Urgency of Change

Passion

Questioner: What is passion? You've talked about it and apparently you give it a special meaning. I don't think I know that meaning. Like every man I have sexual passion and passions for superficial things like fast driving or cultivating a beautiful garden. Most of us indulge in some form of passionate activity. Talk about his special passion and you see a man's eyes sparkle. We know the word passion comes from the Greek word for suffering, but the feeling I get when you use this word is not one of suffering but rather of some driving quality like that of the wind which comes roaring out of the west, chasing the clouds and the rubbish before it. I'd like to possess that passion. How does one come by it? What is it passionate about? What is the passion you mean?

Krishnamurti: I think we should be clear that lust and passion are two different things. Lust is sustained by thought, driven by thought, it grows and gathers substance in thought until it explodes - sexually, or, if it is the lust for power, in its own violent forms of fulfilment. Passion is something entirely different; it is not the product of thought nor the remembrance of a past event; it is not driven by any motive of fulfilment; it is not sorrow either.

Questioner: Is all sexual passion lust? Sexual response is not always the result of thought; it may be contact as when you suddenly meet somebody whose loveliness overpowers you.

Krishnamurti: Wherever thought builds up the image of pleasure it must inevitably be lust and not the freedom of passion. If pleasure is the main drive then it is lust. When sexual feeling is born out of pleasure it is lust. If it is born out of love it is not lust, even though great delight may then be present. Here we must be clear and find out for ourselves whether love excludes pleasure and enjoyment. When you see a cloud and delight in its vastness and the light on it, there is of course pleasure, but there is a great deal more than pleasure. We are not condemning this at all. If you keep returning to the cloud in thought, or in fact, for a stimulation, then you are indulging in an imaginative flight of fancy, and obviously here pleasure and thought are the incentives operating. When you first looked at that cloud and saw its beauty there was no such incentive of pleasure operating. The beauty in sex is the absence of the "me", the ego, but the thought of sex is the affirmation of this ego, and that is pleasure. This ego is all the time either seeking pleasure or avoiding pain, wanting fulfilment and thereby inviting frustration. In all this the feeling of passion is sustained and pursued by thought, and therefore it is no longer passion but pleasure. The hope, the pursuit, of remembered passion is pleasure.

Questioner: What is passion itself, then?

Krishnamurti: It has to do with joy and ecstasy, which is not pleasure. In pleasure there is always a subtle form of effort - a seeing, striving, demanding, struggling to keep it, to get it. In passion there is no demand and therefore no struggle. In passion there is not the slightest shadow of fulfilment, therefore there can be neither frustration nor pain, Passion is the freedom from the "me", which is the centre of all fulfilment and pain. Passion does not demand because it is, and I am not speaking of something static. Passion is the austerity of self-abnegation in which the "you" and the "me" is not; therefore passion is the essence of life. It is this that moves and lives. But when thought brings in all the problems of having and holding, then passion ceases. Without passion creation is not possible.

Questioner: What do you mean by creation?

Krishnamurti: Freedom.

Questioner: What freedom?

Krishnamurti: Freedom from the "me" which depends on environment and is the product of environment - the me which is put together by society and thought. This freedom is clarity, the light that is not lit from the past. Passion is only the present.

Questioner: This has fired me with a strange new feeling.

Krishnamurti: That is the passion of learning.

Questioner: What particular action in my daily living will ensure that this passion is burning and operating?

Krishnamurti: Nothing will ensure it except the attention of learning, which is action, which is now. In this there is the beauty of passion, which is the total abandonment of the "me" and its time.

Order

Questioner: In your teaching there are a thousand details. in my living I must be able to resolve them all into one action, now, which permeates all I do, because in my living I have only the one moment right before me in which to act. What is that one action in daily living which will bring all the details of your teaching to one point, like a pyramid inverted on its point?

Krishnamurti: ...dangerously!

Questioner: Or, to put it differently, what is the one action which will bring the total intelligence of living into focus in one instant in the present?

Krishnamurti: I think the question to ask is how to live a really intelligent, balanced, active life, in harmonious relationship with other human beings, without confusion, adjustment and misery. What is the one act that will summon this intelligence to operate in whatever you are doing? There is so much misery, poverty and sorrow in the world. What are you, as a human being, to do facing all these human problems? If you use the opportunity to help others for your own fulfilment, then it is exploitation and mischief. So we can put that aside from the beginning. The question really is, how are we to live a highly intelligent, orderly life without any kind of effort? It seems that we always approach this problem from the outside, asking ourselves, "What am I to do, confronted with all the many problems of mankind - economic, social, human?" We want to work this out in terms of the outer.

Questioner: No, I am not asking you how I can tackle or solve the problems of the world, economic, social or political. That would be too absurd! All I want to know is how to live righteously in this world exactly as it is, because it is as it is now, right here before me, and I can't will it into any other shape. I must live now in this world as it is, and in these circumstances solve all the problems of living. I am asking how to make this living a life of Dharma, which is that virtue that is not imposed from without, that does not conform to any precept, is not cultivated by any thought.

Krishnamurti: Do you mean you want to find yourself immediately, suddenly, in a state of grace which is great intelligence, innocency, love - to find yourself in this state without having a past or a future, and to act from this state?

Questioner: Yes! That is it exactly.

Krishnamurti: This has nothing to do with achievement, success or failure. There must surely be only one way to live: what is it?

Questioner: That is my question.

Krishnamurti: To have inside you that light that has no beginning and no ending, that is not lit by your desire, that is not yours or someone else's. When there is this inward light, whatever you do will always be right and true.

Questioner: How do you get that light, now, without all the struggle, the search, the longing, the questioning?

Krishnamurti: It is only possible when you really die to the past completely, and this can be done only when there is complete order in the brain. The brain cannot stand disorder. If there is disorder all its activities will be contradictory, confused, miserable and it will bring about mischief in itself and around itself. This order is not the design of thought, the design of obedience to a principle, to authority, or to some form of imagined goodness. It is disorder in the brain that brings about conflict; then all the various resistances cultivated by thought to escape from this disorder arise - religious and otherwise.

Questioner: How can this order be brought about to a brain that is disorderly, contradictory, in itself?

Krishnamurti: It can be done by watchfulness throughout the day, and then, before sleeping, by putting everything that has been done during the day in order. In that way the brain does not go to sleep in disorder. This does not mean that the brain hypnotizes itself into a state of order when there is really disorder in and about it. There must be order during the day, and the summing up of this order before sleeping is the harmonious ending of the day. It is like a man who keeps accounts and balances them properly every evening so that he starts afresh the next day, so that when he goes to sleep his mind is quiet, empty, not worried, confused, anxious or fearful. When he wakes up there is this light which is not the product of thought or of pleasure. This light is intelligence and love. It is the negation of the disorder of the morality in which we have been brought up.

Questioner: Can I have this light immediately? That is the question I asked right at the beginning, only I put it differently.

Krishnamurti: You can have it immediately when the "me" is not. The "me" comes to an end when it sees for itself that it must end; the seeing is the light of understanding.

The Individual and The Community

Questioner: I don't quite know how to ask this question but I have a strong feeling that relationship between the individual and the community, these two opposing entities, has been a long history of mischief. The history of the world, of thought, of civilization, is, after all, the history of the relationship between these two opposing entities. In all societies the individual is more or less suppressed; he must conform and fit into the pattern which the theorists have determined. The individual is always trying to break out of these patterns, and continuous battle between the two is the result. Religions talk about the individual soul as something separate from the collective soul. They emphasize the individual. In modern society - which has become so mechanical, standardized and collectively active - the individual is trying to identify himself, enquiring what he is, asserting himself. All struggle leads nowhere. My question is, what is wrong with all this?

Krishnamurti: The only thing that really matters is that there be an action of goodness, love and intelligence in living. Is goodness individual or collective, is love personal or impersonal, is intelligence yours, mine or somebody else's? If it is yours or mine then it is not intelligence, or love, or goodness. If goodness is an affair of the individual or of the collective, according to one's particular preference or decision, then it is no longer goodness. Goodness is not in the backyard of the individual nor in the open field of the collective; goodness flowers only in freedom from both. When there is this goodness, love and intelligence, then action is not in terms of the individual or the collective. Lacking goodness, we divide the world into the individual and the collective, and further divide the collective into innumerable groups according to religion, nationality and class. Having created these divisions we try to bridge them by forming new groups which are again divided from other groups. We see that every great religion supposedly exists to bring about the brotherhood of man and, in actual fact, prevents it. We always try to reform that which is already corrupt. We don't eradicate corruption fundamentally but simply rearrange it.

Questioner: Are you saying that we need not waste time in these endless bargainings between the individual and the collective, or try to prove that they are different or that they are similar? Are you saying that only goodness, love and intelligence are the issue, and that these lie beyond the individual or the collective?

Krishnamurti: Yes.

Questioner: So the real question seems to be how love, goodness and intelligence can act in daily living.

Krishnamurti: If these act, then the question of the individual and the collective is academic.

Questioner: How are they to act?

Krishnamurti: They can act only in relationship: all existence is in relationship. So the first thing is to become aware of one's relationship to everything and everybody, and to see how in this relationship the "me" is born and acts. This "me" that is both the collective and the individual; it is the "me" that separates; it is the "me" that acts collectively or individually, the "me" that creates heaven and hell. To be aware of this is to understand it. And the understanding of it is the ending of it. The ending of it is goodness, love and intelligence.

Meditation and Energy

Questioner: This morning I should like to go into the deeper meaning, or deeper sense, of meditation. I have practised many forms of it, including a little Zen. There are various schools which teach awareness but they all seem rather superficial, so can we leave all that aside and go into it more deeply?

Krishnamurti: We must also set aside the whole meaning of authority, because in meditation any form of authority, either one's own or the authority of another, becomes an impediment and prevents freedom - prevents a freshness, a newness. So authority, conformity and imitation must be set aside completely. Otherwise you merely imitate, follow what has been said, and that makes the mind very dull and stupid. In that there is no freedom. Your past experience may guide, direct or establish a new path, and so even that must go. Then only can one go into this very deep and extraordinarily important thing called meditation. Meditation is the essence of energy.

Questioner: For many years I have tried to see that I do not become a slave to the authority of someone else or to a pattern. Of course there is a danger of deceiving myself but as we go along I shall probably find out. But when you say that meditation is the essence of energy, what do you mean by the words energy and meditation?

Krishnamurti: Every movement of thought every action demands energy. Whatever you do or think needs energy, and this energy can be dissipated through conflict, through various forms of unnecessary thought, emotional pursuits and sentimental activities. Energy is wasted in conflict which arises in duality, in the "me" and the "not-me", in the division between the observer and the observed, the thinker and the thought. When this wastage is no longer taking place there is a quality of energy which can be called an awareness - an awareness in which there is no evaluation, judgement, condemnation or comparison but merely an attentive observation, a seeing of things exactly as they are, both inwardly and outwardly, without the interference of thought, which is the past.

Questioner: This I find very difficult to understand. If there were no thought at all, would it be possible to recognise a tree, or my wife or neighbour? Recognition is necessary, isn't it, when you look at a tree or the woman next door?

Krishnamurti: When you observe a tree is recognition necessary? When you look at that tree, do you say it is a tree or do you just look? If you begin to recognise it as an elm, an oak or a mango tree then the past interferes with direct observation. In the same way, when you look at your wife, if you look with memories of annoyances or pleasures you are not really looking at her but at the image which you have in your mind about her. That prevents direct perception: direct perception does not need recognition. Outward recognition of your wife, your children, your house or your neighbour is, of course necessary, but why should there be an interference of the past in the eyes, the mind and the heart? Doesn't it prevent you from seeing clearly? When you condemn or have an opinion about something, that opinion or prejudice distorts observation.

Questioner: Yes, I see that. That subtle form of recognition does distort, I see that. You say all these interferences of thought are a waste of energy. You say observe without any form of recognition, condemnation, judgement; observe without naming, for that naming, recognition, condemnation are a waste of energy. That can be logically and actually understood. Then there is the next point which is the division, the separateness, or, rather, as you have often put it in your talks, the space that exists between the observer and the observed which creates duality; you say that this also is a waste of energy and brings about conflict. I find everything you say logical but I find it extraordinarily difficult to remove that space, to bring about harmony between the observer and the observed. How is this to be done?

Krishnamurti: There is no how. The how means a system, a method, a practice which becomes mechanical. Again we have to be rid of the significance of the word "how".

Questioner: Is it possible? I know the word possible implies a future, an effort, a striving to bring about harmony, but one must use certain words. I hope we can go beyond those words, so is it possible to bring about a union between the observer and the observed?

Krishnamurti: The observer is always casting its shadow on the thing it observes. So one must understand the structure and the nature of the observer, not how to bring about a union between the two. One must understand the movement of the observer and in that understanding perhaps the observer comes to an end. We must examine what the observer is: it is the past with all its memories, conscious and unconscious, its racial inheritance, its accumulated experience which is called knowledge, its reactions. The observer is really the conditioned entity. He is the one who asserts that he is, and I am. In protecting himself, he resists, dominates, seeking comfort and security. The observer then sets himself apart as something different from that which he observes, inwardly or outwardly. This brings about a duality and from this duality there is conflict, which is the wastage of energy. To be aware of the observer, his movement, his self-centred activity, his assertions, his prejudices, one must be aware of all these unconscious movements which build the separatist feeling that he is different. It must be observed without any form of evaluation, without like and dislike; just observe it in daily life, in its relationships. When this observation is clear, isn't there then a freedom from the observer?

Questioner: You are saying, sir, that the observer is really the ego; you are saying that as long as the ego exists, he must resist, divide, separate, for in this separation, this division, he feels alive. It gives him vitality to resist, to fight, and he has become accustomed to that battle; it is his way of living. Are you not saying that this ego, this "I", must dissolve through an observation in which there is no sense of like or dislike, no opinion or judgement, but only the observing of this "I" in action? But can such a thing really take place? Can I look at myself so completely, so truly, without distortion? You say that when I do look at myself so clearly then the "I" has no movement at all. And you say this is part of meditation?

Krishnamurti: Of course. This is meditation.

Questioner: This observation surely demands extraordinary self-discipline.

Krishnamurti: What do you mean by self-discipline? Do you mean disciplining the self by putting him in a strait-jacket, or do you mean learning about the self, the self that asserts, that dominates, that is ambitious, violent and so on - learning about it? The learning is, in itself, discipline. The word discipline means to learn and when there is learning, not accumulating, when there is actual learning, which needs attention, that learning brings about its own responsibility, its own activity, its own dimensions: so there is no discipline as something imposed upon it. Where there is learning there is no imitation, no conformity, no authority. If this is what you mean by the word discipline, then surely there is freedom to learn?

Questioner: You are taking me too far and perhaps too deeply, and I can't quite go with you where this learning is concerned. I see very clearly that the self as the observer must come to an end. It is logically so, and there must be no conflict: that is very clear. But you are saying that this very observation is learning and in learning there is always accumulation; this accumulation becomes the past. Learning is an additive process, but you are apparently giving it a different meaning altogether. From what I have understood you are saying that learning is a constant movement without accumulation. Is that so? Can learning be without accumulation?

Krishnamurti: Learning is its own action. What generally happens is that having learnt - we act upon what we have learnt. So there is division between the past and action, and hence there is a conflict between what should be and what is, or what has been and what is. We are saying that there can be action in the very movement of learning: that is, learning is doing; it is not a question of having learnt and then acting. This is very important to understand because having learnt, and acting from that accumulation, is the very nature of the "me", the "I", the ego or whatever name one likes to give it. The "I" is the very essence of the past and the past impinges on the present and so on into the future. In this there is constant division. Where there is learning there is a constant movement; there is no accumulation which can become the "I".

Questioner: But in the technological field there must be accumulated knowledge. One can't fly the Atlantic or run a car, or even do most of the ordinary daily things without knowledge.

Krishnamurti: Of course not, sir; such knowledge is absolutely necessary. But we are talking about the psychological field in which the "I" operates. The "I" can use technological knowledge in order to achieve something, a position or prestige; the "I" can use that knowledge to function, but if in functioning the "I" interferes, things begin to go wrong, for the "I", through technical means, seeks status. So the "I" is not concerned merely with knowledge in scientific fields; it is using it to achieve something else. It is like a musician who uses the piano to become famous. What he is concerned with is fame and not the beauty of the music in itself or for itself. We are not saying that we must get rid of technological knowledge; on the contrary, the more technological knowledge there is the better living conditions will be. But the moment the "I" uses it, things begin to go wrong.

Questioner: I think I begin to understand what you are saying. You are giving quite a different meaning and dimension to the word learning, which is marvellous. I am beginning to grasp it. You are saying that meditation is a movement of learning and in that there is freedom to learn about everything, not only about meditation, but about the way one lives, drives, eats, talks, everything.

Krishnamurti: As we said, the essence of energy is meditation. To put it differently - so long as there is a meditator there is no meditation. If he attempts to achieve a state described by others, or some flash of experience....

Questioner: If I may interrupt you, sir, are you saying that learning must be constant, a flow, a line without any break, so that learning and action are one, or a constant movement? I don't know what word to use, but I am sure you understand what I mean. The moment there is a break between learning, action and meditation, that break is a disharmony, that break is conflict. In that break there is the observer and the observed and hence the whole wastage of energy; is that what you are saying?

Krishnamurti: Yes, that is what we mean. Meditation is not a state; it is a movement, as action is a movement. And as we said just now, when we separate action from learning, then the observer comes between the learning and the action; then he becomes important; then he uses action and learning for ulterior motives. When this is very clearly understood as one harmonious movement of acting, of learning, of meditation, there is no wastage of energy and this is the beauty of meditation. There is only one movement. Learning is far more important than meditation or action. To learn there must be complete freedom, not only consciously but deeply, inwardly - a total freedom. And in freedom there is this movement of learning, acting, meditating as a harmonious whole. The word whole not only means health but holy. So learning is holy, acting is holy, meditation is holy. This is really a sacred thing and the beauty is in itself and not beyond it.
Ending Thought

Questioner: I wonder what you really mean by ending thought. I talked to a friend about it and he said it is some kind of oriental nonsense. To him thought is the highest form of intelligence and action, the very salt of life, indispensable. It has created civilization, and all relationship is based on it. All of us accept this, from the greatest thinker to the humblest labourer. When we don't think we sleep, vegetate or daydream; we are vacant, dull and unproductive, whereas when we are awake we are thinking, doing, living, quarrelling: these are the only two states we know. You say, be beyond both - beyond thought and vacant inactivity. What do you mean by this?

Krishnamurti: Very simply put, thought is the response of memory, the past. The past is an infinity or a second ago. When thought acts it is this past which is acting as memory, as experience, as knowledge, as opportunity. All will is desire based on this past and directed towards pleasure or the avoidance of pain. When thought is functioning it is the past, therefore there is no new living at all; it is the past living in the present, modifying itself and the present. So there is nothing new in life that way, and when something new is to be found there must be the absence of the past, the mind must not be cluttered up with thought, fear, pleasure, and everything else. Only when the mind is uncluttered can the new come into being, and for this reason we say that thought must be still, operating only when it has to - objectively, efficiently. All continuity is thought; when there is continuity there is nothing new. Do you see how important this is? It's really a question of life itself. Either you live in the past, or you live totally differently: that is the whole point.

Questioner: I think I do see what you mean, but how in the world is one to end this thought? When I listen to the blackbird there is thought telling me instantly it is the blackbird; when I walk down the street thought tells me I am walking down the street and tells me all I recognise and see; when I play with the notion of not thinking it is again thought that plays this game. All meaning and understanding and communication are thought. Even when I am not communicating with someone else I am doing so with myself. When I am awake, I think, when I am asleep I think. The whole structure of my being is thought. Its roots lie far deeper than I know. All I think and do and all I am is thought, thought creating pleasure and pain, appetites, longings, resolutions, conclusions, hopes, fears and questions. Thought commits murder and thought forgives. So how can one go beyond it? Isn't it thought again which seeks to go beyond it?

Krishnamurti: We both said, when thought is still, something new can be. We both saw that point clearly and to understand it clearly is the ending of thought.

Questioner: But that understanding is also thought.

Krishnamurti: Is it? You assume that it is thought, but is it, actually?

Questioner: It is a mental movement with meaning, a communication to oneself.

Krishnamurti: If it is a communication to oneself it is thought. But is understanding a mental movement with meaning?

Questioner: Yes it is.

Krishnamurti: The meaning of the word and the understanding of that meaning is thought. That is necessary in life. There thought must function efficiently. It is a technological matter. But you are not asking that. You are asking how thought, which is the very movement of life as you know it, can come to an end. Can it only end when you die? That is really your question, isn't it?

Questioner: Yes.

Krishnamurti: That is the right question. Die! Die to the past, to tradition.

Questioner: But how?

Krishnamurti: The brain is the source of thought. The brain is matter and thought is matter. Can the brain - with all its reactions and its immediate responses to every challenge and demand - can that brain be very still? It is not a question of ending thought, but of whether the brain can be completely still. Can it act with full capacity when necessary and otherwise be still? This stillness is not physical death. See what happens when the brain is completely still. See what happens.

Questioner: In that space there was a blackbird, the green tree, the blue sky, the man hammering next door, the sound of the wind in the trees and my own heartbeat, the total quietness of the body. That is all.

Krishnamurti: If there was recognition of the blackbird singing, then the brain was active, was interpreting. It was not still. This really demands tremendous alertness and discipline, the watching that brings its own discipline, not imposed or brought about by your unconscious desire to achieve a result or a pleasurable new experience. Therefore during the day thought must operate effectively, sanely, and also watch itself.

Questioner: That is easy, but what about going beyond it?

Krishnamurti: Who is asking this question? Is it the desire to experience something new or is it the enquiry? If it is the enquiry, then you must enquire and investigate the whole business of thinking and be completely familiar with it, know all its tricks and subtleties. If you have done this you will know that the question of going beyond thought is an empty one. Going beyond thought is knowing what thought is.

The New Human Being

Questioner: I am a reformer, a social worker. Seeing the extraordinary injustice there is in the world my whole life has been dedicated to reform. I used to be a Communist but I can't go along with Communism any more, it has ended in tyranny. Nevertheless, I am still dedicated to reforming society so that man can live in dignity, beauty and freedom, and realize the potential which nature seems to have given him, and which he himself seems always to have stolen from his fellow man. In America there is a certain kind of freedom, and yet standardization and propaganda are very strong there - all the mass media exert a tremendous pressure on the mind. It seems that the power of television, this mechanical thing that man has invented, has developed its own personality, its own will, its own momentum; and though probably nobody - perhaps not even any one group - is deliberately using it to influence society, its trend shapes the very souls of our children. And this is the same in varying degrees in all democracies. In China there seems to be no hope at all for the dignity or freedom of man, while in India the government is weak, corrupt and inefficient. It seems to me that all the social injustice in the world absolutely must be changed. I want passionately to do something about it, yet I don't know where to begin to tackle it.

Krishnamurti: Reform needs further reform, and this is an endless process. So let us look at it differently. Let us put aside the whole thought of reform; let us wipe it out of our blood. Let us completely forget this idea of wanting to reform the world. Then let us see actually what is happening, right throughout the world. Political parties always have a limited programme which, even if fulfilled, invariably brings about mischief, which then has to be corrected once again. We are always talking about political action as being a most important action, but political action is not the way. Let us put it out of our minds. All social and economic reforms come under this category. Then there is the religious formula of action based on belief, idealism, dogmatism, conformity to some so-called divine recipe. In this is involved authority and acceptance, obedience and the utter denial of freedom. Though religions talk of peace on earth they contribute to the disorder because they are a factor of division. Also the churches have always taken some political stand in times of crisis, so they are really political bodies, and we have seen that all political action is divisive. The churches have never really denied war: on the contrary they have waged war. So when one puts aside the religious recipes, as one puts aside the political formulas - what is left, and what is one to do? Naturally civic order must be maintained: you have to have water in the taps. If you destroy civic order you have to start again from the beginning. So, what is one to do?

Questioner: That is what I am actually asking you.

Krishnamurti: Be concerned with radical change, with total revolution. The only revolution is the revolution between man and man, between human beings. That is our only concern. In this revolution there are no blueprints, no ideologies, no conceptual utopias. We must take the fact of the actual relationship between men and change that radically. That is the real thing. And this revolution must be immediate, it must not take time. It is not achieved through evolution, which is time.

Questioner: What do you mean? All historical changes have taken place in time; none of them has been immediate. You are proposing something quite inconceivable.

Krishnamurti: If you take time to change, do you suppose that life is in suspension during the time it takes to change? It isn't in suspension. Everything you are trying to change is being modified and perpetuated by the environment, by life itself. So there is no end to it. It is like trying to clean the water in a tank which is constantly being refilled with dirty water. So time is out.

Now, what is to bring about this change? It cannot be will, or determination, or choice, or desire, because all these are part of the entity that has to be changed. So we must ask what actually is possible, without the action of will and assertiveness which is always the action of conflict.

Questioner: Is there any action which is not the action of will and assertiveness?

Krishnamurti: Instead of asking this question let us go much deeper. Let us see that actually it is only the action of will and assertiveness that needs to be changed at all, because the only mischief in relationship is conflict, between individuals or within individuals, and conflict is will and assertiveness. Living without such action does not mean that we live like vegetables. Conflict is our main concern. All the social maladies you mentioned are the projection of this conflict in the heart of each human being. The only possible change is a radical transformation of yourself in all your relationships, not in some vague future, but now.

Questioner: But how can I completely eradicate this conflict in myself, this contradiction, this resistance, this conditioning? I understand what you mean intellectually, but I can only change when I feel it passionately, and I don't feel it passionately. It is merely an idea to me; I don't see it with my heart. If I try to act on this intellectual understanding I am in conflict with another, deeper, part of myself.

Krishnamurti: If you really see this contradiction passionately, then that very perception is the revolution. If you see in yourself this division between the mind and the heart, actually see it, not conceive of it theoretically, but see it, then the problem comes to an end. A man who is passionate about the world and the necessity for change, must be free from political activity, religious conformity and tradition - which means, free from the weight of time, free from the burden of the past, free from all the action of will: this is the new human being. This only is the social, psychological, and even the political revolution.


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