What caregivers in Africa think about The Work

It has been a while since I had the chance to go to Africa to move The Work of Byron Katie and I am very excited about the new project that is going to take me to Zimbabwe in September and October 2013. The best thing about it is that it is organised by an NGO,by people who deal with the problems on the ground on a daily basis. I have heard from health workers, community development workers, AIDS advocates and Social workers that The Work is a powerful tool in the hands of caregivers who deal with heightened levels of suffering. And the best place to start is always with oneself. Prior to discovering The Work, I used to feel quite depleted and saddened by the levels of poverty and sickness I witnessed on my trips to developing countries. The Work has totally changed my attitude and I now have more clarity and energy to deal with all the situations I am confronted with there. Questioning my own thoughts and not seeing a problem with those people’s circumstances, gives them the room to also have a look and realise for themselves what is the cause of their suffering. Not being at war against reality doesn’t mean being passive, quite the opposite. It frees up energy to take action when action is needed, effectively and fearlessly. In the two videos below, you will meet some of my Franciscan nuns friends who have experienced The Work for themselves before passing it on to the people in their community that they are so dedicated to. I am open to sharing The Work with members of the caring professions and to supporting them in doing The School for The Work so that they can in turn pass the tool, end their own suffering and inspire others to do the same. Caregivers and The Work Part 1 Caregivers and The Work Part 2  ...
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Bringing our African Friends to The School for The Work of Byron Katie

One of the things that I feel very enthusiastic about is to bring our African friends to The School for The Work of Byron Katie. The School for the Work is a phenomenal experience and I would encourage anybody who has an interest in The Work to go. My first School – and subsequent ones – was the most life-enhancing experiences I have ever had and I love passing on this message. In order to make The Work progress in Africa, we have been supporting people who have been actively involved in their community as health professionals, AIDS workers, community development workers, and others in the caring professions to attend the School in Germany in the summer of each year or in Los Angeles. So far, we have supported four Africans to participate in this great adventure: two Kenyans (Bad Neuenahr, Germany July 2010 & 2011) and a couple from Uganda (Los Angeles, Oct. 2012). Another three were ready to go and got refused their European visa. I have also met a Rwandan man and another from Malawi at various Schools… the numbers are growing. When these people go back to their country and their community, they can share The Work as living examples of what it can do to improve someone’s life. They go home equipped with some of Katie’s books and audios and a large dose of enthusiasm. The two Ugandans  are now engaged in the program to become Certified Facilitators. For us, it is great support to have these School graduates on the ground, able to help us organise sessions, talks and workshops. This year we are very hopeful about being able to bring Moses, a community development worker from Kenya. He was one of the ones that was refused his entry visa last year. In this video you will meet one of our School graduates African friends. <iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/3jxOCmzq6W8?rel=0″ frameborder=”0″...
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The Work of Byron Katie for people living with HIV / AIDS

I have been taking trips to Kenya and Tanzania, sharing The Work of Byron Katie in places where the incidence of HIV+ in the local population is officially 1 in 3 , including children. The effect that the epidemic has on people’s every day lives is hard to comprehend. The social structure and economy are also deeply affected and in turn, poverty gains ground. The Work is a powerful tool for people who are seemingly living in hopeless situations. It helps people gain a new perspective on their life, keep contributing to the community and face disclosure fearlessly. Coming out of denial and resulting covert sexual behaviours is, to my mind, one of the factors that will help curtail the progression of the AIDS epidemic. Below is short video that was filmed in 2010, it contains testimonials from HIV positive people who have experienced The Work. I hope it inspires...
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Moving The Work of Byron Katie in Zimbabwe

This coming September and October, I will be taking part in a project in Harare, Zimbabwe. The aim of this project is to use The Work of Byron Katie to help people living with HIV and AIDS reduce their self-stigma.  Self-stigma is defined as negative self-judgements resulting in shame, worthlessness and self-blame adversely affecting the heath of a person. When self-stigma is present, it feeds a cycle of denial. alienation and fear of disclosure of the sufferer’s status. In turn, this may result in behaviours that contribute to the spreading of the disease. Self-judgment is nothing more than a set of beliefs a person has about him or herself. Dismantling painful and limiting beliefs is the purpose of The Work, the perfect tool to support people living with HIV and AIDS, and affected by self-stigma to alleviate their own suffering. The Work is perfectly adapted to the African context since it requires nothing more than pen and paper and a willingness to go inside. This project was born out of a study carried out by Nadine Ferris France, HIV AIDS Consultant and fellow Certified Facilitator of The Work. In her own words, “Self-stigma is a silent killer of people living with HIV and AIDS. It adversely affects the physical and psychological health of people living with HIV and acts as barrier to care, treatment and support”. Nadine, in collaboration with Trocaire, an Irish NGO, has designed an intervention in Harare and has kindly invited me to participate in its implementation. It’s been two years now since my last visit to Africa. I am always amazed at how powerful The Work is in an African context and how it can make a real difference in people’s life. I am looking forward to this project and to discovering a new country....
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