The connection of Byron Katie with covert NLP style Ericksonian hypnotherapy, (as done by her close associate Stever Robbins) has been mentioned a number of times. But its important to remember that BK does much more than these methods, and she has customized them in her own way. A guess might be that at most 30% of what she does is along these lines, with most of the other stuff ranging from social influence techniques, LGAT methods, and a huge grab-bag of psychotherapeutic techniques picked up over the years, as well as dozens of sales techniques. People are being bombarded with more that 50 techniques all at once when they walk into a seminar. It would be possible to list dozens of techniques being used all at once. They do this, as this makes sure it works on as many people as possible, as everyone is unique, and to get the maximum impact, that can last for years.
But its a good idea to do some research into some of the more basic NLP style hypnotherapists out there.
There are many different kinds.
For example, some self-identify themselves as doing NLP style hypnosis, like this guy.
Paul Hessinger, Certified Master Neuro-Linguistic Practitioner/Hypnotherapist
FREE monthly hypnosis/NLP events - NLP Cafe San Francisco
Now, people need to be extremely careful with guys like this. It literally would take books to explain what these folks are doing, in terms of persuasion. But you can NEVER, and I mean EVER take any type of NLP-hypnotherapist at face value. NEVER. They are not just some dude in a Hawaiian shirt talking to you. (you can be guaranteed, that Hawaiian shirt Paul Hessinger wears is used as a Visual Anchor, and makes you want to ....r-e-l-a-x...that's right....like you now are on a warm tropical island....etc) Standard stuff, but people don't even notice something that obvious.
The only thing positive one could say about this guy, is at least he self-identifies as doing hypnotherapy and NLP, although his explanation of it is very dubious.
The language on his website is very carefully chosen, as well as the design.
For example, people do not know that a "free event" is anything but free. These guys know how to get up and talk, and it sounds pretty tepid, but almost all people have no idea of the kinds or persuasion that is being done to them, just by using language. The "content" of their speaking, is almost irrelevant, depending on their skill level.
Again, it takes book to explain this stuff, but it can be very powerful.
And sadly, its being used just to make money. If they find someone who is highly suggestible, and a bit naive, then next thing you know, 10's of thousands of dollars are gone into 'coaching' sessions.
But guess what?
Guys like this are the most obvious.
You could call them Version 2.0
There are Version 3.0 people, who do all the same techniques of NLP hypno-persuasion, but don't self-identify as such. They sell themselves as selling Sales or Coaching, or whatever. They just modify the language and their marketing image. When they speak, it just sounds like a typical business person.
There are also more advanced Version 4.0 people, who might present themselves as a spiritual New Age Energy Healer, or just a generic psychological seminar leader selling almost anything, when in fact they have all the same training as this guy, but have concealed it completely. Those folks can do very well, as no one knows what is going on. This would have been Byron Katie up to maybe 10 years ago, as you can see in the suppressed out-of-print books from that time.
But the New Byron Katie might be a version 5.0.
She is doing very advanced methods, and doing them very well, and its almost totally concealed, and ambiguous. (this is why her past books were suppressed, as they conflict in certain areas with the newer approach)
On top of that, she markets her Story that she is some type of mystical Savant, and acts like she has no idea of what she is doing.
So she taps into people's spiritual and religious impulses, as well as psychological areas, depression, anxiety, sexual and relationships, health, money, and anything else.
On top of that she carefully engineers people into basically "worshipping" her, when verbally she may say the opposite. She likes to play those opposites, not only in marketing.
These folks learned that if people know you are doing persuasion, or hypnotherapy, they will resist to a much greater degree. But if they have no idea you are doing that, there is almost no resistance.
On top of that, she engineers passivity and acceptance into her subjects, right from the start.
So its not easy to see at first glance, and requires some homework, like studying more obvious people who do similar things.
But there are going to be more Byron Katie 5.0 coming along, that is for sure. Its a brilliant insight. Because there is no licenses, then there is no responsibility.
The audience has no idea of the persuasion methods, so there is little resistance.
And its all done under a veil of plausible deniability. If a journalist, if there are any left, ever does some research, then its easy to deny everything and anything, as its all designed with a double-meaning, and is also done in the manner of a Spiritual Savant.
Regular folks are not aware that people who do this type of persuasion hypnotherapy, spend months and years writing, and refining their inductions, which are their STORIES. All of Byron Katie's stories are a type of induction. And notice, she tells people to drop their stories, so she plays that opposite again.
Thankfully, even if people can't see the specifics and the techniques in her Magick, people generally know when their chain is being jerked.
Why are Byron Katie "fans" so fanatical? Why are their websites full of every word she says?
Why are they "in love" with her, and copying her language patterns?
Its all designed.
A guy like Werner Erhard was more like a 3.0, he still tried to present himself as being "smart" and knowing what he is talking about.
But the new method, is like Byron Katie, and some other current Mysterians, is far more powerful and subtle.
Version 1.0 people were the ones with shaved heads banging drums in the airport.
Version 5.0 wear pantsuits, and play Savant, and pretend they have no idea of what they are doing, when in fact they run their companies like any other CEO behind the scenes.
Those who have worked closely with the Anti-Guru at many events, would start to see this eventually. But it really is a brilliant performance.
There will be many more new age Version 5.0 Savant Guru's to come, that is for sure.
There are some mind-games being played here. Say one thing in one post, and the opposite in the next post. (road-rage, for example).
Ken Keyes wrote a lot of books about the 'science of happiness' and apparently began claiming in the last years of his life that he lived in a state of permanent happiness. His apparently turbulent emotional life (he was divorced three or four times!) tells a different story!
This passage shows what a conscious manipulator Stephen Mitchell is, trying to pretend that Byron Katie doesn't read books, what a joke, what a scam. Just bold-faced BS, right in your face..
Read this thread, and it shows how in the suppressed Byron Katie book, A CRY IN THE DESERT, they talk in detail about how Byron Katie studied A Course In Miracles, and many other programs and methods. That is why they killed that book.
The PDF of the book A Cry In The Desert is online as a PDF, and can be downloaded, anyone can check for themselves.
He even admits that someone at the Halfway House had given her Ken Keyes material. Whoops!
Interesting words Stephen Mitchell chose...
...liar and rip-off artist.Quote
Another quote from the Janaki-Byron Katie saga:Quote
After these emails, I spoke with my friend from the Muktananda days, the one who first introduced me to Katie, and I told him what had happened between Katie and me. He said, "And she got most of The Work from the Course in Miracles, because they were all reading that in the halfway house, that is where the turnarounds come from. She also told us that she was reading books by Ken Keyes when she was at the halfway house."
I had never heard that name before and I became curious. I Googled him, and learned that Ken Keyes had a personal growth center in the 70's in Oregon. I found some quotes by him on the internet, that could have been Katie quotes. Quotes like, "A loving person lives in a loving world. A hostile person lives in a hostile world; everyone you meet is your mirror." and "Everyone and everything around you is your teacher." and "I have everything I need to enjoy my here and now-unless I am letting my consciousness be dominated by demands and expectations based on the dead past or the imagined future".
I became more curious and ordered some of his books. I was amazed. He called his process The Inner Work. He worked with worksheets that consist of 6 uncompleted sentences. I found a list of all the questions that are on the worksheet from The Work: I want, I need, he should, what I never want to happen again. I also found some of the questions, especially the 3rd question was literal, including the answers that are given to that question. I found the turnarounds, exactly the way they are done in The Work. And there was a lot more.
I scanned everything that is relevant to The Work into a pdf document and sent it to Katie. I emailed her: "Recently someone told me that you were reading books by Ken Keyes Jr., while you were at the halfway house. Having read several of his books, I put together this document, since it is highly confusing to me. The confusing part being that you always told us that you never had any teachers, or read any books, and the fact that it says on your bio on your website that: "Katie's process of self-inquiry, called The Work, didn't develop from this experience; she says that it woke up with her, as her, that February morning in 1986. Would you please explain this?"
Katie replied with, "As to the Ken Keyes pages, I love that there are so many ways of saying the same thing as we all journey through our own experiences. I think the big difference is the four questions and turnarounds. That is The Work."
Stephen also wrote me a note, "P.S. from Stephen: Dear Janaki, My goodness! Anyone who knows Katie knows that she doesn't read books. Furthermore, even if someone had been with her at the halfway house, even if that someone had given her homework assignments from Ken Keyes, how could he know that she actually read the books? Was he hiding underneath Katie's bed? It must be painful to believe that Katie is a liar and a rip-off artist. In addition to the Keyes books, I could find a hundred books on spirituality or cognitive psychology where there are echoes of Katie's words. And I could find even clearer echoes in the words of the Buddha. But nowhere are there the four questions and turnarounds, which are The Work. If you can't see Katie's astounding originality from comparing the passages that you sent in the pdf, then you're not seeing very clearly, in my opinion.
Very surprised, very amused, and with love, Stephen"
I answered him with, Hi Stephen, Painful? No. Confused? Yes. That is why I asked. If it were just echoes, I probably wouldn't be confused. Liar and rip-off artist are your words, not mine. I love that you are amused. Janaki
I let Katie know exactly who had given me the Ken Keyes information. After that, I received an email from my friend, saying that upon reflecting, he and his wife could not confirm that Katie had actually told them she read the Ken Keyes books. But that back in the early days, they kept pointing out the similarities to her, between Keyes' work and her own.
I never got a response to my answers to her email.
One wonders, are there other blogs out there, which are telling the truth about Byron Katie that have not been mentioned?
For example, there is this one..
Perfect & Untouchable
Katie says, ‘I am here for your projection’, and ‘I am what it looks like on the other side’ (of doing The Work), and ‘You are what is left of my story’.
For me this always meant that she had risen above and beyond all earthly vices and negative emotions (she has become perfect and untouchable). If she is here for our projection, it surely must mean that she no longer projects herself.
If she is what it looks like on the other side, it surely must mean that I still have a long way to go, since I am nowhere near that point.
Then she would also say, ‘It’s not called The Work for nothing’.
So in all appearances, I still had a lot to do.
This is being reinforced by Katie’s stories about her personal life in A Thousand Names for Joy and in the various Katie-isms booklets and newsletters.
It paints a picture of a woman who is never unhappy, who has no negative emotions left and who can deal with any situation in a peaceful way, because she is the living example of Loving What Is.
I have heard Katie say several times (on stage), that she hasn’t been angry ever since her awakening experience. To prove this she will ask Stephen who sits on the front row, ‘honey, have you ever seen me angry?’. His answer is always the same, ‘No, I haven’t’.
In private, I have rarely seen Katie go in and make turnarounds. Not with any of the feedback she ever gave me, or with any of the feedback I ever gave her.
If I would give her feedback, she would immediately call me on the turnaround and want examples.
She told me in her feedback that there was a smelly flavor in the way I compare myself to other trainers, yet she says The School is unlike any other school on the planet.
Is this not a comparison?
I have seen Katie get irritated and angry at people.
I have seen her stressed out.
I have seen how she doesn’t stay in her business, every time she gave me feedback, she went into mine. I have heard her defend, justify and explain. I have often seen her as someone who goes into a story and doesn’t question it. I have experienced how she believes the stories reported back to her by her staff members and doesn’t question those stories, or checks with the person involved.
02 - Meeting Katie
Katie and I have a very close friend in common. My friend and I were both part of Baba Muktananda’s staff in the late 70’s and early 80’s. After Muktananda died in 1982, I went back to Holland and my friend and I stayed in regular touch with each other.
In 1995 he told me the story of a woman he had heard about. He told me that she was from a desert town in California, and once when she was sleeping on the floor of an attic room, a cockroach crawled over her foot. When she woke up, she was everything and nothing at the same time. He told me that it reminded him of the state described in Kashmir Shaivism, that Baba always used to talk about.
I remember him telling me this story, and that I failed to see the point of the cockroach.
When I got to the house in Amsterdam, I found myself in someone’s living room with about 20 people I didn’t know and didn’t want to know. I realized that I had come to the workshop after all. I was just coming out of a period of a severe depression, and socializing wasn’t my strong point in those days.
I was into Native American stuff. I made dream catchers, painted medicine shields, practiced shamanic journeying and was dressed in full Native American attire: coats and boots with fringes, long hair with feathers, braids and beads and of course a hat.
I met Katie. She looked wonderful. Round face, lovely smile and of course those radiant blue eyes. I didn’t know what to say to her. Before the program started we sat close to each other, there was a buzz going on in the room, as people were still coming in and getting their tea. Our eyes met and locked. Very slowly it appeared as if everything around me slowed down and then came to a full stop. Like in a movie, when they do a flash back of someone’s dream. The noises faded into the background and the room started to fall away. Then everything else started to fall away, her face, her body, everything except the eyes. We stayed like that to what appeared a timeless moment, and it probably lasted for at least 15 minutes.
We got worksheets, and I filled one out. Didn’t know what to write on, or how. I wrote on my throat, but it didn’t feel like anything. Katie started to speak. She was saying things I had never heard before, and her words resonated deeply. She said, ‘life is not about making money, or having a relationship… it is about finding truth’. My world fell from underneath my feet. Of course, that’s it! I had been struggling for so many years with precisely those things, and now I heard that they were not what my life was about. It felt like a huge turning point, and a great relief.
During lunch she asked me if I wanted to go for a walk, and so we did. We walked the streets of Amsterdam. Again, I didn’t know what to say to her. In the distance a woman was approaching. She took my arm. ‘Look’, she said, ‘look at her’, as we walked towards her. ‘Sometimes there is a gate’. I looked and the woman didn’t look back at us. We passed her. ‘Ok, she said, this time there wasn’t a gate’.
My friend had told me that she loved to hear stories about Baba, so I told her about my life with him, about my love and devotion for him. He had told us that after his death we would never miss him, because he would merge with our hearts. And it felt true. But I told her how I had loved his physical form, and how I missed having that. She stopped and turned to me. Her face very close to mine. She looked into my eyes and put her hand on my cheek and she said: ‘my thought is, I am here now’.
A shock went through me. What was she saying? I didn’t understand.
That afternoon in the workshop, Katie was speaking. I was sitting on the floor, staring at her beautiful face. I can’t remember what she said, but I know I had never heard such words before. They were like a healing for my soul, which had felt in pain for as long as I can remember.
At some moment tears were flowing down my cheeks. Katie noticed and said, ‘What’s the sound of it?’ Something stirred way down below, in the region of my toes, and wanted to surface. I pushed it down. No way was I going to give in to this in a room full of strangers.
She kept saying this a couple of times, ‘what’s the sound of it?’, and I kept pushing it down. Then she straightened her back and said, ‘I haven’t been in her presence for a long time’. All hell broke loose inside of me.
In that moment Katie became Baba Muktananda incarnate, and I was back with my Guru.
The floodgates opened and tears poured, it felt like they had been sitting there, waiting for this precise moment, for years and years. Along with the tears the sound came, it was a deep wailing and sobbing. It didn’t come from my toes, it came from far beyond my toes. I fully let go. Along with the tears and the wailing, of course there was the spit and the snot that also poured out. I lost full control.
It was as if in that moment a lot of pent up pain, sadness and rage came out.
Chapter 41 'Conclusions' Janaki wrote
Perhaps I will lose friends over this publication, perhaps people will throw The Work back at me, perhaps people will feel offended. I don’t know. It is not my intention to offend anyone. I do know that I need to tell this, and somehow, in the writing of this, many things were seen through.
It seems to me that people don’t give Katie feedback anymore. Perhaps it is to protect all their invested time, energy, devotion and money. Perhaps they are afraid of her. I understand this only too well, I have been in that position myself. I also understand the fear, it runs deeper than most would care to admit, or even understand why. What comes to mind here is the tale of the emperor’s clothes.
This story may indicate that there is a gap between the Katie personality in front of an audience and the woman Katie in private. Perhaps I am telling tales out of school, but Katie addresses every audience as ‘my family’, and she says she has no secrets.
People seem to attribute many qualities to Katie, some of them being wisdom and insight. Qualities that are being attributed to many gurus, teachers and masters, and this keeps us firmly locked in the role of the seeker or the follower, emphasizing the fact that they have reached a place that we still need to reach.
I don’t know if Katie has a wisdom and an insight, and not because I can’t know that, but simply because I don’t believe that anyone does.
These concepts are often seen as possessions that some have and some others don’t, and in my opinion they aren’t possessions. I know that stuff comes out of my mouth which may often sound very clear, and I also know that it isn’t mine.
It has nothing to do with me. it has nothing to do with something that I ‘learned’ or ‘understood’ or a wisdom I might possess, it simply comes out. Like the air that comes out of my mouth, which has the same value as the words: nothing.
During the first meeting with Katie, it appeared that she made a reference to either being Muktananda, or pretending to be, or being one with him. I never fully understood.
For many years I was very overwhelmed by what she had said during that first meeting. It made me feel special, and it certainly made Katie seem special. Once I asked her what that was all about, and she said, ‘Well… I was only telling the truth..’.
The process of writing this story was like riding a roller coaster of emotions, much like what happened in the very beginning when I started doing The Work. There was anger, bitterness, and sadness, but also a sense of freedom, of being on my own, of not being dependent and of not needing to hold back anymore.
I never fully got to hear from Katie why she threw me out. Her list of reasons seemed petty, and we never actually spoke to each other about all of this, so there is a sense of something being unfinished.
But then something occurred to me. She appears to have an issue with ‘mine’.
She said, this is my pizza, Emmaplein is mine, I introduced you to my daughter, you stroke up a friendship with my publisher, the domain names are mine, Tony Parsons also has my state.
And then a thought arose in me, perhaps Katie thought, Europe is mine… and The Work is mine…
And I can’t know that this is true.
“Everyone is entitled to their own opinion”
- Byron Katie
Pilot, I owe you an apology. I let myself get rattled, after the troll visits weve had.
Your directing us to Janaki's blog has been a huge, huge, help.
This is the saddest thing about troll attacks. It leads us (certainly me) to get nervous and then hit out at friends.