Questioner: What has diet to do with the mental process or intelligence?
Krishnamurti: Certainly, a great deal. Understanding reality does not necessarily depend on the kind of food one eats; one may be a vegetarian and be vicious and dull, or a meat-eater and be intelligent in the widest sense. If one overeats, it is an indication of thoughtlessness; moderate and rational diet is necessary to alert thought. Too much fasting also dulls the mind. Not to be angry, not to be disparaging in our talk, not to be ruthless, obstinate, not to flatter, not to receive flattery, these are more important than the consideration of what we eat. Of primary importance are your thoughts and feelings. Cleanliness of food is not cleanliness of thought. Again we begin at the wrong end, with the external, hoping to grasp that state of inward peace, which cannot be realized through the mere alteration of environment. We hope to have psychological peace through discipline and denial, through imitation and isolation; we begin at the periphery, hoping to create inward peace and compassion but we must begin from the centre, the centre from which arise conflict and sorrow. We must become aware of the process of craving and its outward expressions; in discerning these, there is a natural restraint, not imposed through fear.
7th Public Talk 7th July, 1940