I thought that I would be able to write more often on this trip but it has been an extremely full time. The Chicago experience was amazing. I arrived a day earlier than I needed to, to attend the Oprah Winfrey show about A New Earth, and what happened in that day (besides resting up) was the filming of two hours of conversation with Richard Miller who has already made 24 of these conversations with others for Chicago Public Television. Richard is creating a wonderful archive of conversations with spiritual teacher types of people and they are available to all if you go to video.google.com and search “Never Not Here”. It is a wonderful resource for all and I will put a link to it on my website when I get home.
The Oprah Show the next morning was an amazing experience, but they didn’t ask me to say anything at all. The entire audience consisted of people who were related to the A New Earth webcast in some way. Many of them were people who had written in asking questions. The show itself was 100% on A New Earth, and was already pre-orchestrated with 8 chosen participants Skyping in who had experienced major shifts recently from reading A New Earth. One was a soldier in Baghdad who was currently experiencing incoming rockets and having to periodically hide underground to protect himself from the enemy fire. His mother was in the live audience. So was Elizabeth Lesser and a woman who was a Catholic lay minister. Each person of the 8 Skypers had a particular story about a recent shift and they all fit together beautifully. My favorite was a woman in Ontario who was in late stages of cancer. She was so inspiring the way she talked about how she had been so negative and angry and now she was living in the awareness of how precious and beautiful every remaining moment of her life was. The show will air on Wednesday April 9th in the regular Oprah Winfrey show time-slot in your area.
As soon as the cameras would shut off, Oprah was so personable and talked to us all as if over a cup of tea in her kitchen. She told us a couple of remarkable things in those commercial breaks and afterwards. She traced the whole trajectory of her career with us and ended up making the point that ALL of it seemed to her to be directly leading to and making possible this work that she is doing with Eckhart Tolle. She says it is the most important thing she has done in her life. She also said that she intends to hold off naming any more books to her book club for at least a year in order to keep the focus on A New Earth and see what the year brings. Isn’t she something? I’ve really got to hand it to Oprah. What an amazing woman. What an opportunity she is giving the world.
Now, a few days later, I am writing from Vermont. I am staying with a dear friend in Guilford Vermont and there is still 3 feet of snow on the ground at her house! Vermonters are still waiting for spring, and looking forward to it very much after one of the longest and snowiest winters in a very long time. There are still 20 foot piles of snow here and there on the north sides of big barns and places where the sun doesn’t often reach.
I have already done two evening book events/groups and both have gone wonderfully with about 25 to 30 people attending. The event in Amherst Mass takes the record for length, having started at 7:00 and the last people not leaving till almost midnight. There was also a radio interview on the local station WKVT with local DJ Steve West who did a wonderful job interviewing me about the book, and has given me the recording on a disc, so I will be able to post it on the website at some point in the near future. There is one more event this afternoon in Westminster West (Vermont, north of Brattleboro) and then a lot of visiting around with old friends. This is the area where I have lived for most of my adult life and raised my family. I lived around here right up until moving to California in 2004. On Monday night I will visit the woman who created the beautiful cover that you see on Life Beyond Belief, and on Tuesday I return to see more of my parents who live in a wonderful Senior Community in Exeter New Hampshire called RiverWoods. Because of the Chicago adventure, I arrived to see them at the beginning of this trip just in time to borrow their car and leave again. So Tuesday through Saturday will be the time to be a better guest than that, and to enjoy and be with them until my return to California on the 12th.