I’m trying to learn to stay in the moment. I’m trying not to make up stories in my head, and even more, I’m trying not to believe the stories I tell myself. Byron Katie teaches a method to inquire as to the truth of the stories we believe with the following 4 questions.
Do you know it’s true? no.
(In case the first answer was yes)….Do you absolutely positively know it’s true? No.
(If the answer is yes, then move forward based on that absolute truth.)
How do you feel when you think that thought? Afraid, insecure, unloved, uncared for, disrespected, hurt, lonely. (In other words, all the negative unhappy emotions that you can think of.)
Who would you be without that thought? Content, patient, loving, self-assured, trusting, safe, busy, relaxed.
So why would I hold onto a thought that I don’t know (and in my heart don’t believe) is true, when it makes me feel like shit?
Ego. Goddam ego, telling me maybe it’s true, and what will you do if it is, and how will it feel when you know it wasn’t real, you’re about to get blindsided, and yada yada yada. Stupid monkey mind egoic voices screaming in my ear, “fear fear fear.”
In my marriage, I had to assume the opposite of what came out of his mouth was true. I had to take all the clues, and hints, (because there was always a piece of the truth in what he said, and he spun his lie around that truth) and then investigate and he never disappointed, he was always lying, when the whole truth came out. It got so I didn’t even get mad, I couldn’t confront him with the truth, and expose his lies, because my anger and indignance at being lied to (again) only exacerbated the situation. I just had to deal with the lies, work around them, discover the truth on my own, and then do my best to act based on whatever the truth actually was.
Of course, I was just burying anger, but that’s another blog.
I don’t have to do that anymore, but my mind is so trained to do it, I can’t seem to stop, unless I can find stillness somewhere. I try hard to hold myself back from seeking constant reassurance. I know it’s irritating, to people who have never lied to me.
So back to Byron Katie….my problem lies between acting on the third question and rising to the fourth, so that I don’t create problems that don’t exist. The negative voices are so many, so deep-seated, they don’t want to let go. They tell me I’m being a fool. I fight to ignore them. Because I know….they don’t have any good news, and are only afraid of losing their power.
Buddha teaches that attachment and desire are the causes of all pain….(or something like that…). But how can we not be attached, nor desire the object of our affection? When that attachment and desire is fulfilled, it is a beautiful thing.
I don’t know the answer to these questions. Well…I do know that I have to continue to try not to listen to my monkey mind. I do know that I need to wait, to have patience, I have to let the truth make itself known, in its own time. To fill my own time, and be flexible, because that’s what it takes right now.