Bridget McNulty
Bridget McNulty

A New Earth … the follow-up

I apologise — I assumed there had been so much hoo-ha about A New Earth that everyone knew what it was about and that I could just fleetingly mention it in my blog about how much I’ve enjoyed Oprah’s webcasts with author Eckhart Tolle.

My bad.

So, without giving too exhaustive a book review, let me tell you what I think A New Earth is all about.

It’s the second full length book by Eckhart Tolle and kind of follows on where The Power of Now left off, repeating some of the same ideas but, in my view, offering very practical ways to apply them.

Apply what? Well, in brief, ways to make life less painful. It’s a spiritual guide to understanding why we act the way we do, how we are driven by our egos and how to begin to let go of the ceaseless voices in our heads (which most of us are rather familiar with — at least, I am, and many of my friends are too). Most strikingly for me, he offers an explanation for irrational outbursts of anger or emotion (which he calls the pain body) and ways to begin to let go of that, and to let go of the past.

It’s about accepting what happens to you and moving forward from that place of power instead of constantly complaining and wishing things where otherwise. “Wanting something to be different than it is, is what causes stress,” he says. I agree with him.
You might not. As with any spiritual teaching, it will appeal to some and not to others. That’s inevitable.

So where does Oprah fit in and why am I suddenly so enamoured with her?

Basically, she loved the book and wanted to understand it on a deeper level. So she set up this worldwide webcast, with people calling and emailing in from all over the world, and got down to the nitty gritty of what A New Earth means for people wanting changes in their lives. And then she provided the webcasts and podcasts free. She asks insightful, genuine questions and creates a really helpful learning tool for anyone who wants to understand the book more deeply.

And I think that’s cool.