#3098 - Friday, March 7, 2008 - Editor: Jerry Katz
- #3098 - Friday, March 7, 2008 - Editor: Jerry KatzNonduality Highlights - http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NDhighlightsIn this issue an excerpt from Oprah Winfrey's A New Earth Online Class, featuring Eckhart Tolle. It is a 45 page transcript and may be accessed here: http://images.oprah.com/images/obc_classic/book/2008/anewearth/ane_chapter1_transcript.pdf.I've selected a portion that illustrates the focus and flow among Oprah, Eckhart, and a caller named Kelly. It emphasizes Kelly's and Oprah's spirituality more than Tolle's confessions. Still, what Tolle says in this exchange is enough. This is the first of ten shows with Eckhart.You may also download video and audio formats here: http://www.oprah.com/obc_classic/webcast/archive/archive_download.jsp
photos: Eckhart Tolle and Oprha Winfrey
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): It's that one. All right, so Kelly from Alton, Illinois joins us via
Skype. Kelly? Hi.
KELLY (ILLINOIS): Hi Oprah. Hi Eckhart.
ECKHART TOLLE (AUTHOR “A NEW EARTH: AWAKENING TO YOUR LIFE’S PURPOSE”): Hello.
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): Hi, what’s your question?
KELLY (ILLINOIS): Thank you for having me.
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): Well, good. Where are you? Home?
KELLY (ILLINOIS): I’m at home.
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): Okay, good. This is the coolest thing. Isn’t this cool?
KELLY (ILLINOIS): It is crazy.
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): Oh it’s crazy. That's what I think. It’s crazy that we're like out here
wherever this is talking to each other. Okay, what's your question?
KELLY (ILLINOIS): Well, my question is regarding religion and spirituality.
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): Big one.
KELLY (ILLINOIS): I had a Catholic upbringing, I married a Catholic, and we’re raising our
children this way. In reading books such as Tolle's, I’ve really, it’s really opened my eyes up
to a new way of thinking; a new form of spirituality that doesn't always align with the
teachings of Christianity. So my question is to you, Oprah, how have you reconciled these
spiritual teachings with your Christian beliefs?
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): Oh, the question's to me. I was resting knowing it was going to
about – I’ve reconciled it because I was able to open my mind about the absolute
indescribable hugeness of that which we call “God.” I took God out of the box because I
grew up in the Baptist church and there were, you know, rules and, you know, belief systems
Copyright 2008 HARPO PRODUCTIONS INC
Page 12 of 45
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): And I happened to be sitting in church in my late 20's and I was
going to this church where you had to get there at 8:00 in the morning or you couldn't get a
seat. And a very charismatic minister, and everybody was just, you know, into the sermon.
And this great minister was preaching about how great God was and how omniscient and
omnipresent, and God is everything.
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): And then he said, and the lord thy god is a jealous god. And I was,
you know, caught up in the rapture of that moment until he said “jealous.” And something
struck me. And I was like, I think about 27 or 28. I was thinking God is all, God is
omnipresent, God is – and God’s also jealous? God is jealous of me?
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): And something about that didn't feel right in my spirit because I
believe that god is love and that god is in all things. And so that's when the search for
something more than doctrine started to stir within me. And I love this quote that Eckhart
has, this is one of my favorite quotes in chapter one where he says, “Man made god in his
own image, the eternal, the infinite, and unnamable was reduced to a mental idol that you
had to believe in and worship as my god or our god.”
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): Now I think that's very eloquently put by Eckhart Tolle in chapter
one. But that is exactly what I was feeling when I was, you know, sitting in church that
Sunday listening to the preacher. And you know, it's been a journey to get to the place
where I understand, as I said on the pre-show here, that what I believe is that Jesus came to
show us Christ consciousness.
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): That Jesus came to show us the way of the heart and that what
Jesus was saying that to show us the higher consciousness that we're all talking about here.
Jesus came to say, “Look I'm going to live in the body, in the human body and I'm going to
show you how it's done.” These are some principles and some laws that you can use to live
by to know that way. And when I started to recognize that, that Jesus didn't come in my
belief, even as a Christian, I don't believe that Jesus came to start Christianity.
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): So that was also very helpful to me. And as I said earlier in the preshow
here, there is a wonderful book called, “Discover the Power Within You” by Eric
Butterworth, which helped me reconcile the two. So that might be really good for those of
you who are Christian and trying to balance the two. What would you say?
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): Because one of the things that Eckhart says in the beginning of this
book on page six is this book’s main purpose is not to add information or beliefs to your
mind, or to try to convince you of anything, but to bring about a shift in consciousness. That
is to say, to awaken. He says that on page six. And one of the reasons why I appreciate him
so much is because he truly isn't out to become your next guru. He doesn't want, you know,
all of you who are online with us tonight and those millions who will now hear about this
book, he's not interested in being your guru, correct?
Copyright 2008 HARPO PRODUCTIONS INC
Page 13 of 45
ECKHART TOLLE (AUTHOR “A NEW EARTH: AWAKENING TO YOUR LIFE’S PURPOSE”): Yes,
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): Yeah. How would you respond to that? That's one of the biggest
questions that we have coming into our message boards about the same thing that Kelly is
addressing here from Alton about spirituality and religion. This is not trying to tell you how
to believe. And how do you advise people to reconcile this with their religious beliefs?
ECKHART TOLLE (AUTHOR “A NEW EARTH: AWAKENING TO YOUR LIFE’S PURPOSE”): Well,
religion can be an open doorway into spirituality and religion can be a closed door. It
prevents you from going deeper. So that I love reading the New Testament and I also read
the old Testament. Sometimes there’s some incredible jewels in there. And when I went
through this inner transformation and for the first time accidentally I picked up a copy of the
New Testament at my mother's place.
ECKHART TOLLE (AUTHOR “A NEW EARTH: AWAKENING TO YOUR LIFE’S PURPOSE”): And I
started reading and I immediately recognized the deep truths that is there and I realized the
truth that is deeper, that is expressed in what Jesus said is much deeper than what you, how
the church interprets it. There’s a depth to it. And it reflects your own depth when you read
it. So there’s no conflict between this teaching, which is purely spiritual, and any religion.
ECKHART TOLLE (AUTHOR “A NEW EARTH: AWAKENING TO YOUR LIFE’S PURPOSE”): Because
if you go deep enough in your religion, then you all get to the same place. It's a question of
going deeper so there's no conflict here. The important thing is that religion doesn't become
an ideology, so I believe this. And the moment you say “only my belief” or “our belief” is
true, and you deny other people's beliefs, then you've adopted an ideology. And then
religion becomes a closed door. But potentially religion can also be an open door.
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): Well, let me share this with you too, Kelly. There's another book by
a woman named Elizabeth Lesser, it's called, “The Seeker's Guide,” where she talks about the
new spirituality versus the old. So I just wanted to -- this is on page 51 and 52 of Elizabeth
Lesser's book called “The Seeker’s Guide.”
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): And she talks about old spirituality versus the new spirituality and
she says the old was – the old way is the hierarchy has the authority. Church authorities tell
you how to worship in church and how to behave outside of church. The new spirituality is
that you are your own best authority as you work to know and love yourself, you discover
how to live a more spiritual life.
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): The old is God and the path to worship him have already been
defined and all you need to do is follow the directions. The new is being able to listen within
for your own definition of spirituality, your deeper longings are under search.
Copyright 2008 HARPO PRODUCTIONS INC
Page 14 of 45
And the old says exact here what Eckhart was saying. That there's only one path it's the right
way and all other ways are wrong. And the spirituality says that many paths lead to spiritual
freedom and peace.
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): You have a rich array of gems from which to draw illumination. The
world's religious traditional, mythology, psychology, healing methods, scientific wisdom,
your own experience and that you can begin to string a necklace all your own. Then she
lists, you know, other old and new. And so it's really a question of what you were saying to
us earlier that this material strikes a chord within you.
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): Something in you opens up and wants, you know, feels alive and is
awakened to that. And yet there is the ideology that says what to you? What is the conflict
KELLY (ILLINOIS): Just thoughts on the afterlife, things like that. You know, you – in a lot of
books such as Tolle's, we get teachings from Buddhism or Hinduism, and those thoughts
don't go along with, you know, what I was raised to believe as a Christian. So that's been the
biggest thing that I've struggled with, I think, so...
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): Well, I am a Christian who believes that there are certainly many
more paths to God other than Christianity.
KELLY (ILLINOIS): All right.
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): I'm a free-thinking Christian who believes that, who believes in my
way, but I don't believe that it's the only way, with six billion people here on the planet.
KELLY (ILLINOIS): Right.
ECKHART TOLLE (AUTHOR “A NEW EARTH: AWAKENING TO YOUR LIFE’S PURPOSE”): Another
also who uses, who might appeal to you, who uses Christian terminology but goes very very
deep, using Christian language and Christian teachings; Joel Goldsmith.
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): yes.
ECKHART TOLLE (AUTHOR “A NEW EARTH: AWAKENING TO YOUR LIFE’S PURPOSE”): So any…
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): Joel Goldstein?
ECKHART TOLLE (AUTHOR “A NEW EARTH: AWAKENING TO YOUR LIFE’S PURPOSE”):
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): Oh, Goldsmith.
Copyright 2008 HARPO PRODUCTIONS INC
Page 15 of 45
ECKHART TOLLE (AUTHOR “A NEW EARTH: AWAKENING TO YOUR LIFE’S PURPOSE”): Joel
Goldsmith. Any book by Joel Goldsmith that you would try that, and you can see how deep
the Christian teaching can be.
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): Okay?
KELLY (ILLINOIS): Well, thank you very much.
OPRAH WINFREY (HOST): Thanks, Kelly. You're our first Skyper.
KELLY (ILLINOIS): Great. I’m honored.
The 45 page transcript and may be accessed here: http://images.oprah.com/images/obc_classic/book/2008/anewearth/ane_chapter1_transcript.pdfYou may also download video and audio formats here: http://www.oprah.com/obc_classic/webcast/archive/archive_download.jsp