Q: Why is it so difficult to empty one's mind?
Krishnamurti : Now just listen to that question. Why is it so difficult to empty the mind? Listen to this. The speaker stated: meditation is the emptying of the mind of the activity of the self. You heard it. You have drawn a conclusion from it, saying, "How am I to do it?" - and in the very doing of it, it has become very difficult. So you ask the question, "Why is it so difficult to empty the mind?" That is, you haven't listened to the statement at all. You have drawn a conclusion from that statement saying, "I'd like to do that, but by Jove, how difficult it is" - you have understood? If you listen to it and not draw an abstraction from it, that is, "I must empty the mind", then "How am I to do it and how difficult it is", then you have an immense problem, you can't empty the mind, do what you will you can't empty it, because the desire to empty it is part of the activity of the self.
But if you listen to it, listen to the statement, knowing you can't do a thing about it, just listen to it - look sirs, I listen to that aeroplane, listen to it. Listen to it without any resistance; listen to it saying, "I am trying to understand what he is talking about, how can I listen to that aeroplane, I want to listen to him" - you follow? Whereas if you just listen to that aeroplane without any resistance, then what takes place? You are just listening. There is no difficulty. But whereas if you listen to the statement that meditation is that, then you go into all kinds of tantrums, see all the difficulties, say, how can you do this living in this beastly world and so on and so on. Whereas if you listened totally and completely then that very act of listening has produced in the mind a movement which is not the activity of the self. And that movement operates in daily life without any difficulty.
7th Public Talk 29th July 1973