Awakening of Intelligence
7th Public Dialogue Saanen
10th August 1971
Intelligence and the Religious Life
Questioner (1): Can we discuss the observer and the observed and their relation to awareness?
Questioner (2): May we discuss what it really means to lead a religious life?
Questioner (3): Could we talk about intelligence and meditation?
Krishnamurti; Now what is a religious life? In talking that over, we shall come upon this question of the observer and the observed, intelligence and meditation and the rest of it. I don't know if it interests you at all to find out what religion means. Not the accepted meaning of that word, the belief in some saviour, in some form of God, in some ritual and so on, which is all propaganda and for me has no value whatsoever - that is not a religious life. Are you quite sure we all see that fact? You may not belong to any sect or group, or any community that believes - or doesn't believe - in God. That belief - or unbelief - in God is another form of fear: the mind wanting some kind of security, certainty; because our life is so uncertain, so confused, so meaningless, we want something to believe in. So can we also put aside the hope that something outside, a superior agency, exists? To enquire, all that must obviously be put aside.
Thought can imagine anything - gods or no gods, angels or no angels - it can produce every form of neurotic perception, idea and conclusion. Knowing that intelligently, man then says: how can thought be quiet, so that the mind is free to enquire? Thought is capable of inventing, or imagining every form of conclusion, of projecting an image in which the human mind finds security; that security, that image, becomes an illusion - the Saviour, the Brahma, the Atman, the experiences you have through various forms of discipline and so on. So the problem is: can thought become completely still? Some say you can make it still only through a system which a teacher has invented through discipline and control. Can a system, discipline, conformity, make the mind really quiet? Or doesn't following a system, practising day after day, make the mind mechanical? - and being mechanical, then you can control it like any other machine. But the brain is not quiet, it has been shaped and conditioned by the system which it has practised. Such a brain, being mechanical, can be controlled and thinks such control is quietness, stillness. Obviously it is not. Please don't just accept what the speaker is saying. But do we all see the necessity of having a completely quiet mind? For when the mind is quiet it can see and hear much more, see things as they are - not invent, not imagine.
So can the mind become completely still without coercion, without compulsion, without discipline? - discipline being will, resistance, suppression, conformity, fitting into a pre-established pattern. If you do that, you are forcing the mind through conflict to conform to the pattern established by the system. So discipline in the ordinary sense of the word is out. The word discipline means to learn; not to conform, not to suppress, not to control, but to learn.
Can the whole structure of the brain and the mind be completely quiet without any form of distortion by will, by desire, by thought? That is the problem and knowing it, people have said, "It is not possible." Therefore they went in the other direction, used control, and discipline, did all kinds of tricks. In Zen meditation they sit, paying attention, watching and if they go to sleep they are struck to keep awake. This kind of tremendous discipline is mechanical and therefore controllable; it is done in the hope of achieving an experience which will be true.
In his search for some super-transcendental experience man has said: the mind must be absolutely quiet to receive something which it has never experienced before; he has never tasted the smell, the quality of it, therefore the mind must be still. And they have said there is only one way of making the mind still: to force it. When there is the operation of will in bringing about a quiet mind, there is distortion. A mind which is distorted cannot possibly see "what is". Are we doing this? - that is, not exercising will, not forcing the mind to be mechanical through any form of discipline or system, in which are included all the tricks of Yoga - which is totally wrong. Those people who teach physical exercises make it into a perfect racket.
So seeing all that, can the mind become completely still - the mind and the brain, because it is very important that the brain be completely quiet. The brain, which is the result of time, with all its knowledge, experience and so on, is always active to every stimulus, responding to every impression, to every influence, and can that brain also be quiet?
Questioner: Why should it be quiet? It has a lot of different functions.
Krishnamurti: It must be active within the field of knowledge, because that is its function. If I did not know that a cobra was a most poisonous snake I would play with it and get killed. The knowledge that it is poisonous is self-protection, therefore knowledge must exist - technologically, in every way. That knowledge has been acquired, but we are not interfering with it, we don't say, "You must not have knowledge", on the contrary, you must have knowledge of the world, of the facts. But that knowledge has to be used impersonally.
So the brain has to be quiet; if it makes any movement, its movement will be in the direction of security, because it can only function in security, whether that security be neurotic, rational, or irrational. The brain has to have that quality of sensitivity so that it can function in knowledge, fully, completely, efficiently, sanely, healthily, and not from the point of view of "My country", "For my people", "For my family", "For me". But also there must be that quality of sensitivity which makes the brain completely quiet - that is the problem. I have explained, described the problem, but it has nothing whatsoever to do with the fact. The fact is whether you, listening to this, have put aside every form of organized belief, every form of wanting more and more experience. Because if you are desirous of wanting more experience, then the desire is in operation, which is will.
So the fact is, if you are interested in pursuing a religious life, you have to do this, which means leading a really serious life - no drugs, all that is out. And also there must be no seeking or demanding experience. Because when you are seeking experience - transcendental, or whatever you like to call it - you are seeking because you are bored with the daily experiences of life and you want to have an experience which is beyond this. And when you are experiencing what one calls a transcendental, or a different level of experience, in that there is the experiencer and the experienced; there is the observer who is experiencing and the observed which is the experience. So there is division, there is conflict: you want more and more experience. That also must be completely set aside, because when you are enquiring, experience has no place.
One sees clearly that it is absolutely necessary that the brain, the mind, the whole system, the organism, must be quiet. As you can see, if you want to listen to something like music, your body, your mind is still - you are listening. And if you are listening to somebody who is talking, your body becomes quiet. When you want to understand something, the mind, the brain, the body, the whole organism, become quiet naturally. Look how you are all sitting quietly! You are not forcing yourself to sit quietly, because you are interested to find out. That very interest is the flame that makes the mind, the brain, the body, quiet.
Now what relationship has meditation to a quiet mind? The word meditation means to measure: that is the root meaning of it. Thought alone can measure, thought is measurement. Please, this is important to understand. One really should not use the word "meditation" at all. Thought is based on measure, and the cultivation of thought is the action of measurement - technologically and in life. Without measurement there could be no modern civilization. To go to the moon you must have the infinite capacity to measure.
Although measurement is essential, is obviously necessary, how can thought - which is measurable, which is measure - not enter? Let us put it round the other way. When there is this absolute quietness of the mind, of the whole organism, including the brain, measurement as thought ceases. Then one can enquire if there is such a thing as the immeasurable. The measurable is thought, and as long as thought is functioning the immeasurable cannot be understood. Therefore it has been said: control, beat down thought. And the whole Asiatic world went into the immeasurable, neglecting the measurable. You are following this?
Still using the word "meditation", what relationship has that to a very still mind? Can thought be really quiet, which means for the body, the mind and the heart to be in complete harmony? - yet seeing the truth that thought is measurable and that all the knowledge which thought has produced is essential. And also seeing the truth that thought, which is measurable, can never understand the immeasurable.
So if one has gone as far as that, then what relationship has this quality of the immeasurable with daily life? Are you all asleep? Are you all being mesmerized by the speaker?
We know thought is measure, we know all the mischief that thought has done in human life, the misery, the confusion, the division between people. "You believe and I don't believe," "Your God is not my God”: thought has brought about havoc in the world. Thought is also knowledge, so thought is necessary. To see the truth of that, and that thought can never investigate the immeasurable, is to see that thought can never experience it as an experiencer and the experienced. So when thought is absolutely quiet, then there is a state, or a dimension, in which the immeasurable has its own movement. Now what relationship has that to daily life? Because if it has no relationship, then I shall live a life very carefully measuring my morality, my activity, according to the measurement of thought, but it will be very limited.
So what is the relationship of the unknown to the known? What is the relationship between the measurable and that which is not measurable? There must be a liaison: and that is intelligence. Intelligence has nothing whatsoever to do with thought. You may be very clever, very good at arguing, very learned. You may have experienced, lived a tremendous life, been all over the world, investigating, searching, looking, accumulating a great deal of knowledge, practised Zen or Hindu meditation. But all that has nothing whatsoever to do with intelligence. Intelligence comes into being when the mind, the heart, and the body are really harmonious.
Therefore - follow this, Sirs - the body must be highly sensitive. Not gross, not overindulging in eating, drinking, sex, and all the rest that makes the body coarse, dull, heavy. You have to understand all that. The very seeing the fact of that makes you eat less, gives the body its own intelligence. If there is an awareness of the body, which is not being forced, then the body becomes very, very sensitive, like a beautiful instrument. The same with the heart; that is, it is never hurt and can never hurt another. Not to hurt and not to be hurt, that is the innocency of the heart. A mind which has no fear, which demands no pleasure - not that you cannot enjoy the beauty of life, the beauty of trees, of a beautiful face, looking at children, at the flow of water, at the mountains and the green pastures - there is great delight in that. But that delight, when pursued by thought, becomes pleasure.
The mind has to be empty to see clearly. So the relationship between the immeasurable, the unknown and the known, is this intelligence, which has nothing whatsoever to do with Buddhism, with Zen, with me or with you; it has absolutely nothing to do with authority or tradition. Have you got that intelligence? That is the only point that matters. That intelligence will operate in this world morally. Morality then is order, which is virtue. Not the virtue or the morality of society, which is totally immoral.
So that intelligence brings about order, which is virtue, a thing that is living, that is not mechanical. Therefore you can never practise being good, you can never practise trying to become humble. When there is that intelligence, it naturally brings about order and the beauty of order. This is a religious life, not all the fooling around with it.
Listening to the speaker have you understood this? - not verbally or intellectually, but actually seen the truth of this? If you see the truth of it, it will act. If you see the truth that a snake is dangerous, you act. If you see the danger of a precipice, the fact, the truth of it, you act. If you see the truth of arsenic, of poison, you act. So do you see this, or do you still live in the world of ideas? If you live in the world of ideas, of conclusions, then that's not truth, that's just a projection of thought.
So that is the real question: listening to this, as you have for the last three weeks, in which we have talked about all the varieties of human existence, of suffering, pain and pleasure, of sex and immorality, social injustice, national divisions, wars, and all the rest - do you see the truth of this, and therefore is there that intelligence which operates? - not "me" operating. When you say, "I must be myself", which is the slogan or the cliche of the modern generation, when you examine these words, "I must be myself", what is myself? A lot of words, a lot of conclusions, traditions, reactions, memories, a bundle of the past; and yet you say, "I want to be myself", which is too childish.
So having listened to all this, is there the awakening of that intelligence? And if there is that awakening of intelligence, then it will operate, then you don't have to say, "What am I to do?" Perhaps there have been a thousand persons here during these three weeks who have listened. If they really live that, do you know what is going to happen? We should change the world. We shall be the salt of the earth.
Questioner: Do I understand correctly, that for thought to cease the mind has to see deeply the truth of the poison of seeking security. Is that what you said?
Krishnamurti: Partly, Sir.
Questioner: The difficulty seems to be, that this part doesn't see, so the mind doesn't see it, and in order for the mind to see something there has to be quiet - it seems like a vicious circle. The difficulty is that it has not seen it.
Krishnamurti: No, Sir. First of all, why should a mind be quiet, why shouldn't it go on chattering? When the mind is chattering, you can't see anything very clearly, can you? You can't listen to anybody clearly. If you are looking at a mountain, seeing its beauty, your mind naturally has to be quiet; which means you have to give attention to that moment, to seeing. That's all. That is, if you listen to the fact that thought is measure, that thought has divided human beings, that thought has brought about wars - if you see the truth of it - not the explanation, the justification - you just see the fact of what thought has done. Obviously to see that fact your mind must be quiet. So it is not a vicious circle at all, Sir.
Questioner: May I ask you a question? You often talk about the beauty of the mountains and the stillness of the mind when looking at the beauty of a cloud. Can the mind be still when looking at something horrible?
Krishnamurti: Just listen carefully, observe the dark and the light, the slum and the non-slum. Can you watch that? Can there be an awareness in which these divisions don't exist? Is there an awareness in which the division between poverty and riches does not exist? Not the fact that there is not the division, with all its injustice, immorality, all that - but an awareness in which this division doesn't exist? That is, can the mind observe the beauty of the hill and the squalor, and not prefer, or incline to one, opposed to the other? That means an awareness in which choice doesn't exist. You can do this. Not that poverty should go on - you would do something, politically, socially and so on; but the mind could be freed from division, from this classical division between the rich and the poor, between beauty and ugliness, from the opposites and all the rest of it.
Questioner: I should like to ask you, is there a difference for you between thought and speculation?
Krishnamurti: Why should there be a difference between thought and speculation? Who is speculating - isn't thought speculating? Isn't thought theorizing that there is God, that there is no God, about how many angels can sit on a pinhead, and so on? It is the whole business of thought to speculate - there is no difference, it is the same.
Questioner: One can be aware objectively of a tree, of a Fountain, of a person. Can thought observe its own movement? Is there awareness of itself, and is one aware of being aware?
Krishnamurti: Yes: is there an awareness of thought watching itself?
Questioner: I don't like the word "watch".
Krishnamurti: All right: an awareness of itself. Now wait a minute, just look. Have you understood the question? You can be aware of the tree, of the hill, of your sitting there; there is an awareness of that. Is there an awareness of being aware?
You can be aware of the tree, the cloud, the colour of your shirt, and you can be aware objectively. You can also be aware of how your thought is operating. But is there an awareness of being aware?
When you are aware of a tree, as an observer, is that awareness? The tree is there and you are aware of that tree. You then become the observer and that becomes the observed, and you say, "That's not it." In that there is a division, as the observer and the observed. It is the same with the cloud, the same with you sitting there, and the person speaking, sitting on a platform and observing. In that too there is a division. In this too there is the observer watching you, the observed; in that there is division. One can be aware of thought. I am going step by step. Being aware of thought, in that also there is a division; the one who is aware separating himself from thought.
Now you are asking a question, which is: does awareness know, or is it aware of itself, without an observer? Of course not, the moment there is no observer, there is no awareness of being aware. Obviously, Sir, that's the whole point! The moment I am aware that I am aware, I'm not aware. Remain with it, Sir, for two minutes remain with it! The moment I am aware that I am humble, humility is not. The moment I am aware that I am happy, happiness is not.
So if I am aware that I am aware, then that is not awareness; in that there is division between the observer and the observed. Now you are asking a question, which is: is there an awareness in which division as the observer and the observed comes to an end? Obviously awareness means that - awareness means that the observer is not.
Questioner: Can one be aware of the tree without the observer, without that space?
Krishnamurti: Look at it. When you look at a tree, there is space between you and the tree. Wait Sir, we are going step by step. When you look at that tree, there is a distance between you and the tree, there is the space, there is division. That division takes place when there is the observer who has an image of that tree as the oak, or the pine. So the knowledge, the image, separates the observer from the observed, from the tree. Please look at it. Can you look at that tree without the image? If you look at that tree without the image, without saying, "That is an oak", "That is beautiful or not beautiful", without like or dislike, then what takes place? What takes place when there is no observer, but only the observed? Go on, Sir, tell me what takes place - I'm not going to tell you!
Questioner (1): There comes about union.
Questioner (2): Oneness.
Krishnamurti; Oneness means the same thing.
Krishnamurti: No don't invent, don't speculate.
Questioner: When I am aware of the tree I have a feeling...
Krishnamurti: I'm coming to that, Sir. Please listen to it step by step. I said to you: when you look ordinarily at a tree, there is the division between you and the tree. You are the observer and the tree is the observed. That's a fact. You, with your image, with your prejudices, with your hopes and all the rest of it - that is the observer. Therefore as long as that exists as the observer, there must be division between you and the tree. When the observer is not, but only the object, what takes place? - don't imagine, do it!
Questioner (1): There is stillness... thought does not work any more.
Questioner (2): We become the tree.
Krishnamurti: You become the tree - my God, I hope not! Become the elephant! (Laughter) Do please listen. Do it. Look at a tree and see if you can look at it without any image. That is fairly easy. But to look at yourself without an image, to look at yourself without the observer, that's much more difficult. Because what you see is unpleasant or pleasant, you want to change it, you want to control it, you want to shape it, you want to do something about it.
So can you look at yourself without the observer, as you can if you look at the tree? Which means to look at yourself with complete attention. When there is complete attention there is no image. It is only when your mind is thinking, "I wish I had a better `me"', or "I am going to do so and so" - then when you are looking, there is inattention.
Questioner: Am I wrong if I say that we are in a state of awareness all the time? It's thought that invents the division.
Krishnamurti: Oh, no! That is another speculation of thought, that we are aware all the time. We are in a state of awareness only at moments, then we go off to sleep. The moments when we go off to sleep, the moments when we are inattentive, that is what is important, not when we are aware.
Questioner: Are we aware of the infinite affection you express when you translate intelligence into human life?
Krishnamurti: It's up to you, Sir!
Questioner: When I am aware of my image, and my image goes, then isn't that awareness in itself?
Krishnamurti: When I am aware of my image, does the image exist? It doesn't.
Questioner: Then that is awareness in itself.
Krishnamurti: That's right, awareness in itself without any choice. Sir, what is important in all this, is not what one has heard, but what one is learning. Learning is not accumulation of knowledge. When you go away from here, you will have various ideas about awareness, love, truth, fear and all the rest of it. Those very ideas are going to prevent learning. But if you are aware a little bit, then you are learning and then intelligence can operate through learning in daily life.
Brockwood Park 1971
1st Public Talk Brockwood Park
4th September 1971
The Relationship to Awareness of Thought and the Image
I THINK IT would be worth while to talk over together the question of violence, which is becoming worse and spreading right through the world; this really a part of the whole human conditioning. Can man ever be free either of the superficial social conditioning of a particular culture, or of the much deeper conditioning, which is the whole collective sorrow, the violence, the destructive despairs and their activities of which most of us are unconscious? It is like a cloud which one has inherited, in which one lives. Apparently one finds it tremendously difficult to free oneself from it all.
Wherever one goes, all over the world, one observes that the superficial cultures don't penetrate very deeply into human consciousness. But the great clouds of sorrow - I don't like to use the word "evil" - that destructive violence, the antagonisms and conflicts seem to be deeply rooted in all of us. Can one be utterly free of this? If that is essential, then how is one to set about it? Superficially we may be highly cultured, polite, slightly indifferent, but deep down I think most of us are unaware that there is a great inheritance of this vast, complex conflict, misery and fear. If one is at all conscious of it one asks: is it possible to be entirely free of it, so that the mind is a totally different kind of instrument? I do not know if you have thought about this at all - or perhaps it seems that the superficial conditioning is so important that one is always struggling against it. If one has been through that and has put it away then there are all these deep layers which are for the most part unconscious. How is one to become aware of those? Is it at all possible to be completely rid of them?
Perhaps we could discuss how to be aware of these terrible things which man has inherited or cultivated. Whatever the explanations be, the fact is that we are deeply violent, that we are caught in sorrow. There is this cloud of fear and obviously this brings about a great deal of mischief and confusion in action. I think that is fairly obvious. How is one to be aware of all this, and is it possible to go beyond it?
The organized religions throughout the world have laid down certain rules, disciplines, attitudes and beliefs. But have they resolved human suffering and the deep-rooted anxieties, guilts and all the rest of it? So we can put aside all religious beliefs, hopes and fears. One is aware of what is taking place in the world, of the nature of religious oganizations with their heads, gurus and saviours and all their mythology. If one has set aside all that, because one has understood it and seen the futility, the falseness of it and is free of it, then certain facts remain: sorrow, violence, fear and great anxiety.
If I am conscious of all that, how am I to be free of it, so that I have a different kind of brain, a different kind of action, a different attitude towards life, a different way of living? The more intelligent, enquiring and intellectually aware one is of this, the more serious one becomes and there is also the demand that the mind must be totally free of all this mess that human beings have created and carry about with them endlessly. I think that is the basic problem; not that there is not social injustice and poverty, wars, violence, the division between nationalities and so on. All that can be solved, I feel, when human beings really understand this whole problem of existence. Then they can tackle all the confusion and wars from a different dimension.
The human mind wants to find that dimension. It has to find it to solve all this misery. If you are serious, not playing with words, speculating or indulging in theoretical suppositions, ideas and hypotheses, but are actually confronted not only with your own, but with this human suffering, how are you to end all this? The demand for constant security is much more a demand for psychological security, which is much deeper than physiological security; because we want psychological security, to give over all our thoughts and hope to some teacher, to some saviour, to some belief. How shall I, knowing all this, understand and be free of this constant effort, struggle and misery?
How are we to be aware of all that? What does this awareness or perception mean? How do I know that I am in sorrow? - not only I, but every human being in the world, of which I am part; how do I know that there is this sorrow? Is it a verbal recognition or is it an acceptance of an idea that there is sorrow of which I am part? Or is there a conscious awareness that sorrow is a fact? When I say to myself: there is tremendous sorrow in the world, of which I am part - as I am the world and the world is me - that is a fact. It is not an idea, not a sentiment, not an emotional assertion; it is an absolute fact that I am the world and the world is me. Because we have made this world we are responsible for it. All my thoughts, my activities, my fears, my hopes, are the hopes and fears of the world. There is no division between the world and me. The community is me, the culture is me and I am that culture; so there is no division. I don't know if you see and feel that?
Knowing that I am the world and that there must be a radical revolution in the world - not through bombs, that leads nowhere - I realize there must be a revolution in the very psyche and in the mind itself. So that one lives differently, thinks differently, acts in a totally different manner altogether. How am I to free the mind that is responsible for all this? - the mind being thought. It is thought that has brought about the division between people, the wars, the structure of religious belief. And thought has also put together the technology that makes for the convenience of everyday existence: electricity, the railway, the technological knowledge that enables one to go to the moon; it is thought that has done all this. This thought which has gathered so much information, so much knowledge, how is it to be free from the whole structure and nature of sorrow and fear? - and yet function efficiently, with sanity, in the field of knowledge without bringing about division and antagonism between man and man. You see the problem? How then is thought to prevent this division? Because where there is division there is conflict, not only outwardly but inwardly. Am I making the problem clear? - it's your problem, it's the problem of human being. One sees what thought has done, being cunning, extraordinarily capable, it has gathered technological knowledge which cannot possibly be put aside; thought must be exercised to function at all. And yet thought has brought about violence, and thought is not love. So one has to have the clarity of thought in function, and yet be aware that thought does breed all the misery in the world. How can we be aware of the whole implication of thought - which is the measurable - and also of a dimension in which thought as the measurable does not exist at all? First, is it clear what thought has done in the world, both beneficial and destructive? How is thought to function efficiently, healthily and not create division between people?
The collective memory of man responds as thought - which is the past. It may project into the future, but it still has its roots in the past and from there it functions. We see that in operation and we say that is necessary. But why does thought divide people? Why should I be conditioned as a Muslim - which is the result of thought - and you be conditioned as a Communist, also as a result of thought? Some people think that only violence can produce a sociological change, and others say: that is not the way. So thought is always creating divisions and where there is division there is conflict. So what is the function of thought?
Knowing that thought can only function in the field of knowledge, can thought invent or come upon a different dimension in which there is no division created by thought? Personally, I am very interested in this, because I have seen all over the world that thought has created such marvellous things and yet has brought about such misery, such confusion, such an enormous amount of sorrow. Can thought completely operate in one direction and be totally silent in another, so that it does not create a division? After having put that question to myself - and I hope you are putting it to yourself - is it possible for thought to say, "I won't go beyond the technological world, knowledge and daily existence", and not enter into that dimension in which there is no division? Is it possible for thought to separate itself like that or are we putting the wrong question altogether? Can thought see its own limitations and bring about a different intelligence? If thought sees its own limitation, is there not a different kind of intelligence in operation? Then is there not an awakening of intelligence which is above and beyond thought?
Questioner: When thought is seeing itself, that must not be thinking.
Krishnamurti: I don t know, Sir.
Questioner: Hasn't thought come up with systems to destroy itself?
Krishnamurti: First see our difficulty, don't let's find an easy answer, see the enormous implications in this. Man has lived by thought. We exercise thought every day, every minute. We must have thought; without it there is no action, you can't live. You can't destroy thought. To destroy thought implies a thought which is superior and says "I must destroy my lower thought" - it is all within the field of thought. This is what the Indians have done. They have said: thought is very limited, there is a superior thought, the Atman, the Brahman, the thing above; keep thought silent and then the other will operate. The very assertion of that is thought, isn't it? Here you say "The soul" - it is still part of thought. So thought has produced this extraordinary world of technology, which thought uses for the convenience of human beings and for their destruction. It is thought that has invented the saviours, the myths, the gods; it is thought that has produced violence, that becomes jealous, anxious, fearful.
So is there a field which is not measurable by thought? Can that field operate within the field of thought, without thought breaking up into fragmentations? If thought is operating all the time, then the mind is functioning with the knowledge which is the past. Knowledge is the past - I can't have knowledge of tomorrow, and knowledge is thought. If the only way to live is always within the field of thought, then the mind can never be free and man must always live in sorrow, in fear, in division, therefore in conflict. Realizing that, man has said there must be an outside agency - as God - who will help me to overcome all this fragmentation of thought. But that God, that Atman - or other forms of hope - is still the invention of thought not finding security in this world, which invents or believes or projects an idea which it calls God, which is secure. I see this. If thought is to be the only field in which human beings can live, then they are doomed. This is not my invention, this is what is actually going on.
Have I made the problem clear? The human mind demands freedom from guilt, suffering, confusion, of these endless wars and violence, and thought cannot produce freedom. It can invent the idea of freedom, but that is not freedom. So the human mind must find the answer. It can only do that when it has understood the nature of thinking and has seen its capacity and has found a state of the immeasurable in which thought does not function at all. This is what is called meditation. People have done this; but again, their meditation is part of the furthering of thought. They say "I must sit quietly, my thoughts must be controlled." Knowing the limitation of thought, they say "I must discipline it", "I must hold it in check, not let it wander". They discipline themselves tremendously, but they have not got that other dimension, because thought cannot enter into that.
The really serious people have enquired deeply into this. And yet, thought has been their major instrument and therefore they have never solved this problem. They have invented things, they have speculated. And poor fools like us accept these speculations, the philosophies, the teachers, the whole gamut of it. Obviously there must be a different kind of meditation, a different kind of perception, that is seeing and not evaluating. To see the operations of thought, all its inward and outward movement without giving it any direction or forcing it in any way, just to observe it completely without any choice, that is a different kind of perception. We see, but we always give it a direction. We say "This must not be", "This should be", "I shall overcome it". All that is the old way of responding to any action, feeling or idea. But to observe without any direction, without any pressure, without any distortion - is that possible at all? If I can see myself as I am without any condemnation or saying "I'll keep this and I'll reject that", then perception has a different quality. Then it becomes a living thing, not the repetitive pattern of the past. So in the very act of listening, as you are doing now, you see the truth that to really perceive there must be no directive or persuasion or compulsion. In that observation, you will see that thought does not enter at all. Which means, in that perception, in that seeing, there is complete attention. Where there is no attention there is a distortion. Now when you are listening to this, if you see the truth of it, that acts.
Questioner: Sir, in that state one sees oneself absolutely powerless and also amoral, and thought always feels and knows its own power. Thought always enters where there is interest, fear and anxiety.
Krishnamurti: Sir, isn't fear and anxiety the result of thought? - thought has produced fear!
Questioner: Sometimes it comes unexpectedly.
Krishnamurti: That may be, but whether it is unexpected or not, it's thought that has produced fear - no? Thought has produced this immense sorrow.
Questioner: What about children's fears?
Krishnamurti: Surely, isn't that based on their lack of security? Children need complete security and the parents cannot give it because they are interested in their own little selves. They are quarrelling, they are ambitious, so they cannot give the security the child demands - which is love.
So we come back to the same question. Thought has produced fear, there is no question about it. Thought has produced the aching loneliness in oneself, thought has said "I must fulfil, I must be, I am little, I must be big". Thought has brought about jealousy, anxiety, guilt. Thought is that guilt. Not: thought makes for guilt, thought is guilt. How can I observe myself and the world, of which I am part, without any interference of thought in that observation, so that out of the observation a different action can come which does not produce fear, regrets and all the rest of it. So I must learn to observe myself and the world and my actions quite differently. There must be a learning of observation in which thought does not interfere at all because the moment thought interferes it leads to distortion, it becomes biased. Perception is in the present; you can't perceive tomorrow. You perceive now, and when thought interferes in that perception - thought being the response of the past - it must distort the present; this is logical.
Questioner: Surely, to be aware we have to think.
Krishnamurti: Wait, look at it. What does awareness mean? I am aware that you are sitting there and that I am sitting up here, I am aware that I am sitting on a chair etc. Then thought says "I am a better person than somebody who is sitting below, because I am talking". Thought gives me prestige - do you follow? Is that awareness, or is it merely the continuous movement of thought? Can you see a tree without the operation of thought, without the image of the tree? - the image being thought that says: that is an oak.
In observing a tree what takes place? There is the space between the observer and the tree, there is distance; then there is the botanical knowledge, the like or dislike of that tree. I have an image of a tree and that image looks at that tree; is there a perception without the image? The image is thought; thought is the knowledge of that tree. When there is perception with an image, there is no direct perception of the tree. Is it possible to look at the tree without the image? That is fairly simple, but it becomes much more complex when I look at myself without any image about myself. Can there be an observation of myself without any image? I am full of my images. I am this, I am not that, I should be this, I should not be that, I must become, I must not become - do you follow? Those are all images and I am looking at myself with one of the images - not with the whole group of images.
So what is looking? If there is no image then what is seeing? If I have no images at all about myself - which one has to go into very deeply - then what is there to see? There is absolutely nothing to see, and one is frightened of that. That is: one is absolutely nothing. But we can't face that, therefore we have those images about ourselves.
The human mind demands freedom. Freedom is essential, it is even demanded politically, but you don't demand freedom from all images. Thought has created these images for various sociological, economic and cultural reasons. These images are measurable: the greater, the lesser. One asks: can thought observe without distortion? Obviously it can't. There is a distorting factor in thought, because thought is the response of the past. Is there an observation without the interference of thought? - that means without the interference of any image. You can find this out; it's not a question of just accepting or believing. You can look at your wife or your husband, the tree, the cloud, or the person sitting next to you, without any image.
Questioner: Is there such a thing as an unconscious image one might not be aware of?
Krishnamurti: Yes, there is, of course. Please listen to my question: how am I to be aware of the many unconscious images that I have stored up?
Questioner: Krishnaji, as long as one is trying to be aware, one creates things to be aware of.
Krishnamurti: That is what I am saying. You cannot try to be aware, you cannot determine to be aware; to be aware is not the result of exercising will. Either you see or you don't see, either you listen to what we are talking about now, or you don't listen. But if you listen with your image, then of course you don't listen at all.
The question is really very interesting. I can understand the conscious images, the superficial knowledge that I have, that is fairly simple and clear. But how am I to be aware of the deep, hidden images which have such a powerful influence on the whole way of life?
Questioner: We find out by how we behave, by how these images come up, sometimes in sleep.
Krishnamurti: Which means: through my behaviour I begin to discover the unconscious images that have been stored up - one image after the other, you follow? I behave towards you differently than towards another, because you are more powerful, you have greater prestige than the other man. Therefore my image of you is greater and I despise the other; so it means going through one image after another. Is there a central fact that creates these images consciously as well as deeply? If I can find that out, then I don't have to go through image after image, or discover the images through dreams.
Through my behaviour I discover my unconscious images; that's a form of analysis, isn't it? Will analysis resolve these images? These images are created by thought, and analysis is thought. Through thought I hope to destroy the images that thought has created, so I am caught in a vicious circle. How do I deal with this? Are your images revealed through dreams? Isn't that another form of analysis? Why should you dream at all? Dreams are a continuation of my daily activity, aren't they? I lead rather a confused life - uncertain, miserable, lonely, frightened, comparing myself with somebody else who is more beautiful, more intelligent; that is my life during the waking hours and when I sleep, all that goes on. I dream of all the things I have been through; it is the continuation of how I have been living during the daytime. If there is a revelation of myself through dreams, that is a form of analysis. Therefore I am depending on dreams to reveal the hidden images, and the dependence on dreams makes me less and less awake during the waking hours - no?
Questioner: Thought and sub-thought create images and these are useful on a certain level.
Krishnamurti: We have said that, there are useful images which must function, which we must have, there are highly dangerous images which one must totally abolish - obviously. That is what this whole discussion is about.
Questioner: Is there not only one question? - not whether thought can be silent when necessary but: can there be only silence?
Krishnamurti: That means, Sir: can there be silence, from which thought can operate, doesn't it?
Questioner: It is not a question whether thought can operate or not, but can there be only silence?
Krishnamurti: Can thought be completely silent? Who is putting that question? Is thought putting that question?
Krishnamurti: So thought is asking itself whether it can be quiet.
How will it find out? Can it do anything to be silent? It can't, can it? Can thought say to itself: I must be quiet? That is not being quiet! Then what is silence which is not the product of thought? Is there a silence which is not the result of thought? Which means, can thought come to an end by itself, without asking to come to an end? Isn't that what is implied when you listen to something, when you see clearly? When you are completely attentive, in that attention there is silence, isn't there? Complete attention means your body, your nerves, everything is attentive. Then in that attention the observer as thought does not exist.
Questioner: That only happens in moments of great danger.
Krishnamurti: You mean to say when there is a crisis. Must one live in crises all the time? What an appalling idea, isn't it? In order to be quiet I must have a series of crises and thereby hope to be silent. That's too complicated!
Questioner: May I say that silence happens from within.
Krishnamurti: How does it happen? Can one function from silence - you follow? Please put that question: first of all, what is silence? How does it come? Is there a functioning, that is living a daily life out of silence? I can't assert that there is an awareness all the time, I don't know, you don't know.
Questioner: But it seems to be there, it just changes all the time.
Krishnamurti: We only know one thing: that thought is perpetually in operation. And when thought is in operation there is no silence, there is no awareness, as we pointed out. Awareness, or perception, implies a state of seeing in which there is no image whatsoever. Until I find out that it is possible to see without any image, I can't state anything else. I can't state that there is an awareness, there is a silence. Is it possible for me, in daily life, to observe my wife, my child, everything around me, without a shadow of an image? Find out. Then out of that attention there is silence. That attention is silence. And it is not the result of practice, which is again thought.
4th Public Talk Brockwood Park
12th September 1971
The Meditative Mind and the Impossible Question
Shall we go on with what we said we were going to talk about this morning? I think it was that we should talk over together the question of meditation, various forms of yoga, and the appalling number of groups there are who are practising the most incredible things.
You know, as one travels all over the world, there is not only the explosion of population, pollution and the heavy weight of bureaucracy, tyranny, not only of the politicians and dictators but also the tyranny of the priests, the gurus, those who say they have attained enlightenment and so on. Observing all this, and the appalling condition - conditions of poverty and the ugliness of man's relationship to man, it becomes obvious that there must be a total revolution. A different kind of culture must come into being. The old culture is almost dead and yet we are clinging to it, and those who are young, revolt against it, but unfortunately haven't found a way or a means of transforming the essential quality of the human being which is the mind. And unless there is a deep psychological revolution, mere reformation on the periphery will have little effect. And this revolution, this psychological revolution, which I think is the only revolution, is possible through meditation.
Meditation is the total release of energy, and that is what we are going to talk over together this morning. Now, the word 'meditation', the root meaning of that word, is to measure. And the whole western world is based on that idea of measurement; and in the East they have said measurement is maya, illusion, and therefore one must find the immeasurable. The two went apart, culturally, socially, and intellectually and religiously. And as meditation is quite a complex problem, we have to go into it rather slowly and approach it from different angles, bearing in mind all the time that psychological revolution is absolutely necessary for a different kind of world, society, to come into being. I do not know how strongly you feel about it. Probably most of us, being bourgeois, comfortable on our little income, our little family, and so on and so on, would rather remain as we are and not be disturbed; but events, technology, and all those things that are happening in the world, are producing great changes outwardly; but inwardly most of us remain more or less as we have been for centuries upon centuries, and that revolution can only take place at the very centre of our being. And this revolution requires a great abundance of energy. And meditation is the release of that total energy. We are going to talk over that.
You see, first of all, how is one to have this quality of energy which is without friction? We know mechanical energy which is friction, mechanically and the friction which produces in us energy, through conflict, through resistance, through control and all the rest of it. So there are two different kinds of energy, mechanical which is friction, and is there any other kind of energy, which has no friction whatsoever, and therefore completely free and immeasurable? I think meditation is the discovery of that, because unless one has great abundance of energy, not only physically but much more psychologically, intellectually, our action will never be complete. It will always produce friction, conflict, struggle. So observing the various forms of meditation throughout the world, including Zen, the various forms of yoga brought over from India, and the various contemplative groups as monks and so on, in all that, if one observes it very closely, there is the idea of control, acceptance of a system, and practising a repetition of words which is called mantra, and various forms of breathing, hatha yoga and so on.
So first of all let us dispose of them altogether, by investigating not accepting what they say, investigating what they have said themselves, seeing the truth or the falseness of it. First of all there is this repetition of words: those words, sentences, mantras, a set of phrases given by a guru, a teacher, initiated, paying ten pounds, fifteen pounds or a hundred pounds so that you learn a peculiar phrase repeated by you secretly. Probably some of you have done that and you know a great deal about it. And that is called mantra yoga, brought over from India. I don't know why you pay a single penny to repeat certain words from somebody who says "If you do this you will achieve enlightenment - or you will have a certain quiet mind" and all the rest of it. You know when you repeat a series of words constantly, whether it is Ave Maria or various Sanskrit words or - what is the latest drink? - coca cola - and when you repeat that over and over and over again, obviously your mind becomes rather dull, and you have a peculiar sense of unity, quietness, and you think that will help to bring about clarity. You can see the absurdity of it altogether: because, first of all why should you accept what anybody says about anything, about these matters, including myself? Why should you accept any authority about inward movement of life. We reject authority outwardly - if you are at all intellectually aware, observe politically, other things, you reject it. But apparently we accept authority of somebody who says "I know; I have achieved; I have realized." The man who says he has, the man who says he knows, does not know. Right? The moment you say you know, you don't know. Because what is it you know? Some experience which you have had, some kind of vision, some kind of enlightenment - I dislike to use that word 'enlightenment'. And once you have experienced that, you think you have attained some extraordinary state, some extraordinary vision, and that is past, you can only know something which is over and therefore dead. So when all these people, this gang of people I like to call them, come over and say they have realized, do this or do that, for so much money, then it is obviously so absurd. So we can dispose of that.
Then we can also dispose of this whole idea of practising a system, a method. When you practise a method in order to achieve enlightenment, or bliss, or have a quiet mind, or achieve a state of tranquility, when you practise a method, whatever it is, it obviously makes the mind mechanical. You repeat over and over again certain gestures, breathing, you know all that business, repeat, practising awareness, which is quite absurd. Then this practice not only implies suppression of your own movement, of your own understanding, conformity, and the endless conflict involved in practising a particular system - and the mind likes to conform to a system because then it gets crystallized and it is easy to live that way. Right? So can we dispose now of all systems of meditations?
Then what is meditation? Is it control of thought? And if it is, who is the controller of thought? The controller of thought is thought itself, isn't it? Our whole culture both in the East and West is based on control - control of thought, and concentration in which only one thought can be pursued to the end. I hope we are meeting each other, are we? Shall I go on? Why should one control at all? Control implies imitation, conformity. Control implies the acceptance of a pattern as the authority, according to which you are trying to live - that pattern set by the society, the culture, by the priest, by somebody whom you think has knowledge, enlightenment and so on. And according to that pattern one tries to live, suppressing all one's own feelings and ideas and trying to conform. So in that there is conflict, and conflict is essentially wastage of energy. So concentration, which so many advocate in meditation, is totally wrong. You are accepting all this, or are you just listening out of boredom? Because we'll go into this question, whether thought without any form of control, control being suppression, conformity, conflict, whether thought can function when necessary, as in knowledge, in action, and be completely still at all other times? Do you follow my question? That is the real issue: whether the mind which is cluttered up with so many activities of thought and therefore uncertain, and trying to find clarity in that confusion, forces itself to control, conform to an idea, and therefore brings about more and more confusion within itself. I want to find out whether the mind can be quiet and only function when necessary, as in knowledge? Are you following my question? Am I making myself clear?
And control obviously, because it implies conflict, is a great waste of energy. Please, that is important to understand because I feel meditation must be a releasing of energy in which there isn't the slightest friction. And how is a mind to do this? How is it to have such energy in which every form of friction comes to an end? And in enquiring into that, one must understand oneself completely. There must be self-knowing totally. I must know myself completely, and is that possible? Not according to any psychologist, philosopher, teacher, or the pattern set by a particular culture, but know myself right through, both at the conscious level as well as at the deeper levels, totally. So, when there is knowledge, understanding of oneself completely, then there is the ending of conflict, and this is meditation.
Now how am I to know myself? I can only know myself in relationship. I can observe or the observation of myself takes place only when there is the response, reaction, in relationship; and there is no such thing as isolation, though the mind is all the time isolating itself in all its activities, building a wall round itself in order not to be hurt, in order not to have any discomfort, unhappiness, any trouble. It is isolating itself all the time in its activity, self-centred activity and I want to know myself as I want to know how to go from here to a particular town, clearly, watching everything that is involved in myself, my feelings, my thoughts, my motives, conscious or unconscious. How is this possible? You know, knowing oneself has been - the Greeks have said it, the Hindus have said it, the Buddhists have said it, 'know yourself', but apparently that is one of the most difficult things to know oneself. And we are going to find out this morning how to look at ourselves, because once you know yourself completely, that completeness prevents all friction, and therefore out of that comes this quality of energy which is totally different.
So to find out how to observe oneself one must see what we mean by observing. When we observe objective things like trees, clouds, the things outside of us, there is not only the space between the observer and the observed, physical space, there is also space of time. Isn't there? When you look at a tree - please do listen to this - when you look at a tree there is not only physical distance but there is also psychological distance. There is the distance between you and the tree, the distance created by the image as knowledge - that's an oak tree, elm, the image, and that image between you and the tree separates you. You don't become the tree, you don't identify yourself with the tree, but when the quality of the mind of the observer becomes without imagination, without the image which is imagination, then there is quite a different relationship between the observer and the observed. Right? Have you ever done this, looked at a tree without a single word of like or dislike, without a single image and have you noticed then what takes place? Then for the first time you see the tree as it is, and you see the beauty of it, the colour, the depth, you know, the vitality of it. That's fairly easy to observe a tree, another person, but to observe oneself, that way, that is to observe without the observer - are you following all this? So one must find out who is the observer, what is the observer.
I want to watch myself, I want to know myself as deeply as possible. And I watch myself. And what is the observer who is watching? What is the nature of that observer, the structure of that observer? That observer is the past, isn't it - the past knowledge, what he has remembered, collected, stored up, the past being the culture, the conditioning - that is the observer, who says, this is right, this is wrong, this must be, this must not be, this is good, I'll keep on, this is bad, I mustn't have. So the observer is the past, and with those eyes of the past we try to see what we are. Then we say, I don't like this, I am ugly, or, this I will keep - you follow? All those discriminations, condemnations take place. Now can I look at myself without the eyes of the past? Then is there an observer? Then there is only the observed, there is no observer. Please just see this. I am envious, or I over eat, I am greedy, and the normal reaction is, I must not over eat, I must not be greedy, I must suppress, you know all the rest of it that follows. So in that there is the observer trying to control his greed, his envy, and all the rest of it. Now when there is an awareness of greed, of your over eating, or whatever it is, without the observer, what takes place? Are we following each other, are we doing this thing? No? I over eat, my greed, I am very greedy. Can I observer that greed without giving it a name as greed, because the moment I name it I have already fixed it in my memory, as greed, which says, I must get over it, I must control.
So is there an observation of greed without the word, without justifying it, without condemning it? Which means, can I observe this thing called greed without any reaction whatsoever? To so observe is a form of discipline isn't it, not imposed by any particular pattern and therefore conformity, suppression, and all the rest of it, but to observe anything, observe the movements that are in myself, greed, envy, over eating, anger, jealousy, anxiety, smoking, drinking, you follow, the whole series of actions, without condemning, justifying or naming, just to observe. Then you will see, if you so observe, the mind is no longer wasting energy. It is then aware, and therefore it has energy to deal with that which it is observing. All right? Are you all asleep?
K: Quite right sir. That's it. But once you understand the whole mechanism of it, it doesn't become difficult. Once you see the truth of it, sir, that truth, that fact, acts. One can do that at the conscious level. There are a great many unconscious responses, motives, inclinations, tendencies, inhibitions, fears, how is one to deal with all that, the hidden accumulations? Must one go through analysing layer after layer, exposing all that through dreams? You follow? How is all that to be exposed totally so that knowing oneself becomes complete? You have understood my question?
Now how is this possible? Apparently it cannot be done by the conscious mind. I can't investigate consciously the unconscious, the hidden - can you?
K: Don't say 'no' - see the difficulty of it, because I don't know what is hidden and the hidden may intimate through dreams but the dreams need to be interpreted and all the complications - and all that will take a lot of time, won't it?
Q: I think it is possible under certain drugs to know myself with analysis - there is no conflict.
K: If one takes LSD or various forms of drugs that helps a great deal, because in that there is no conflict at all. So you please take drugs. Does it really, does any drug, LSD, marijuana, any of them - does it really expose the totality of the content of consciousness, or does it bring about chemically a certain state of mind which is totally different from the understanding of oneself? These drugs - I have never taken them - they have taken them in India a great deal - I have watched many people there. I have also watched students in universities in America, and many, many other people who have been taking various forms of drugs, LSD, marijuana, you know I don't know what all the other names are - psychedelic drugs. If you have observed, these drugs do affect the mind, the brain cells themselves. They destroy the brain. If you have talked to one or many of those who have taken drugs, they can't reason, they can't pursue a logical sequence of thought - and the doctors and the scientists are beginning to say it does destroy the very structure of the brain cells. Not only LSD but marijuana, which is much more dangerous than LSD because that leaves a toxic condition in the brain cells and is much more difficult to get rid of. In India they have taken drugs for millions, for thousands of years and they are the most ignorant people who have taken drugs. And all the so-called intellectuals in India have denied it, said don't do it, touch it. I am not asking you not to take it, it's up to you, but when you see the effect of it, on people - they have no sense of responsibility, they think they can do anything they like, many, many hospitals are full of these people who mentally are unbalanced through drugs.
We are talking of something which is non-chemical. If LSD or any drug can bring about a state of mind in which there is no conflict that would be a marvellous thing. And at the same time complete responsibility, sequence of thought, and action.
K: Beg your pardon, I cannot hear. Am I coming to a conclusion? Is that what you are saying sir?
Q: I find your sequence of thought illogical. And also I cannot see how you can argue against drugs if you have not any experience of taking drugs.
K: Ah wait. How can you argue against drugs if you have not taken drugs yourself? Must you go through various forms of experiences, must you get drunk in order to understand sobriety? Must you get angry in order to find out what it is not to be angry? Must you over eat in order - and so on and so on. Can't one observe without going through all the human mischief? So I am saying, we are asking, how is one to expose the whole content that lies hidden, at one glance - not through a series of dreams, not through analysis, all that implies time and wastage of energy? How is one to observe the whole content of consciousness, the obvious and the hidden, the superficial and the profound, at one look? You understand? Because this is an important question. I want to understand myself - myself being all the past, the incidents in my present life, the experiences, the hurts, the anxieties, the guilt, the various fears - how am I to understand all that without a single analysis, without going through all the dreams and intimations and so on, to comprehend all that immediately? To understand all that immediately gives immense energy. You follow? Am I making myself clear?
Now how do you do that? Is that an impossibility? And we have to ask the impossible question to find a way out of it. Unless we ask the most impossible question we shall always be dealing with what is possible, and what is possible is very little. I don't know if you meet this. So I am asking the most impossible question, which is to have this whole content of consciousness exposed and understand it, see it totally without time, which means analysis, exploration, investigation and seeing layer after layer, layer after - that's all a waste of time. So how is the mind to observe this whole content with one look? Is that possible at all?
If that question is put to you as it is being put now, what is your response? If you are honest, if you are really listening to that question, what is your response? You obviously say, I can't do it. Right? You obviously really don't know how to do it. Right? You really don't know, do you? Listen, please do listen. You don't know, do you? Or are you waiting for somebody to tell you? (Laughter) No, please, this is much too serious. Do listen to this. If I say to myself, I don't know, am I waiting for somebody to inform me? Am I expecting an answer? Then when I am expecting an answer, somebody to tell me, then I already know. Right? Are you following this? When I say, I don't know, I really don't know - I am not waiting for anybody to tell me, I am not expecting a thing because nobody can answer it. So I actually don't know. Right? Now, what is the state of the mind that says, I really don't know? I can't find it in any book, I can't ask anybody, I can't go to any teacher, priest, I really don't know. When the mind says, "I do not know" - what is the state of the mind? Please do listen, don't answer me yet. Do look at it because we always say, "We know". I know my wife, I know mathematics, I know this, I know that. We never say, "I really don't know." And I am asking, what is the state of the mind that actually, honestly says, "I don't know"?
K: Not blank - we'll take a little time, have a little patience with yourselves, don't verbalize immediately. When I say, I don't know and I really mean I don't know, what is the state of my mind? It has no answer. It is not expecting anything from anybody. Right? It is not waiting, it is not expecting. So what happens? What is the state of the mind that says, I don't know? Is it not completely alone? Right? It is not isolated. Isolation and aloneness are two different things. Aloneness, in that quality of aloneness there is no influence, there is no resistance, it has shed itself from all the past, it says, I really don't know. Therefore the mind when it says, I really deeply don't know, has emptied itself of all its content. Right? Have you understood this?
K: Have you? No, please, please.
I do not know how to expose the whole content of my consciousness. I thought I could through analysis. I thought I could through drugs. I thought I could do it by following some teacher, philosopher, psychologist or analyst. I have tried all those ways and I see I am still caught in the net of all that, and I discard all that, because that doesn't help me to know myself totally, and I don't know what to do. Do you follow? I don't know what to do. I have asked the impossible question and the impossible question says, "I don't know". Therefore the mind empties itself of everything it has - every suggestion, every probability, every possibility. So the mind is completely active, empty of all the past, which is time, analysis, the authority of somebody. So it has exposed all the content of itself by denying the content. Do you understand now? No? Has somebody understood this or am I talking to myself?
So, as we said, meditation can only begin with the understanding of myself totally, that is part of meditation, part of the beginning of meditation. Without understanding myself the mind can deceive itself, it can have illusions. That is, being conditioned by a particular culture in which one has been brought up, Hindu, Christian or Communist - if you are a Hindu you will see according to your conditioning, the god, the illusions, the myths, the falseness, the lies; if you are a Christian you are conditioned according to your particular culture, you will see Christ, you will see this and you will see that. If you are a Hibrew - you know all the rest of it, the same phenomenon goes through. And so when you know your conditioning and are free of it then there is no possibility of any kind of illusion. And that is absolutely essential because we can deceive ourselves so easily. So when I investigate into myself I see that the consciousness emptying itself of all its content through knowing itself, not by denying anything, but by understanding the whole content, that brings about a great energy which is necessary, because that energy transforms completely all my activity. It is no longer self-centred and therefore cause of friction. I don't know if you have followed this?
So meditation is a way of putting aside altogether everything that man has conceived of himself and of the world. You understand? So he has a totally different kind of mind. Meditation also means awareness - awareness both of the world and of the whole movement of oneself, without any choice, to see exactly 'what is', without any distortion, to see. And distortion takes place the moment you bring in thought. Right? But thought has function, absolute function, but when there is an observation, when thought interferes with that observation as image, then there is distortion, then there is illusion. So to observe actually what is, in oneself and in the world, without any distortion, and to so observe, a quiet mind is necessary. You understand? A very still mind is necessary. And one knows that it is necessary to have a quiet mind, therefore they say, discipline. Do you understand? Control it, and there are various systems to help you to control. And all that is friction. So if you want to observe passionately, with intensity, the mind inevitably becomes quiet. You don't have to force it. I don't know if you follow it? The moment you force it, it is not quiet - it is dead. Whereas if you see the truth that to perceive anything you must look, and if you look with prejudice you cannot see. If you see that, your mind is quiet.
So a quiet mind, a still mind, is necessary - not through any sense of conformity, discipline, enforcement. Right? Now what takes place in a quiet mind? Because we are enquiring not only into that quality of energy in which there is no friction, but also we are enquiring how to bring about a radical change within oneself, and oneself being the world and the world is oneself, the world is not different from me, I am the world. It's not just an idea, theory, but an actual fact that I am the world and the world is me. So if there is a radical revolution, a change in me, it will inevitably affect the world because I am part of the world.
And in this enquiry into what is meditation I see that any wastage of energy is caused by friction in my relationship with another. And is it possible to have a relationship with another in which there is no friction whatsoever? And that is possible only when I understand what love is, and the understanding of what love is, is the denial of what love is not. Love is not - as we went into that the other day - jealousy, ambition, greed, self-centred activity, you know, obviously all that is not love. So, when in the understanding of myself there is the total setting aside of all that which is not love, then it is.
So I have found in this examination, observing - the observation takes a second, the explanation takes a long time, the description takes pages but the act of observation is instantaneous. I have found in this observation no system, no authority, no self-centred activity, therefore no conformity, no comparison of myself with another. And to observe all this the mind must be extraordinarily quiet. If you want to listen to what is being said this morning, just now, you have to listen, haven't you? But you can't listen, if you are thinking about something else, if you are bored with this, I should get up and go. But to force yourself to listen is absurd, but if you are really interested in it, passionately, intensely, then you listen completely, and to listen completely the mind must be quiet. It is as simple as that.
Now, all this is meditation; not just one act, sitting for five minutes by yourself, cross-legged, breathing properly - that's not meditation, that's self-hypnosis. I want to find out what is the quality of the mind that is completely still, and also what takes place when it is still. Do you understand my question? I've observed, I've recorded, I've understood, I've watched, I've finished with that, but there is another enquiry which is, what is the state of the mind, the brain cells themselves? The brain cells store for self-protection the memories that are useful, memories that are necessary, memories that might lead to danger. Haven't you noticed this? I suppose you read a lot of books, personally I don't, I only read detective stories, therefore I can look, I can look into myself and find out, watch myself, not according to somebody - just watch. I am asking myself what is the quality of such a mind, what has happened to the brain? The brain records, that is its function. It functions only through memory, so that it is protected, safe, secure, otherwise it can't function. The brain may find security in some neurosis. But it has found security there. It has found security in nationalism, in a belief, which are all various forms of neurosis, in the family, in having possessions. The brain must be secure to function, and it may choose that security in something that is false, unreal, illusory, neurotic. So, when I have examined myself thoroughly all this disappears. There is no neurosis, no belief, no nationality, no desire to hurt anybody, nor record all the hurts. So the brain then is a recording instrument without thought using it as the 'me' in operation.
So meditation implies not only the body being still but also the brain being quiet. Have you ever watched your brain in operation - your own thinking, why you think certain things, why you react to others, how when you feel lonely, desperately lonely, unloved, nothing to rely on, no hope - you know, this tremendous sense of loneliness, though you may be married have children and live in a group but there is still this feeling of complete solitude - emptiness rather, not solitude. And seeing it one tries to escape from it, but if you remain with it, not escape from it, just look at it completely without condemning it, trying to overcome it, or escaping from it, just observe actually as it is then you will see that what you considered loneliness ceases to be.
So the brain cells record, and thought as the 'me', my ambition, my greed, my purposes, my fulfilment - all that comes to an end. Therefore the brain and the mind become extraordinarily quiet. They only function when necessary. Therefore your brain, your mind enters into quite a different dimension, in which there is no description, because description is not the described. What we have done this morning is description, explanation, but the word is not the thing. When we realize the word is not the thing then one is free of the word. It is only the quiet mind can find out the immeasurable - not find out. The quiet mind then enters into the immeasurable, because all our life is based on thought which is measurable. It measures god, it measures its relationship with another through image, it tries to improve itself according to what it thinks it should be. So we live in a world of measurement, unnecessarily, and with that world we want to enter into a world in which there is no measurement at all.
So meditation is the seeing 'what is' and going beyond it, seeing the measure and going beyond the measure. And what happens, what takes place when the brain, the mind and the body are really quiet, harmonious? Harmonious, which is the mind, the body and the heart are completely one. Then one lives a totally different kind of life. All right, sir. Any questions?
Q: What is intuition?
K: What is intuition? One has to be awfully careful of that word. Because I like something unconsciously and I say I have an intuition about it. Don't you know all the tricks one plays upon oneself through that word? Why do you want an intuition? When you see things as they are, why do you want an intuition? To observe things actually in yourself as they are without any distortion, why do you want any form of a hunch, intimation? We are talking of understanding oneself.
K: Sir, self-knowledge is endless, you can't measure self-knowledge, can you? I have got so much, I have understood today so much, I'll understand so much tomorrow.
Any other questions?
Q: When one is aware of one's sexual appetites they seem to disappear and can that awareness, attention, be maintained all the time?
K: Just watch the danger of this question. When I am aware of my sexual desires they seems to disappear. So awareness is a trick which will help me to make things which I don't like disappear. I don't like anger therefore I am going to be aware of it and perhaps it will disappear. But I do like my fulfilment, I want to become a great man, and I won't be aware of that. I believe in god but I won't be aware of all the dangers involved in that, because it separates people, destroys people, tortures people - not god only but worship of the state. So I am going to be aware of the things that are most unpleasant but I am going to be unaware of all those things which I am going to keep. Awareness is not a trick, it is not something that will help you to dissolve things that we don't want to keep - awareness means to observe the whole of the movement of like and dislike, of your suppressions. If you are a Victorian you don't talk about sex, you suppress it but you go on thinking about it. But if you are modern you are permissive - to be aware of all that.
Q: Sir, can we by understanding our minds be aware when we are asleep?
K: Can we be aware of what goes on when we are asleep? Oh Lord! Sir, this really is a complex question. How am I to be aware that I am asleep? Is there an awareness of what's going on during sleep? So to find that out, am I aware during the day of everything that's going on - aware not only outwardly of what's going on, the mischief of the politicians, the wars, the admiralty, the army, my relationship with my wife, husband, friend, girl, boy? Am I aware during the day of all the movements that are going on within me, the reactions? If I am not aware during the day how am I going to be aware at night when I sleep? And if I am aware during the day - do you understand what it means - watching, attentive, watching how much you eat, what you say, what you think, motives, aware of all that during the day, then during the night have you anything to be aware of? Do please find out. Then if you are not aware except that which is going on as a recording as the brain, what takes place? I have spent my day actively, being aware, watching what I eat, what I think, what I feel, how I talk to others, jealousy, envy, greed, violence - I have watched all that, been completely aware of all that. Which means I have brought order there - order, not according to any plan, but order, because I have lived a disordered life of not being aware. Now when I have become aware of all this, in that awareness there is order. Then when I go to sleep, when the body goes to sleep, what takes place? Generally the brain tries to bring about order while you are asleep because during the conscious waking hours you have lived a disordered life. Because the brain needs order - I don't know if you have not watched it - it can't function properly, healthily if there is no order. So if during the day there has been order, at night when you sleep the brain is not trying to bring order, trying through dreams, through intimations and so on, it becomes quiet. It may record but it is quiet, and so there is a possibility of renewal, possibility of a mind no longer fighting, struggling, and therefore the mind becomes extraordinarily young, fresh, innocent - innocent in the sense it won't hurt and will not be hurt. Isn't that enough for this morning? Yes?
Q: When a man has a message, the relationship between a man and his message is usually a teacher and his teachings. The teacher often has followers, and his message is a system - why don't you consider yourself a teacher and your message a system?
K: Generally a teacher has a message and followers - a teacher. Why don't you consider yourself as a teacher and have followers? I have made it fairly clear, haven't I? Don't follow anybody and don't accept anybody as a teacher except you yourself become the teacher and the disciple for yourself.