Loving What Is by Byron Katie
Will Melt Your Fucking Brain
One Line Summary
Old lady teaches you four questions to rid you of all your problems
Why it’s Awesome
What if I told you there was a book that could end every problem you’ve ever had? Would you believe me? Is that even possible?
Loving What Is by Byron Katie is that book. There is no theory to memorize. No “10 funky steps to achieve success! Your competitors will hate you!”. Just four questions to ask yourself whenever you find yourself in any scenario that seems less than optimal. Here are the questions:
Are my thoughts about this situation true?
Can I be absolutely sure that my thoughts about this situation are true?
How do I react when I think this thought?
Who would I be without this thought?
And that’s it. Going through these questions and then flipping them is a process that Katie calls “inquiry” or “doing The Work”. She has a whole website set up at www.thework.com just to assist you with this.
Okay, so that’s all nice. But why should you do this? Why do I claim that this book will solve all your problems if you take it to heart?
One simple fact: problems don’t come from the external world. They come from your own mind made interpretation of the world. Inquiry is a way to change your interpretations.
Just to be clear, I don’t mean that if you do inquiry today, tomorrow you won’t have to pay your bills. Nothing in the external will change in the immediate. But your relationship to these problems will have shifted dramatically.
Why this occurs is a whole different subject that I touched on in my review of The Power of Now and will touch on in future reviews. But for now, it’s enough to say that Byron Katie knows what she is talking about. Problems don’t actually exist except in the mind.
Since the ideas in this book are so simple, the whole book is just dialogues between Katie and her students going through this inquiry process. That’s huge because the main challenge with inquiry is learning how to do it. These dialogues will give you practical examples to copy for issues in your own life.
Why Does It Suck
It’s probably longer than it needs to be. Besides that, fuck this is basically a perfect book.
The Wrap Up
I do this process in my head all the time when I’m having problems. And if I feel it’s a serious problem I will go home and do inquiry by hand. While it’s a subtle process and can take time for you to notice a difference, it definitely helps.
But don’t take my word on any of this. Read the book, try inquiry for yourself and then let me know. I’ll be here.
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