Having just being introduced to the Byron Katie work on being, I couldn’t help a stir of admiration for her comment: “I am a lover of what is, not because I‟m a spiritual person, but because it hurts when I argue with reality.” She mentions, in her ‘Little Book’, “I can find only three kinds of business in the universe: mine, yours, and God‟s.” God’s business she calls reality. “Much of our stress”, she reckons, “comes from mentally living out of our own business.” Of course, every reader of the Gospels would recognise the resonation with Jesus guidance to look only at casting out the beam in our own eye and not look to the mote in our brother’s. Likewise, Baha’u’llah remonstrates with us, “O SON OF BEING! How couldst thou forget thine own faults and busy thyself with the faults of others?” (The Arabic Hidden Words)
Katie goes on, “If I am mentally in your business or in God‟s business, the effect is separation. Describing why we suffer, Katie observes, “A thought is harmless unless we believe it. It is not our thoughts, but the attachment to our thoughts, that causes suffering. Attaching to a thought means believing that it‟s true, without inquiring. A belief is a thought that we‟ve been attaching to, often for years.”
Reading Katie’s work is bringing new life to some, for me, well worn readings from Baha’u’llah, “They whose sight is keen, whose ears are retentive, whose hearts are enlightened, and whose breasts are dilated, recognize both truth and falsehood, and distinguish the one from the other. Recite thou this prayer that hath flowed from the tongue of this Wronged One, and ponder thereon with a heart rid of all attachment, and with ears that are pure and sanctified, be attentive to its meaning, that haply thou mayest inhale the breath of detachment and have pity upon thyself and upon others:
“My God, the Object of my adoration, the Goal of my desire, the All-Bountiful, the Most Compassionate! All life is of Thee, and all power lieth within the grasp of Thine omnipotence. Whosoever Thou exaltest is raised above the angels, and attaineth the station: ‘Verily, We uplifted him to a place on high!’; and whosoever Thou dost abase is made lower than dust, nay, less than nothing. O Divine Providence! Though wicked, sinful, and intemperate, we still seek from Thee a ‘seat of truth,’ and long to behold the countenance of the Omnipotent King. It is Thine to command, and all sovereignty belongeth to Thee, and the realm of might boweth before Thy behest. Everything Thou doest is pure justice, nay, the very essence of grace. One gleam from the splendors of Thy Name, the All-Merciful, sufficeth to banish and blot out every trace of sinfulness from the world, and a single breath from the breezes of the Day of Thy Revelation is enough to adorn all mankind with a fresh attire. Vouchsafe Thy strength, O Almighty One, unto Thy weak creatures, and quicken them who are as dead, that haply they may find Thee, and may be led unto the ocean of Thy guidance, and may remain steadfast in Thy Cause. Should the fragrance of Thy praise be shed abroad by any of the divers tongues of the world, out of the East or out of the West, it would, verily, be prized and greatly cherished. If such tongues, however, be deprived of that fragrance, they assuredly would be unworthy of any mention, in word or yet in thought. We beg of Thee, O Providence, to show Thy way unto all men, and to guide them aright. Thou art, verily, the Almighty, the Most Powerful, the All-Knowing, the All-Seeing.”
Unity, then, is not a place where I look at others and ask them to change for me. Such belief that someone else is wrong, causes a separation from them. The belief that the world of humanity is wrong, a separation from them. Accountability is looking clearly at my thoughts, without avoiding that sometimes, even often, they seem horrible, and then inquiring into how this belief makes me, and then, with deep meditation, look at how I am when I do not have this belief.
I am fully committed to practicing Katie Byron’s work, as well as utilising the tools I learnt from Landmark, and practicing the exercises from “The Course of Miracles”. It might seem a divers lot. There is, however, a certain commonness among them, and the effort in such practice can only be a service to humanity.