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Chapter 1: The Flowering of Human Consciousness

‘A new heaven’ is the emergence of a transformed state of human consciousness, and ‘a new earth’ is its reflection in the physical realm.

Tolle wants us to understand that ‘heaven’ refers not to a location but to our inner realm of consciousness. Earth, on the other hand, is the outer manifestation, which is always a reflection of the inner. Therefore, collective human consciousness and life on our planet are intrinsically connected. An essential part of the awakening is the recognition of the unawakened you—the ego—as it thinks, speaks, and acts. Also, recognition of the collectively conditioned mental processes that perpetuate the unawakened state is vital.

Humans are hurting each other and the environment, persisting in behavior that, if continued unchecked, can only result in their destruction. People identify with belief systems (religious, corporate, government, etc.) which make themselves ‘right’ and others ‘wrong.’ There is an urgent need for transformation. It is now arising in a consciousness which recognizes that we are all connected to each other and to nature.

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