The war that we see in the world is the war within ourself. Make peace with your thoughts and judgements. I invite you to explore the work, a beautifully simple process… four questions and a turnaround.
How do you react when you believe the thought that creates stress in your life?
- Is it true?
- Can you absolutely know it is true?
- How do you react when you believe the thought?
- Who would you be without the thought?
- Turn the thought around
I discovered that when I believed my thoughts I suffered, but when I didn’t believe them I didn’t suffer, and that this is true for every human being. Freedom is as simple as that. I found that suffering is optional. I found a joy within me that has never disappeared, not for a single moment. That joy is in everyone, always. And I invite you not to believe me. I invite you to test it for yourself.Byron Katie www.thework.com
A Simple Yet Powerful Practice
As we do The Work of Byron Katie, not only do we remain alert to our stressful thoughts—the ones that cause all the anger, sadness, and frustration in our world—but we question them, and through that questioning the thoughts lose their power over us. Great spiritual texts describe the what—what it means to be free. The Work is the how. It shows you exactly how to identify and question any thought that would keep you from that freedom.
The Work is a Practice
Every time you do The Work you are becoming enlightened to who and what you are, the true nature of being. To question what you believe is an amazing gift to give yourself, and you can have it all the days of your life. The answers are always inside you, just waiting to be heard.
Who or what upsets you? Why? Recall a specific situation.
To begin, relax and be still. Travel in your mind to a specific situation where you were angry, hurt, sad, or disappointed with someone. Witness the situation. Be there now. Notice, name, and feel the emotion you were experiencing at the time. Find the reason you were upset.
Capture your stressful thoughts on a Judge-Your-Neighbor Worksheet using short, simple sentences.
Staying anchored in the situation, at a specific moment in time, write down your responses to the questions on the Worksheet, using short, simple sentences. Write without censoring yourself. Allow yourself to be as judgmental, childish, and petty as you were in that moment. This is an opportunity to discover the cause of your stress and emotions in that moment.
Isolate one thought. Ask the four questions. Allow the genuine answers to arise.
To begin, isolate a statement for inquiry. Now apply the four questions. Begin by repeating the original statement, then ask yourself each question. This Work is a meditation practice. It’s like diving into yourself. Contemplate the questions, one at a time. Drop into the depths of yourself, listen, and wait. The answer will meet your question.
Turn It Around
Turn the thought around. Is the opposite as true as or truer than the original thought?
To do the turnarounds, find opposites of the original statement on your Worksheet. Often a statement can be turned around to the self, to the other, and to the opposite. Not every statement has as many as three turnarounds. Some may have just one or two, and others may have more than three. Some turnarounds may not make any sense to you. Don’t force these.