Michael A. Singer Quotes

Imagine this scene. 

You’re in a rigorous PhD program at a respected university, and suddenly and unexpectedly you have a spiritual awakening experience that completely changes how you see the universe. 

Instead of being driven by a mind full of preferences and opinions, you decide to let go and let the intelligence of the universe guide your life. Before long you’ve devoted your life to meditation and yoga, and you’ve been moved to live in the woods. This intelligence leads you to more insights and awakenings, and eventually back to the busy world of business where you found a Medical company that merges with WebMD and becomes a billion-dollar enterprise.

Crazy story? Sounds like something out of a movie. Well, it happened to Michael Singer. He went on to write two very popular books, The Untethered Soul (2007) and The Surrender Experiment (2015).

The Untethered Soul was the first bestselling book from Michael Singer. It was a more general book about the nature of mind, self and life, and drew heavily from yogic philosophy. Eventually, this book caught the attention of Oprah Winfrey, which exploded its popularity and resulted in international exposure for Singer.

In 2015 Singer released The Surrender Experiment, a much more personal first-hand account of his journey with yoga, meditation, life and business. The themes in this book overlap greatly with The Untethered Soul, and there is an emphasis on surrendering to whatever happens in life without resistance. Spiritual autobiographies have a long history, and Singer has mentioned that Philip Kapleau’s book, The Three Pillars of Zen, as well as Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda, were influential in his life and writing. 

There is a consistency between the themes explored by Singer and other modern spiritual teachers who draw from traditional wisdom paths such as Zen and Advaita Vedanta. However, though topics such as ego, surrender and spiritual practice, are touched on, the honesty of Singer’s experience makes his work honest and palatable.

Here are 52 quotes from Michael Singer from The Untethered Soul and The Surrender Experiment!

The Untethered Soul Quotes

“When a problem is disturbing you, don’t ask, “What should I do about it?” Ask, “What part of me is being disturbed by this?” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself

“True personal growth is about transcending the part of you that is not okay and needs protection.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself

“The only permanent solution to your problems is to go inside and let go of the part of you that seems to have so many problems with reality. Once you do that, you’ll be clear enough to deal with what’s left.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“Only you can take inner freedom away from yourself, or give it to yourself. Nobody else can.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself

“Instead of being encouraged to feel completely protected, loved, honored, and respected by the Divine Force, you’ve been taught that you’re being judged. Because you’ve been taught that, you feel guilt and fear. But guilt and fear do not open your connection to the Divine; they only serve to close your heart. The reality is that God’s way is love, and you can see this for yourself.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself

“There is no reason to constantly attempt to figure everything out” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“There is nothing more important to true growth than realizing that you are not the voice of the mind – you are the one who hears it.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“If you want to be happy, you have to let go of the part of you that wants to create melodrama. This is the part that thinks there’s a reason not to be happy. You have to transcend the personal, and as you do, you will naturally awaken to the higher aspects of your being.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself

“We are constantly trying to hold it all together. If you really want to see why you do things, then don’t do them and see what happens.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“Acceptance means events can make it through you without resistance.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“The most important thing in life is your inner energy. If you’re always tired and never enthused, then life is no fun. But if you’re always inspired and filled with energy, then every minute of every day is an exciting experience. Learn to work with these things. Through meditation, through awareness and willful efforts, you can learn to keep your centers open. You do this by just relaxing and releasing.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“You’re floating in empty space in a universe that goes on forever. If you have to be here, at least be happy and enjoy the experience.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“The psyche is built upon avoiding this pain, and as a result, it has fear of pain as its foundation. That is what caused the psyche to be. To understand this, notice that if the feeling of rejection is a major problem for you, you will fear experiences that cause rejection. That fear will become part of your psyche.”- Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“If you truly love someone, your love sees past their humanness” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“Your eyes are not really windows through which you look out into the world. Your eyes are cameras that send electronic images of the world into you.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself  

“The truth is that most of life will unfold in accordance with forces far outside your control, regardless of what your mind says about it” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“If you really want to see why you do things, then don’t do them and see what happens.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“You really don’t need more time before death; what you need is more depth of experience during the time you’re given.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“To attain true inner freedom, you must be able to objectively watch your problems instead of being lost in them.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“You don’t fight the mind. In fact, you don’t even try to change it. You just make a game out of relaxing in the face of its melodrama.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“What if you knew that the next person you’d see would be the last person you would ever see? You’d be right there soaking it in, experiencing it. It wouldn’t matter what they were saying; you’d just enjoy hearing the words because it would be the last conversation you’d ever have. What if you brought that kind of awareness to every conversation?” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“There is nothing more important to true growth than realizing that you are not the voice of the mind – you are the one who hears it” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“Death changes everything in a flash. That’s the reality of the situation. If all these things can be changed in an instant, then maybe they aren’t so real after all.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“Do not let anything that happens in life be important enough that you’re willing to close your heart over it.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“Your inner growth is completely dependent upon the realization that the only way to find peace and contentment is to stop thinking about yourself.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

Michael Singer on How To Seperate The Voice In Your Head From The Real You

“You have to understand that it is your attempt to get special experiences from life that makes you miss the actual experience of life.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“Eventually you will see that the real cause of the problem is not life itself. It’s the commotion the mind makes about life that really causes the problems.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“You gain nothing by being bothered by life’s events. It doesn’t change the world; you just suffer. There’s always going to be something that can bother you, if you let it.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself

“Billions of things are going on in this world. You can think about it all you want, but life is still going to keep on happening.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“What you end up experiencing is really a personal presentation of the world according to you, rather than the stark, unfiltered experience of what is really out there. This mental manipulation of the outer experience allows you to buffer reality as it comes in.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“Fear is the cause of every problem. It’s the root of all prejudices and the negative emotions of anger, jealousy, and possessiveness. If you had no fear, you could be perfectly happy living in this world.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“Imagine if you used relationships to get to know other people, rather than to satisfy what is blocked inside of you. If you’re not trying to make people fit into your preconceived notions of what you like and dislike, you will find that relationships are not really that difficult. If you’re not so busy judging and resisting people based upon what is blocked inside of you, you will find that they are much easier to get along with—and so are you. Letting go of yourself is the simplest way to get closer to others.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“It’s actually a shocking realization when you first notice that your mind is constantly talking. You might even try to yell at it in a feeble attempt to shut it up. But then you realize that’s the voice yelling at the voice:” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

“When you feel pain, simply view it as energy. Just start seeing these inner experiences as energy passing through your heart and before the eye of your consciousness. Then relax. Do the opposite of contracting and closing. Relax and release. Relax your heart until you are actually face-to-face with the exact place where it hurts. Stay open and receptive so you can be present right where the tension is. You must be willing to be present right at the place of the tightness and pain, and then relax and go even deeper. This is very deep growth and transformation. But you will not want to do this. You will feel tremendous resistance to doing this, and that’s what makes it so powerful. As you relax and feel the resistance, the heart will want to pull away, to close, to protect, and to defend itself. Keep relaxing. Relax your shoulders and relax your heart. Let go and give room for the pain to pass through you. It’s just energy. Just see it as energy and let it go.” – Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself 

Michael Singer On How To Free Yourself From Negative Thoughts

The Surrender Experiment Quotes

“Each of us actually believes that things should be the way we want them, instead of being the natural result of all the forces of creation.” – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection

“I was not in charge, yet life continued to unfold as if it knew just what it was doing.”  – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection 

“That was the essence of my experiment with life: if it’s down to a matter of preference—life wins.”  – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection 

“Just kept letting go and practicing nonresistance, whether I liked what was happening or not.”  – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection 

“At some point there’s no more struggle, just the deep peace that comes from surrendering to a perfection that is beyond your comprehension.” – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection

“No matter who we are, life is going to put us through the changes we need to go through. The question is: Are we willing to use this force for our transformation? I saw that even very intense situations don’t have to leave psychological scars, if we are willing to process our changes at a deeper level.” – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection  

“It seems as though life knew exactly what it was doing, and as usual, my mind knew nothing.” – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection

Michael Singer on Why We Are Afraid of Change

“Instead of trying to free myself by constantly quieting the mind, perhaps I should be asking why the mind is so active. What is in the motivation behind all the mental chatter? If that motivation was to be removed, the struggle would be over.” – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection

“I could see that the practice of surrender was actually done in two, very distinct steps: first, you let go of the personal reactions of like and dislike that form inside your mind and heart; and second, with the resultant sense of clarity, you simply look to see what is being asked of you by the situation unfolding in front of you.” – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection

“How could I possibly explain the great freedom that comes from realizing to the depth of your being that life knows what it’s doing?” – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection 

“Time and again I was seeing that if I could handle the winds of the current storm, they would end up blowing in some great gift…Challenging situations create the force needed to bring about change. The problem is that we generally use all the stirred up energy intended to bring about change, to resist change.” – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection 

“Clearly remember deciding that from now on if life was unfolding in a certain way, and the only reason I was resisting it was because of a personal preference, I would let go of my preference and let life be in charge.” – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection 

“My formula for success was very simple: Do whatever is put in front of you with all your heart and soul without regard for personal results. Do the work as though it were given to you by the universe itself – because it was.” – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection 

“Because I had inwardly surrendered each step of the way, no scars were left of my psyche. It had been like writing on water – the impressions only lasted while the events were actually taking place.” – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection 

“There was not much I could do but let go of my reaction.” – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection

“I am so grateful that surrender had taught me to willingly participate in life’s dance with a quiet mind and an open heart.” – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection 

“Am I better off making up an alternate reality in my mind and then fighting with reality to make it be my way, or am I better off letting go of what I want and serving the same forces of reality that managed to create the entire perfection of the universe around me?” – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection 

“Surrender – what an amazingly powerful world. It often engenders the thought of weakness and cowardice. In my case, it required all the strength I had to be brave enough to follow the invisible into the unknown.” – Michael A. Singer, The Surrender Experiment: My Journey into Life’s Perfection

Ben Fishel

Ben is an author, psychotherapist and the creator of Project Monkey Mind, a blog that looks at Psychology and Spirituality to find practical wisdom for the digital age. He holds an MSc. in Applied Neuroscience from King's College London and a Bachelors in Psychology from the University of Queensland.

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