Krishnamurti & the Art of Awakening
A Quiet Space | moderated by Clive Elwell

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Thu, 09 Jan 2020 #61
Thumb_spock Douglas MacRae-Smith France 144 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
I think he was emphasising thought being aware of itself directly, rather than in the illusion of the thinker being aware of "his" thoughts. It seems to me - I say this tentatively, that it can, and when it does, thought dies.

The K quote was "can thought be aware of itself?" Maybe we are overly interpreting all the stuff about thought and thinker that K has said over the years..

Would it simplify matters if we just asked : "Can thought be aware?"

Look, see, let go

This post was last updated by Douglas MacRae-Smith Thu, 09 Jan 2020.

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Thu, 09 Jan 2020 #62
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5546 posts in this forum Offline

idiot ? wrote #57:
Attention is no thought/no self.

This is still not clear, not certain to me. Why do you say so? i am not saying that you are wrong.

idiot ? wrote:
Awareness of thought, which is awareness of inattention, is attention.

What distinction are you drawing between awareness and attention, Id?

idiot ? wrote:
Therefore, awareness of thought is the ending of thought. Momentarily I see my thought and at least briefly, in that moment there is a pause in thought.

Yes, this seems to be the case, I wrote something similar in a post above.

idiot ? wrote:
What is self knowledge? It is awareness of every thought.

That sounds reasonable. But I have often wondered why K used the term "knowledge", because awareness is NOT knowledge. Such usage seems wholly confusing, no?

idiot ? wrote:
Because we indulge in thought. That is, we think something, notice the thinking, it ends ever so briefly, and then we take up thinking again readily. We drown endlessly in thought.

In saying this, you seem to be creating a distinction, a separation, between "we" and "thought". We ARE that thought, are we not? Thought is not something that we DO, it is thought that creates ME, is it not?

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Thu, 09 Jan 2020 #63
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5546 posts in this forum Offline

Douglas MacRae-Smith wrote:
Would it simplify matters if we just asked : "Can thought be aware?"

This is a question that the forum has arrived at several times over the years.

It seems to me a significantly different question to:
"Can thought be aware of itself?", but one can still ask it.

Given that thought is the response of memory, given the scientific description of thought as activity in the brain cells, one would tend to answer "No, thought cannot be aware. It would seem to be like the pages of a book being aware of their contents.

But perhaps it is more subtle than that?

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Thu, 09 Jan 2020 #64
Thumb_spock Douglas MacRae-Smith France 144 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
But perhaps it is more subtle than that?

Well its way past my bedtime - but it might help if someone pulled up a text by K on what is thought.

Look, see, let go

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Thu, 09 Jan 2020 #65
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5546 posts in this forum Offline

Douglas MacRae-Smith wrote:
but it might help if someone pulled up a text by K on what is thought.

Try an excerpt on awareness instead:

Awareness is from moment to moment, it is not the cumulative effect of self-protective memories. Awareness is not determination nor is it the action of will. Awareness is the complete and unconditional surrender to what is, without rationalization, without the division of the observer and the observed. As awareness is non-accumulative, non-residual, it does not build up the self, positively or negatively. Awareness is ever in the present and so, non-identifying and non-repetitive; nor does it create habit.

Take, for instance, the habit of smoking and experiment with it in awareness. Be aware of smoking, do not condemn, rationalize or accept, simply be aware. If you are so aware there is the cessation of the habit; if you are so aware there will be no recurrence of it but if you are not aware the habit will persist. This awareness is not the determination to cease or to indulge.

Be aware; there is a fundamental difference between being and becoming. To become aware you make effort and effort implies resistance and time, and leads to conflict. If you are aware in the moment there is no effort, no continuance of the self-protective intelligence. You are aware or you are not; the desire to be aware is only the activity of the sleeper, the dreamer. Awareness reveals the problem completely, fully, without denial or acceptance, justification or identification, and it is freedom which quickens understanding. Awareness is a unitary process of the observer and the observed.

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Thu, 09 Jan 2020 #66
Thumb_spock Douglas MacRae-Smith France 144 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
K: "Awareness is the complete and unconditional surrender to what is, without rationalization,"

Meditation is an open heart.

Look, see, let go

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Thu, 09 Jan 2020 #67
Thumb_spock Douglas MacRae-Smith France 144 posts in this forum Offline

But back to this question : "Can thought be aware of itself?"

Since simplifying the question does not help - maybe we need to be reminded what thought is? (As suggested by K.)

The Network of Thought Chapter 8 | 1st Public Talk Amsterdam 19th September 1981

Thought is born of experience and knowledge, and there is nothing sacred whatsoever about thought. Thinking is materialistic, it is a process of matter. And we have relied on thinking to solve all our problems in politics and religions and in our relationships. Our brains, our minds, are conditioned, educated to solve problems. Thinking has created problems and then our brains, our minds, are trained to solve them with more thinking. All problems are created, psychologically and inwardly, by thought. Follow what is happening. Thought creates the problem, psychologically; the mind is trained to solve problems with further thinking, so thought in creating the problem then tries to solve it. So it is caught in a continuous process, a routine. Problems are becoming more and more complex, more and more insoluble, so we must find out if it is at all possible to approach life in a different way, not through thought because thought does not solve our problems; on the contrary thought has brought about greater complexity.
We must find out - if it is possible or not - whether there is a different dimension, a different approach, to life altogether. And that is why it is important to understand the nature of our thinking. Our thinking is based on remembrance of things past - which is thinking about what happened a week ago, thinking about it modified in the present, and projected into the future. This is actually the movement of our life. So knowledge has become all-important for us but knowledge is never complete. Therefore knowledge always lives within the shadow of ignorance. That is a fact. It is not the speaker's invention or conclusion, but it is so.

Look, see, let go

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Thu, 09 Jan 2020 #68
Thumb_spock Douglas MacRae-Smith France 144 posts in this forum Offline

And again, some more K on Thought:

Meditations | Part 1, 1969

In the space which thought creates around itself there is no love.This space divides man from man, and in it is all the becoming, the battle of life, the agony and fear. Meditation is the ending of this space, the ending of the me. Then relationship has quite a different meaning, for in that space which is not made by thought, the other does not exist, for you do not exist. Meditation then is not the pursuit of some vision, however sanctified by tradition. Rather it is the the endless space where thought cannot enter. To us, the little space made by thought around itself, which is the me, is extremely important, for this is all the mind knows, identifying itself with everything that is in that space. And the fear of "not being" is born in that space.
But in meditation, when this is understood, the mind can enter into a dimension of space where action is inaction. We do not know what love is, for in the space by thought around itself as the me, love is the conflict of the me and the not-me. This conflict, this torture is not love.
Thought is the very denial of love, and it cannot enter into that space where the me is not. In that space is the benediction which man seeks and cannot find. He seeks it within the frontiers of thought, and thought destroys the ecstasy of this benediction.

Look, see, let go

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Thu, 09 Jan 2020 #69
Thumb_spock Douglas MacRae-Smith France 144 posts in this forum Offline

A lot of stuff by K there - I'll just highlight what seem to be killer blows to the idea that thought may offer solutions to our psychological cage:

Douglas MacRae-Smith wrote:
K: "we must find out if it is at all possible to approach life in a different way, not through thought because thought does not solve our problems; on the contrary thought has brought about greater complexity.
We must find out - if it is possible or not - whether there is a different dimension, a different approach, to life altogether."

Douglas MacRae-Smith wrote:
K: "Thought is the very denial of love, and it cannot enter into that space where the me is not."

Thought is habit in the service of fear and desire - where there is fear and desire, love and Clarity is not.

Look, see, let go

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Thu, 09 Jan 2020 #70
Thumb_spock Douglas MacRae-Smith France 144 posts in this forum Offline

Which begs the even more confusing question :
Can I be aware of myself?

Look, see, let go

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Thu, 09 Jan 2020 #71
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3093 posts in this forum Offline

Douglas MacRae-Smith wrote:
Thinking has created problems and then our brains, our minds, are trained to solve them with more thinking. All problems are created, psychologically and inwardly, by thought. (K)

That’s a radical statement, and I think most of us, myself included, don’t always realize the truth of it. If it is in fact true. When I’m angry I normally say, “You made me angry”, or “The Republicans or Democrats made me angry.” Or my financial situation is the cause, or my spouse, the Catholics or Jews, or my boss or neighbor. What about fear...greed...attachments and addictions...and other psychological problems? K says thought is behind it ALL; and furthermore, that thought can’t solve the problems it itself has created. Challenging excerpt! Thanks for sharing it, Douglas....and the one that follows it.

Let it Be

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Thu, 09 Jan 2020 #72
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3093 posts in this forum Offline

Douglas MacRae-Smith wrote:
Which begs the even more confusing question :
Can I be aware of myself?

Confusing why? Because ‘I’ am the denial of awareness? Yet K has often said one can observe oneself...observe fear or anger ...or any inner conflict or problem. Then, it would seem to be that if there is to be awareness of myself....my greed or anger, etc....awareness must come from outside of ‘me’. Otherwise I’m just thinking...trying to solve these problems intellectually...analytically. Yet K said we can simply observe...look at...the problem. Yet the problem is not separate from the observer who has caused it. This can get complicated because ‘I’ have to see my role in all this...that thought is behind it all.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Thu, 09 Jan 2020.

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Thu, 09 Jan 2020 #73
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1647 posts in this forum Offline

Douglas MacRae-Smith wrote:
Thought is habit in the service of fear and desire - where there is fear and desire, love and Clarity is not.

Didn't the Buddha once say something that was translated like "All is suffering"? K. uses the word "bliss" which I looked up the definition of and it means according to the dictionaries as an extreme 'happiness'...a lot of the 'wise' quotes I read, using the word seem to put bliss as something we can 'follow' as in "following your bliss". K to my understanding puts bliss outside the 'walls' of the self. In another 'domain' outside the domain of thought created reality. He has called the 'other' domain at various times, no-thingness, meditation, love, wisdom, intelligence, emptiness, the immensity, awareness, eternity. This 'other' domain has no borders, no limits, no division, no beginning and no end. The domain of thought, the 'me and the mine, the 'I process' cannot 'touch' it but it can be touched by the other. Was the Buddha referring to the thought domain if he did say "all is suffering"? Was he referring to that 'wall' of self-protection that we are? That we struggle and yearn to be free of? Yet any action, any movement of psychological thought, is a continuation of that suffering, a reinforcing of that wall?

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Thu, 09 Jan 2020 #74
Thumb_spock Douglas MacRae-Smith France 144 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
.a lot of the 'wise' quotes I read, using the word seem to put bliss as something we can 'follow' as in "following your bliss"

Is this New Age self-help? Could you cite couple of sources?

Dan McDermott wrote:
Was the Buddha referring to the thought domain if he did say "all is suffering"?

Yes, Self, with its effect of Desire/Aversion, is Suffering. The Christian Bible is also clear about this : Suffering is due to knowledge of good and evil (this knowledge necessitating a sense of self [Genesis, Forbidden fruit]).

PS - I've found Joseph Campbell, by Following bliss on Google

Look, see, let go

This post was last updated by Douglas MacRae-Smith Thu, 09 Jan 2020.

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Thu, 09 Jan 2020 #75
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1647 posts in this forum Offline

Douglas MacRae-Smith wrote:
I've found Joseph Campbell, by Following bliss on Google

Yes Campbell was one. I think the quotes I read were all contemporary like Rajneesh, Deepak Chopra, Marianne williamson. I enjoyed Campbell's talks and books years ago. My point was that I think K, the Buddha, esoteric Christian teaching were putting 'bliss' in another dimension, a 'separate reality' from our thought created reality. That our reality is "all suffering"... and searching, striving for bliss here is futile. It is the dismantling, breaking down of this reality, this 'wall', that is bliss...

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Thu, 09 Jan 2020 #76
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5546 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
I think most of us, myself included, don’t always realize the truth of it. If it is in fact true. When I’m angry I normally say, “You made me angry”, or “The Republicans or Democrats made me angry.”

The Republicans and the Democrats, and all that ilk, are in fact created by thought, are they not? All ideology, all belief.

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Fri, 10 Jan 2020 #77
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3093 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
The Republicans and the Democrats, and all that ilk, are in fact created by thought, are they not? All ideology, all belief.

True, but the ones that often get us angry are the very real human beings who make public policy based upon those ideologies. But probably we can’t separate the person from the ideology. My ideas/thoughts about Trump are obviously only ideas...not that actual human being

Let it Be

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Fri, 10 Jan 2020 #78
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3093 posts in this forum Offline

Clive shared this above and I wanted to come back to it. It’s from The Ending of Time, chapter 15. What did you find most significant, Clive, in the excerpts you shared above? Any comments...anyone?

K: Isn't it very difficult, Sir, to be free of becoming? That is the root of it. To end becoming.

DB: Yes. There is no attention, and that is why these problems are there.

K: Yes, and when you point that out, the paying attention also becomes a problem.

DB: The difficulty is that the mind plays tricks, and in trying to deal with this, it does the very same thing again.

K: Of course. Can the mind, which is so full of knowledge, self-importance, self-contradiction, and all the rest of it, come to a point where it finds itself psychologically unable to move?

Why would the mind find itself unable to move? What is seen/understood that leads to the mind stopping?

Let it Be

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Fri, 10 Jan 2020 #79
Thumb_avatar idiot ? United States 79 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
Why would the mind find itself unable to move? What is seen/understood that leads to the mind stopping?

That every thought I think kills reality.

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Fri, 10 Jan 2020 #80
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3093 posts in this forum Offline

idiot ? wrote:
That every thought I think kills reality.

You mean that you can live free of thought? How will you cook your dinner?

Let it Be

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Fri, 10 Jan 2020 #81
Thumb_spock Douglas MacRae-Smith France 144 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
Why would the mind find itself unable to move? What is seen/understood that leads to the mind stopping?

This is difficult, because the mind wants to avoid this happening at all costs. We would normally not allow this to happen - it would be experienced usually as mental anguish, psychological disease, from which the self will turn away from or put an end to with some kind of conclusion.

Great doubt, or passionate doubt is not a choice, its arises due to an essential need for Truth, coupled with the realisation that every conclusion is fundamentally flawed by our point of view - the letting go that may happen at this point is not a choice either.

Of course this rarely happens when trying to decide what to cook for dinner.

Although I've heard it can, if there has been a regular habit of awareness and doubt.

Look, see, let go

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Fri, 10 Jan 2020 #82
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 797 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote at 78:
"K: Of course. Can the mind, which is so full of knowledge, self-importance, self-contradiction, and all the rest of it, come to a point where it finds itself psychologically unable to move?"

Tom: Why would the mind find itself unable to move? What is seen/understood that leads to the mind stopping?

Tom,

I don't know what K meant by "psychologically unable to move". Is it that the mind can neither escape from or avoid what is, nor can it face what is; it can neither read nor can it NOT read; it can neither speak nor stay silent; it can move neither forward nor backward. It can't move or "do" anything at all --- psychologically.

I don't know if this means anything to you. Again, I don't know if that's what K meant.

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Fri, 10 Jan 2020 #83
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3093 posts in this forum Offline

Douglas MacRae-Smith wrote:
Great doubt, or passionate doubt is not a choice, its arises due to an essential need for Truth,

This need must be quite rare then. How do you know that?

coupled with the realisation that every conclusion is fundamentally flawed by our point of view

Why is this so? Most of the time humans believe that their point of view is the truth...that the Bible is the word of God for example, as my Evangelical friend believes.


  • the letting go that may happen at this point is not a choice either.


Right, choice is of the self that one believes he is choosing to let go of. Choice is an avoidance of ‘what is’.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Fri, 10 Jan 2020.

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Fri, 10 Jan 2020 #84
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3093 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
Is it that the mind can neither escape from or avoid what is, nor can it face what is; it can neither read nor can it NOT read; it can neither speak nor stay silent; it can move neither forward nor backward. It can't move or "do" anything at all --- psychologically.

I’m not sure I get this, Huguette. I see the psychological realm in its entirety as false. It’s made up of the interior world of the mind ...conscious and unconscious...with its conditioning...its beliefs, ideals, judgments, knowledge of right and wrong, should and should not, and so on. Seeing the falseness of this realm in its entirety, one doesn’t enter there. One sees that the mind is ‘locked and loaded’ like a firearm and that whatever it touches will be hurt or damaged, other than in the practical realm, and that thought cannot see...cannot solve the problems of relationship that it’s causing.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Fri, 10 Jan 2020.

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Fri, 10 Jan 2020 #85
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 797 posts in this forum Offline

K asks: "Can the mind, which is so full of knowledge, self-importance, self-contradiction, and all the rest of it, come to a point where it finds itself psychologically unable to move?"

Tom responds:
Seeing the falseness of this realm in its entirety, one doesn’t enter there.

Seeing the falseness, what does the mind DO? Does it simply not "enter there"? Is it as simple as that? That question comes up, doesn't it? It is afraid of doing nothing.

So it sees the falseness and, seeing it, it CAN't enter there. But it also can't NOT enter there. So has it come to a point where it finds itself psychologically unable to move? I'm not saying yes or no, but it seems to me that this happens. I could be wrong.

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Fri, 10 Jan 2020 #86
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1647 posts in this forum Offline

When psychological thought is seen to be identifying itself as the body, emotions, movements, etc., can it stop itself? When it sees through its own trick of creating a 'me' and a 'you' and it realizes the suffering that is and has been entailed with such an identification creating a 'self', can it cease? When it realizes that any movement on its part except in the practical realm where identification doesn't happen, can it operate only there? Can it cease to bring time into the psychological realm of the senses, as well as psychological 'becoming'?

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Fri, 10 Jan 2020 #87
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3093 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
Seeing the falseness, what does the mind DO? Does it simply not "enter there"? Is it as simple as that? That question comes up, doesn't it? It is afraid of doing nothing.

The mind comes to rest. Not saying it won’t start moving again. Perhaps as you say, it’s afraid of doing nothing. Perhaps it sees the necessity of being vigilant? I need to look further into this.

Let it Be

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Sat, 11 Jan 2020 #88
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5546 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote &78:
Why would the mind find itself unable to move? What is seen/understood that leads to the mind stopping?

It is a fact, is it not, that thought cannot solve its own problems? That thought is the Creator of (psychological) problems, not the solver? Is this not a fact. The main reason being, perhaps, that thought is always only a fragment, and so can never deal with the whole problem. And also the whole orientation of thought is not really to solve its problems, but to protect itself, or rather to protect this imaginary entity that it has created.

Seeing this this, seeing the futility of thought trying to act, leads to the mind 'stopping', at least in the moment.

But I think, Tom, that you are asking how does seeing this fact come about, is that right? Clearly most people do not see this, they continue acting through thought, as if thought can solve its problems.

Let us consider this question together. My first observations are: by looking. By applying oneself to the investigation of thought itself. By watching thought in operation. By following each thought through (is this the "tedious" process K talks of?). By not identifying with the things of thought. And perhaps greatest of all, by realising that the thinker is thought.

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Sat, 11 Jan 2020 #89
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5546 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote &84:
I see the psychological realm in its entirety as false.

But can you see this, Tom, and (psychological) thought still proceed in its falseness?

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Sat, 11 Jan 2020 #90
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3093 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
But can you see this, Tom, and (psychological) thought still proceed in its falseness?

See #87 and #84

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Sat, 11 Jan 2020.

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