The process of awakening, may often seem to be a shattering one. It's often great suffering that pushes us onto a path, into insight, into a practice. There are those like Tolle, who seem to be given inner peace all at once. There are others like Peace Pilgrim, for whom these things take time. And that seems to be the case for most of us. We have some kind of epiphany or Satori or moment of grace, and our world is turned upside down or shattered. This may come at some moment of great trial, or seemingly out of the blue, Paul on the road to Damascus.
Vestiges of the ego, of attachment, or what the Buddhists call 'defilement', these seem to persist, until they don't.