... what is self-knowledge? Surely it cannot be learned through books. Surely it is not the assertion of another. You have to know the total process of your whole being, that is, to be aware of everything that you are - thoughts, feeling and action. Being aware, not by becoming aware, of what you are, that is the very beginning of self-knowledge. Without self-knowledge I do not see how there can be any thinking at all. Since you are the world and your relationship with another is society, without a revolutionary change in you there can be no hope. How to understand yourself is of primary importance. "Transform society" is one of our catch-phrases, an easy assertion, that we must do something about the world as though the world were so different from ourselves. We have created this horror, these wars, this mad chaos in the world at the present time and we cannot transform it if we do not know how to think about the problem. We cannot think about the problem unless we are aware of it. And you cannot be aware of it outside of yourself. You have created this, therefore you should become aware of yourselves and not of others. Therefore the confusion has to be cleared within your mind, which does not mean you must wait till all the confusion in yourself is cleared before you act.
Public Talk 2nd November, 1947