Watch out for the little man in a beige vest; he’s up to no good.

Though it shouldn’t come as a surprise, turns out Eckhart Tolle is a threat to all that is good and moral.

Well, at least according to leaders of just about every organized religion out there.

The Canadian magazine Macleans recently ran a feature on the man who some consider “one of the greatest spiritual leaders of our age.”

Other considerations range from heretic, to a mixer of “Hinduism, Buddhism, and New-Age Pop,” to “anti-Christ” (in a beige sweater vest, as the author notes).

What’s his sin? Well, it seems to be one thing essentially, no matter which religious leader you ask. He removes the hierarchical view of God being “above” us, and states instead that God is within each of us. We are all of, and share, the same source, so there is no need to go outside oneself to find connection or peace.

Or, as Mr. Walker, Texas Ranger himself, Chuck Norris had to say:

To me, [Tolle’s success] is more evidence of the paradigm shift in our culture from its moral absolute and Judeo-Christian basis to a relativistic world view in which anything goes and everything is tolerated.

Anything goes? Has he read Tolle?

The Purpose of the Now

I’m not sure this commenter on the Macleans‘ piece has either: “Spiritual masturbation. All the good feelings without any intellectual discipline, interpersonal communion, or a perspective informed by tradition or mentorship.”

Tolle’s overall message is to always live in the present moment. To attempt living in the now, it takes extreme discipline. As Ian MacKenzie wrote in his piece, The Traveler’s Guide To Enlightenment, “‘Now’ is what you’re doing at this moment. It is you sitting in your chair, hand on the mouse, pupils reading the words on this screen.”

Are you fully in your body right at this moment, or is your mind somewhere else – thinking about checking Facebook, that annoying thing your friend said earlier today, or contemplating what sex with Eckhart Tolle might be like based on his picture above? (No need to lie, now).

In other words, it’s every day, every second, both within yourself and in connection with others, of not thinking about the past, and not contemplating the future. It means always connecting to the spirit inside of you and all around you.

He is simply spreading a message about our own ability to achieve inner peace.

I hardly consider Tolle perfect, and he certainly is making a chunk of change off of his books, videos and new ET-TV (yes, that’s Eckhart Tolle, not Entertainment Tonight, TV). But as far as I can tell, he has never claimed perfection, or being better than the rest of us; he is simply spreading a message about our own ability to achieve inner peace (a message which can be accessed at the public library for free).

God or Prophet? No. Simple, loving message? Feels more like it.

What do you think of Eckhart Tolle’s message and tactics? Share your thoughts below.