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Questions About The Questions

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

In an interview, Katie was asked the following questions:  The first question is “Is it true?” The second question is “Can you absolutely know that it is true?” When you start doing The Work regularly, does the second question eventually fall off, because you fully probe things when you ask the first question?

Here's what she said:

Sometimes the second question doesn’t even apply. And sometimes with the concept you’re questioning, it makes more sense to ask just the second one and not the first one. For me, I wouldn’t miss one of the four. I like to say that the first question is there, and just in case you miss it, there’s another one to back it up.

Some people sincerely answer yes to the first question, but with the second question they have to go deeper and see if they can absolutely know what they’re so convinced of. For example, if the concept is “John shouldn’t have hit me—is that true?” your answer may be a quick yes. Of course it’s true; we all know that violence is bad. But then, when you ask yourself the second question, your answer may be different. You may find that you can’t absolutely know what is best for you or for John or for the world. And if your answer is yes, then just move to the third question: “How do you react when you believe that thought?” And just trust the questions and the inquiry.

People sometimes believe that every answer to the first two questions should be no. That’s not true. This is personal work. It’s meditation, and you come out with the answer that is yours. When you’re not defending and justifying, and you’re being very still, your answers can and do shock you.



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