First, Katie does not claim that hers is a spiritual system; yet her methods and ideas usually help whoever uses them to align much better with their souls. Her method, which she calls "The Work," is similar to cognitive psychological tools that explore our thinking.
Basically, the theory behind "The Work" is that our thinking causes our distress about a person/situation. Another person or situation, according to this theory, can never cause us distress unless our minds cooperate. Therefore, the tools Byron Katie provides show us ways to change our thinking into happier and less-stressful paths. The ultimate result, if used successfully, is that we become somewhat like the saints, able to love and accept everything. But my daughter is a drug addict. Do you expect me to be able to love that? The answer is yes and Katie carefully and lovingly discusses this specific situation in Loving What Is (2002, p. 214).
Folks have found several ways to avoid the teachings of Katie, while pretending to be on that path. The most common is: "I only accept that situations that don't apply to me are able to be loved. My difficult situations and angst are not the same; it is totally appropriate for me to be critical and judgmental about current wars, sitting presidents, big polluters or big business." Justifying criticism and pain (because it is "natural") does lead some people away from Katie's work, while they may still believe that they are following it.
© 2008 by Thayer White
Finding Your Soul in the Spirituality Maze
|Excerpt from Be Your Own Therapist: "Do you routinely ignore your body and its signals, as you might ignore a carcass alongside the highway? Is your body dull and lifeless, like a carcass? If so, you may be like many psychotherapy clients who have the mistaken impression that just doing verbal psychotherapy will eventually make them happy."|