Re: Byron Katie (the Work) Schoolmates, Love the Teacher-Mom-God,give
Posted by: eduardo ()
Date: March 05, 2008 08:17AM

Byron Katie's questions appear to infer that objective reality should be subjectively interpreted.

In other words what is objectively real should be reinterpreted through subjective feelings.

In the end what you feel is real, is therefore real. And reality ceases to be objective and becomes subjective instead to the believer.

Katie's Q and A keeps going round and round until you reach that desired result.

Is that it more or less?

Hi rrmoderator:

From my limited experience, what you describe is more how people who work with "positive affirmations" see the world. I know because I tried that, and it didn't work for me. It never quite got me where I wanted to go with it.

The questions from The Work stem from a different premise: that, this instant, reality is what it is, and anything you compare that to is imagination, fantasy, and if that fantasy dictates that things should be different than they are, in this instant, the result is disappointment and depression.

So that's the premise, but how does it work? Something like this: as humans, we are constantly interpreting reality one way or another. Some of those interpretations are stressful (the ones that are inconsistent with the way things are). I can take the stressful interpretations and question their validity. If they are not necessarily valid, it begs the question: why suffer about something that I don't even know if it's true? The insight is to recognize that it's not what happens that is stressful, but our interpretations about what happens that is stressful, and that recognition is what the questions from The Work invite you to notice. As you investigate with your own personal intelligence the validity of the stressful interpretations what's left is a more direct connection with what happens in reality. The end result is less stress, because I discover that things don't mean what I thought they did, and I notice that this is okay.

It's a very old perspective. Shakespeare wrote, in Hamlet: "Nothing's good or bad but thinking makes it so." And even earlier, Epictetus taught a similar system of inquiry to his students.

So in simple terms, once I have identified a stressful interpretation of reality, the questions from The Work help me do two things:

Questions 1 and 2: They help me take a direct look at the validity of my interpretation.
Questions 3 and 4: They help me take a look at what my life looks like when I buy into my interpretation and what would my life look like if I did not give it that interpretation.

Then there is the so-called turnaround, and that helps me further to see if I was actually suffering for the reason that I thought: Is the opposite of what I thought to be true also as true? It becomes harder to continue to believe any stressful thought in light of specific evidence of how the opposite can be just as true.

So that's it, in a nutshell.

For further clarity, it may help to write about a concrete example of how this works, related to an experience I began to describe in my earlier post. When my partner of 11 years told me she wanted to separate I had the thought "She abandoned me." This was very, very painful. Now, after doing The Work on this thought I found out that the pain did not come from her leaving me, but from believing the thought "she abandoned me". I figured this out because I found that when I wasn't thinking about it (like when I was spending time with my kids or at my job) I noticed that I would not suffer. So it was the same me, the same reality (she was gone) and if I wasn't thinking the thought, there was no pain. The pain came only when I remembered "she abandoned me." It was not that she left that was painful, it was believing my thoughts about her leaving that was painful. This doesn't change reality, but it sheds light on what the source of the pain really is, and it was not her behavior, I noticed. Thanks to being able to separate her actions from my interpretations of them it became clear to me that, whatever it was she was doing, she wasn't doing it to hurt me, that she was taking the actions she thought were kindest for her, and for me. It then became very difficult to resent her as the strength of my belief "she abandoned me" weakened. I also noticed that I didn't have to make myself be kind to her: kindness is what naturally arose in me after questioning my stressful thoughts about my situation. And, as I said in my previous post, I am grateful to my knees that, as a consequence, there is peace in my family, even as we don't live together anymore.

rrmoderator, I don't know if this answers your question. And this is, of course, my experience, of how The Work works: I fully recognize that other people's experiences may be different. Hence the value of this Forum: for us all to freely be able to express what works and what doesn't for each of us, so that the readers who want to make sense of a particular approach can read and make their own informed choice.

I am appreciating being a part of this conversation. Thank you.

Re: Byron Katie (the Work) Jon Willis, deception, Hypnotic cockroach
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: March 05, 2008 08:40AM

one can expect various promoters of The Work, to come here and elsewhere and try to use The Work against The Facts.

They usually try to send a few folks out to put out fires, and tell the other people to just IGNORE the evildoers trapped in their Minds and factual reality. DENY, IGNORE.

It never ceases to amaze how various New Age culty groups about alleged Love and God and all that, seem to think its perfectly fine to use various forms of Deception and even outright lies to hook new fish.

But they learn from the Master, Byron Katie. How many falsehoods have been dug up so far? 50? 100? 200? How many does it take before its enough? 10,000 direct falsehoods?

After more than maybe 3 direct bald-faced lies one after another, one would be wise to not believe another word that person says, without objective factual evidence.

For example, the Byron Katie "I have cancer" blog post.
She had a face-lift, which is probably a greater risk to her health and life due to complications at her age, than the non-melanoma BCC she says she has. (again, she has not shown proof she has BCC, in theory she could have just had another cosmetic surgery, like rhinoplasty on the nose, or complications from before, and could need to explain those unsightly face bandages...her plastic surgery before pissed a lot of her people off due to the hypocrisy).
But why did she not announce the previous cosmetic surgery on her blog too? That could be a greater risk to her health and life, due to complications, like we read in the papers daily.
Why not mention the risks of a face-lift and cosmetic surgery?

So the reality is that once a person has been busted fabricating more than a few times, then they have to provide actual EVIDENCE and PROOF for their claims. Their word has ceased to be credible. After more than 50 deceptions, or maybe 300, then maybe its time to stop believing what they say? ya think????

For all we know, Byron Katie took The Forum with Werner Erhard in 1986, had a mental breakdown like many do, flopped out for a weekend at some roach motel or house, and came up with the idea to do her own version of The Forum, but instead of yelling, do a Turnaround into making it seem move Loving, and adding in hypnosis, Trance stories like the cockroach, and about 100 other techniques added in over the years.

What's more likely? The above, or a magical supernatural hypnotic cockroach?

Re: Byron Katie (the Work) and Eckhart Tolle Legit??
Posted by: jj52 ()
Date: March 05, 2008 09:01AM

Then of course they refuse to say anything against the group, they insist there's "value" to be had from it, and if it didn't hurt them, well what's the problem, right?

That is part of the Byron Katie alternate reality.

If someone rapes you, there was something to be learned.
If someone robs you and takes everything you own, there's value in it.

"Negative" events are turned around into positive events. And while doing The Work, people are trained to always look for that "silver lining", because that is supposedly "reality." "Reality is kind" Byron Katie repeats and repeats as a mantra, until all the tranced-out people are repeating it back and forth to each other.

So, her philosophy is... that if you see something that is not "kind" or "good"... then you are not living in "reality." Molestation. Rape. Enslavement. Murder. Violence. Neglect. Terrorism. Byron Katie says that all of these things are done out of love-- because that's all there is-- and are "kind." If you can't see it her way, then you still have more Work to do.

If Jon (or anyone involved in The Work) were to think or speak negatively of us on this forum, and didn't see us as "kind", The Work would require him to judge us, and turn all of his judgments around to himself until he had convinced himself that we are kind.

In reality, some of us here are not very kind to apologists. (I take credit for my part in that.) So, by doing The Work on us, Jon would lose twice. He would get us roasting him... and then he would have to turn whatever he thinks about us to himself. Isn't this insane??? When it reaches this point, the person has lost their dignity, integrity, and their grip on reality. AND, he's still going to be smeared by the people on this forum. It leaves people incapable of self-defense and self-preservation... and wide open to abuses of all kinds.

For Example: If he thought: "The rickross forum is mean", he would be required to use the four questions and find the "turnarounds", like... "The rickross forum is not mean. The rickross forum is nice. I am mean. My thoughts are mean." Then, he would have to find 3 real-life examples of each "turnaround" to reinforce this perception of reality in his mind. If that doesn't stick, then he'd have to do it again and again until it did.

In the end, he would probably end up seeing us as having done him some huge cosmic favor... for causing him to have to do "The Work" again, and "showing himself to himself." In this case, doing The Work may not be in Jon's own best interest.

Also, in Byron Katie Land, people are using The Work in their efforts to become "clear." (Like Byron Katie, supposedly.) It's sort of like cleaning a windshield, and The Work is the window cleaner. Every time they encounter something stressful, it is supposed to show them "what is left" to do The Work on. They do The Work, clean the windshield, and can see more with more "clarity"... at least that is the philosophy. Being in this forum for Jon is probably like... for lack of a better metaphor... finding a big nasty bug stuck on the windshield.

If he's not "clear" then he may not see us as kind and good. And if that happens, then he's got more Work to do, and he will probably thank us all for showing him that big bug on the windshield that he missed. For him, this is some great opportunity to get more "clarity." He's been trained to see us in the best positive light, and to be "open" to it. That is what he is obviously trying to do here.

The reality of it is ironic. This forum really is an opportunity to more clarity, for anyone and everyone. The irony that comes about in dealing with Byron Katie and her stuff... leaves me dumbfounded sometimes.

That's the best I can do to describe this aspect of the Byron Katie disciple mentality. Been there, done that. It was a self-made prison, with no boundaries.

Hell, not heaven.

Oh... the irony.


Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/05/2008 09:07AM by jj52.

Re: Byron Katie (The Work) - Landmark/Forum/EST connection?
Posted by: helpme2times ()
Date: March 05, 2008 09:04AM

Someone passed this on to me, from a post made several years ago in a forum dealing with cults...


X says to me, "You could also check out Byron Katie" and gives a link to
click on.

I clicked and noticed that the website starts with a lovely introduction,
with music and words to represent the things Byron assumes, perhaps
rightly, that most of us have going through our heads.

And then the introduction concludes, "Who would you be without your story?"

It was like someone threw a glass of cold water in my face.

I suddenly saw the face of my best friend who got involved with
Landshark, uh, Landmark Education and got all caught up in spending more
and more money going to more and more workshops. I suddenly saw him with
That Look in his eyes, and switching gears and kneejerking into the
jargon, and saying, "That's your Story!"

"Story" is one of the loaded words they use in Landmark. I get that your
"story" is the identity you create for yourself by telling yourself stuff.
It's a Bad Thing, or so it sounds from the way my friend was talking.

So who is Byron Katie? And just what is this Story she is talking about
in her introduction? Does it have anything to do with Landmark
Education? Is it only a coincidence that she is using jargon from

Re: Byron Katie (the Work) and Eckhart Tolle Legit??
Posted by: vlinden ()
Date: March 05, 2008 09:09AM

Maybe she dropped acid and read a bunch self-help and Kafka all in one weekend. And in a way, she really WAS transformed into a giant cockroach!

Actually, these self help gurus are a lot like those nasty bugs. Sneaky opportunists and hard to get rid of.

Re: Byron Katie (the Work) and Eckhart Tolle Legit??
Posted by: vlinden ()
Date: March 05, 2008 09:20AM

I guess "loving what is" doesn't include loving your saggy skin. But Byron! Does the vase of flowers on the table need a face-lift? It's not afraid of war, and it's not afraid of wrinkles . . .

This is of course a reference to her absurd session with the poor Israeli woman that you can watch on You Tube, if you can keep your lunch down, that is. BK attempts to replace the woman's brain with a bunch of daffodils. Fascinating stuff.

Re: Byron Katie (The Work) - Culty Video re 9-Day School
Posted by: helpme2times ()
Date: March 05, 2008 09:39AM

This is of course a reference to her absurd session with the poor Israeli woman that you can watch on You Tube, if you can keep your lunch down, that is. BK attempts to replace the woman's brain with a bunch of daffodils. Fascinating stuff.
Speaking of You Tube, check out this video of Byron Katie regarding her 9-day "school". Very culty imo.

Re: Byron Katie (the Work) - is Jon Willis a BK apologist?
Posted by: The Shadow ()
Date: March 05, 2008 09:41AM

The Shadow
~~ thanks for the salespitch, Jon, but i'm not buying it - regards, Shad
Hey Shadow, I kind of bit your head off recently when I thought you were belittling people for getting hooked into Byron Katie. I apologize if I overreacted.

As for Jon Willis, I really appreciate what you have expressed to him and would like to add a few things...

I googled "Jon Willis" and "Byron Katie" and was rewarded with quite a few hits. Seems Jon has several websites, at least one of them dedicated to "the work":

"Just 4 Questions"

"Self Happiness"

"Jon Willis dot com"

There may be more sites; I didn't feel like looking any further.

Interestingly these sites are not currently active, although from what came up via google, it appears that at some point they WERE active AND contain references to Byron Katie. The sites are "parked" by Go Daddy for now.

The owner of the "kNOw Limits" coaching website says this of Jon:

Jon Willis is a coach who loves to take his clients to bold and adventurous places. Jon’s blog is very honest, real and down to earth. He certainly tells it as it is. Jon is also my coach so for those of you who have been moaning about me increasing my fees……..yes he’s the man to blame! Jon’s fees are a reflection of how much he is willing to show up for his clients.

Jon can be found at various blogs making comments about Byron Katie's work. Here are two examples in a Carol Skolnick blog entry and a Mona Grayson blog entry.

Jon has transcribed at least one Byron Katie video: "The Work is Within You".

And so it appears that Jon Willis is DEEPLY INVESTED in Byron Katie's approach, both philosophically and monetarily. Let those attempting to release themselves from the grip of Byron Katie's "work" be-aware.

thanks, helpme2times, but really no need to apologize, i totally understand where you were coming from, and I was not in the least offended by your comment.

VERRRRRY interesting about Jon Willis, he was certainly POSING like just some innocent participatant, saying things like he was learning from reading and listening to CD, when in fact he is a couch, well fancy that (big surprise, eh?). So in fact it would not be an exagerration to say that in fact he was lying in that post that i responded to?
(again, Big Surprise!)...

thanks for the updates.


Re: Byron Katie (the Work) and Eckhart Tolle Legit??
Posted by: The Shadow ()
Date: March 05, 2008 09:50AM

Jon Willis
Hi JJ,

I don't feel resistance to this forum, otherwise I wouldn't be on here - I did feel some apprehension on first introducing myself - never particularly easy to say 'this is me' and 'this is my experience' when it seems to be contrary to most people's experience - also reading earlier posts in the threads where people that have been pro-The Work or pro-Byron Katie don't seem to have gone down too well - and I can see why they haven't as well - attacking others isn't the best way to engage with people. Probably a bit more of my nervousness is knowing that I am capable of that as well - who isn't I suppose?

Even just looking at the previous posts had me seeing that if I feel like there's anything that needs defending then it's for me to look at first of all.

One of the places I have got comfortable is that I don't feel the need for others to do The Work, so I don't feel any investment in that or feel the need to defend it - in another discussion forum about The Work I realized that even if Byron Katie is a total fraud, lying, whatever, I will still use The Work for as long as it works for me.


If you don't feel the need to defend "the work", then why do you keep posting here? Have you not got the message? - this is a forum for people who have been HURT by cults, and cult-like organizations, of which Byron Katies's is one and the same.

So really, and i have asked you this question before, but perhaps you did not read my post, but why ARE you here?


Re: Byron Katie (the Work) and Eckhart Tolle Legit??
Posted by: The Shadow ()
Date: March 05, 2008 10:19AM

Jon Willis
Hi Anticult,

Looking back on my initial post I can see how the 'free online' thing could be seen as pushing that - sadly, that wasn't my intention, that was more about stressing that I'm not a 'paid out loads of money on workshops, etc' person.


So, please, please please, tell me what is your intention for posting here? People HERE are talking about their negative experiences with LGATs such at Katie's, so why oh why do you continue to try to tell them different.

The point of this forum is to VALIDATE their feelings/experiences. You just don't SEEM to "get it". If you cannot say, "I'm sorry that you had such a bad experience, that really sucks" etc. WITHOUT then adding, "but I had the opposite experience", then you are in the wrong place. Get it?


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