How would Eckhart Tolle do in a concentration camp with his gospel of the Power of Now Hypnosis?
Would he be able to hypnotize the prisoners into his Power of Now ideology, and thus help them to go through the daily horrors of their incarceration, without suffering the typical, concentration-camp-generated psycho-spiritual torment?
Would his Power of Now Hypnosis be helpful at all?
In order to find out if a particular methodology has a real transformational, and mind-empowering value, we must test that methodology under the most adverse psycho-spiritual circumstances.
The proposal here is that, we take Eckhart Tolle Power of Now ideology, and see how useful it would be, under the extremes of the physical and mental torment of a concentration camp.
How useful would it be in helping the prisoners to deal with their utterly horrible situation?
How could we test the value of Eckhart Tolle Power of Now Hypnosis against the realities of a concentration camp?
We could do this by finding someone who has been a prisoner of a concentration camp, and who could say something with authority about the realities of a concentration camp, in the context of Eckhart Tolle Power of Now ideology.
A perfect authority figure, who could deliver just that is Viktor Frankl.
Viktor Frankl, a former Professor of Neurology and Psychiatry at the University of Vienna, had been through a few concentration camps, and in his books, wrote - amongst other things - about what was the most important mental orientation (think - hypnosis) of a concentration camp prisoner, in the context of his or her survival potential.
Eckhart Tolle gospel of the Power of Now Hypnosis speaks against the so typical, human, mental orientation towards the future.
It not only speaks against the future, it seems to abhor it!
It claims that, whatever real power - over our human negative states of consciousness - we can ever access, comes only from being in the now.
Into this ideology, Eckhart Tolle has been trying to hypnotize tens of thousands - perhaps even hundreds of thousands - of people worldwide.
Following Tolle’s logic, the prisoners of concentration camps - in theory - should benefit tremendously from being exposed to the supposedly empowering value of the Power of Now Hypnosis.
Implicitly, through the whole body of his work Eckhart Tolle claims that, if some of the concentration camp prisoners had been powerfully influenced, (think - hypnotized) into following his BE-IN-THE-NOW prescription for a liberated living, they would have done so much better than those, who were striving to stay alive, by feeding their minds with the thoughts about their future liberation.
In theory, if somehow, Eckhart Tolle cold be transported back in time, onto the grounds of Auschwitz, and allowed to hypnotize the prisoners into a trance of BEING-IN-THE-NOW, he should be able to tremendously increase the average prisoner’s concentration-camp-survival-potential.
Let’s see what Viktor Frankl has to say about it.
In his book entitled The Doctor And The Soul Viktor Frankl writes that:
“Healthy living is living with an eye to the future... The moment a person cannot foresee the end of a provisional stage in his life, he is unable to set himself any further goals... Life consequently loses all content and meaning in his eyes.”
“Goal in the future constitutes the very spiritual support, which the camp prisoner so badly needs.. can save him... from utterly giving in.”
Viktor Frankl writes that, the “sensation of futurelessness”, with its potential of hypnotizing the prisoners into behaving like “living corpses”, was the greatest enemy of life in the concentration camps.
Precisely, because the “NOW” of concentration camps was so horrific, the only way to overcome it, was to escape into the future.
It is obvious that, what Viktor Frankl presents from his own experience, clashes with what Eckhart Tolle presents only from his theoretical musings.
At the beginning of this article I’ve asked a question: How would Eckhart Tolle do in a concentration camp with his gospel of the Power of Now Hypnosis?
After reading what Viktor Frankl had to say about the Power of the Future Hypnosis, as the only known to him power, capable of sustaining lives amidst the horrors of concentration camps, I must conclude that, what Eckhart Tolle preaches is not a practical truth.
It belongs to the category of an idealized truth - perhaps not even that - and for sure, it can create a lot of quite damaging confusion in the minds of those who are striving to put it into practice, and finding out that they can’t.
From what Viktor Frankl wrote about the realities of life in a concentration camp, it is obvious that, only those who were able to self-hypnotize themselves out of the unbearable camp reality, and into some kind of pleasant, and desirable reality waiting for them in the future, were able to survive.
Viktor Frankl Power of The Future Hypnosis - experientially derived wisdom - definitely wins over Ekhart Tolle Power of Now Hypnosis, at least on the grounds of a concentration camp.
Considering the fact that, Eckhart Tolle Power of Now Hypnosis breaks down under the weight of the circumstances - it remains to be treated with great suspicion as a useful prescription for a liberated living.