A Thousand Names for Joy: Living in Harmony with the Way Things Are
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

A Thousand Names for Joy: Living in Harmony with the Way Things Are

4.25 of 5 stars 4.25  ·  rating details  ·  770 ratings  ·  100 reviews
In her first two books, Byron Katie showed how suffering can be ended by questioning the stressful thoughts that create it, through a process of self-inquiry she calls The Work. Now, in A Thousand Names for Joy, she encourages us to discover the freedom that lives on the other side of inquiry.Stephen Mitchell—the renowned translator of the Tao Te Ching—selected provocative...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published February 6th 2007 by Harmony (first published January 1st 2007)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about A Thousand Names for Joy, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about A Thousand Names for Joy

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,328)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
This book helped me relax and know that there's never, ever anything to worry about, that life is safe and good all of the time, and that as long as I question my thoughts and don't take my beliefs as truth, it always will be. What freedom.
The framework is too esoteric and fakey for the easy, natural philosophy of the primary author. The "Tao" and "master" insertions are rigid impositions that make the text inaccessible in places and give the impression of insecurity, or of a grasping for validity.

However, when these moments pass and Byron Katie sinks into to the stories and patterns that characterize her one-on-one dialogues (which are brilliant and can be found on YouTube), the book shows its real value. Without the trappings an...more
I'm inspired to share how I found out about Byron Katie in the first place. Around the time I came to the firm decision to both retire and to pursue my MtF transition during retirement (September 2010), I realized that I'd begun returning to something I'd let fall by the wayside since my college days: the mystical writings of the so-called ancient Hindu and Buddhist writers, and to some extent Taoist. I not-did the theist approach for basically all the years between my marriage in 1978 up until...more
I have to sit with this book for a while before I really can rate it. I know I loved the absolutely unique voice of this woman, and her absolutely unique worldview; and I love anything that makes me think differently. I think about the book a lot. It might be too out there for me, but I think I can learn some things from her "Work" which is essentially a therapeutic tool to deal with unresolved issues. You make a statement about something unresolved, and ask some questions about it, and then rev...more
Alicia St Rose
Jul 19, 2007 Alicia St Rose rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone who wishes to end their mental suffering by loving what is..
Shelves: selfrealization
As of August 2007, I'm on my fifth read of this profoundly moving book. I'm savoring it one paragraph at a time. I copy a key sentence from one paragraph each day and carry it with me.
Yes, this book is so rich in clarity, that every paragraph offers some insight.

If you are familiar with the Tao Te Ching, then this book will illuminate Lao Tzu's message like nothing ever has.

Simply amazing...

I guess I'm officially giving up on Byron Katie. This is the second book of hers I tried to read (after coming across a quote that I liked*). Parts of the book made absolutely no sense to me, as if they were written in a language I didn't understand. The parts I could sort of follow seemed to be proposing a method for suppressing fear and anger, which, IMO, is not a good idea, as suppressed emotions are likely to come back eventually, stronger than ever.

Also, the book is not logically consisten...more
Farnoosh Brock
I listened to this book on audio, courtesy of Byron Katie team themselves, pior to my interview with her.

The audio is simply mesmerizing. She has a voice that sounds like the voice of God if there were such a thing. She is incredibly soothing and comforting.

The book content is beautiful, but the concept of the Tao gets very esoteric for me, and I tried to stay with it. I did not multi-task when listening to this audio book and I really contemplated the deep concepts of truth, reality, self, ex...more
Gregg Bell
I thought Byron Katie was a flake. I had no interest in reading any of her stuff. But the book club I was in was reading her. As it was, this book club was very far from where I lived so I ended up buying the book, rather than making the long drive to pick it up from the library (where the book club had ordered enough for the club), and am I ever glad I did.

The title is misleading. A lot of what's within the book is misleading. But--the good news--you won't miss out on Katie's heart for people a...more
Jeremy Neal
I love this book.

It's quite rare to read an account by somebody who is relating the experience of enlightenment, I've read plenty of treatises on what you need to do to get there.

I'm not enlightened, but neither am I a cement-head, and I can see that on a spectrum of learning, all of these ideas make sense. This is written like a dream; not in terms of prose, but in terms of relating a particular perspective, it's beautiful.
Jan 06, 2013 Dawn rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: kindle
I love the core of her basic philosophy - that it's your thoughts about things that cause you stress & unhappiness rather than the things themselves - but I don't really buy into it quite as far as she takes it. As a result, a lot of this book felt way, way out in left field. This would've been more interesting if I were either more familiar with the Tao or a bigger believer in her philosophy.
Well I have to buy this book. It's a loose translation of Tao Te Ching. I felt like I could absorb it personally instead of intellectually. One of those books you can pop open to any page and it would apply to your current problem and perhaps give you a different perspective of it (like the Bible).
Byron Katie's best book. A commentary on the Tao Te Ching (translated by her husband) in light of her own experience. Read it several years ago.
I quit. I don't know if I'm just not used to reading this type of book, but I'm over it after only 14 pages. She's too damn repetitive and I just can't get behind her philosophy. Maybe I needed to read her other books first to really 'get' what she's talking about, but as of now I'm not a believer. She just keeps saying the same thing over and over, and that thing is that everything that happens in the present is what is exactly supposed to be happening and that fact should bring you joy - even...more
What does compassion look like? You don't have to know what to do. It's revealed to you. Someone come into your arms, and the kid words speak themselves; you're not doing it. compassion isn't a doing. Whether or not you're suffering over their suffering, you're standing or you're sitting. But one way you're comfortable, the other way you're not.

You don't have to feel bad to act kindly. On the contrary: the less you suffer, the kinder you naturally become. And if compassion means wanting others t...more
Jan 21, 2008 jimstoic rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to jimstoic by: Jessica Rockers
Shelves: ultimate-reality
I read "Loving What Is" when it came out six or seven years ago. It was transformative for me at a critical point in my life. A friend gave me "A Thousand Names for Joy" on CD for Christmas, and I have been listening to it ever since. I'm on Disc 5 now and I'm sad that there are no more discs. The book is a sort of call and response between Stephen Mitchell, who reads a passage from his translation of the Tao te Ching, and Byron Katie, who responds to and explains the passage. All books change u...more
Philip Morgan
This is a book where the main message is slightly encumbered by the presentation. The author reflects on the Tao Te Ching to varying degrees of effectiveness.

The underlying message, though, is extremely important. The mind is a wonderful tool but a terrible master. Byron Katie is trying in her books to offer a protocol for breaking the tyranny of the mind which, by its nature, is changeful in the extreme and intent on being justified, even if it does not reflect reality.

So this book is worth rea...more
I really like Byron Katie. I will most likely continue to read anything she puts out. However, this book is a little different than the others I've read by her. While her ideas about life certainly shine through, and she does discuss The Work a bit here and there, most of the book is just her thoughts as she contemplates the Tao Te Ching. I will freely admit that I don't entirely understand or appreciate the Tao Te Ching (though I'd like to). I still enjoyed this book, but there were parts where...more
Ancient wisdom from the Tao Te Ching is applied to modern life by a woman who discovered that she could end all her suffering by questioning her stressful thoughts.

The book is written like a transcript of a conversation between Byron Katie and her husband, Stephen Mitchell, whose translated version of the Chinese text, the Tao Te Ching, is considered one of the best. Mitchell reads verses from the Tao to Katie and she responds from her own wisdom and experience of loving what is, no matter if w...more
Yitka Winn
I didn't enjoy this one as much as 'Loving What Is,' because some of the sections felt so abstract/out of my realm of experience that it was hard for me to grasp much from them; if ants infest my house and body, I'm never going to be able to sit there patiently like Katie and think, "How wonderful that ants are nesting in my hair."
However, it was nevertheless a good follow-up to read immediately after reading 'Loving What Is' for the first time, to just hone a lot of the concepts and show me mor...more
BLEEPING Herald Newsletter
I now own three books written by Byron Katie. I leave them lying around the house out in plain view, because her picture on the front is always a handy reminder to question my stressful thoughts. Is that true? Can you absolutely know that it’s true? How do you react when you believe that thought? Who would you be without that thought? Turn it around. Ah, that’s better. In each of her pictures on these book covers, there is something about Katie that tells you she is authentic and she is authenti...more
Srividya Balaji rao
WOW! No words simply amazing Have read multiple times
This book changed the way I think...by making me realize I am not my thoughts. I guess it doesn't get more simple than that. This woman's words ring true for me. Maybe not for everyone--but I like the way she thinks...I mean, I like the way she exists? ;) The best part of the book is the tie-in with the Tao Teh Ching. I've been a fan of Lao-Tsu's since I was laid up for 2 months with a broken leg. She ties each chapter of this book in with one part of the Tao Teh Ching. Very cool--especially if...more
Lisi Pei
best book I ever read.
This book is destined to be one of the first spiritual classics of the 21st century. Katie's words are like arrows that strike the heart and bring stillness to a mind laden with turbulence. The logic she offers is irrefutable: reality is not the problem, it's our thoughts about reality that cause all the suffering we experience. Written as a modern day commentary on the Tao Te Ching, this is Katie's best Work yet. If the phrase 'All is One" resonates within you, don't pass on this wonderful book...more
Iciar Piera
Un auténtico placer leerlo. He disfrutado y "gozado" de cada palabra y página de este libro.
Maria Paiz
Although this book seemed to repeat itself a lot, I do appreciate that it did so its message could drill itself in my head. Katie's "The Work" reminds us that we can't ever change the problems that afflict us or the people that hurt us; we can only change our perception of them through questioning the validity of our thoughts. Everything we need to be happy and free is inside us.
I like a lot of what Katie has to say in this book. I can definitely see where stress in my life comes from a lack of acceptance of reality - especially the small, irritating bits of it. I'm actually pretty good at dealing with major hardship, it's the daily grind that gets me down. I'm not convinced that a mother's life has room for "The Work," but I'm willing to give it a try.
Nanci Robertson
I totally admire this author, Byron Katie, for the integrity with which she incorporates her spiritual beliefs into her life. Living life moment to moment, trusting in the Divine Intelligence of the Universe and seeing everything, yes EVERYTHING without judgment, as a manifestation of Universal Love. Don't argue with Reality. Love it all.
Some seriously esoteric, mind boggling stuff. Based on ideas from the Tao te Ching. I'm sooooo not ready to practice the idea that I simulaniously don't exist and yet I'm all there is. Does offer great, deep philosophical mind benders that can be debated with someone who's interesting in debating deep philosophical mind benders. Hmmmmmmmm....
Leslie North
great great thoughts!
I love so many but my favorite has got to be this, "I told all my children, you have the perfect mother, I'm responsible for all your problems and you're responsible for the solutions." So great. Of course, I would add to that - that the solutions are all found in the spiritual dimension.....
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 44 45 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Goodreads Librari...: Please delete this quote with typos 4 15 Jun 01, 2014 04:11AM  
  • The Diamond in Your Pocket: Discovering Your True Radiance
  • The End of Your World: Uncensored Straight Talk on the Nature of Enlightenment
  • The Presence Process: A Healing Journey Into Present Moment Awareness
  • Spiritual Enlightenment: The Damnedest Thing
  • NLP: The New Technology of Achievement
  • The Spiritual Dimension of the Enneagram: Nine Faces of the Soul
  • Teachings on Love
  • The Language of Emotions: What Your Feelings Are Trying to Tell You
  • Mama Gena's School of Womanly Arts: Using the Power of Pleasure to Have Your Way with the World
  • There Is Nothing Wrong with You: Going Beyond Self-Hate
  • Entering the Castle: An Inner Path to God and Your Soul
  • The Gift of Change: Spiritual Guidance for Living Your Best Life
  • The Disappearance of the Universe
  • Getting Unstuck: Breaking Your Habitual Patterns & Encountering Naked Reality
  • Mindfulness for Beginners
  • The Conscious Parent: Transforming Ourselves, Empowering Our Children
  • The Vortex: Where the Law of Attraction Assembles All Cooperative Relationships
  • Manifesting Change: It Couldn't Be Easier
Byron Kathleen Mitchell, better known as Byron Katie, is an American speaker and writer who teaches a method of self-inquiry called “The Work of Byron Katie” or simply “The Work.”

Katie became severely depressed in her early thirties. She was a businesswoman and mother who lived in Barstow, a small town in the high desert of southern California. For nearly a decade she spiraled down into paranoia,...more
More about Byron Katie...
Loving What Is: Four Questions That Can Change Your Life I Need Your Love - Is That True?: How to Stop Seeking Love, Approval, and Appreciation and Start Finding Them Instead Who Would You Be Without Your Story?: Dialogues with Byron Katie Question Your Thinking, Change The World: Quotations from Byron Katie Your Inner Awakening: The Work of Byron Katie: Four Questions That Will Transform Your Life

Share This Book

“I love what I think, and I'm never tempted to believe it.” 15 likes
“The reason I love rules and plans and religions is that people feel safe in them for a while. And, personally, I don't have any rules. I don't need them. There's a sense of order that goes on all the time as things move and change, and I am that harmony, and so are you. Not knowing is the only way to understand... Meanings, rules, the whole world of right and wrong, are secondary at best. I understand how some people think they need to live by rules...It's very frightening for them to watch the world unfolding in apparent chaos and not realize that the chaos itself is God in his infinite intelligence.” 0 likes
More quotes…