Question: The idea of leadership is, to many, a great inspiration. Also it leads to the cultivation of respect and a spirit of self-sacrifice. In you we recognize a great spiritual leader, and feel profound reverence towards you. Should we not therefore encourage, in others as well as in ourselves, these great qualities of respect and self-sacrifice?
Krishnamurti: The show of respect is personally distasteful to me. (Laughter) Please do not laugh. If there were true respect you would not only show it to me but to all. Your show of respect to me only indicates a mentality of barter. You think I am going to give you something, or help you in some way, and so you show respect. What you are really doing is showing respect to an idea that you should display consideration to a person who may help you, but out of this false respect there is born contempt for others. There is no consideration of the ideas in themselves, but unfortunately only of the person who gives forth these ideas. In this lies grave danger, leading to reciprocal exploitation. The mere respect of authority indicates fear which breeds many illusions. From this false respect, there arises the artificial distinction between leaders and followers, with its many obvious and subtle forms of exploitation. Where there is no intelligence there is respect for the few and disdain for the rest.
Ommen Camp, Holland
2nd Public Talk 27th July, 1936