The Work by Byron Katie

PopHistorian

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I haven't seen this mentioned here - apologies if I missed it - so I'll note that there is a "school" using alarmingly similar surface terminology, but, as far as I can tell, nothing to do with Gurdjieff. Rather, this seems to be the creation of someone making themselves out to be a kind of new-age self-help celebrity (just check all the professional photographs and the status of this organization as "Byron Katie International, Inc.").

_http://www.thework.com/index.asp
 

Tigersoap

The Living Force
Another "school" doing "The Work"

Looks like your run-of-the-mill nine days self-help miracle.
I don't think it is made to look like "the work" as we speak about here but it
sounds confusing enough tough if you're not familiar with Gurdjeff.
Although you never know
She has been around for quite a while my wife says.

I found this Q&A that might explain it

Q :I've heard of The Work of Gurdjieff, and I know the Landmark Forum uses the word "story." And a lot of Eastern teachers speak of things similar to what Katie speaks of. Did she study other philosophies or systems?

A:No. Katie had no "spiritual" ambition or exposure prior to 1986. After 1986, she developed The Work completely out of her own experiences. Any similarities to other systems are unintentional.
 

Rich

The Living Force
Another "school" doing "The Work"

AdPop said:
I haven't seen this mentioned here - apologies if I missed it - so I'll note that there is a "school" using alarmingly similar surface terminology, but, as far as I can tell, nothing to do with Gurdjieff. Rather, this seems to be the creation of someone making themselves out to be a kind of new-age self-help celebrity (just check all the professional photographs and the status of this organization as "Byron Katie International, Inc.").

_http://www.thework.com/index.asp
slick marketing and vomit-inducing at the same time, kind of along the life coaching theme
 

Nawd

Dagobah Resident
Another "school" doing "The Work"

It's kind of disturbing that she has for the past 20 years, using only her own experiences, decided to 'impart her great wisdom' on people with normal everyday problems. If it helps people then 'cool', but it seems very 'positive white light and warm fuzzy' to me. I say that mostly because there ARE things to worry about outside of oneself.

Tigersoap said:
Looks like your run-of-the-mill nine days self-help miracle.
I don't think it is made to look like "the work" as we speak about here but it
sounds confusing enough tough if you're not familiar with Gurdjeff.
Although you never know
She has been around for quite a while my wife says.

I found this Q&A that might explain it

Q :I've heard of The Work of Gurdjieff, and I know the Landmark Forum uses the word "story." And a lot of Eastern teachers speak of things similar to what Katie speaks of. Did she study other philosophies or systems?

A:No. Katie had no "spiritual" ambition or exposure prior to 1986. After 1986, she developed The Work completely out of her own experiences. Any similarities to other systems are unintentional.
 

Laura

Administrator
Administrator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
Another "school" doing "The Work"

Actually, looking at the process she is talking about here: http://www.thework.com/index.asp , it doesn't look like a bad thing at all! If some esoteric ideas were blended in there, it would be a kicker. But as it is, for the average person, this is excellent.
 

T.C.

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Another "school" doing "The Work"

I had a quick look at thework.com and there are some real "karmic and simple understandings". For instance:

thework.com said:
She realized that what had been causing her depression was not the world around her, but the beliefs she'd had about the world. Instead of hopelessly trying to change the world to match her thoughts about how it should be, she could question these thoughts and, by meeting reality as it is, experience unimaginable freedom and joy. As a result, a bedridden, suicidal woman was instantly filled with love for everything life brings.
It IS strange though how it's called "the work". But then again, the approaching wave IS supposed to be accelerating awakening and awareness so that could be an explanation. I'm sure there have been more unbelievable coincidences than that.
 

NormaRegula

SuperModerator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
Another "school" doing "The Work"

I looked at the site earlier. The founder/spokeswoman had some very useful/truthful things to say. I just wonder if she thinks "The Work" as she has developed it works on all human beings. It would be interesting to hear Katy's take on psychopathy. Didn't notice anything in that vein, but then I might have missed it as my visit was brief. It's a very attractive looking site...lots of praise from TIME magazine, Wayne Dyer, etc.. I'll have a closer look later. My first impression was not all positive for some reason. Guess I equate slickness, and "televangelist-style" interview techniques with Cointelpro. Don't want to throw the baby out with the bathwater.
 

Laura

Administrator
Administrator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
Another "school" doing "The Work"

Oh, I definitely think she is claiming way too much in the way of results and what her method can do for a person. It is just simply a tool that can help in some situations to identify issues, programs, etc., and get clarity on them. I think that it's over the top with the claims. We all know better!

What she is talking about is just a small part of The Work.
 

Nawd

Dagobah Resident
Another "school" doing "The Work"

This Byron Katie does have a point, however my concern has always been with sites who claim to have 'the answers.' On her front page she says "do you really want to know the truth?" Right there is enough for any seekers of Truth to go-a-running. It reminds me of 'The Secret.' LOL

I suppose what makes me cringe is that these types of fringe beliefs are classic for sucking up another number of seekers and giving them 'a home' without much in return.

In the case of SOTT, it speaks of searching one('s) selves objectively, not "here is the truth, come get it." Which makes this site different and worthy of exploration. In my personal observation of course.


Laura said:
Oh, I definitely think she is claiming way too much in the way of results and what her method can do for a person. It is just simply a tool that can help in some situations to identify issues, programs, etc., and get clarity on them. I think that it's over the top with the claims. We all know better!

What she is talking about is just a small part of The Work.
 

Kel

Jedi
Another "school" doing "The Work"

My sister has been into the Byron Katie stuff lately and has loaned me some audio books to listen to. It seems that this "work" has truly helped her discipline her thought-processes. She (my sis) tends to get stuck in obsessive thought patterns and by doing "the work", Byron Katie style, she has learned to let obsessive thoughts go and become more clear. I believe there are 4 steps when you have a thought that is causing some problem in your life:

Is it True?

Can I absolutely know that it is true?

What affect does this thought have on me?

Who would I be without this thought?

Byron Katie's method is simple and the goal is to become "happy" and content and mostly focuses on personal relationships.

You will not, however, find any reference to thinking with a hammer or facing the truth of our situation here on the BBM.
 

kenlee

SuperModerator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
Another "school" doing "The Work"

Kel said:
Is it True?

Can I absolutely know that it is true?

What affect does this thought have on me?

Who would I be without this thought?

Byron Katie's method is simple and the goal is to become "happy" and content and mostly focuses on personal relationships.

You will not, however, find any reference to thinking with a hammer or facing the truth of our situation here on the BBM.
Right. Much of what she says (from what I have read and seen so far) makes sense and her 'Work' will make us more consciously aware of how our minds have become partitioned within itself which gives us our fixed ideas, prejudices, complexes that literally take on a life of their own. She shows us the futility of our imaginary suffering and how we just love to suffer from our repetitive thought patterns that we identify with that have conditioned us from childhood. I have no problem with that but it's only a part of 'The Work.'

However, in our laziness and unwillingness to truly see (and feel) reality-as-it-is on both a microscopic and macroscopic level the part is often mistaken for the whole and this is evident (at least for me) when she uses the term The Work.

To me the true essence of 'The Work,' it's totality, is represented in what Gurdjieff said in the chapter 'The Terror Of The Situation' in his book Beelzebub's Tales:
"This pondering of his [Ashiata Shiemash] definitely convinced him that it would indeed be possible to save them by means of the data in their common presence for engendering this sacred being-impulse [conscience], but only if the manifestations of these data surviving in the subconscious were without fail to participate in the functioning of the consciousness under whose direction their daily waking existence flows, and furthermore, only if this being-impulse were to be manifested over a long period through every aspect of this consciousness of theirs."
 

Aeneas

Ambassador
Ambassador
FOTCM Member
Another "school" doing "The Work"

kenlee said:
Kel said:
Is it True?

Can I absolutely know that it is true?

What affect does this thought have on me?

Who would I be without this thought?

Byron Katie's method is simple and the goal is to become "happy" and content and mostly focuses on personal relationships.

You will not, however, find any reference to thinking with a hammer or facing the truth of our situation here on the BBM.
Right. Much of what she says (from what I have read and seen so far) makes sense and her 'Work' will make us more consciously aware of how our minds have become partitioned within itself which gives us our fixed ideas, prejudices, complexes that literally take on a life of their own. She shows us the futility of our imaginary suffering and how we just love to suffer from our repetitive thought patterns that we identify with that have conditioned us from childhood. I have no problem with that but it's only a part of 'The Work.'
I have known of the work of Byron Katie for about 6 years, and seen people get infatuated with it and then dropping it. In itself like Ken and others have said, it is can be useful to get to see our thought patterns and programs, but the key point is that it is ONLY a tool. Like any tool, the usefulness depends on who wields it, and given human nature it will often be used for self calming and a way to not look deep enough at the programming. One way I have seen this play out in people is when a program gets activated, the people will quickly just say: "Can I know that it is true", followed by a "No" and end of story. The terror of the situation is not given permission to sink in! I have also witnessed people who have trained in this and who would say to their friend/client: "Now and what would it be like like to not have this thought"?, to which the friend will say something like "Great", and bingo no need to talk or look deeper at it. In other words self-calming.

It can be good as a tool for people who have never looked at their destructive thought patterns and never asked questions about their own programs. The method does however not take into account the cunningness of the predator within and therefore misses a BIG part of the basic understanding needed for the any seeker to progress in the WORK. OSIT
 

Smallwood

Jedi Master
_http://www.thework.com/index.php

I searched the forum and found nothing on this.

After watching some of the videos it appears that this woman has taken, along with the name of "The Work", some of the ideas of Gurdjieff and put a heavy New-Agey slant on it. Basicly this work is about asking oneself four questions about a stressful subject like "Is it true?", "Can I absolutely know that it's true?", "How do I react, what happens, when I believe that thought?" and "Who would I be without the thought?", then flipping those initial statements to see if their opposites don't feel equally, if not more, true. This to end emotional suffering and unlearning cultural brainwashing. And supposedly when one is free of emotional suffering and somehow gets to the state of Grace (living in the now) they then project this peace to the outside world. In one video she mentions that humanity is not evolving (with all the wars) but will evolve with these methods. Also she seems to be implying to the tune of Gurdjieff that identification with negative thoughts is prison of the mind.

I thought that would be interesting to share.
 

clerck de bonk

Dagobah Resident
Re: The Work by Katey Brien

Smallwood said:
_http://www.thework.com/index.php

I searched the forum and found nothing on this.

After watching some of the videos it appears that this woman has taken, along with the name of "The Work", some of the ideas of Gurdjieff and put a heavy New-Agey slant on it. Basicly this work is about asking oneself four questions about a stressful subject like "Is it true?", "Can I absolutely know that it's true?", "How do I react, what happens, when I believe that thought?" and "Who would I be without the thought?", then flipping those initial statements to see if their opposites don't feel equally, if not more, true. This to end emotional suffering and unlearning cultural brainwashing. And supposedly when one is free of emotional suffering and somehow gets to the state of Grace (living in the now) they then project this peace to the outside world. In one video she mentions that humanity is not evolving (with all the wars) but will evolve with these methods. Also she seems to be implying to the tune of Gurdjieff that identification with negative thoughts is prison of the mind.

I thought that would be interesting to share.

Was there any identifying of psychopathy in her "work"? I mean, does she acknowledge psychopathy as a force to take into account?
 

Smallwood

Jedi Master
Re: The Work by Katey Brien

Nope. She says that wars only exist because there is a war in everyone's mind. In the same video ("Arab / Jew conflict") that she says humanity is not evolving, she tells Israel that she hopes they will use her methods to bring peace to the world.
 
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