I am confused when he, and others like him, talk about stillness as the precurser to enlightenment and he uses Eckhart Tolle as an example but, and I could be wrong, I see Tolle as the opposite of someone who is enlightened. I see him as someone who is dissociated.
What Eckhart Tolle talks about is different from dissociation, which he lumps in with addictions and pain escape. Instead, he advocates mindfulness, and being present to the current moment (and anjoying it) without being distracted by the past and future. Just be aware of what you are experiencing right now, and be the one experiencing it, not the one analysing it or judging it. The experience is light and alert and happy, not the drugged spacey feeling of being dissociated. Just an absence of stress/anxiety/depression and the presece of a contentment that requires no outside stimulation or intellecutal activity to enhance it.
I am completely on side with the fact that addictions (even mild ones) are the result of avoiding pain and that the degree to which we are addicted is the degree to which we are in pain. He then goes on to say that in order to stop being addicted you must be still because the purpose of the ego is to constantly distract us and keep us shielded from that pain. Maybe I am missing the point or something, but I don't get what happens after this? Do you have to concentrate feeling still in perpetuity? How is this not an avoidance of the pain aswell and thus an addiction?
It's the experience of being separated from this simple, peaceful, content sense of yourself that is associated with pain, boredom, frustration, stress and irritation. So if you're in your head, distracted by all of the noise of various thoughts and judgements and repeating thought patterns, you are cut off from this experience and need something to drown out the unpleasantness or boredom or frustration. And that's what addictions are for. Note that this is all a matter of degrees: so the less you identify with the thoughts and activity happening in your conscious mind, the more you will be at ease and the less tempting addictions or distractions are. The key is not to obsess over silence, but to discover that there is immense pleasure and releif in that silence. Just one experience like this, which lasted on and off for a few days, had me calmly choose to break some unshakable addictive habits for 6 months, but because I didn't repeat the original experience the negative feelings etc came back.