The Work can be pretty annoying when it becomes another ideology, another guideline for how to respond to situations and how to see the world, another set of rules for what is OK to say and do, another source of information for what is “politically correct”, another way to squish what I really feel, and so on. I see this quite a bit in the BK inquiry world, although not in Byron Katie herself.
As usual, when something just becomes a belief things go out of whack. But when it is really explored, really taken as a practice, it can free us.
Statement: Inquiry is annoying.
- Is it true?
Yes, sometimes I really feel that way. Especially when seeing people being prim and proper and just repeating things they (think they) have heard Byron Katie say without really seeing it for themselves. Also, when I see myself holding back or stuffing things just because I know what comes up in me comes from a belief.
- Can I absolutely know it is true?
- What happens when I believe that thought?
I get annoyed and frustrated. Often just with the ones displaying it, but occasionally with the whole Byron Katie world. I feel right. Even if I see it in myself too, at least I see it, so that makes me more right than the folks who are blindly in the grips of it and do not see it for themselves. So I then feel separation and that I don’t quite belong. I feel alienated from the ones I see this in, the parts of myself displaying it, and life in general.
- Who am I without that thought?
OK with it. Even if I see that it may be happening, I see the perfection in it too. I see how there are infinite causes behind it, the whole universe has brought it to fruition here and now. And I see how it can help us all become more aware of that tendency in ourselves. I take it in stride, still being honest about what I see, using it as an opportunity to find it in myself and explore it for myself, expressing it to others if it seems appropriate, all with a sense of ease around it.
- Inquiry is not annoying. More true. It is only four innocent questions and the turnarounds. There is nothing annoying inherent in it, or anything else for that matter. Also, it is just a way to find for ourselves what is already more true for us. That is fine too. And if it is used in other ways, for instance as an ideology, then that is not part of The Work, and it just gives us all something new to inquire into.
- I am annoying. Very true. I am often annoyed by myself, and in this case, about the tendency to make The Work into an ideology, another belief system and worldview. I am sure I can be pretty annoying to others as well. For instance, why do I write about the same things over and over in this blog? Don’t I have anything better to do? Don’t I have a life? Shouldn’t I move on?
- I am not annoying. Nothing is inherently annoying. A sense of being annoyed comes from the stories we put on top of what is happening, and none of those stories are absolutely true.
- My thinking is annoying. When I believe my thoughts, and the world creates friction with the shoulds in those beliefs, I get annoyed.
- My thinking is not annoying. They are just thoughts, just stories. Innocent questions about the world. Nothing annoying there. The sense of being annoyed only comes up when I take them as absolutely true, and the world rubs up against them.