Krishnamurti & the Art of Awakening

Krishnamurti Quote of the Day

Ojai, California | 1st Public Talk, 1945

Questioner: I find there is conflict between my occupation and my relationship. They go in different directions. How can I make them meet?

Krishnamurti: Most of our occupations are dictated by tradition, or by greed, or by ambition. In our occupation we are ruthless, competitive, deceitful, cunning and highly self-protective. If we weaken at any time we may go under, so we must keep up with the high efficiency of the greedy machine of business. It is a constant struggle to maintain a hold, to become sharper and cleverer. Ambition can never find lasting satisfaction; it is ever seeking wider fields for self-assertiveness.

But in relationship quite a different process is involved. In it there must be affection, consideration, adjustment, self-denial, yielding; not to conquer but to live happily. In it there must be self-effacing tenderness, freedom from domination, from possessiveness; but emptiness and fear breed jealousy and pain in relationship. Relationship is a process of self-discovery, in which there is wider and deeper understanding; relationship is a constant adjustment in self-discovery. It demands patience, infinite pliability and a simple heart.

But how can the two meet together, self-assertiveness and love, occupation and relationship? The one is ruthless, competitive, ambitious, the other is self-denying, considerate, gentle; they cannot come together. With one hand people deal in blood and money, and with the other they try to be kind, affectionate, thoughtful. As a relief from their thoughtless and dull occupations they seek comfort and ease in relationship. But relationship does not yield comfort for it is a distinctive process of self-discovery and understanding. The man of occupation tries to seek through his life of relationship comfort and pleasure as a compensation for his wearisome business. His daily occupation of ambition, greed and ruthlessness lead step by step to war and to the barbarities of modern civilization.

Right occupation is not dictated by tradition, greed or ambition. If each one is seriously concerned in establishing right relationship, not only with one but with all, then he will find right occupation. Right occupation comes with regeneration, with the change of heart, not with the mere intellectual determination to find it.

Integration is only possible if there is clarity of understanding on all the different levels of our consciousness. There can be no integration of love and ambition, deception and clarity, compassion and war. So long as occupation and relationship are kept apart, so long will there be endless conflict and misery. All reformation within the pattern of duality is retrogression; only beyond it, is there creative peace.

Tags: learning, pliability

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