|Cambridge - Thursday 8/29|
I'm working my way through Byron Katie's book A Thousand Names for Joy. It's Katie's written response in parallel to the sacred Taoist text the Tao Te Ching.
Here's the passage that struck me today (pg. 117):
The voice within is what I honor. It's what I'm married to. This life doesn't belong to me. The voice says, "Do the dishes" -okay. I don't know what it's for, I just do it. If I don't follow the order, that's all right, too. But this is a game about where life will take me when I do follow. There's nothing more exciting than to say yes to such a wild thing. I don't have anything to lose. I can afford to be a fool.
If you have no idea who Katie is, or what the process of The Work is all about then this phrase can easily be taken the wrong way. Out of context it can be twisted and turned, making the sentiment seem crass, selfish, and maybe even a bit crazy. I get that.
Regardless, I'm not going to explain to you exactly what The Work is, or what this above excerpt is trying to transmit. I'm not sure you'll get anything out of it, or if it will resonate with you on any level. It may just make you think I'm a bit too wu-wu, or that I'm hearing voices (I'm not, I assure you. Well, except for that inner voice we all have that we listen to all the time).
I will tell you that the part where she says, "... this is a game about where life will take me when I do follow. There's nothing more exciting than to say yes to such a wild thing" , that's the bit that makes me smile. I can't quite put my finger on why exactly. I think it sums up that life is really quite simple, all we have to do is follow the simple directions, or not. If we don't superimpose a story on every thought, if we let go of the expectations we keep for others, and dwell in our own business we don't have anything to lose or gain. Saying "yes to such a wild thing" is living in line with what's true for me as it arises. No right, no wrong. Making one choice then making another. There's freedom in that to me.
"I discovered that when I believed my thoughts, I suffered, but that when I didn’t believe them, I didn’t suffer, and that this is true for every human being. Freedom is as simple as that. I found that suffering is optional." - Byron Katie
Somehow this cute video feels connected to all my above rambling, and sort of lightens the weightiness of my mumble-jumble above.