without. That is why, by letting go of inner resistance, you often find circumstances change for the better.”

“Acceptance of the unacceptable is the greatest source of grace in this world.”

“When you fully accept that you don't know, you give up struggling to find answers with the limited thinking mind, and that is when a greater intelligence can operate through you.”

“Leave Life alone. Let it be.”

“We have forgotten what rocks, plants, and animals still know. We have forgotten how to be–to be still, to be ourselves, to be where life is: Here and Now.”

“Whenever you bring your attention to anything natural, anything that has come into existence without human intervention, you step out of the prison of conceptualized thinking…”

“The moment you become aware of a plant's emanation of stillness and peace, that plant becomes your teacher.”

“ Watch an animal, a flower, a tree, and see how it rests in Being. It is itself. It has enormous dignity, innocence, and holiness. However, for you to see that, you need to go beyond the mental habit of naming and labeling. The moment you look beyond mental labels, you feel that ineffable dimension of nature that cannot be understood by thought or perceived through the senses. It is a harmony, a sacredness that permeates not only the whole of nature but is also within you.”

“The air that you breathe is nature, as is the breathing process itself.”

“A great silent space holds all of nature in its embrace. It also holds you.”

“All things in nature are not only one with themselves but also one with the totality. They haven't removed themselves from the fabric of the whole by claiming a separate existence: ‘me’ and the rest of the universe.”

“… the body's functions [by]… an intelligence greater than the human mind… It is the same intelligence that sustains all of nature. You cannot get any closer to that intelligence than by being aware of your own inner energy field–by feeling the aliveness, the animating presence within the body.”

“The playfulness and joy of a dog, its unconditional love and readiness to celebrate life at any moment often contrast sharply with the inner state of the dog's owner… One wonders: living with this person, how does the dog manage to remain so sane, so joyous?

“Notice how present a flower is, how surrendered to life.”

“Watch an animal, a flower, a tree, and see how it rests in Being. It is itself. It has enormous dignity, innocence, and holiness.”

“Bring your attention to your breathing and realize that you are not doing it. It is the breath of nature. If you had to remember to breathe, you would soon die, and if you tried to stop breathing, nature would prevail.”

“You are not separate from nature. We are all part of the One Life that manifests itself in countless forms throughout the universe, forms that are all completely interconnected.”

“Only when you are still inside do you have access to the realm of stillness that rocks, plants, and animals inhabit.”

“Thinking is a stage in the evolution of life. Nature exists in innocent stillness that is prior to the arising of thought.”

“If her past were your past, her pain your pain, her level of consciousness your level of consciousness, you would think and act exactly as she does. With this realization comes forgiveness, compassion, peace.”

“When you receive whoever comes into the space of Now as a noble guest, when you allow each person to be as they are, they begin to change.”

“To know another human being in their essence, you don’t really need to know anything about them–their past, their history, their story. We confuse knowing about with a deeper knowing that is non-conceptual. Knowing about and knowing are totally different modalities…One operates through thought, the other through stillness. Knowing about is helpful for practical purposes. On that level, we cannot do without it. When it is the predominant modality in relationships, however, it becomes very limiting, even destructive. Thoughts and concepts create an artificial barrier, a separation between human beings. Your interactions are then not rooted in Being, but become mind-based. Without the conceptual barriers, love is naturally present in all human interactions.”

“If spacious stillness is missing, the relationship will be dominated by the mind and can easily be taken over by problems and conflict. If stillness is there, it can contain anything.”

“What is your relationship with the world of objects, the countless things that surround you… senses. Physicist will confirm that on a molecular level, [they are] indeed, a pulsating energy field. Through selfless appreciation of the realm of things, the world around you will begin to come alive for you in ways you cannot comprehend with the mind.”

“When you receive whoever comes into the space of Now as a noble guest, when you allow each person to be as they are, they begin to change.”

“ When you are suffering, when you are unhappy, stay totally with what is now. Unhappiness or problems cannot survive in the Now.”

“Suffering begins when you mentally name or label a situation in some way as undesirable or bad.”

“Naming something as bad causes an emotional contraction within you. When you let it be without naming it, enormous power is suddenly available to you. The contraction cuts you off from that power, the power of life itself.”

“They ate the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Go beyond good and bad by refraining from mentally naming anything as good or bad.”

“When you go beyond the habitual naming, the power of the universe moves through you. When you are in a nonreactive relationship to experiences, what you would have called bad before, often turns around quickly, if not immediately through the power of life itself. Watch what happens…”

“There are many subtle and not so subtle forms of suffering that are so normal, they are usually not recognized as suffering and may even feel satisfying to the ego. Irritation, impatience, anger, having an issue with something or someone, resentment, complaining.”

Profile Image for Jess.
246 reviews2 followers
May 22, 2012
This is one of those books that if you rate poorly, droves of fans collectively roll their eyes and proclaim that you have missed the point. I feel almost lame giving this one two stars but the format just doesn't work for me, and yes, I read the first few pages, I get this this is a narrow little work that encourages stillness not reading and digesting. But this got me thinking about Derrida who wrote about the use of words and imperfect symbols and how very irritated I become in general with writers using a format that they proclaim to be an imperfect vehicle for their message. I agree with Mr. Tolle that this book is less for reading than reminding or redirecting - I just think it's tremendously ineffective in written form. The book/concept relationship really bothered me.
Profile Image for Fernando.
32 reviews31 followers
June 4, 2015
Small phrases with deep knowledge and insight. A truly awakening book!! The way Eckhart writes in this book is definitely powerful. Every person on his journey of self-discovery would be grateful to have gotten this book on his hands. This is one of this books you pick up from your bookshelf and just open it to read a random page, and be amazed by the teaching.
Profile Image for Suzie Warren.
17 reviews10 followers
March 11, 2013
I found this book to be worth reading and thinking about. It will make you aware of some of the mistaken ways we view ourselves and our relationships. Every human being has been conditioned to think and behave in certain ways - conditioned genetically by our childhood experiences and our cultural environment.
It's good for reference and inspiration purposes. It's perfect for a quick injection on the following topics - silence & stillness, beyond the thinking mind, the egoic self, the now, who you truly are, acceptance & surrender, nature, relationships, death & the eternal and suffering & the end of suffering.
Overall, good book.
Profile Image for Nicole.
15 reviews
January 6, 2022
This is one of those books that has soooo much good information for such a small book that you have to take your time reading it to really grasp everything that is said. I spent a few weeks just reading a few pages because I really wanted to absorb the info. Really helpful info. I will read this one again!
Profile Image for Alex Kartelias.
210 reviews69 followers
June 21, 2014
Even though all his ideas come from all the worlds religions, he puts it in a language that is relevant to people's lives without limiting it to an exclusive vocabulary. Not to be attached to your ego, people or thoughts is all common sense to most people but, to hear about the unsubstantial nature of words/thoughts as merely labels, the inescapable presence of Now and the all encomposing Consciousness of the universe of which you are merely a unique extension of, is profoundly fresh in today's western culture. What is never thought twice in the east needs to be known to all westerners and the fact that there are some writing and speaking to them like Echart Tolle, gives me hope for humanity.

As a believer in the unity of all religions, most intellectuals merely claim that it is ONLY the institutional religions that are and NOT anything else that hasn't been,"divinely" revealed to a select group of people. This type of discourse is hypocritical to its very essence. Divine revelation is happening regardless of its announcement to the public or not. The institution is not the point: the experience is. And like many know, many institutions eventually wander away from their original intentions and become corrupt. Echart Tolle may not be devoted to a religion, but he's devoted to being One with all life and helping others alleviate suffering. That's what it is about.
Profile Image for Emily Peebles.
43 reviews2 followers
April 2, 2018
Eckhart Tolle will certainly go down as one of the great spiritual leaders of our time. He has a way of revealing powerful truths to you--truths that have always been within you, just covered by the egoic mind. With the use of simple, plain language, Tolle writes from a place of humility. His accessibility, I presume, would appeal to even the most spiritually resistant of readers.

I recommend this book to every one of my Goodreads friends. To every person who reads this review. If Tolle's teachings were deeply and habitually considered, they would no doubt transform the life paths of so many people. And maybe our life paths wouldn't shift course so much as they would change in scenery. Reading this book has reminded me that what I have been searching for all along is simply within me. It is within us all.

P.S. Listen to this in audiobook form if you want the added benefit of hearing Eckhart Tolle's voice, which I suspect would swiftly lull even the fussiest of babies to sleep.
Profile Image for David A. Beardsley.
Author 11 books7 followers
April 18, 2013
Tolle is one of the few "self-help" authors out there who gets that you can't help yourself: that you are already perfect and just have to get out of your own way. One does this by becoming still, and this book can help you learn how. It consists of a series of "shrutis;" short quotes that can bypass the discursive mind and speak to your true self.
An excerpt from the introduction:
That stillness is also inner peace, and that stillness and peace are the essence of your Being. It is inner stillness that will save and transform the world.
Profile Image for Jennifer.
86 reviews40 followers
July 31, 2014
I listened to the audiobook version of this. I loved it! There are two reasons I will be listening to this again.
1. Eckhart Tolle's voice is relaxing and soothing, which is nice, just not when I'm driving. I found myself getting distracted. I will listen to this in a more suitable enviroment.
2. This is not a book you should take in all at once. You have to stop, reflect and repeat. Most importantly, practice.

Profile Image for Sridhar Guda.
25 reviews
October 15, 2015
I could relate several statements to our ancient texts. The good thing about this book is simple and yet powerful ideas are presented in subtle manner. May be one of those few books which you can read as many times as possible and put the learnings into practice.
Profile Image for Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl.
1,049 reviews143 followers
December 8, 2022
A powerful little book offering profound wisdom and enlightening perspective. There is a theme of accepting the "isness" and suchness of life.

I read Stillness Speaks twice in December 2020. I borrowed a copy from the public library. In January 2021, I bought a copy and read the book for the third time. Read for the fourth time in December 2022.

Stillness Speaks pairs well with The Greatest Secret by Rhonda Byrne.

Favorite Passages

The words are no more than signposts. That to which they point is not to be found within the realm of thought, but a dimension within yourself that is deeper and infinitely vaster than thought.

The transformation of human consciousness is no longer a luxury, so to speak, available only to a few isolated individuals, but a necessity of humankind is not to destroy itself.

It is inner stillness that will save and transform the world.

Silence & Stillness
Whenever there is some silence around you - listen to it. That means just notice it. Pay attention to it. Listening to silence awakens the dimension of stillness within yourself . . .

When you have become aware of silence, immediately there is that state of inner still alertness. You are present. You have stepped out of thousands of years of collective human conditioning.

Any disturbing noise can be as helpful as silence. How? By dropping your inner resistance to the noise, by allowing it to be as it is, this acceptance also takes you into the realm of inner peace that is stillness.

True intelligence operates silently. Stillness is where creativity and solutions to problems are found.

Stillness is the only thing in this world that has no form. But then, it is not really a thing, and it is not of this world.

Do you need more knowledge? Is more information going to save the world, or faster computers, more scientific or intellectual analysis? Is it not wisdom that humanity need most at this time?

But what is wisdom and where is it to be found? Wisdom comes with the ability to be still. Just look and just listen. No more is needed. Being still, looking, and listening activates the non-conceptual intelligence within you. Let stillness direct your words and actions.

Beyond the Thinking Mind
The human condition: lost in thought.

In you, as in each human being, there is a dimension of consciousness far deeper than thought. It is the very essence of who you are.

. . . if you can witness your own mental-emotional reactive patterns as they happen, then that dimension is already emerging in you as the awareness in which thoughts and emotions happen - the timeless inner space in which the content of your life unfolds.

You have to be larger than thought to realize that however you interpret "your life" or someone else's life or behavior, however you judge any situation, it is no more than a viewpoint, one of many possible perspectives. It is no more than a bundle of thoughts. But reality is one unified whole, in which all things are interwoven, where nothing exists in and by itself. Thinking fragments reality - it cuts it up into conceptual bits and pieces.

Wisdom is not a product of thought. The deep knowing that is wisdom arises through the simple act of giving someone or something your full attention. Attention is primordial intelligence, consciousness itself. It dissolves the barriers created by conceptual thought, and with this comes the recognition that nothing exists in and by itself. It joins the perceiver and the perceived in a unifying field of awareness. It is the healer of separation.

Dogmas - religious, political, scientific - arise out of the erroneous belief that thought can encapsulate reality or the truth. Dogmas are collective conceptual prisons. And the strange thing is that people love their prison cells because they give them a sense of security and a false sense of "I know."

Nothing has inflicted more suffering on humanity than its dogmas.

Spiritual awakening is awakening from the dream of thought.

Prejudice of any kind implies that you are identified with the thinking mind. It means you don't see the other human being anymore, but only your own concept of that human being. To reduce the aliveness of another human being to a concept is already a form of violence.

The next step in human evolution is to transcend thought.

Become at ease with the state of "not knowing."

Mastery of life is the opposite of control.

The Egoic Self
When you think or speak about yourself, when you say, "I," what you usually refer to is "me and my story." This is the "I" of your likes and dislikes, fears and desires, the "I" that is never satisfied for long. It is a mind-made sense of who you are, conditioned by the past and seeking to find its fulfillment in the future.

What will be left of all the fearing and wanting associated with your problematic life situation that every day takes up most of your attention? A dash - one or two inches long, between the date of birth and date of death on your gravestone.

To the egoic self, this is a depressing thought. To you, it is liberating.

Knowing yourself as the awareness behind the voice is freedom.

Complaining and reactivity are favorite mind patterns through which the ego strengthens itself.

What are the stories, the fictions from which you derive your sense of self?

Your unhappiness ultimately arises not from the circumstances of your life but from the conditioning of your mind.

Set goals, but know that the arriving is not all that important. When anything arises out of presence, it means the moment is not a means to an end: the doing is fulfilling in itself every moment. You are no longer reducing the Now to a means to an end, which is the egoic consciousness.

The Now
Since there is no escape from the Now, why not welcome it, become friendly with it?

When you make friends with the present moment, you feel at home no matter where you are. When you don't feel at home in the Now, no matter where you go, you will carry unease with you.

The division of life into past, present, and future is mind-made and ultimately illusory. Past and future are thought forms, mental abstractions. The past can only be remembered Now. What you remember is an event that took place in the Now, and you remember it Now. The future, when it comes, is the Now. So the only thing that is real, the only thing there ever is is the Now.

Taking responsibility for this moment means not to oppose internally the "suchness" of Now, not to argue with what is. It means to be in alignment with life.

The moment you enter the Now with your attention, you realize that life is sacred. There is a sacredness to everything you perceive when you are present. The more you live in the Now, the more you sense the simple yet profound joy of Being and the sacredness of all life.

Who You Truly Are
The Now is inseparable from who you are at the deepest level.

You cannot find yourself in the past or future. The only place where you can find yourself is in the Now.

Spiritual seekers look for self-realization or enlightenment in the future. To be a seeker implies that you need the future. If this is what you believe, it becomes true for you: you will need time until you realize that you don't need time to be who you are.

Things lose their heaviness, their seriousness. A playfulness comes into your life. You recognize this world is a cosmic dance, the dance of form - no more and no less.

When you know who you truly are, there is an abiding alive sense of peace. You could call it joy because that's what joy is: vibrantly alive peace. It is the joy of knowing yourself as the very life essence before life takes on form. That is the joy of Being - of being who you truly are.

Most people's lives are run by desire and fear.

Desire is the need to add something to yourself in order to be yourself more fully. All fear is the fear of losing something and thereby becoming diminished by being less.

These two movements obscure the fact that Being cannot be given or taken away. Being in its fullness is already within you. Now.

Acceptance & Surrender
When you say "yes" to the "isness" of life, when you accept the moment as it is, you can feel a sense of spaciousness within you that is deeply peaceful.

The "yes" to what is reveals a dimension of depth within you that is dependent neither on external conditions nor on the internal conditions of constantly fluctuating thoughts and emotions.

Am I saying, "Enjoy this moment. Be happy."? No.

Allow the "suchness" of this moment. That's enough.

Surrender comes when you no longer ask, "Why is this happening to me?"

Sometimes surrender means giving up trying to understand and becoming comfortable with not knowing.

We depend on nature not only for our physical survival. We also need nature to show us the way home, the way out of the prison of our own minds. We got lost in doing, thinking, remembering, anticipating - lost in a maze of complexity and a world of problems.

We have forgotten what rocks, plants, and animals still know. We have forgotten how to be - to be still, to be ourselves, to be where life is: Here and Now.

When you perceive nature, let there be spaces of no thought, no mind. When you approach nature in this way, it will respond to you and participate in the evolution of human and planetary consciousness.

When you pronounce judgement upon someone, you confuse those conditioned mind patterns with who they are. To do that is in itself a deeply conditioned and unconscious pattern. You give them a conceptual identity, and that false identity becomes a prison not only for the other person but also for yourself.

Love does not want or fear anything.

If her past were your past, her pain your pain, her level of consciousness your level of consciousness, you would think and act exactly as she does. With this realization comes forgiveness, compassion, peace.

When you receive whoever comes into the space of Now as a noble guest, when you allow each person to be as they are, they begin to change.

Human interaction can be hell. Or it can be a great spiritual practice.

You are no longer acting out a script; you become real. When that dimension emerges from within you, it also draws it forth from within the other person.

Death & The Eternal
When you walk through a forest that has not been tamed and interfered with by man, you will see not only abundant life all around you, but you will also encounter fallen trees and decaying trunks, rotting leaves and decomposing matter at every step. Wherever you look, you will find death as well as life.

Upon closer scrutiny, however, you will discover that the decomposing tree trunk and rotting leaves not only give birth to new life, but are full of life themselves. Microorganisms are at work. Molecules are rearranging themselves. So death isn't to be found anywhere. There is only the metamorphosis of life forms.

Death is not the opposite of life. Life has no opposite. The opposite of death is birth. Life is eternal.

Sages and poets throughout the ages have recognized the dreamlike quality of human existence - seemingly so solid and real and yet so fleeting that it could dissolve at any moment.

At the hour of your death, the story of your life may, indeed, appear to you like a dream that is coming to an end. Yet even in a dream there must be an essence that is real. There must be a consciousness in which the dream happens; otherwise, it would not be.

That consciousness - does the body create it or does consciousness create the dream of body, the dream of somebody?

Why have most of those who went through a near-death experience lost their fear of death? Reflect on this.

A culture that denies death inevitably becomes shallow and superficial, concerned only with the external form of things. When death is denied, life loses its depth. The possibility of knowing who we are beyond name and form, the dimension of the transcendent, disappears from our lives because death is the opening into the dimension.

If you can learn to accept and even welcome the endings in your life, you may find that the feeling of emptiness that initially felt uncomfortable turns into a sense of inner spaciousness that is deeply peaceful.

By learning to die daily in this way, you open yourself to Life.

When a form that you had unconsciously identified with as part of yourself leaves you or dissolves, that can be extremely painful. It leaves a hole, so to speak, in the fabric of your existence.

Suffering & The End of Suffering
The interconnectedness of all things. Buddhists have always known it, and physicists now confirm it. Nothing that happens is an isolated event; it only appears to be. The more we judge and label it, the more we isolate it. The wholeness of life becomes fragmented through our thinking. Yet the totality of life has brought this even about. It is part of the web of interconnectedness that is the cosmos.

True freedom and the end of suffering is living in such a way as if you had completely chosen whatever you feel or experience at this moment.

This inner alignment with Now is the end of suffering.

Little stories we tell ourselves and others, often in the form of complaints. They are unconsciously designed to enhance our always deficient sense of self through being "right" and making something or someone "wrong." Being "right" places us in a position of imagined superiority and so strengthens our false sense of self, the ego. This also creates some kind of enemy: yes, the ego needs enemies to define its boundary, and even the weather can serve that function.

The ego enhances itself through reactivity and conflict.

Suffering begins when you mentally name or label a situation in some way as undesirable or bad. You resent a situation and that resentment personalizes it and brings in a reactive "me."

Can you immediately accept the "isness" of that moment?

Naming something as bad causes an emotional contraction within you. When you let it be, without naming it, enormous power is suddenly available to you.

You cannot be conscious and create suffering for yourself.
Profile Image for Hawraki.
556 reviews96 followers
March 31, 2022
سيحين الوقت المناسب لقراءة هذا الكتاب، سيقع بين يديك حينما تكون مستعدًا، قد يركن نفسه في زاوية إلى أن تصبح أكثر وعيًا لإلتقاطه. الكتاب صغير في حجمه، مقتضب في مضمونه، لكنه معبأ بالحكمة التي تريك الجانب النيّر من الحياة، والموت، وتشرح لك كيف هي الحياة، والأشياء، والناس، والعلاقات على حقيقتها. به ستدرك خُدع الأنا الكاذبة، وكيف سيّرت حياتك لسنوات كثيرة. كتاب يُحررك من قيود التفكير، ويعيدك إلى حقيقتك الثمينة.

رغم حجم الكتاب الصغير، إلا إني لم أستطع قراءته إلا ب��د أن اطلعت على "الأرض الجديدة" حيث الشرح التفصيلي لكل هذه الأفكار التي تبدو صغيرة، وبسيطة في شكلها.
Profile Image for Lukas Rupp.
119 reviews4 followers
May 23, 2022
Eckhart Tolle‘s Bücher haben eine bewusstseinserweiternde und transzendente Wirkung, wie ich es sonst nur von der Meditation oder psychedelischen Substanzen kenne. Hypnotisierend!

„Wenn du jemanden, der in den Raum des Jetzt tritt, als edlen Gast empfängst, wenn du jedem Menschen erlaubst, so zu sein, wie er ist, beginnt er sich zu verändern.“
Profile Image for Ali Hussein.
112 reviews4 followers
January 6, 2020
Just like the bible, open at any page and it shall impart wisdom upon you. The little spiritual master Eckhart does it again, producing another masterclass. The last chapter in particular was exquisite. Elite author.
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