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Oud 4 november 2012, 11:57   #1
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Oud 4 november 2012, 12:07   #2
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When I met Byron Katie I was immersed in the advaita, non-dual teachings. I knew the depth of Silence accessible in the Heart, as the Heart. I had sat extensively with many beautiful teachers including Gangaji, Papaji, Robert Adams, Francis Lucille, and Isaac Shapiro. I had walked around India's sacred mountain, Arunachala. My heart had sung deeply with Ramana. I had fallen more than once in full prostration with the total awe of That. I had spent months in gratitude.

And my mind was a mess. I wandered around chanting the child's rhyme of "There once was a girl who had a little curl right in the middle of her forehead. When she was good, she was very, very good, and when she was bad, she was horrid." The extremes of that seemed accurate. I would know all the bliss and gratitude of empty mind, of non-identification, and then like a wall, like a landslide, the mind would begin its cycle of not letting up. Self-abuse would reign. I felt shame at being in such misery, when I had experienced such freedom. I felt something must be very wrong with me. How could I know the truth of no self, of emptiness, and still be caught by the illusions that left me full of fear and self-loathing?

Many friends had suggested meeting Byron Katie and experiencing The Work. I went. Having been a psychologist, the last thing I felt I needed was another method. The first day I didn't listen to The Work at all. My focus was glued on Katie. I don't know what exactly I was studying, but I was studying her. My attitude was "Make one false move and I'm out of here," although the actual feeling was more like "Make one false move and I'll kill you." The old rage which I hadn't felt in years had returned. I was like a caged animal?caught between Truth and total pain. How could this be?

The second day I continued the focus on Katie. I planted myself in the back of the room, but directly in line with her. I couldn't see the one in the chair doing the Work and I didn't want to. I simply studied Katie. That night I went home and wrote my first piece of The Work?on God and how angry I was. I didn't really connect with it much. Katie returned to Marin the next month. This time I was willing to watch The Work. I borrowed tapes. I bought the book. I began doing The Work. The first turn-arounds I experienced rocked me.

Here was a procedure, done as a meditation, that worked only with my own mind and my own integrity, or lack of it. I was intrigued. I was full of resentments, and had no problem writing The Work daily.
In my connection with Katie, all my longing got aroused once again. I wrote The Work on Katie and again rocked with the turn-arounds ! "Katie should connect me with Heart!" became "I should connect me with Heart." What do you mean I should? If I could, I would! "Is that true?" I began to settle down inside of myself with the questions. I began to feel the lies as they were gently contacted. I listened when Katie said the Heart is the only place we can meet that The Work is internal.

Katie suggests asking the questions of the Work with the mind, and letting the heart answer. Mine was not an easy case. My mind fought and scrambled for its life. My mother issues were totally in my face. I hated seeing them? again! After a decade of therapy I thought they were gone! What felt like attachments held since childhood were standing firm. I wanted the peace of non-duality, not the pain of my feelings about my mother.

But the Work. works! It is four simple questions and one can ask and answer them alone. I filled out the worksheet, set up Katie's picture, got out the little book, and proceeded step by step through the four questions.

I began investigating my anger with a close friend: ...She should have come to see my apartment by now! Is it true? What's the reality of it? She hasn't. What do I get when I hold the belief she should have come by now, when she hasn't? The old familiar self-righteousness and superiority, for starters. And how does that feel inside of me? Separate. Hopeless. Angry. Alone. And who or what would I be if I didn't hold that lie, the lie that says she should have visited when she hasn't? Present. Not thinking I know something. Which is more comfortable?separate, hopeless, angry, alone? or present not knowing something? I had to admit the latter.

You mean thoughts cause those feelings? You mean SHE doesn't cause them? You mean I'm not a victim of her behavior?

Years before as I sat in bliss for months on end in India, I knew that I would eventually have to face the content of the mind. I somehow knew that for me the emptiness I knew in India was a reprieve, a sweet gift.
I was certain that sooner or later I would have to welcome the mind once again?that the welcoming of seeing it as not real would not be sufficient when the mind got past a certain threshold.

What The Work offered was miraculous: Purity grounded in the truth of non-duality, and in a way that addressed the particulars of this mind in the moment of its identification. I can know all is well, and I can experience the sweetness of silence, but in the next instant I can be reeling with the judgments "you should love me," and "you should clean your room," and "you should leave so he can be happy." The tension between these feeling realities of the moment, and the truth of no Mind, was experienced like a rubber band pulling me into more and more self- hatred and fear. While lovingly reading about non- attachment, I was attached to very particular judgments, moment by moment.

When thoughts are not impinging, there is no problem. When there is that luscious spaciousness, that Silence, there is no problem. Thoughts come and go?like laughing gas?keeping everything at a distance in which anything is okay! This is the wondrous state of peace, of just sitting, of quiet, of non-attachment. However, in this mind, another experience sometimes takes over. The thoughts come in closer, and it's as if the sweet veil which keeps them as out there somehow disappears. Every movement of mind suddenly feels real. The "I" is identified. Silence seems unavailable. Grace has stepped aside as unknowingly as she appeared. Shame takes over with "What have I done?" Suddenly the "I" is everything again. Asking "Who am I?" seems to only result in more mind activity.

This is where the gift of Byron Katie's investigation comes in. It addresses the mind where it is, exactly in the middle of its content. It can go directly into shame as well as into beliefs such as "My mother should love me." The shame says, "These thoughts shouldn't be arising!" The Work asks, "Is it true? Sweetheart, these thoughts shouldn't be arising, is that true?" What is the reality of it? They are. And what do you get when you hold the belief that they shouldn't be arising, when they are? What happens when you argue with reality? What happens is more shame! Guilt. Worry. Anxiety. Belief in the "I." What do I get when I argue with reality? Pain. Katie says of herself if she has any freedom, it's that she's a lover of reality. Of what is.

The Work is based on the simple cause-and-effect relationship between attachment to a belief and it's being let go. When I believe certain thoughts shouldn't arise and they do, I can chronicle what happens: My body tightens; feelings of shame, guilt, and self-blame escalate; thoughts build on each other appearing more and more solid; the mind gets very active. All of this can be observed and monitored. And then, as the fourth question is asked, "Who or what would I be without this belief that certain thoughts shouldn't arise?" I can also chronicle what happens. Without this belief, I become a simple observer without judgment. A friend. My breath eases. My stomach softens. Slowly the lovely advaitic "All is well" begins feeling closer inside.

It's not "All is well" as some theory, but this moment, inside of me, when I examine this belief that my friend should come visit, when I investigate it. I began to contact for myself this truth of the advaitic masters?All is well. I am not dependent on your actions, feelings, decisions. My shutting down my love is what hurts.

I am love, I am That. And when I hold the belief that you shouldn't be how you are, I am in the lie that there is something other than love, something other than That. Suddenly the truths of advaita were seeping into my own body. I am love, not in spite of you, or when you give me what I want, just I am love. I realized the truth that Katie's daughter announced to her mother one day: "There is nothing you can do to keep me from loving you." "Who am I?" like "Is it true?" becomes again an amazing question that stops the mind.

Writing The Work stops the mind on paper. The swirling mass of thoughts becomes stopped. Each thought is then available in its purity for investigation. We may find the next time the thought arises, it does not produce the same discomfort, and that it is held much lighter. We may just find it mildly interesting! The Great Undoing has begun. We even look forward to it arising again, so we can investigate it freshly.

As each belief is undone through the four questions, the original silence of the mind is once more available. And with the turn-around, the attention is put back where it belongs?on me. It is the returning to "Who am I?" after straying off to "Who are You?" "Who are you?" returning to "Who am I?" becomes the ultimate turn-around.
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Oud 4 november 2012, 12:11   #3
Renoir's schermafbeelding
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I invite you into these pages where the Truth of Non- duality and the truth of what is, meet. "Ramana" means that which resides in the Heart of all Being. Ramana comes to the West in 1998 in the form of Byron Katie. Tat tvam asi. (You are That!)

Ellen J. Mack, Editor



Friend: Are we right in understanding, Katie, that no desires arise in you?

Katie: There's not anything legitimate ever going on inside of me. You're all that's left of it. And I know that you don't believe your own desires either.

Friend: I don't believe my own desires? Let's say that a corn chip is in front of me. I can taste the salt and I feel like I'd be happier if I put that corn chip in my mouth than if I just left it there. I can feel the saliva...

Katie: That's the power of the story of a past. It's the story of a corn chip that doesn't even exist.

Friend: It's in front of me...

Katie: But it's a corn chip, sweetheart, is it true? Can you really know that?

Friend: No, I can't know it's a corn chip.

Katie: So you're telling the story that it's real, and your tongue does all that stuff, and all the desire starts, and none of it's real. I mean you could reach down and find that it's plastic? That's a closer metaphor. But even when you eat it and you investigate, it can't be real. Because everything is a story. It can't ever be legitimate.

Friend: So, why do I eat?

Katie: Because you do.

Friend: So, what's the difference between ...


Katie: Motive. A "you." I am eating? Ach, I don't think sol Investigate. "I" doesn't eat. It's "is-ing." There's no eating. There's no sleeping.

Friend: So, the corn chip just goes in the mouth, but as soon as it's "I want that corn chip," it's time to investigate?

Katie: Yes. But not with the motive of not eating the corn chip. You investigate for the love of truth because that's what you want. A corn chip is a metaphor for that that you really want.

Friend: Let's say it's true now that all I want is the truth. Now, how could I know that to be totally true?

Katie: Well, it's true until you see the corn chip. And then you switch, you've moved. So, at that moment you want a corn chip more than you want truth. When it's true you don't want the corn chip, and you're tired of the effects, it's as though apparent form starts to shift because it really is your body. And it could be obesity, or swelling from the salt, or indigestion, whatever the effects are?those are God also. When you stop preferring the corn chip, and corn chip is all the guilt, the shame, the happiness, the joy, the indigestion, all of it?that's the package. That's what is.

When you don't prefer any of that, then there's no corn chip. I mean they could be all over the place, and you would never see one. It'd be like you don't want to sit in that chair forever, and so you don't. That's where the apparent world field starts to shift. It leaves when you leave. It's the end of everything. And then you notice, it wasn't just. the corn chip. Or it wasn't just the sex partner. You do this work on sexuality, and you notice the desire


for everything?it's across-the-board. Because it's all just a metaphor for the same thing. What happens is it just starts to do its own flow without attachment. It's like a "what is," with no ups or downs.

Friend: There's no "you" doing it. It's that impersonal thing that's almost impossible to get until you get it.

Katie: Well, it's not impossible to get because it's always there. The illusion is impossible to get, and not there.

Friend: When you are doing The Work I often think of vasanas, this concept I was taught in India, which means habits of mind, or tendencies of mind. Annamalai Swami, a disciple of Ramana Maharshi, said, "Vasanas arise, catch your attention, and pull you outwards towards the world rather than inwards towards the Self."

Katie: Vasanas are the world. The world is a reflection of the vasanas. The world cannot exist without them. It's a reflection of them. And he's accurate in my experience also, because he could be realizing that people think there's a past, so the world already exists for them in their reality.

Friend: He suggests just ignoring all the vasanas that arise in the mind and to fix the attention on the Self.

Katie: The guy's, you know, in my experience, absolutely, totally accurate. And for me, to be still 43 years ago and ignore the vasanas that arose in my mind, and to try to fix it on the Self?I had not heard of such a suggestion. It just wasn't available to me.

So for me to be still and ignore the vasanas?it would be like "yeah, sure" and give me some cocaine instead. Give me something that makes sense to me. To tell someone to be still, from where I came from, would be disrespectful. It would be to ask the impossible. So, I enter the vasana with total respect.


Rather than saying go beyond the vasana, let's join the vasana. Let's understand the vasana. It makes sense to me because only love heals in my experience. I can't just leave it out there and go to the Self. That is me I'm leaving out there.

So I came in as a reversal. I call this the re-entry. I'm in love with it. It would not think of not coming back to give itself a kiss? including it, merging with it, sexing with it, holding it, being it?all of it. Why would I want to ignore it or meditate it away? Just meet it head-on. Let me meet it with understanding. Because after all these centuries, it's pretty obvious it's not going away. And I just rarely speak of prior to that, because it leaves you out and you are me.

Friend: Could you explain more about coming in as a reversal?

Katie: It would be like if we put a mirror up here, and we're all reflected up in it. And the mirror image, you over there, is going to dictate to the mirror image of another to be different than it is. You are dictating from the mirror. Hopeless. So it's going to do everything it can watching the others in the mirror move around and think it should be like that, like it's really real. And we're just sitting here still. And it's got all of our tendencies?it's insane. It's not real! It's not Source. Okay? So for me to ask, like if I am the image, for me to try to change the other, if I'm you, is nuts! And I spend an entire lifetime trying to pull off something. I am not Source. I am the reflection of Source. That's why it's kind to just kick back and move when it moves. I am that. And then not even that. I mean all you have to do is turn the mirror and it's gone.

Friend: So you're the reversal?

Katie: As God, I'm watching my image. It's called you. It's called the books over there, It's called the wall. Fireplace.

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Oud 4 november 2012, 12:18   #4
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Everything. Okay? So I'm watching it, and I thought I was that. I thought I was God. Here's how I came in as a reversal: I wasn't this woman for 43 years and then awakened?I was BORN. I was born at what you would call age 43. I came from nowhere and nothing. It was wiped out. I looked at my hand for the first time. I came in through a back door. I didn't die and was born.

I had never seen this earth. I came in clean. At 43. Clean. So when someone calls it a hand, it's like my self defining my self. It's like a man and woman in bed when they're the most intimate. You would say hand, and it was rapture. The very first time. And everything is a first time. So I fell in love with earth. Everything. All of it. I got to come into that. Not leave earth and go back to the other. So that is my love of the mirror image. I woke up as the image. Not God. And God. The fun part where it's lived. The fun part is the living one. It is itself realized.

Friend: So these last 12 years were the fun part.

Katie: Oh ! Ah !

Friend: How were the first 43 years? Were they fun?

Katie: No. They were not fun. They were not fun. They were not fun. It was confusion. Just confusion.

Friend: Now, the people reading about re-entry are going to be mostly confused people. They're going to be confused people looking for concepts that will help them out of the confusion. My concern about this book is that we are going to create a new concept.

Katie: Don't bother being concerned?what you say is absolutely accurate. No need to be concerned?that's exactly what's going to happen. That's what happens in the dream.

Friend: And do we have any way to warn people about this,
or to tell them?


Katie: Yes, up front. You can say everything we say here is a lie. But only everything. And if you think there's something real here that could be carried on as a new religion?new concepts in any way, shape or form, ask yourself four questions....

Friend: Like, "Is it true?"

Katie: Yes. I just like that it?oh, you know what I speak can't be told! So, it never bothers. But if people would just look at their hand without a story, they would fall in love also. Total. Absolute, Absolute. Absolute. Just like they would fall in love with the most apparent vicious concept that could arise. It would be the same.

Friend #2: Katie, didn't you say there are no new concepts? So when you say there's going to be a new concept with this...

Katie: People would think they have a new concept. It's just the same old thing. Let's understand the vasana. And when I hear these non-duality teachings, I get very excited, because they hold the space that I don't. It's me again. And when someone says, "I'm going to this teacher," I say, let's celebrate that together because to go to them, is to go to me. I get that a lot in Europe: "Will you forgive me, I've been to see another teacher?" So, like Ramana holds that space of prior to, and I am a lover of the vasana. Because it's the mirror image of myself. And myself is the "prior to." It just completed itself. It lives as the full circle. I mean the no thing is no more or less than the apparent thing. And it's a total love affair. I refer to it as the re-entry that can't be done. There is no re-entry. Ramana apparently held that space. I'm a scam while he held that space. How can you speak of nothing when people think there's something?


Friend: Just say the truth that you're a scam.

Katie: I'm pretending not to be non-duality. Ramana holds the place where people can understand that truth. And I pretend I don't. And there's no "I" doing it. It's just an appearance.

Friend: And you're pretending not to hold that truth because...?

Katie: Why would I separate from you? Why wouldn't I join you? My way is to join wherever you are. When you go into the pits of hell, I'm there. I am there.

Friend: I see you actually as a Trojan horse. I see you're appearing in a guise that you're not, and this book is going to reveal the Trojan horse as it really is and I think that's what has to be, in the sense that you're a more palatable package to the Western mind in your disguised state. They think you're a person that's wise.

Katie: And it amazes me that it is standing still for such?it's obviously time. This vasana?habit or tendency?you're talking about comes from a natural place. It images Source.

Friend: I keep hearing the word "re-entry" as you talk.

Katie: Yes. Good. All you can do is come to see that what is, is. And then there's another step. I always say it "I'm a lover of reality." What is, is. Until I love what is, there's a good reason to cut my throat, because I lose. I don't have control, and that was my game. My life was "I want control and I'm going to have it." So, "What is, is" can seem pretty depressing. But I'm a lover of what is. And that takes it to a whole other level and that's the re-entry for me.

Friend #2: I'm getting more and more what you mean by reentry, but maybe you could just...

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Katie: To go to the "No thing?I'm God?I'm a song, but I won't come out and sing," is like halfway. The No One and the No Thing?ach ! Re-enter ! You may as well. It's what you're doing, pretending not to. You know these spiritual people, the ones that say "There's no One and Nothing"? it's a great concept. I really understand the teachers who are silent, who stay silent. It's noble. And this one speaks. It had to go all the way. It had to take all the risks. It would not let any concept of "I should teach it all" stop it. The inquiry won't have it. It says you and me, and that's where the scam began.

It came out as a liar?for love. It will do anything for love?say anything, do anything. It's what it is. It would die for it. And that's over and over and over. It would sell its peace. It has no caring for itself. It will join. It will join because it is it already. It dies for itself. Lives for itself.

Friend: What I hear you talking about is pretense. You don't have any pretense to be anything other than what you are.

Katie: Yes, because it's so fine, so good.

Friend #2: Katie, in a workshop recently you said, "What fun is it being God if I can't hold up the mirror? Not mourning the coming back, not judging ourselves for not being in non-duality. Duality is a terrible thing?is it true?"

Katie: That pretty well covers it. You know how you say Ramana sat, and didn't speak for so long, all of that?I experienced that for like a second. And because he did it, I burned through it. It didn't take me months or years out there. It was just a moment.
What happened was this: there were a bunch of people waiting for me, and I had committed to be there. I was on this rock.


And they were calling me. And I KNEW that nothing could ever move me?ever, EVER move me. And then it moved ! It was like because it has been done, it burned just like that. So, again, this has just gone to the next phase. It's a total reversal. My experience is until I loved them there was no peace. Because I didn't have a people world. There was only thought. There was only mind. I mean "prior to I" and "I." So it was all me. To love each one arising, that was all of existence, because you just don't exist. Show me something that's not kind. Show me something that's not benign. In other words, show me something that's real. So, it's the joy of apparent living. It's the joy of life.

Friend: Katie, could you comment about referring to yourself as "it?"

Katie: I'll say, "She needs to go to sleep now." If they hadn't said "You're a woman," I would just always say "It? it needs to sleep now." I refer to myself as "us" or "you." I'll take on any pronoun and sometimes it's hard for people to catch that. I don't have a reference point for any separation.

Friend #2: It seems to me a big difference is, of all the meditative traditions, yours is the only one that says look at the content. Everyone else is saying avoid it.

Katie: Yes, you look at it, you come to love it. I mean, isn't that what we do? Isn't that love at first sight? And if we don't love our neighbor, isn't it painful? To me there is no neighbor. There's only this?what people would call an internal world. There was nothing left to love.




Friend: Katie, I woke up this morning in a space where there just seemed to be awareness, and then identification set in and as soon as that happened, intense fear arose. So as we've been sitting here, I've been doing The Work with the fear. And the first thing I asked was "What am I afraid of?" And I couldn't get an answer. There's just this fear. And then I asked "What do I get for holding the belief in the fear?" What I get is a "me." Okay, so the fear gives me a "me." Then I asked, "Can I know that it's true?" And that's where the dropping into the heart won't happen. It just sits here. Intellectually, I can see it; I have a host of teachings, yours included, running through me, but it's just stuck.

Katie: I'm hearing the question. You're labeling it fear, saying that it's fear. Can you really know that it's true?

Friend: No, as soon as you said it, it was clear?

Katie: So there it is. It's done. That was the first one and you skipped it. You went to a descendant. A little reincarnation there! You're skipping a generation. It's fear, ach ! Labeling it fear without investigation is how it has all these lives. And that's where psychology is born, in trying to find out what this fear is. Well, it's nothing. Let's just investigate it in the beginning. Go back to the beginning. And then there's no need for psychology.


Friend: So when you said about fear, "Can you know that it's true?" It went really fast?can we go through it again?

Katie: Okay. It's fear. Is it true? Can you really know that it is fear?

Friend: What came up was, "It's a sensation."

Katie: Yes. And you label it an enemy. You label it "not natural." It's a sensation. So, now you can ask: "It's a sensation?is it true?" Can you really know that?

Friend: The strongest thing that comes is "I don't know."

Katie: That's my position. In that place, you're back in that twilight you were describing?before the label of sensation and then labeling it fear, and on and on and on. This is a game! This is fun! This is not serious. You're doing one of two things all of the time: you're attaching to apparent creation, what arises; or you're un-attaching. And the investigation is the un-attaching. You can't attach to what's not true. And that's been the apparent life's goal? to make something real. It's a full-time job. We don't go to sleep at night?we pass out. It's like living in an arena, trying to win all the time inside of yourself to make it real. And being unconscious of it. Just knowing that it's very hopeless and stressful.

I was in Istanbul in a Turkish bath and the woman who came at me must have weighed 300 pounds?that's an under exaggeration?and she was entirely physical. And I could not make a sensation. Another person could have called it a physical torture chamber. And that's all that happened to you this morning. Making something out of nothing. Without investigation it has to go on like the creator because it's a mirror image. That's its nature, but to investigate is to put yourself back into a clear position of "I am That."

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Oud 4 november 2012, 12:34   #6
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I AM the sensation. And it can't be told. But the investigation puts you into the experience of all those words. And that's not even true. I am prior to I. But what fun to come back to one's own self. In my experience, there's nothing I could or would do to stop that. That's re-entry. So we come to understand it as we're discussing here, through the investigation. That it's a privilege to open the eyes and see itself. You don't wake up forever. It's now, now, now.

Friend: When you said those last words I had this image that, in some sense, final awakening will happen, and now it's just like it's not. It's just going to be...

Katie: To wake up?whatever that is?forever, implies time. To wake up is just a past history apparently arising. It's old. It's to keep you from the experience now. Man sitting in chair. Without a story?heaven. The stories go on?but without attachment to the story. And that's what the inquiry leaves us with. The freedom of non-attachment. Internal. Detachment from the movie. But then, as you know, I talk about the re-entry.

And movies are good when they've been met with some understanding. You know how you love your story? Well, every story is the story of itself. It adores itself. People say how can you just listen to people's stories for 12 years? They're my story. It's the story of me, the story of God. The sounds of the birds out there?same. Delightful. It is itself. Now. And all sounds are internal. There is no "out there." Hear it from inside. Nothing less than that is possible.

Friend: Katie, my understanding of awakening has been that it's the absence of a personal me. There's an apparent me and then that's gone. There's just what is.

Katie: As you investigate, it's not. It's just one more story of the past. If it's five seconds ago, it might as well be a


million years ago. This moment cannot be spoken of. It's already gone. There's no such thing as a moment or now. Now is a concept.

Friend #2: That's pretty exciting.

Katie: Yes! And I get to hear this word, not awareness, but the other one?enlightenment--thrown around so much. But "awakening," I understand. Because that's my story. I was asleep on a floor. I awoke, I was asleep, or not. But the way I like to tell it is?it's a process all the way through. All the way through. It's ever-changing. Ever-growing. Ever-expanding. I couldn't even speak of it at first, it sounded like a deranged, insane woman trying to speak the unspeakable. But it's taken on a way of... communication. And it continues to mature. And that's fascinating from here.

Friend: One quotation from Ramana Maharshi that totally stays with me is: "The only obstacle to your enlightenment is the belief that you are not enlightened."

Katie: When you look at "What do you get for holding the belief, I want to be enlightened," you see you get to stay stuck in what you quote Ramana as saying is the problem. And the inquiry shows that beyond a doubt.

What do you get for holding the belief? You're not enlightened! And who would you be without it? That's when you go into that space. And you can continue to hold the same concept after the investigation, but without attachment, which is mostly what I experience you do anyway. You can't long for what you don't know. The concept is what you say it is. I was just one "graced"?to use that term?with not knowing there was such a thing as "awakening." I thought that suicide was the only way out?that it was my only option. It's a homesickness. A homesickness! The longing for home.


I used to lie in bed for so many of those seven years and just wail, "I want to go home" I thought that was suicide but inside of me that's all! knew. It was a purity?"I want to go home." But I didn't believe in a heaven or a hell. I wanted to go home, so in my innocence and ignorance, I had it right. That's how I know the longing for oneself is a perfectly natural thing.

Take away the word "enlightenment"?because I wouldn't know what that meant, and maybe no one else does?take away the word "enlightenment," and go home. Go home?meet it there. To the heart. Back to itself. It's always there; you know that from The Work. It's always there?always.

There's no time you can ask the heart that it won't give you that innocent purity?full-blown right in your face. Just what do you use to block it? That's the true guru. It always speaks?always. There's nothing you can do to obliterate it. Nothing. Going against it is the pain. It's a natural. This asking is what the investigation is for?there it is. There it is! It's an amazing thing. To say it's tireless is a ridiculous understatement. And if you ask it when you get hurt?it's home. It's always there.

It doesn't matter what condition?you listen. You are the listener, the one without a story. I use an expression, "Let the mind ask the question, let the heart give the answer." And the mind and the heart merge as one. You come to know that they were always undivided. There never WAS a mind. It was always the heart. Just ,a little dance here or there and you know the heart is everything. It is Everything.

Friend: You've said that the heart will do whatever it takes. It will rape a child, it'll murder 6 million Jews, it'll do whatever it takes. I really just got that, really literally.

Katie: It is love, and we can tell all the stories we want about how it's not, and it is. It's not even misguided.


It is what it is, always. Always cleansing, purifying itself. Always knowing?sparing nothing. It's pure instead. That is the kindness. And anyone who would meet that realization, and get it, would walk into the fire to hold that purity. Literally, be ignited. It would walk through anything because it's fearless, it's nature itself. It does anyway?it would just walk into it with a little awareness. There's not a choice. It's like when the axe falls, just before it hits your head the last thought is?Grace. Thank you! This too. And even in this condition, this apparent condition, it always welcomes death. Always. So even the suicidal things are natural.

Everything is natural. It's just our interpretation, the way we interpret it, that's unnatural. And the life and death of it is, we could say, the non-duality coming back for itself. And I don't mean to get itself, or to heal itself or any of that, but to come BACK for the pure joy and egocentricity that is its nature?self love. It is itself. It is too damn greedy not to lick itself. Eat itself. Devour itself. Every taste, every thing is God. Every word, every movement is a love affair. Literally.

Longing for death is a longing for the beginning. And the longing for the beginning is the longing for death. It's a breath, it's an in and out, in and out. It's nothing, something, the left and the right. In Europe, a couple of people asked about non-duality and what I experienced was that I have no interest in non-duality.

Give me myself. It's the greed to hold the mirror up.. It wouldn't delete itself. And that's where lust comes in. And selfishness?all those words we have seen as negatives. They're all natural. They're all words for God. It would have to be?it's its own song. Every name is its own name. Non-duality is no name?and I come back for my name.

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It's arrogance beyond description. I appreciate these next few days; it's very rare that people ask questions about non-duality. We'll go deeper and deeper into the questioning because The Work joins the dream where it is and dispels it. I find it remarkable? and not?that the questions don't go deeper because it's available. But without cause, this effect doesn't happen. So your questions are cause, and it will respond. It doesn't exist until then?there's nothing to meet. The words come out for it. It lives as this. And it always comes from a place of what you refer to as non-duality. You cannot make duality happen. To speak of the mirror image, it's still non-existent.

I experience the "I" arising, and I quake with the privilege of that, because the "I" is its very self, being born. "I" arising is not an enemy. It's not something to get rid of. It is simply?if you would turn and look in a mirror?there it is ! There you are. When the "I" arises, it's presenting itself to itself. This is good news. When I say your name, it's the name of God. It's my name. Equal to "table." I hear the word "Katie," it's the name of God. "I." God. It has all been a misunderstanding. The "I" arises and it's about to, we could say, move away from the match. It's like the mirror taking on the perfect reflection and thinking that that is it.

That it is God. That's duality. It has split from its source into the illusion of "I am that." I AM the man in the chair, in this world, experiencing fear in the morning. It's just not personal. It's a misunderstanding. So that's why the investigation brings you back to "I-I." And then the story we tell moves it to "I am man experiencing fear, sensation, and this world." And then it attaches?it thinks that that is it. So, the investigation?"I-I."Then it can love the story of itself. Everything is the story of God. You know how you love humor?well, that's it. And drama?that's it. It's just that none of it is real because you're interpreting it as separate.


I'm a lover of stories?arising in you, arising in me. What's the difference? What's real? Inquire and know.

Friend: Would it be from the perspective of "I-I" that this whole story is none of my business?

Katie: Totally, totally.

Friend #2: So, when you make the story your business, you attach to the story and detach from "1." And when the story's no longer your business, but just the story, you're home again. Simple.

Katie: Whether we like it or not, it's that simple. That's it. Not a choice. We can continue to pretend or not. In the moment There's no time about this



(Note: The material in this chapter may be experienced as a radical departure from commonly held concepts. Please note that in no way is it meant to condone violence or any other specific behavior.)

Friend: I once interviewed a Jewish man who spent two years in Auschwitz--he's one of the few who lived to tell the tale. One day he was in a unit called "Canada." What they were doing was taking all the clothes and belongings from people as they were shipped to the gas chamber. And he survived because he was doing the work of the Nazis. At this point Auschwitz is coming to an end, the Allies are coming, so that particular day they decided just to burn the babies. So the Nazis made a little pit and a huge bonfire and as these young Jewish women are stepping off the train, the Nazi guards would tear the babies from them to throw them onto this huge bonfire. The person I interviewed said at that point he began to hate.

Katie: I hear from you that Nazis throw babies into the pit. There's nothing we can do with this short of finding understanding inside, within each of us ourselves. War continues to exist?that's what we do. But this is not something that's easy for people to understand. It takes an absolute love of God.


Is it "I love God," or is it "I love God sometimes when He's giving me the reality I want?" War is what is. It's Nature. It's what is sometimes. It's not personal. If Someone (God, "what is") pulls my baby from me?if that's what it takes, I'm there. Take the baby. Tear my baby from me. Throw it in the fire.
What does it take for me to get this thing? What does it take for me to understand that I am a lover of "what is, God?" My discomfort is my war with God. It's my war with reality the way it is, and not the "loss" of my baby. It's not as though I have a choice. The baby is me. You see, there are NO choices. What is, is. When you know that, it's over. And it's beyond full acceptance, it's the love of itself, the love of God. There is nothing terrible. Shall I say it again?
There is nothing terrible. There has never been anything terrible. There will never be anything terrible. But when we get to the baby thing, we're getting down to our sacred little concepts now. Let's do away with all of them, but not the part about MY baby. And its welfare, my welfare. Me, me, me, me in the name of the baby. I'm the one in hell. It's all about you're destroying my dream.

That's all. You take my baby from me, you're messing with the illusion of I'm the mommy, this is the baby, there's the daddy, we're going to raise it, happy-ever-after-in-the-future-fairy tale. But tearing the baby away?that's the higher. That's the higher, because it snatches your story from you and makes it apparent in your face?nothing's real short of reality. The baby's gone, and you are left with you and your thinking.
That's it. That's what is. That's love. That's absolutely UN- describable love. That you, God, would even give me that. Can you know that Hitler didn't bring more people to realization than Jesus? On your knees?God. God! God!


But our stories of reality keep us from the awareness of God is Everything. And God is Good. That's the purpose of the story. Until you have a way of meeting your thinking with understanding, it's hell and pure innocence. Hell is nothing more than mental confusion. Fight it and you only experience your own lack of awareness of love. You experience your own cruelty to yourself. And you experience cruelty to others by teaching that such childish illusions are true and real. We're not evolving?we're unevolving. You cannot do war with God?with Reality?and win.

Friend: God is Everything. God is sacred. Everything is sacred. So how could there ever be any evil?

Katie: There never has been evil and there never will be. Evil is simply a story about what's not. I mean it's got to be pretty powerful to keep you separate. Evil is a story of how you think nature should be and what goes on in it, and it keeps you in the illusion of fear and separation. It's got to be "My baby!" and "You!" It's got to be very dramatic to keep it going. Otherwise, there's only peace. Like who would you be without it? Peace. And grace. But I'll stick to the story of "Don't throw my baby in the fire." You see, I'll reorganize everything, get my baby, and THEN I'll have this love, this peace. But I have trashed the baby when I have trashed the Nazi.

Whether I like it or not. I'll get the whole world to validate that. And I have thrown the baby in the fire in the name of this one belief. So I Wonder why it never works. I'm holding the baby and I really don't care. Now I'm left with having to clutch him to my dying breath. It doesn't look like freedom to me. It's not just this ease of saying, "Throw the baby into the fire." I am the baby going into the pit. I am the one throwing the baby in the pit, and I am the mother from whose arms the child was pulled.

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I have died. I have died of it. And I'm fully aware of it. I'm not speaking from a place of not being the one it was happening to and for.

Friend: That's the difficulty that you're helping me with so much. I have clear vision that my heart moves between vulnerability and invulnerability. Now I feel that the trust that I have in you is opening this heart to that vulnerability moment by moment. Essentially, what I'm saying now I knew 25 years ago, yet the heart is closed to certain pain and, therefore, the ego continues to play its little game.

Friend #2: I seem to understand the knowing that everything is God. It's all good; it's all what it is. It seems with that awareness, that people don't do what I perceive to be evil anymore?

Katie: It's because they never have been. You just got a little awareness going for you there. As long as you see someone as evil, you need to check yourself out. People used to tell me I'm too open, just too vulnerable. They were worried about me. It's not my experience.

Friend #2: Don't let the demons come in. There are no demons, so...

Katie: Or, if there ARE, come in? You know, show me something real. And that's where the full circle of The Work comes in. All the evil in the world is welcome here. Fear is nothing more than a story that has not been investigated internally. We haven't known how, and now we do.

Friend: This level of truth! It's like?one of the sentences you just said?it's like "Whoosh!" It's just so clear. And then, something comes in at an angle and the understanding seems to disappear. It's amazing to watch?I guess that's just the way it is.


It can't be grasped directly by the mind. It can't stay. It can't last.

Katie: What it does is short-circuit the logical mind. I go to a place and it penetrates in that space.

Friend: Yeah. The mind isn't supposed to comprehend... Katie: The mind can't comprehend it. It can't comprehend it, so it's a good thing. You're getting it beyond. That's what's meant?and I don't tell this one either?but that is the power of being in the presence of the true guru?because it really is you.

Friend #2: Then, what about "There is no suffering, there is no evil?"

Katie: Tell me that when you're in it!
Friend #2: Gotcha. I got it.

Katie: Only then, when you're in it, let me know it's not real. That's the absolute?love joins where it is. It doesn't deny it. It just wouldn't leave anything out under any condition. No matter what the pleasure or the pain, it'll meet it there. It is you. Use the investigation and stand by yourself. And I see that you do that. And, good, it gets out of control. Investigate. Begin again. Or not.

Friend: To go with this Auschwitz man again, he actually met one of the cruelest Nazis in the camp. He saw this man murdering people quite often for the fun of it. He'd just be walking along, see somebody he didn't like, and then just shoot him for no reason. And when he was assigned to take care of this Nazi's family, he went into his house and he found this man apparently being loving to his children.

Katie: Bringing teddy bears home.

Friend: Exactly. And the Nazi played Beethoven and he had a canary that he loved to pet. Then he would go out and just shoot a few people for the fun of it. And the


Jewish survivor said this was incomprehensible to his mind.

Katie: Do you step on the grass? You step on the grass, and you move around the flower not to disturb it. Same.

Friend: I don't quite get it. Yet.

Katie: The family is the flower. The grass are the Jews. How many times a day have you done it? If you bend down and start getting intimate with the grass, like if you're out for a couple of weeks?the grass becomes your whole reality, your family. When you're out in a place with no human, no apparent human, and there's only grass, you get real intimate. And the mind starts attaching the whole Nazi good guy/bad guy thing onto the grass. And it will start its whole world there again, with an inanimate object. Because it's only the concepts that appear to live. Without them, no body. And that's my experience.

Friend #2: You take the Jews away from the Nazi, he's going to start persecuting one of his family.

Katie: Exactly. Exactly so. There's nothing sacred?only the concept arising, in the moment. That's what we hold sacred. That's what we worship, until we don't.

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Friend: Indian culture is so supportive of stillness. But for Westerners it's not so easy to be still. It seems we go right into the vasana.

Katie: And at the same time, stillness is my exact experience. But it's my secret. It's my secret that you're about to put out which no one will hear anyway. So it's still going to remain a secret. If it became the number-one bestseller, no one's going to get it anyway. But what it does, is it shifts everyone into the possibility. And it gives them the potential for a way out of hell that could serve them. And that's my interest.

Friend: Is this the scam you refer to?

Katie:Yes, there are many scams running. People hear me say "You hurt, I hurt." They hear that I'm feeling that pain. But I'm feeling it from over there. Until you have peace, I don't have it. You are me. It's that literal thing again. But I'm at perfect peace over here. You say you're hurt and I am more than connected. I AM you. I cannot make that not happen. It's an echo?I created you. And you don't exist for me any more? Well, you're the thing in front of me. You arc me. It's just not done until it's done. So I am at your service. It's a totally selfish act.

Friend #2: What I think I heard you say is less of a scam,

is that all of that is a lie. It's all a lie. That the dualistic way of speaking is a lie, but if we're going to talk that way then I'll say it's over here, but you're suffering, so it's not.
Katie: Yes.

Friend #2: But really, there's no me, there's no you; it's just all?nothing. There's no anything, anyway.

Katie: Exactly.

Friend #2: That's the dream.

Katie: But I honor you wherever you are. You are me. It's as though there was such an honoring here that it has to extend it. Because I can't make you go away. You don't exist for me, and you're still telling me you're hurt. So that's the putting the baby over there in the fire?I feel nothing but connection. Your story of the baby and the fire doesn't move me. And your screams don't move me. But when you look at me and you say "Help me," then I will? I will enter that place with you, that place where you live, the place that you hurt from. Because you ask, you can see my peace. And that is the help. You can see that I am not alarmed?my baby went too--1 am your peace?your ever present friend. So, that's the joining. But to get the baby back is to give you less. It is to give you only a Band-Aid and it serves nothing. It perpetuates. No true healing has occurred, only a higher density of fear. How do I know that this would give you less? What is, is the highest order.

Friend #2: Katie, do you experience any difference between hearing me and hearing you? Like you say "it speaks" and how surprising that is...

Katie:Not ever. Same. Same. I'm amazed you're still pretending.




Friend: Another aspect of Indian culture is Bhakti, devotion. Every house has an altar, you keep it clean, you put up flowers every day. People get together, there's community, and singing?there is all this devotion to the guru.

Katie: And see I'm like the ultimate Bhakti, because what you've just described is how I experience existence. My self, on my knees to myself. It's always kept clean that way. And it's always worshipped that way. Because it's what is. It's met. Joined with.

Friend: Katie, there's something in me right now that feels like this bhakti, this love thing, is very important. You know, the mind can say, oh, it's a projection, it's not real wisdom? it's duality?but there's something in me that just feels that it's closer. Like you said, if you're me and I'm you, it's all the same, then that's love.

Katie: And that is what?this is really loose language?I am trying to hold sacred, and leave you also.

Friend: Leave me?

Katie: Leave you also. To take from you what you have, leaves it. But without attachment?

Friend: Leaves you as me? Would you say that again, I didn't get it?

Katie: Like you want to hold on to that love thing. And if


that's what you want, I'll support it. You see, I want you to have what you want. Because that's what is. But if you come to me, and you present yourself in such a way that is asking, or is interpreted as an asking, then I am going to take that. I'm going to get your baby and I'm going to throw it in the fire, your baby love. It will give you, beyond a concept, that which you wanted really. It will leave you as that.

Friend: Thank you, you have done that.

Friend #2: And you're doing it right now.

Friend #3: In your book you say you would never take anyone's suffering away from them, that it's theirs, unless they ask.

Katie: And, again, that's loose language, because I can't take someone's suffering. But in that place where they're asking, doors open. Asking is an open door. And I can walk right in. But without a door open, without an asking, I'm not going to bang my head against the wall, and teach other people hopelessness, because I'm not insane any more. Friend: So it feels to me like the way that you're talking, it's saying that the "in love" is a holding, like the baby. Don't take my baby.

Katie: Exactly so. Exactly so. Hanging on to it. You ARE it. And I'm not speaking of not holding onto your baby with your arms and your cries. I'm speaking only of how you hold onto the baby internally?how loud is the screaming there?

Friend #2: I see the schema in India like this: with bbakti they're saying not everything is God and there is this one little God that I'm going to love; with jnana yoga they're saying nothing I've ever seen is God, nothing is God, but if I keep at it, eventually I'll find God; and with tantra they're

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saying everything is God, but beware of the preferences.

Katie: And I could honestly say, "Nothing is God." It doesn't even exist; it's just one more concept. But when a person has "God is good, everything is God," then everything has to fall into that pocket. It's a one-mindedness. When you say, "This woman is everything, this woman is God," everything will fall into that and will work, too, until she dies?or until you attach something, like when she makes a movement that doesn't match your idea of God, and then you move away. So with "God is everything," there's nothing tangible to pin it on. Everything can fall into it. And it's infinite. So, it's that symbol that I suggest to people. Everything will fall into it, beautifully. And, on the other side of it, when all falls into it, you come to see that it is nothing.

Friend: It's also a lie.

Katie: Total. Like you said of Ramana?concentrate on the Self. Well, I am apparent form, disguised as apparent form. So I say, fall into this form. But he's saying the same. So it's "I-I"?same. But this one's easier to hear because you think you're a body. And the other, "I am That," can be experienced as another concept. It's this sacred concept. God is everything. So, God is everything until he throws our baby into the fire. God is the Nazi too. For some of us to go back to the Self is to ignore what's out there?it's a direction that would exclude. And I say, love where you are, because that's my experience. Can you love that?

Friend #2: I'd like to ask something here. When you said a minute ago, "I'll pull it from you, and it'll leave you what you really wanted," my thought is that I've had that experience with you. But 1 don't believe that you do that?

Katie: I do. I do do that That's what these days are about.


I do do that. I AM YOU.

Friend #2: Yes. Okay.

Katie: You think it's a you and a me...

Friend #2: That's right. I hear it. Thank you.

Friend: She's the Nazi. She threw the baby in the fire and she's the fire that burned the baby. And the baby too.

Friend #2: Good. I just go there for a bit?

Katie: It's just a tweak. A tweak away.

Friend: I see you as a belief murderer.

Katie: Yeah. Murderer of all people, you know. It's the annihilation of the world. And it doesn't appear as kind. It loves instead.




Friend: Katie, I've heard you say that thoughts aren't personal. Could you describe that?

Katie: A thought says, "I don't belong here." A thought is like a blade of grass. You don't say here is a blade of grass that did this or that, or this blade of grass should be like this one over there. Those are thoughts just moving through?nothing personal, just like a blade of grass. You attach meaning to it and that's a belief. That's the material world. You walk on a blade of grass, you stop and call it something, and you have just entered the material world. You need to hold up the lie that there is something here, when it was just a sound. You put something on the sound, rather than just be it. You are the sound you are naming already. It's just you.

Friend: Could you say what you mean by calling it a sound?

Katie: Well, the idea that I am speaking and you are listening implies sound. So, you could say "grass" to transmit that, and it would imply there's someone speaking, someone listening?sound. Sound is a concept. So without a story? no sound?no grass?no thing. And the re-entry is here. It's coming back for itself. It loves itself. It will hear itself, see itself, experience itself. It will step on itself or not step on itself. And it knows those are just concepts so it's not that.


It's re-entry and no thing simultaneously. So it won't say it's no thing, or some thing. It's all simultaneous. Experiencing and not?it's not in time or space. It is all of it.

Friend: What I'm picking up from what you're saying now is re-entry just happens. It's not a plan.

Katie: Yes, it's the same. It's not any more valid or invalid than prior to the noticing.

Friend: I'm concerned that anything that we put in this book is entering into a world where people latch onto concepts...

Katie: That IS the world.

Friend: Yes, the world is a concept latch-on. So, in this world, people are going to see this word, "re-entry," and feel that this is a prescription for action. I've already begun to try to describe in some detail what you've meant by reentry and people have said "Oh, she means the Bodhisattva vow."

Katie: Well, that's pretty much right if it means coming back for myself, because it DOES. It will?it has to?it includes?it's not separate from?it is love. If that's what Bodhisattva means, that is it. It would not think of not coming back, especially as it is a call back to itself. It's closer than the physical experience could give.

Friend: In our community a lot of disease is hitting right now. It's obvious that these things can be taken as more than just a concept.

Katie: No, they cannot be taken for more than a concept.

Friend: But it seems that we have that ability to do that. We take them as if they're really real and we freak out, we get upset, and we feel that we're in some way threatened. Isn't that true? Have you noticed that?


Katie:You know, the only language I can answer you with is... Anyone that is not absolutely at home, at peace, is confused.

Friend #2:What would you say to someone who's just been diagnosed with cancer?

Katie: Work with the mind because the body's going to die anyway, cancer or no cancer. There is no concept more powerful than another. It's the attachment we put on it? that's the misunderstanding it's met with. If you're working with the mind and get clear, then you know that if you take wheat grass, the worst that can happen is a concept. And you know that if you do not take wheat grass or chemotherapy, the worst that can happen is a concept.

So, just deal with the concepts and go in peace. You get the greatest doctor in the world and the medicine doesn't work? sometimes it appears to work?sometimes it doesn't. But the worst that can happen either way is nothing's been healed. You see? Until the mind is at peace, nothing is healed. To use another metaphor?breaking my leg when I want to go skiing can be more painful than your cancer. And

I'm not talking about the pain of the leg being broken. It's my desire to go skiing. And what that would bring me could be more painful than your cancer in the moment, because I could tell the story of what I missed, and the story of what I missed can be equally as painful in the moment. So the worst that can happen any time is an unhealed mind. And an unhealed mini' to me is one that has simply not been met with understanding, compassion, love. Meet what arises in that way. And then everything else has to follow because it's not real; it's the mirror image. Just like the concepts are not real.

Friend: It's all a story.

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