Where there is duality, where there are opposites, there must be the consciousness of incompleteness. The mind is caught up in opposites such as punishment and reward, good and bad, past and future, gain and loss. Thought is caught up in this duality, and therefore there is incompleteness in action. This incompleteness creates suffering, the conflict of choice, effort and authority, and the escape from the unessential to the essential.
When you feel that you are incomplete, you feel empty, and from that feeling of emptiness arises suffering; out of that incompleteness you create standards, ideals, to sustain you in your emptiness, and you establish these standards and ideals as your external authority. What is the inner cause of the internal authority that you create for yourself? First, you feel incomplete, and you suffer from that incompleteness. As long as you do not understand the cause of authority, you are but an imitative machine, and where there is imitation there cannot be the rich fulfillment of life.
First Public Talk, 1933