Byron Katie

Quotes from A Thousand Names for Joy

I discovered that when I believed my thoughts, I suffered, but that when I didn’t believe them, I didn’t suffer, and that this is true for every human being.  Freedom is as simple as that.  I found that suffering is optional.  I found a joy within me that has never disappeared, not for a single moment.  That joy is in everyone, always.

Everything happens for you, not to you.
P 4

Once you no longer believe your own thoughts, you act without doing anything, because there’s no other possibility.  You see that all thoughts of yourself as the doer are simply not true.
P 8

It’s very frightening for them [rigidly pious people] to watch the world unfolding in apparent chaos and not realize that the chaos itself is God in his infinite intelligence.
P 51

If I think I’m supposed to be doing anything but what I’m doing now, I’m insane.
P 52

When I say “I love you,” it’s self-love.  There’s no personality talking: I’m only talking to myself.
P 64

Isn’t that why you want to save the world in the first place?  So that you can be happy?  Well, skip the middleman, and be happy from here!  You’re it.
P 82

The apparent craziness of the world, like everything else, is a gift that we can use to set our minds free.  Any stressful thought that you have about the planet, for example, shows you where you are stuck, where your energy is being exhausted in not fully meeting life as it is, without conditions.  You can’t free yourself by finding a so-called enlightened state outside your own mind.  When you question what you believe, you eventually come to see that you are the enlightenment you’ve been seeking.  Until you can love what is–everything, including the apparent violence and craziness–you’re separate from the world, and you’ll see it as dangerous and frightening.  I invite everyone to put these fearful thoughts on paper, question them, and set themselves free.  When mind is not at war with itself, there’s no separation in it.  I’m sixty-three years old and unlimited.  If I had a name, it would be Service.  If I had a name, it would be Gratitude.
P 87

So, when you see him as flawed in any way, you can be sure that that’s where your own flaw is.  The flaw has to be in your thinking, because you’re the one projecting it.  You are always what you judge us to be in the moment.
P 89

Where are your hands right now?  Who put them there?  Did you do that?  And then, no matter what your thinking is, you – it – moved again.  Maybe it moved your foot.  Maybe it swallowed, or it blinked your eyes.  Just notice.  That’s how you enter not-doing, where everything falls sweetly into place.
P 113

All fear is like this.  It’s caused by believing what you think–no more, no less.  It’s always the story of a future.  If you want fear on purpose, get a plan.  Fear is not possible when you’ve questioned your mind; it can be experienced only when the mind projects the story of a past into a future.  The story of a past is what enables us to project a future.  If we weren’t attached to the story of a past, our future would be so bright, so free, that we wouldn’t bother to project time.  We would notice that we’re already living in the future, and that it’s always now.
P 136

Finally I understood.  I said, “Oh, you believe that if thought arises, you did it.”...  But the truth is that I’m not thinking.  Thoughts just arise...  I’m not doing the thinking, I’m being thought.
P 154

The Great Way is easy.  It’s what reveals itself right here, right now.  “Do the dishes.”  Answer the email.”  “Don’t answer the email.”  It’s the great Way because it’s the only way.  Whatever you do or don’t do is your contribution to reality.  Nothing could be easier.  Nothing else is required; you can’t do it wrong.
P 155

We do only three things in life: We sit, we stand, and we lie horizontal.  That’s about it.  Everything else is a story.
P 157

She lets all things come because here they come anyway; it’s not as if she had a choice.  She lets all things go because there they go, with or without her consent.  She delights in the coming and the going.  Nothing comes until she needs it, nothing goes until it’s no longer needed.  She is very clear about this.  Nothing is wasted; there’s never too much or too little.
P 177

You can’t let go of a stressful thought, because you didn’t create it in the first place.  A thought just appears.  You’re not doing it.  You can’t let go of what you have no control over.  Once you’ve questioned the thought, you don’t let go of it, it lets go of you.
P 180

Being present means living without control and always having your needs met.  For people who are tired of the pain, nothing could be worse than trying to control what can’t be controlled.  If you want real control, drop the illusion of control.  Let life live you.  It does anyway.
P 185

When you hide your flaws, you teach us to hide ours.  I love to say that we are just waiting for one teacher, just one, to give us permission to be who we are now.  You appear as this, big or small, straight or bent.  That’s such a gift to give.  The pain is in withholding it.  Who else is going to give us permission to be free, if not you?  Do it for your own sake, and we’ll follow.  We’re a reflection of your thinking, and when you free yourself, we all become free.
P 193

Your story and reality just don’t match.  Reality is always kinder than your story about it – but only always.
P 216

When you no longer have a will of your own, there is no time and space.  It all becomes a flow.  You don’t decide, you flow from one happening to the next, and everything is decided for you.
P 225

When you revere a spiritual teacher, it’s yourself that you’re revering, because you can’t project anything but yourself...  It’s a fine thing to love Jesus [or Buddha], but until you can love the monster, the terrorist, the child molester, until you can meet your worst enemy without defense or justification, your reverence for Jesus [or Buddha] isn’t real, because each of these is just another of his forms.  That’s how you know when you are truly revering your spiritual teacher;  when your reverence goes across the board.
P 240

When you stop seeking, the beauty concealed by the seeking becomes evident.  What you wanted to find is what remains, beyond all stories.
P 241

I trust everyone.  I trust them to do what they do, and I’m never disappointed.  And since I trust people, I know to let them find their own way.  The wonderful thing about inquiry is that there’s no one to guide you but you.  There’s no guru, no teacher who, in her great wisdom, shows you the answers.  Only your own answers can help you.  You yourself are the way and the truth and the life, and when you realize this, the world becomes very kind.
P 247

We think that because Jesus and the Buddha wore robes and owned nothing, that’s how freedom is supposed to look.  But can you live a normal life and be free?  Can you do it from here, right now?  That’s what I want for you.  We have the same desire: your freedom.  And I love that you’re attached to material objects, whether you have them or not, so that you can come to realize that all suffering comes from the mind, not the world.
P 252

We don’t know where we’re going, we just like to imagine that we know.  I never believe it.  That way, wherever I am, my journey is complete and I’m a success, because here I am.
P 258

The litmus test for self-realization is a constant state of gratitude.  This gratitude is not something you can look for or find.  It comes from another direction, and it takes you over completely.  It’s so vast that it can’t be dimmed or overlaid.
P ?

Quotes from Loving what is

If [he] says something that hurts, he’s just revealed what you haven’t wanted to look at yet.  The man is a Buddha.
P 133

[W]e’re babies just learning how to live out our love.  We keep trying to meet love in everything and everyone, because we haven’t noticed that we already have it, that we ARE it.
P 261

What I love most about reality is that it’s always the story of a past.  And what I love most about the past is that it’s over.
P 269

“It’s a tree.  It’s a table.  It’s a chair.”  Is it true?  Have you stopped to ask yourself?  Have you ever become still and listened as you asked you?  Who told you it was a tree?  Who was the original authority?  How did they know?  My entire life, my entire identity, had been built on the trust and uninquiring innocence of a child.
P 300

But even the Now is a concept.  Even as the thought completes itself, it’s gone, with no proof that it ever existed, other than as a concept that would lead you to believe it existed, and now that one is gone too.  Reality is always the story of a past.  Before you can grasp it, it’s gone.  Each of us already has the peaceful mind that we seek.
P 303

We don’t know how to change; we don’t know how to forgive or how to be honest.  We’re waiting for an example.  You’re the one.  You are your only hope, because we’re not changing until you do.  Our job is to keep coming at you, as hard as we can, with everything that angers, upsets, or repulses you, until you understand.  We love you that much, whether we’re aware of it or not.  The whole world is about you.
P 310