Jimi Ballard's Reviews > Loving What Is: Four Questions That Can Change Your Life

Loving What Is by Byron Katie
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Mar 19, 2008

it was amazing
bookshelves: spirituality
Recommended for: people aready familiar with "the work" through Byron Katie's previous books.
Read in March, 2008

I listened to this mostly while on a 4 hour drive and while walking my dog. I don't usually like to treat books as background noise but it worked in this case.

If you're not already familiar with Byron Katie's process of inquiry that she calls "the work" you should start with "Loving What Is: Four Questions That Can Change Your Life". Read that and then actually put her process of inquiry into practice a few times. This book will make much more sense if you have that background first.

In "Loving What Is" Byron Katie relates how she experiences daily life as someone who lives in a constant state of witnessing, non-dual awareness. That is a difficult concept for anyone to get across - reference the long tradition of inscrutable Zen Koans which to some extent attempt the same thing. She manages this quite well though, helped partly by the fact that she is unencumbered by religious tradition or non-western cultural view. I find a strong resonance between what she says and my reading of historical accounts of enlightenment experiences, mostly in the Zen Buddhism tradition. She is radically honest about her thoughts, feelings, and perceptions. Such honesty means she sometimes says things which on first hearing may make you want to throw down the book in disgust. Only when kept in the perspective of her life and process of inquiry are these comments rendered acceptable or meaningful.

Skepticism of those who claim to be spiritual teachers based on some spontaneous enlightenment experience is always warranted. After viewing Byron Katie with a somewhat skeptical eye and comparing her to others I have studied and rejected, I think she may be the real deal.
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