Question: Has experience any value?
Krishnamurti: What happens when there is experience? It leaves a mark on the mind, which we call memory. With that scar, with that memory, we meet the next experience, and from that experience we gather further memory, increasing the scar. Each experience leaves its mark on the mind. Now these collective layers of memories are essentially based on the desire to protect yourself against suffering. That is, you come to experience already prepared, already protected by your past memories. You are not really living completely in that experience, but you are merely learning how to protect yourself against it, against life. Experience becomes valueless to a man who merely uses it as a means of further self-defence against life. But if you live in an experience wholly, integrally, without this desire for self-protection, then it does not destroy discernment; then it reveals the great heights and depths of life.
Now, to use experience as a means of advancing, that is, increasing the walls of self-protection, is generally called evolution. You think that through time this memory, this self-protective record, can reach truth or perfection or God. It cannot. True experience is the breaking down of those self-protective walls and freeing the mind, consciousness, from those scars that prevent discernment, fulfilment.
Rosario and Mendoza, Argentina
Public Talks 27th and 28th July, 25th and 27th August, 1935