Author Topic: The Mind of J. Krishnamurti Edited by S. R. Vas (1989)  (Read 2353 times)


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The Mind of J. Krishnamurti Edited by S. R. Vas (1989)
« on: May 06, 2011, 01:24:42 PM »
Of what importance is that to which you cling, if doubt can destroy it ? Of what value are your traditions, your beliefs, and your accumulations, if doubt is capable of sweeping them away ? A man who is afraid of doubt will never find the truth. Doubt is a precious ointment; it heals though it burns greatly. If you are afraid of little burns, you will never destroy the impurities you have accumulated throughout your lives. In avoiding life, in fearing life, you shelter yourself in decaying things, and in that shelter there is sorrow, but in inviting doubt you will create that which will be eternal, and bear the stamp of happiness. (p.22);

We all know that human consciousness can be disturbed with stimulants. An alcoholic drink will do that much for you. But then you are back next morning where you were before, when the effect of the drink is gone, feeling worse and miserable for your experience. Truly great experiences are those which happen on their own, without any effort on the part of the individual to manipulate them for himself or for others. (p.50)

Man’s discovery of God ceases to be a discovery if he begins this search with a foregone conclusion in his mind. Most religions impose a certain image of the type of God they would want their followers to worship. Whereas to mind, in the search for truth, which to me is the search for God, the choice does not rest with us as to what to reject or accept. Truth, God, call it what you will, is an awareness of the totality of existence, of our hopes and desires, our ambitions, our greed, our loves and thousands of other emotions which constitute what passes for the living individual. I believe organized religions stand in the way of this awareness of the totality of existence.

Mind has its own place, a unique place in our lives. Without the use of your mind you won’t be able to find your way back home, and I won’t be able to conduct this conversation without its help. But mind can only move in the sphere of the known, in the sphere of time. Whereas we refer to God as the unknown the timeless, is it not ? Till a certain stage, in the three dimensions world, our mind can serve us to our advantage. But to reach the fourth dimension of existence, the mind instead of moving along the horizontal plane, must learn to shoot up vertically as it were and explode for the timeless, for the unknown to be. (p.52)

[How do you see this worked our in practice, in the routine life of the millions who seek God ?]

In their sensitivity, in their ability to remain open for the new. I do not like the word God: it smacks of anthropomorphism. But in a man’s sensitivity to, in his choiceless awareness of the totality of existence, in this alone I find whatever meaning the word God conveys.

Sensitivity demands the ability to have serene mind, a mind which is not preoccupied with itself, a mind which is receptive, which is an open mind, a mind which is not always getting hurt at what it sees or perceives. (p.53)

Sensitivity is my equivalent of meditation, which brings you its own rewards.

The actual death of the body one day, as you know, is unavoidable.

Most of these schools, whether it is Buddhism or Vedanta or any other, suggest a path the middle path, the negative path and the like, I suggest no path at all. For a path implies effort or practice, and the immeasurable can only be faced by a person in keeping himself free of effort, in a state of alert readiness for the new, in a state without fear or hope.

We can see that to talk of so-and-so obtaining liberation is a misuse of terms. That which is liberated is always life, not the individual. Indeed it is at the expense of the individual that such liberation is achieved. Life alone benefits by the transaction. It is true that the individual uniqueness, which persists on both sides of the liberating process, finds that, instead of belonging to the Ego, it has really all along belonged to the life universal. But that discovery is made at, or after, liberation. The process towards liberation must always seem like the killing out of individuality  hence its painfulness. (p.61)

Liberation is a matter of life and not of forms. (p.64)

It’s important to think rightly in order to release something creative. To think rightly you must know yourself. To know yourself you must be detached, absolutely honest, free from judgement. It means continual awareness of one’s thoughts and feelings during the day without acceptance or rejection, like watching a movie of oneself.

Isn’t it like a child who says: teach me higher mathematics! My reply would be: it would be useless to teach you higher mathematics unless you have first learnt algebra. If we understand this particular thing, the divinity of that life which lies before us, it is not important to discuss what lies beyond, because we are discussing a thing which is unconditioned with a conditioned mind. (p.83)

Teach the child from the very beginning that its goal is happiness and freedom, and that the manner of attainment is through the harmony of all the bodies  mind, emotion and the physical body.

We are all convinced that the more experiences we have, the more we are alive. But we do not live reality; we live symbols, concepts, ideals and words. We feed on words, our spiritual life has become a perpetual conflict, because we live by concepts like the hungry man who eats bits of paper with ‘bread’ written on it. We live by words, not facts. In all walks of life, whether spiritual or sexual, in our work or leisure, we are stimulated by words. Words organise themselves into thoughts and ideas; they excite us and the greater the gap between reality (what we are) and the ideal (which we are not), the more intensely we imagine ourselves to live. And thus we destroy all possibility of mutation. (p.91-92)

It is a fact, that nowadays religion, the true communion between man and what lies beyond him, has no place whatsoever in human affairs. Religious organisations, on the contrary, have become instruments of politics and economics. (p.95-96)

A truly religious man is free of all fear, for he is free of the patterns created by the many civilisations over thousands of years. He is also free from the past, personal and collective and his future is not distorted by the pressure of his own actions. (p.96)

Silence is important, which is a measureless state, knowable as beyond experience, beyond words, beyond thought, an un-created energy. Without this creative silence there can be no brotherhood and peace and no true religion.

The repetition of sacred formulas calms the agitations of the mind and puts it to sleep. Prayer is a sedative which enables us to continuity in our psychological prison without feeling the need of bursting it open and destroying it. The mechanism of prayer, like all mechanisms, gives a mechanical result. There is no prayer capable to pierce through the ignorance of oneself. All prayer addressed to the unlimited pre-supposes that the limited knows the unlimited and how to contact it. It has all kinds of ideas, concepts and beliefs about the unlimited and is enclosed in a system of explanations, locked up in a mental prison. Prayer binds, it does not liberate. And freedom is the very heart of true religion. Religious organisations deny man this essential freedom, inspite of their assertions to the contrary. Self-knowledge is not prayer, it is the door to meditation. Freedom is not based on a set of psychological theories nor is it a state of surrender in the expectation of grace. It destroys the constraints imposed by religion or society. It is a state of total attention, and not of concentration on the particular. (p.96)

The evolution we know, from bullock cart to spaceship, is only a limited part of the brain. Even if this part develops a million times, this will not answer the fundamental question which man puts to himself about himself. The evolution of science and technology will go on it is necessary, inevitable and irreversible. But the remainder of the brain is there un-awakened and we can put ourselves from now to the task of bringing it to life.

You can only find everything by abandoning everything. (p.167)

When you are really happy, deeply in love, the ‘I’ is not. There is only happiness, the immensity of love. This alone is real, everything else is false. (p.191)

As the animals in the circus are trained to act for the amusement of crowds, so the individual, through fear, looks for these spiritual performers, the so called priests and swamis, the dispensers of spurious spirituality and of all the inanities of religion. Their main function is to entertain; they invent rituals, disciplines and worship, which may look beautiful but soon degenerate into superstition and knavery under the cloak of service. (p.250)

I have no belief and I belong to no tradition. I have always had this attitude towards life. It being a fact that life varies from day to day, not only are beliefs and traditions useless to me, but, if I were to let myself be enchained by them, they would prevent me from understanding life.

You may attain liberation, no matter where you are or what the circumstances surrounding you, but this means that you must have the strength of genius. For genius, is, after all, the ability to deliver oneself from the circumstances in which one is enmeshed, the ability to free oneself from the vicious circle.

For what is ordinarily called meditation is merely, in Krishnamurti’s words, the cultivation of resistance of exclusive concentration on an idea of our choice. Yoga is the process of building a wall of resistance against every thought except that which you have chosen. But what makes you choose? Obviously the choice is based on pleasure, reward or achievement; or it is merely a reaction to one’s conditioning or tradition. Then why choose?

Organisations cannot make you free. No man from outside can make you free; nor can organised worship, nor the immolation of yourselves for a cause, make you free; nor can forming yourselves into an organisation, nor throwing yourselves into works, make you free. You use a typewriter to write letters, but you do not put it on an altar and worship it. But that is what you are doing when organisations become your chief concern.How many members are there in It? That is the first question I am asked by all newspaper reporters. How many followers have you? By their number we shall judge whether what you say is true or false.I do not know how many there are. I am not concerned with that. As I said, if there were even one man who had been set free, that were enough.

Again, you have the idea that only certain people hold the key to the Kingdom of Happiness. No one holds it. No one has the authority to hold that key. That key is your own self, and in the development and the purification and in the incorruptibility of that self alone is the Kingdom of Eternity.

When the mind is completely unconditioned then only can you experience or discover if there is something real or not. But before you uncondition your mind, to say that you are religious, that you are a Hindu, Muslim, a Buddhist or a Christian has no meaning whatsoever. That is pure romanticism which is exploited by the priest, by the organized group politically, religiously because they have their vested interest in it. These are all facts, whether you like them or not. I am merely describing the fact. And these divisions into religious groups, believing this and that, believing this dogma and denying that dogma, going from prison to prison, from temple to temple, doing endless puja all that is not a religious mind at all, it is merely a traditional mind bound by fear. And surely a mind that is afraid can never find out if there is, or if there is not, something beyond the word, beyond the measure of the mind.

So, to find out if there is, or if there is not, something which is beyond the thought, which is not measurable by the mind, the mind must be first free. Surely that is logic.

when you follow somebody, you have destroyed your own thoughts, you have lost your own independence, you have lost your freedom not only politically but much more psychologically, not only outwardly but much more inwardly. So, where there is a following and where there is a leader in matters that are really spiritual, really psychological, there is bound to be confusion because in that there is a contradiction between what your own deep down urges, compulsions are, and the imposition placed upon them by the leader, by what you think you should do. So, there is a contradiction psychologically and that contradiction leads to conflict and where there is a conflict there is effort and where there is effort there is distortion.

So, a religious mind has no conflict. The religious mind does not follow anyone. It has no authority because authority implies imitation; authority implies conformity; and there is conformity because you want success, you want to achieve; and, therefore, there is fear. Without dissolving fear completely, how can you proceed to enquire, how can you proceed to find out? These are no rhetorical questions. If I am frightened, I am bound to seek comfort, shelter, security in whatever that comes along because fear dictates, not sanity, not clarity. So, fear dictates conformity that I must imitate, follow somebody in the hope that I shall find comfort. So, the religious mind has no authority of any kind, and that is very difficult for people to accept because we have been bred in authority the Gita, the Upanishads, the Bible, the Koran  They have taken the place of our own thinking, of our own suffering.

The scientist is concerned with the fact. He is investigating matter, investigating life in his laboratory. He is investigating it under the microscope. He has no fear; he moves from fact to fact and he builds up knowledge, and that knowledge helps him to investigate further only along a particular narrow, restricted line which is science. But we are concerned with the totality of life, not with science only; not only with brick-building but with anger, with ambition, with quarrels, what you are, how limited our minds are the totality of life.

Science does not include the totality of life but a religious mind does. When the economists or the sociologists try to solve human problems, they are dealing with them only partially and therefore bringing about more chaos, more misery. But the religious mind is not concerned with the partial; it is concerned with the total entity of man. That is, outward movement of life is the same as the inward movement. The outward movement is like the ebb, the tide that goes out and then comes in. If the two are divorced, if the two are separated, the outer and the inner, then you have conflict, you have misery and the so-called religious people have divided this life into the outer and the inner. They do not regard it as one unitary process. They avoid the outer by retreating to a monastery or putting on a sanyasi’s robe. They deny the outer world but they do not deny the world of tradition, of their knowledge, of their conditioning. So they separate the two and therefore there is a contradiction.

So, self-knowledge or learning about oneself every day brings about psychologically, inwardly, a new mind because you have denied the old mind. Through self-knowledge you have denied it, you have denied your conditioning totally, and that can be denied totally only when the mind is aware of its own operations, how it works, what it thinks, what it says, what are the motives.

There are laws in some countries, I believe, which prohibit anyone from following you in the street and if someone does he can be arrested and put into prison. So, spiritually, I wish there were a police system which would put people into a spiritual prison for following others. In fact it does happen automatically.

Self-satisfaction, self-contentment, lack of determined effort and above all lack of ecstasy in any pursuit, is the essence of mediocrity.

What matters is to observe your own mind without judgement just to look at it, to watch it, to be conscious of the fact that your mind is a slave, and no more; because that very perception release energy, and it is this energy that is going to destroy the slavishness of the mind.

The state of the mind that questions is much more important than the question itself. Any question may be asked by a slavish mind, and the answer it receives will still be within the limitations of its own slavery.

to restrain oneself from violence by practising non-violence, is no change at all, though in this country (India) it is glibly talked about every day. Non-violence with a motive is still violence.

Cultivated virtue is a horror, because the moment you cultivate a virtue it ceases to be a virtue. Virtue is spontaneous timeless, it is ever active in the present.

Freedom from the desire for an answer is essential to the understanding of a problem.

The craving for experience is the beginning of illusion.

To seek fulfilment is to invite frustration.

Wisdom and truth come to a man who truly says, I am ignorant, I do not know.

Addiction to knowledge is like any other addiction; it offers an escape from the fear of emptiness, of loneliness, of frustration the fear of being nothing.


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Re: The Mind of J. Krishnamurti Edited by S. R. Vas (1989)
« Reply #1 on: May 06, 2011, 02:22:48 PM »

Dear prasanth,

I have read JK like no one else. But this book I have not read.
Somehow I feel that what he is telling as effortless or choiceless
awareness is not true. Further unlike Sri Bhagavan, he did not live
up to his teachings. His personal life, particularly his later years,  speaks of his empty theories, which did not help even him.

Anyway, thanks for the detailed post.

Arunachala Siva.   


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Re: The Mind of J. Krishnamurti Edited by S. R. Vas (1989)
« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2011, 05:42:00 PM »
Well, to my mind, what he speaks here should be taken at least into consideration. What his live was is of no importance to us really.


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Re: The Mind of J. Krishnamurti Edited by S. R. Vas (1989)
« Reply #3 on: May 06, 2011, 05:58:18 PM »

Dear amiatall,

A Brahma Jnani's life should reflect his own teachings. Is it not?
His life is his teachings.  This is what I find in Sri Bhagavan. And this is missing in JK. "Full of sound and fury, signifying nothing......"

Arunachala Siva.


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Re: The Mind of J. Krishnamurti Edited by S. R. Vas (1989)
« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2011, 10:39:27 PM »
Dear Subramanian.R,

Yes it is.

Why i propelled this discussion is because to my mind comes the memory about how Bhagavan used to say, that we cannot judge Jnani by body activities. Why did he say so? And that Jnani can appear to act like a madman to us etc.
But let us leave it alone. My main point is, that, for example, we don't know who J.K. is, we just read this post for the first time, can we take it into consideration, because what he writes here we won't find in TV or fantasy books, romance books etc.



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Re: The Mind of J. Krishnamurti Edited by S. R. Vas (1989)
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2011, 10:18:38 AM »

Dear amiatall,

I appreciate your point.  JK has been discussed here in several posts in the past. Every time, I am giving the same views.  Once Dr. Raju,who is not writing in the Forum nowadays [a gentleman who has understood and is practicing Sri Bhagavan's Atma Vichara and who has written a few books on Him.] also agreed with me.

I was reading JK's books in good numbers.  When I was in Chennai,
I used to attend his December lectures, in Adyar Theosophical Society. He would come only in December to Chennai since that is the period of best climate in Chennai. He would not tolerate hot climates [think of Sri Bhagavan who lived for 54 years in Tiruvannamalai and walked on the Hill without sandals.]  The same faces will show up every year. They would listen to him, like dumb lambs.  No questions will be allowed.  After the lecture, he would simply walk back to his AC room in a nearby two storied building within Adyar Society.  He would come for a week or so and then push off to Mumbai and other places.

His books did not give me any progress in spiritual sadhana. It was really a cool dawn and bright sunshine when I arrived at Sri Bhagavan ten years later.

Arunachala Siva.           


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Re: The Mind of J. Krishnamurti Edited by S. R. Vas (1989)
« Reply #6 on: May 10, 2011, 07:39:05 PM »

Dear srkudai,

Very nicely written post. It is said in Padamalai, as Sri Bhagavan's
statement to Muruganar:

The many different religions are appropriate to the maturity of each individual and all of them are acceptable to Reality. 
Abandoning vain disputation, which only deludes and torments the mind accept the doctrine of the mauna religion, which remains undisturbed.

Sri Bhagavan, just because He identified His experience tallying that of Sri Sankara, said that He is advaitin.  But His own synthesis of the two apparently contradictory philosophies can be found in the following replies in Upadesa Manjari.

Q: What is the end of devotion [bhakti] and the path of Siddhanta
-Saiva Siddhantam?

Sri Bhagavan: It is to learn that the truth of all one's actions performed with unselfish devotion, with the aid of three puriified
instruments of body, speech and mind, in the capacity of the servant of the Lord, become the Lord's actions, and to stand forth free from the sense of 'I' and 'mine'. This is also the truth of what the Saiva Siddhantins call Para Bhakti or living in the service of god iRai paNi niRRal.

Question: What is the end of the path of knowledge [Jnana] or Vedanta?

Sri Bhagavan: It is to know the truth that the 'I' does not exist
separately from the Lord [Iswara] and to be free from the feeling of being the doer, kartrtva, ahamkara.

As Gaudapada said in his Karika: My philosophy has no quarrel with any one. My philosophy has no opponent. Sri Bhagavan also did the same.

But JK is a different kettle.

Arunachala Siva.