Hello friend, how have you been? My name is Clark, and this post is written as a sequel to: How to be enlightened. Below I will take you through the astonishing power of emotions, looking at both its constructive as well as destructive capabilities.
In the post above, we scratched the surface of how each of us, without exception, can practice enlightenment. One of the things that we can do is detach from our mind and emotions, meaning be the observer of them. When you observe your mind or emotions, you are not them. Here I would like to elaborate upon that idea by discussing how destructive (constructive) strong negative (positive) emotions are. With this awareness, hopefully you would be pulled towards the immediate need to practice enlightenment by detaching from your emotions.
Since emotions are the effect of the thoughts we are having, in a way you can think of them as one and the same. When you observe your emotions, you also detach from your mind. Eckhart Tolle talked about the importance of detaching from our emotions in his book The Power of Now. Based on my understanding of his writings, you could only experience real positive emotions when you experience “no-mind”, and one of the ways to do that is to be detached from your emotions.
The Destructive Power of Negative Emotions
First, let us discuss negative emotions. For most of us, these emotions regarding various matters in life have been built up over a long period of time. These emotions translate to imperfect health, low energy levels, and most importantly, an inability to be happy. They make us feel incomplete, that we have to prove ourselves, and that we don’t deserve to be happy until we do so. Also, negative emotions are said to block what we want from coming to us. So if that is not motivation enough to drop these emotions immediately, nothing is.
Not only that, the destructive power of negative emotions extend to making you feel comfortable with them, to the extent that when you finally manage to experience a bit of joy (whether by accident or otherwise), they will try to ‘trick’ you into becoming your old self again – dissatisfied, resentful, angry, etc. The thing is, we may have been carrying around these emotions for such a long time that we may not even realize that they are there. Therefore, becoming the observer of your emotions has the unintended side effect of allowing you to realize what you’re feeling unconsciously.
At an extreme level, our emotions can cause us to engage in destructive acts like hurting another human. You’ve heard of crimes of passion, riots and terrorism. These acts showcase the ugly, destructive power of emotions.
Real Positive Emotions?
If negative emotions bring with them destructive power, then positive emotions allow you to tap into incredible constructive power. Besides observing your mind or emotions, Eckhart Tolle suggested that you can reach “no-mind” by putting your consciousness in the Now. That is, always be conscious of the present moment. Be fully immersed in what you are doing right now.
According to Eckhart Tolle, even emotions like anticipation of something that is going to happen in the near future and that you are excited about are not considered truly positive emotions, because you are not accessing the Now. I may not have fully grasped what he meant, but I wouldn’t worry about it. A positive emotion is better than a negative one, and can always be used as a stepping stone to better feeling-thoughts. So if you are feeling good about yourself and your life at this very moment, continue doing so and bask in your happiness while experimenting with tapping into “no-mind” and experiencing this so-called real love, real joy and real peace.
Stay tuned sisters and brothers, because I’ll be writing more about enlightenment. The Power of Now is a wonderful source for this subject. So come back often to my website; and notice that you may click on the “SERIES” button in the menu above to read all the series I’ve written thus far. Leave your questions and comments below and I will revert ASAP. Thanks a lot!
Read next: How to be enlightened Part 3