Inquiry: “My Partner Left Me…”

Participant: I’m hurt by K****, my partner, because he left me.

Katie: So “He left you”—is that true?

Participant: Not really; in my heart he is there all the time.

Katie: So how do you react when you think the thought “He left me”? What happens? You’re living your life, you’re very happy, and then the thought hits, “Crrrrgh!”—“He left me.”

Participant: I feel inferior, or worthless. I feel very much alone, helpless, and I just don’t know what to do.

Katie: And I would put “I don’t know what to do” on a separate piece of paper, and Work it later. So, “He left me”—who would you be without that thought? Who are you without that thought as you live your life?

Participant: I feel free, secure, content.

Katie: So close your eyes. Now watch you, going to the market, doing the dishes, without the thought “He left me.” What do you see? Watch your life.

Participant: I see many people, and I join with them in a very good time, and I have freedom inside.

Katie: Yes, you have your life back.

Participant: Yes.

Katie: “He left me”—turn it around.

Participant: I left him.

Katie: So when you were with him, give me examples of how you would leave him when you were with him.

Participant: For a long period of time, I didn’t think of him. I had intimate situations with others. I didn’t feel well with him.

Katie: Yes…yes. So you’re just like him! “He left me”—can you find another turnaround?

Participant: He didn’t leave me?

Katie: Yes. You love him; he’s in your heart. Can you find another turnaround?

Participant: I left him in my thoughts.

Katie: Yes, and I found one, would you like to hear it?

Participant: Yes.

Katie: “I left myself.”

Participant: Yes. This is true.

Katie: When you mentally go into his life and who he should be with, you leave you. You move into a dictatorship, and that’s very painful, running people’s lives, and telling them who they should be with, and who they shouldn’t be with. And then you feel that. It’s the opposite of caring and love. Thank you, precious.

Participant: Thank you.

Find your own worksheet, here.

Activism and The Work

Here’s an excerpt from chapter 29 of my new book A Thousand Names for Joy: Living in Harmony with the Way Things Are:

If you have a problem with people or with the state of the world, I invite you to put your stressful thoughts on paper and question them, and to do it for the love of truth, not in order to save the world. Turn it around: save your own world. 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. You’re the one. In this turnaround you remain active, but there’s no fear in it, no internal war. So it ceases to be war trying to teach peace. War can’t teach peace. Only peace can.

I don’t try to change the world—not ever. The world changes by itself, and I’m a part of that change. I’m absolutely, totally, a lover of what is. When people ask me for help, I say yes. We inquire, and they begin to end their suffering, and in that they begin to end the suffering of the world.

I stand in my own truth and don’t presume to know what’s best for the planet. Knowing that the world is perfect doesn’t mean that you withdraw or stop doing what you know is right for you to do. If, for example, you’re concerned about the environment, please give us all the facts. Do a whole study of it, go to graduate school if you have to, help us out here. And if you talk to us clearly, without an agenda or any investment in the results, we can hear you, because you’re on our level. You’re not talking to us from a superior, I-know position. If you know that we’re all equal, that we’re all doing the best we can, you can be the most powerful activist on the planet.

Love is the power. I know only one way to be an activist who can really penetrate the human race, and that is to give the facts, to tell your experience honestly, and to love without condition. You can’t convince the world of anything, even if it’s for the world’s own good, because eventually your righteousness will be seen through, and then you’re on a stage debating a corporate polluter, and you start pointing your finger in outrage. That’s what you’ve been hiding when you believe “I know what’s best for the planet.”

When you attack a corporate official for destroying the atmosphere, however valid your information, do you think that he’ll be open to what you’re saying? You’re threatening him with your attitude, and the facts can get lost, because you’re coming from fear and righteous anger. All he’ll hear is that you think he’s doing it wrong, it’s his fault, and he’ll go into denial and resistance. But if you speak to him without stress, in total confidence that everything is just the way it should be in this very moment, you’re able to express yourself kindly, effectively, and with no fear about the future.

By the way, the Dutch version of the book is called Katie’s Tao.

Live Now: Just Do the Dishes!

Become mindful of how often your conversations focus on the past or future.

Be aware of the verbs you use: was, did, will, are going to, etc. To speak of the past in the present is to reawaken and recreate it fully in the present, if only in our minds, and then we are lost to what is present for us now. To speak of the future is to create and live with a fantasy.

If you want to experience fear, think of the future.

If you want to experience shame and guilt, think of the past.

Just focus on the dishes in front of you.

“Doing the dishes” is a practice of learning to love the action that is in front of you. Your inner voice or intuition guides you all day long to do simple things such as doing the dishes, driving to work, or sweeping the floor. Allow the sanctity of simplicity. Listening to your inner voice and then acting on its suggestions with implicit trust creates a life that is more graceful, effortless, and miraculous.

The miracle of now.

Whose Business Are You In?

Notice when you hurt that you are mentally out of your business.

If you’re not sure, stop and ask, “Mentally, whose business am I in?”

There are only three kinds of business in the universe: mine, yours, and God’s.

Whose business is it if an earthquake happens? God’s business.

Whose business is it if your neighbor down the street has an ugly lawn? Your neighbor’s business.

Whose business is it if you are angry at your neighbor down the street because he has an ugly lawn? Your business.

Life is simple—it is internal.

Count, in five minute intervals, how many times you are in someone else’s business mentally. Notice when you give uninvited advice or offer your opinion about something (aloud or silently).

Ask yourself: “Am I in their business? Did they ask me for my advice?” And more importantly, “Can I take the advice I am offering and apply it to my life?”