A writer from New Earth Eckhart Tolle & Oprah talks about the peace of understanding.
As he finished Chapter 2 of the online discussion, Oprah Eckhart asked, “Let’s close with the peace that gives all the understanding that you are talking about on page 56. What is that peace?”
What neither Tolle nor Oprah recognized in their worldwide class by means of skype was that God in Eckhart’s book on pages 56 to 58 is an important part of the peace process. Eckhart on page 56 begins the whole concept of mentioning St. Paul, who created the expression in its entirety, saying “The peace of God that passes all understanding must preserve your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4: 7).
Eckhart on page 57 mentions “Spirit” and its commitment to freeing us from prison. Tolle continues to mention the issue of being I am and the peace of God. This is where Eckhart I think lets the reader hang on a bit. No doubt Mr. Tolle on the way to some fascinating breakthroughs, which he has probably already experienced, but struggles to fully articulate in biblical terminology.
No doubt many of Tole’s discoveries come from the Bible. Eckhart’s use of the term “I am” is again something taken from the words of Jesus himself. Christ Jesus said, “Before Abraham was I am” (John 9:58). God when he calls Moses to worship to be a deliverer when asked by Moses how to refer to and name him [speaking of God], God said, “I am that I am,” and God said to Moses, “Then you shall say to the children of Israel, I am sent to you” (Exodus 3:14).
Eckhart, speaking to Oprah near the conclusion in Chapter 2 of “Peace that Exceeds Understanding,” says, “That peace comes when you live in inner alignment with the present moment, which means what is what is. no longer arguing with what is when you don’t fight it internally. “
Calling things by the pronunciation “it” always opens the door for confusion to come in. I believe and feel Eckhart is talking about accepting your current circumstances, especially that which is beyond your power to change it. Paul’s prison in Philippi was undoubtedly something he himself could in no way change or change.
Therefore, Paul wrote, “Thank you in everything: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you” (1 Thessalonians 5:18). Gratitude opens the door to God’s peace, for when you give up control and thank God, you honor His sovereignty in the matter.
As for the “internal alignment” that Eckhart is talking about, there can be no greater internal adjustment than humbly adjusting to your Creator and his will in your life. The will of God is made known by the word of God. Our creator gave us 66 books, his love letter to us, where we can know his heart and will in our lives.
Knowing God and His thoughts on every cause gives you great peace and personal power. “The people who know their God must be strong and do great things” (Daniel 11:32). Oprah is a perfect example, as she herself has said many times that she always prayed for God to use her.
Of course, in our spiritual journey, we are always growing, developing, learning, adapting, and constantly being transformed. That is why we like God to be loving and patient with each other, embracing the process of life, and realizing that we ourselves cannot change anyone. Change happens in an atmosphere of unconditional love where people feel safe in the presence of God and your presence.
This is why religious dogma and the struggle against divisive doctrines can be so devastating because by doing this we alienate people from God who put a bitter taste in their mouths and leave their hearts hurt from pursuing spirituality with childish faith.
As for Eckhart, whom I appreciate and speak with respect, had he not begun the whole thought and concept of a biblical reference, I simply would not. Given that the whole genesis of the concept came from “God’s peace” and concludes Tole’s Chapter 2 on page 58 with the words “rest in God,” it is only fitting for us to speak more about God.
Much of Tole’s dialogue through his book and with Oprah is about the selfish mind and presence. On page 57, he writes, “You realize your essential identity as formless, as an all-encompassing presence of being before all forms, all identifications.”
To capitalize “Presence” and “Being” would be to refer to the divine God who transcends form and is omnipresent. Tolle is most correct in associating humanity’s identity with the deity, for in God “we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:28). The more we connect with our creator and realize that we became “in his image,” the more our own “essential identity” will be established and freely formed.
Remember, the apostle Paul wrote to the church and believers in Christ in Philippi as he referred to the blessing of God’s peace. Those without a relationship with God who are not connected to the Father in heaven through the Son of Christ certainly cannot experience the blessing of such a deep “peace that transcends understanding”, nor retain it in their hearts and minds (which Paul said in verse 4: 8 Christ would do).
The lives of believers are hidden with Christ in God (see Colossians 3: 3), where we are complete and our identity is fully established (Colossians 2:10). The peace that gives understanding is a spiritual experience that does not come from the mind, nor from the soul. When I say the soul, I talk about the components therein: the mind, the will and the emotions.
The Apostle Paul experienced many ailments throughout his life, where there was ample opportunity to trick, be confused in his mind, and experience anguish in his soul. Perhaps Paul suffered more than any other of the disciples of Christ.
Paul knew supernatural peace because he often experienced divine visits from God and had an eager ability to hear the voice of the Holy Spirit speak to him and give a certain direction. Without a doubt, hearing the creator of heaven and earth’s voice about your current problem and situation is far more reassuring and comforting than simply quieting your soul and living in your own presence.
“The voice of the Lord is powerful; the voice of the Lord is full of majesty” (Psalm 29: 4). Prophet Elijah knew the still small voice of God and worked with the Lord to awaken Israel from their spiritual sleep. Jesus said: His people would know His voice and follow Him (John 10:27). Christ promised that the Holy Spirit would “speak” and “show us what is to come” (John 16:13). I myself have heard the voice of the Spirit on numerous occasions, which greatly enhances and blesses my life.
Regarding the peace of God, when you hear the voice of the spirit in your “belly,” as Jesus mentioned (see John 7:38, KJV), with it, great security and peace will come. Although you may not fully understand it with your mind, there will come in your heart a divine peace to accompany such a voice.
“There are many voices in the world, none of which are meaningless” (1 Cor. 14:10). Therefore, when you hear the voice of the Holy Spirit of God speaking to you, the power and majestic glory that comes with it will wrap and awaken your inner being. So much so, it will literally allow you to divide and differentiate between the voice of God and the selfish voice of the mind.
Describing the voice of God, David said that the Lord’s voice “breaks,” “divides,” “shakes,” “makes to skip,” “discovers,” and gives birth “makes hinds to calve” (Psalm 29). That being said, when the Holy Spirit of God speaks to you, it will give you a breakthrough in your life. The voice of God will divide and allow you to differentiate between all the voices in your head. The voice of the Lord will cause a shaking, waking and freeing you from the intricacies of the soul.
The voice of the Lord gives indescribable joy and full of glory that makes you jump and dance as a child. The voice of God above fills you with the flow of His divine love and brings new discoveries about your gifts, talents and abilities – some you didn’t even know you had, or may have been asleep, or perhaps even awakened by connecting you with your creator.
As your identity in God becomes more fully discovered, established and emerging, you will give birth to new things in your life. Creativity replaces anxiety; life replaces depression where you felt as if you were dead inside; and troublesome curse places in your life and relationship will suddenly be transformed and blessed by the Spirit of God, who supernaturally transcends and reconciles all and resurrects the dead.
When Paul was out at sea and it was said that the ship on which he was traveling was destined to sink, there was a great revolt and rebellion among the soldiers. Nevertheless, Paul’s peace had surpassed his natural circumstance because he had been visited by an angel of God who said to him, “Fear not, Paul; you must be brought before Caesar; and, behold, God has given you all who are with you “(Acts 27: 23-24).
After believing in the God he belonged to and serving wholeheartedly, Paul was kept by the peace of God. By faith we have access to God’s grace, where we stand and rejoice in the hope of God’s glory (see Romans 5: 2). “Therefore we are justified by faith, and we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (5: 1).
That is, it is the belief in God that produces the divine peace within surpassing our mindlessness and limitations. The inner knowledge that comes from within speaks to our spirit. God by His Holy Spirit was quicker and spoke to Paul’s spirit, producing unshakable peace that deeply transcended the mental arena.
We can also experience such perfect peace that gives understanding when we like Paul, “trust in the Lord with all our heart, and lean not to our own understanding” (Proverbs 3: 5).
Therefore, believing in the angel of the Lord, Paul got up and spoke boldly and said to the soldiers on the ship, “” Be in a good mood; for there shall be no loss of any man’s life among you, but the ship. Gentlemen, be of good cheer: for I believe in God that it shall be as it was spoken unto me ”(see Acts 27: 22,25).
Paul acknowledged that the ship would be lost, but as far as the lives on board were concerned, all would be preserved as promised by God. Truly, Jesus is the “Prince of Peace” who keeps us through every storm of life (see Isaiah 9: 6-7).
Jesus coughed and silenced several storms throughout His earthly ministry.
When disciples, many of whom were fishermen and sea masters, were exceedingly afraid to think that they should perish due to a storm approaching; Jesus “rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm” (see Matthew 8: 23-26)
Jesus rebuked the wind and spoke to the sea, which obeyed him. Jesus our Lord made many men wonder and say, “What manner of man is it that even the wind and the sea obey him!” (Matthew 8:27)
Many marvelous minds were amazed at the miracles Jesus performed and continue to perform from heaven through our disciples on earth. In fact, Jesus said, “He that believeth on me, the works which I do he shall do also: and greater works than these he shall do: because I go unto my Father” (John 14:12).
What Jesus said, he meant completely and truthfully. The shadow of Christ never healed the sick, but his disciple Peter did (Acts 5: 15-16). Christ never used handkerchiefs to heal the sick, but his disciple and apostle Paul did (Acts 19: 11-12). Christ never preached to thousands and to see them turn to God one day, but Peter did (Acts 2: 37-41).
Most in this earthly world are excited and snared by their own minds, being bound in their ego and unable to transcend the mental arena to delight in the spiritual dimension. Those who, however, with childlike faith go beyond their mental reasoning to experience life-giving spirituality, must flourish in life and experience the joy of the flow.
The Spirit of God flows like rivers with living water (see John 7: 37-39). However, most people on earth prefer to think, even to the extent of exalting their thoughts and opinions, while arguing strongly to support them. Men like Rush Limbaugh, Bill O’Reilly and Sean Hannity have built entire careers over argumentation and disputation to support their views and ideology.
However, much more fun than thinking and arguing is to come in and enjoy the divine flow of life. In the Garden of Eden, when human life began, there were two prominent trees: the Tree of Life and the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil (see Genesis 1-3). The tree of life was exactly and exactly that, a life-giving tree. On the other hand, the tree of knowledge that the devil seduced Adam and Eve into eating by appealing to their pride eventually led to death in them. It is no different today for us.
Even Solomon in all his wisdom called the infinite learning and acquisition of knowledge “vanity and the spirit of the spirit” (see Ecclesiastes 1: 16-17,). Yet, Solomon knew the wisdom of God, and the excellent life of knowledge gives life to those who have it (7:12).
The key determinant and distinction is to distinguish between useless and meaningless knowledge versus life dissemination, affirmation, upliftment and useful knowledge.
The second widely known “book of wisdom” in the Bible besides the Proverbs is that of James, the brother of Jesus. James recognized and distinguished between the two types of knowledge that said, “Who is a wise man and attracted to knowledge among you? Let him, from a good conversation, show his works with the meekness of wisdom” (James 3:13).
This is one of the reasons why I respect Eckhart Tolle because he is childish, sincere and gentle. He does not appear to be overly emotionally attached to his teachings. There seems to be a bit of intuitive and intellectual curiosity in him as a teacher, which is refreshing and empowering. Instead of proudly trying to make a point and maintaining his ego when a caller asks a question, he often affirms the person and praises them for their own level of awakening and insight.
That was true when a 13-year-old caller named Madilynn from Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, called in to ask Eckhart about something he wrote about teens on page 47 of his book. Regarding the “ever-evolving ego of teens,” Madilynn Eckhart asked, “By stating this, you are implying that teens cannot be awakened, that even if I read this book, I may have no chance of reaching consciousness just because I am 13 and my ego is not fully developed? “
Oprah replied playfully: “Go Madilynn! I just think she could ask the question is pretty damn good.” (smiles and leans back)
Eckhart smiled approvingly and said, “Yeah, now the first thing is you’re more advanced than I was at 13.” Oprah agreed, “than most of us, I would say.” Tolle continued, “I wouldn’t have been able to read and understand that book when I was 13 years old.”
In fact, Tolle acknowledged that Madilynn and other young people of the new generation are surprisingly awakening at an ever younger age than ever before. The very fact that Madilynn read the book was evidence of her already growing up, otherwise the book would have been completely meaningless to her.
I had a similar experience when I began to wake up to my spiritual need, but still spiritual death inside. I was 20 years old when I decided that I would read the Bible on my own initiative. When I tried to do so, I soon found myself asleep on my bed with the Bible beside me. Reading from the old King James version of the sacred text was obviously not helpful in that regard. Nevertheless, this was my first heartfelt attempt.
Later, months later, an old friend from high school named Derek showed up at my door and invited me to go to church with him. He was a Marine and athletic like myself, we often jogged together during that time. Derek had experienced a spiritual awakening when, in his mother’s church, he experienced a divine healing from anemia, which for many years depleted his energy and impeded his athletic performance.
After experiencing God and awakening himself, Derek immediately felt in his spirit that he should speak to me. At first in his own heart he thought I would be a tough nut to crack and withdrew from the idea of pursuing or engaging spiritually. Still, to his surprise, when I arrived at my door, I was actually ready. Together we went to church, and I myself entered the supernatural realm and was transformed and my life incredibly revolutionized.
Jesus as Madilynn was quite young when he was 12 years old, when he, like her, confused theologians and teachers of his time with deep, insightful questions (see Luke 2: 41-48). Christ as a young boy amazed many and had incredible insight and understanding. This meant Oprah when she commented on 13-year-old Madilynn’s ability to ask such a question about Eckhart.
Therefore, as far as young and old are concerned, we must remember that spiritual awakening and growth have nothing to do with our natural age. On the contrary, spiritual growth occurs in pace and according to your level of inner hunger and persecution. That it can unfortunately happen quickly or slowly according to the intensity with which you are pursuing it.
Some are complacent in the same old church their entire lives and never put their feet to their faith, but consider themselves to be highly enlightened. On the contrary, “faith without works is dead” (James 2:26). The spiritual truths that we as human beings learn, we must practice and apply in our everyday lives to reap the full rewards. Otherwise, we are just top heavy and nothing earthly good.
We must master the art of being naturally supernatural, humanly relatable and spiritually sensitive. In doing so, we will transcend religious barriers that stand out, experience transformation as we go deeper into one another and collectively connect with our Creator and commit ourselves to good works in his honor.
Solomon, who is said to be one of the wisest men to ever live, said, “In much wisdom is much sorrow: and he that increases knowledge increases sorrow” (1:18). Therefore, the phrase “ignorance is happiness.”
The larger works now occur all over the earth. Men like Billy Graham, Reinhard Bonnke and Benny Hinn see hundreds of thousands of people gather in a single ministry to seek the risen Christ and turn to him to experience new life.
There really is “a new earth waking up” because of the new birth when a soul turns to God in repentance, cleansed from sin by the holy blood of Jesus and restored inside by the deposit of the Holy Spirit forever connecting man to God.
Paul was such a man who “risked” his life for the cause of Jesus Christ (Acts 15: 26-27). Paul was imprisoned in Philippi for preaching the gospel and wrote several epistles. Even in chains, Paul in the gospel of Christ defended, affirmed, and continued full strength that never faltered. Although his outward circumstances were apparently bleak, Paul’s interior was daily strengthened by the power of the resurrection and life of the Holy Spirit.
Jesus refers to the Holy Spirit as the Comforter who would remain with His people on earth in His absence as Christ ascended to heaven to sit at the Father’s right hand (John 14:26; Mark 16:19).
There is no greater presence on earth or in heaven than the power of the blessed Holy Spirit, who raised Christ from the dead and quickened our mortal bodies to believers who believe in him (see Romans 8:11). In the presence of the Lord there is full joy and at the right hand of God, where Christ sits joy forever (Psalm 16:11).
The Holy Spirit for humanity is the judge who regulates, governs and facilitates the peace of God in our own hearts and minds. Enabling us to see the resurrected Christ fully in all its glory, the Holy Spirit releases and transforms us within, while also conveying a peace that provides understanding.
“Now the Spirit of the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. But all of us, with an open face that looks like a glass, the glory of the Lord, are changed to the same image from glory to glory by the Spirit of the Lord ”(2 Corinthians 3: 17-18).
Most Christians are far removed from the revelation of the great necessity and role that the Holy Spirit plays in connecting us to our Creator, exalting the risen Christ and bringing forth the power of resurrection in our lives.
It is through the blessed Holy Spirit that we are able to gain access to God the Father and Christ the Son, being both Spirit (see Eph 2:18). Jesus correctly said, “God is a Spirit, and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth” (John 4:24).
Many, however, differ in different religious circles and sects first into forms, rather than flowing and moving in the formless Spirit to gain access to and enjoy experiencing God. That is why their services are dull, dull, dead and put you to sleep.
“But he that is joined to the Lord is a spirit” (1 Cor. 6:17). How can we be put together with the Lord, who is himself spirit, unless we transcend our minds and bodies to enter the spirit?
Most people only know Jesus by the flesh, but after His resurrection, we should know Him by the Spirit. Yes, without doubt and truth, Jesus came in the form of flesh to fulfill and complete the will of God; dying for humanity on a bloody cross to enable us to transition from our own sins to sinless and liberating spirituality.
But to fully receive and enjoy the spiritual blessings Jesus purchased for us with the crucifixion of his own body, we must first “live in the Spirit.” Living in the Spirit is most alien to a Western culture, even Christian culture, which tends to be cerebral rather than spiritual.
When emphasis is Christianity rather than Christ, is it so strange that we lack new life and expression? Ironically, many Christians identify moreso with Christianity than Christ. However, what we need to remember is Christianity without Christ is dead and just a meaningless movement.
Christ is the author of the life and leader of the Church, without which we are merely a denomination of our association and doctrine. Such a mindset does not make Christians any better than a political party or supporters of a professional sports team. There may be enthusiasm, but no life or fulfillment.
Where the perfect peace is found again in God. When, with childlike faith, we believe and utilize our minds to agree with the Word of God about our identity, circumstances, purpose, and potential; we must experience “perfect peace” as we display a tender hearted trust in God.
“You will keep him in perfect peace whose mind stays on you: because he trusts you. Trust in the Lord forever: for in the LORD YHWAH is eternal strength” (Isaiah 26: 3-4).
Therefore, reconnect with your creator. Embrace his peace. Internalizes and meditates on his life-giving, life-giving and life-bearing words. In so doing, you must transcend your problems, cultivate inner peace, discover the power of presence, and experience divine release.
Guru Joseph is a Jesus-follower, Christian song-bird, and Bible word-lover. He aspires to craft words that are deep, impactful, beautiful Kingdom of God, and Christ-centered.
Guru Joseph passions include Jesus, church, family, people, Bible, music, food & culture, also spreading the power of the Holy Spirit. He lives in Hyderabad India with his wife and son.
Guru Joseph is a leading Christian author, blogger, YouTuber passionate about people worldwide discovering Jesus Christ through Christian Writing. His content is findable at www.cmportal.in A popular Christian portal with a mission to connect the dots between the Bible and modern life. More