“I discovered that when I believed my thoughts I suffered, but 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.”
- Byron Katie, Author
I've spent a lot of time lately unpacking and reconsidering all of the beliefs that I've taken on over the course of my lifetime. I've been on this planet for a little while, so that's a lot of suitcases that needed unpacking. Before this, it never occurred to me I was taking and holding onto other people's fears, traumas and limiting beliefs without question.
Turns out most of the baggage was jammed full of all the beliefs that other people told me I was supposed to believe - whether about the world or myself.
For instance, when I looked at many of the beliefs that I hold, I realized many were inherited from my parents, that were often unquestioningly passed down to them from their parents. On and on, generation after generation. Byron Katie
has a great practice in a process of self-inquiry which she now calls “The Work.” It involves asking four simple questions about each belief that causes us pain: Is it true? Can you absolutely know that it's true? How do you react when you believe that thought? Who would you be without the thought?
Turn the thought around:
The “turnaround” gives you an opportunity to experience the opposite of what you believe. Once you have found one or more turnarounds to your original statement, you are invited to find at least three specific, genuine examples of how each turnaround is true in your life.
where she asks herself "Is it true." This can mean a couple things - is it true that it actually happened or happened the way I believe it did. Or is it true for me now to even hold onto this belief - does it support my current value system?
One of the many beautiful things about a mindfulness and meditation practice is the nurturing space created within for us to safely re-examine and question everything we believed to be true.
Reconnecting with my our inner silence gives us the space to peel back the layers of the onion that we took on without knowing, and rediscover the truth of who we really are (love mostly - ding!). And then, to consciously decided who we want to be in this world going forward...one suitcase at a time.
So much love, Carolyn xx