Krishnamurti & the Art of Awakening

Krishnamurti Quote of the Day

Ojai, California | 3rd Public Talk 9th June, 1940

Questioner: To be fully aware, to be pliable, there must always be a great feeling of love. Not by effort can one feel love, nor become fully aware, so what should one do?

Krishnamurti: Now what is the effort involved in understanding, for example, our psychological cravings and natural needs? To understand deeply that all psychological dependence whether on things or on people creates not only social but personal conflict and sorrow, to understand the complex causes of conflict and the desire to be free from it, requires not the mere will to be free, but constant awareness in our daily life. If that awareness is the outcome of the desire to achieve a certain result, then the effort to be aware only produces further resistance and conflict. Awareness comes into being when there is the interest to understand but interest cannot be created through mere will and control. If you give true value to things only in order not to have conflict, you are living in a state of illusion, for then you do not understand the process of craving which creates conflict and pain.

Tags: desire, understanding, will

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Until you are committed, dedicated, to eradicating this national, economic, religious division, you are perpetuating war
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To understand what I am saying is not very difficult. The difficulty lies in putting what I am saying into action.
Where there is no creative expression of life, we give undue importance to sex, which becomes an acute problem.
Question: I desire many things from life which I do not have. Can you tell me how to get them?
If we destroy desire, there is death;
When you are really able to think without any craving, without any desire to choose - for choice implies opposites - there is discernment.
The very desire to be free creates its own limitation.
Confusion arises only when you are made incapable of adjustment by your fantastic and harmful conceptions, ideals and beliefs.
Before we can understand what is truth, reality, or know if there be such a thing, we must discern what it is that is constantly seeking.
Through want we create confusion, ignorance and suffering, and then we set in movement the process of escape.
If you can deeply comprehend [this] self-sustaining process of ignorance which gives a solidity to the "I", from which arise all confusion and suffering, then life can be lived fully, without the various subtle escapes and pursuits that, unknowingly, you have created for yourself.
The reality of the permanent can only happen, take place, and is not to be cultivated.
[The] process of escape from actuality, from uncertainty, must lead to illusion, abnormality, neurosis and unbalance.
There is the will of want, which is effort, and the will of comprehension, which is discernment.
The process of choice is merely one want overcoming another, one illusion dispelling another, one set of values substituting itself for another.
I have tried to explain that conduct born of compulsion, whether it be the compulsion of reward or of punishment, of fear or of love, is not right conduct.
Desire cannot exist by itself, it must always be in relation to something.
Desire is not emotion; desire is the result of a mind that is ever seeking satisfaction, whose values are based on satisfaction.
The desire to be satisfied creates will, which maintains itself by its own continual effort.
The very question of how to be free of desire is prompted by desire itself.
Only in deep emotion is there no craving for satisfaction.
Desire and emotion are two different and distinct processes; desire being entirely of the mind, and emotion the integral expression of one's whole being.
Desire can only recondition itself, reshape itself to a new pattern, but it will still be desire, giving birth to fear.
Question: Are desire and interest, as we know them now, the same?
Question: How can I attain the quality of desirelessness without having the desire to attain it?
What we are trying to do here is to understand the process of desire, not to put a boundary to craving.
The motive for cultivating the opposite matters greatly; if it is a desire to escape from the struggle and pain of envy, then its opposite becomes identical with itself and so there is no freedom from envy.
To merely deny craving, to merely oppose its many expressions is not to transcend it but to continue in it.
Our conflict within and without arises, does it not, from the changing and contradictory values based on pleasure and pain?
The conflict of acquisitiveness appears in knowledge, in relationship, in possessions; acquisitiveness in any form creates inequality and brutality.
Being is only when there is no effort, positive or negative, to become;
if we were aware of what is, then the truth of sorrow, of impermanency, of imprisonment would liberate thought from its own ignorance.
The desire to become, negatively or positively, is self-expansive and in the expansion of the self there can be no freedom.
All forms of becoming, negative or positive, cause conflict, resistance.
You are this and you want to be that; you are ignorant and you want to be enlightened; you are arrogant and you want to be humble.
The desire to listen and the action of listening are two quite different states.
In the very desire to achieve anything, there is the seed of its own opposite.
Why do you want to give up something, for getting rid of fear or on seeing it as it is?
the explanation is never that thing which is explained, that is the word is never the thing.
We don't love children, because we have no love in our own hearts. We just breed children.
The essence of control is suppression.
A mind that is indifferent, is aware of the shoddiness of our civilization, the shoddiness of our thought, the ugly relationships;
Mere reformation of the pattern of society only alters the surface, it brings about a more respectable form of ambition.
Until I, in my relationship to you, understand myself, I am the cause of chaos, misery, destruction, fear, brutality.
Life itself has no system, for it is always in movement;
In the confusion and turmoil of life, in its continual bustle and conflict, every individual is caught.
Criticism is only of value in so far as it trains your observation so that it can eventually be turned on yourself.
Desire, which has been the driving force in man, has created a great many pleasant and useful things; desire also, in man's relationships, has created a great many problems and turmoil and misery - the desire for pleasure.
As fear cannot free itself through any means, for all its efforts spring from its own source, there must be the cessation of all intellectual safeguards.
Conflict at any level, at any depth, indicates immaturity.
There is no essential difference between the old and the young, for both are slaves to their own desires and gratifications.
Is it possible for the mind to be so attentive all the time, so sensitive that every challenge is answered completely and immediately, and to come to a state when there is no challenge and no response, when it is no longer in a state of experiencing?
There is a vast difference, then, between the mental examination of a fact and the understanding of that fact.
We are not concerned with individual salvation or individual liberation, or whatever the individual is trying to seek but rather with the whole movement of life, the understanding of the whole current of existence;
to observe means to observe without the interference of one's background; but one is the background - you follow?-one's whole being which looks is one's background - as a Christian, as a Frenchman, or as an intellectual.
Stillness cannot be cultivated, because if you cultivate a still mind, it is not a still mind, it is a dead mind.
When one merely understands intellectually, verbally or romantically or emotionally, it is just nothing at all.
In action born of choice there is no discernment, choice being calculation, a remembrance of incomplete action.
When you are awakened there is conflict, struggle. which you call suffering; but immediately you want to put away that struggle, that awakening;
In order to fight, you must know what you are fighting, so there must be understanding of the fundamental, not of the divisions between the false things.
Why do you want to eliminate self-consciousness?
Because what you can now discern as God must be limited, since your mind is circumscribed, held in bondage; therefore I will not describe that.
When you understand you don't seek to modify, to alter, to reform.
There is the reaction to environment when the mind does not understand the environment, and acts without understanding, thereby further increasing the limitation of environment
I doubt, if I may say so, that you really understand what I am saying, even intellectually;
There is either deep understanding or the creation of mere theory.
Truth, the beauty of reality, can be discerned only when the mind is fearless; not with the fearlessness of intellectuality, but of utter insecurity.
If you have beliefs, you are translating and moulding your experiences according to them, and so you are continuously forcing and limiting thought-emotion, and these limitations become the "I" process.
Both the religious and the materialistic mind are conditioned by their own prejudices which prevent the integral comprehension of truth and the communion with it.
The problem of starvation is not solved by merely discovering its causes - the bad economic system, over-production, maldistribution, and so on.
I can give you [also] a very good explanation, but we are trying to go beyond mere explanations.
I have explained what I mean by understanding. This understanding is not an intellectual, analytical process.
Understanding is not brought about through the mere exertion of a one-sided will but through that experimental approach which has that peculiar quality of wholeness.
All overcoming is a form of ignorance and violence; only understanding can free thought from bondage.
I am talking of understanding which transcends reason and emotion.
What is of primary importance [then] is understanding, in whose wake follows compassion.
Understanding is not a reward; in the very moment of awareness it is born.
Surely there is a difference between right thinking and right or conditioned thought.
It is natural, is it not, to be depressed at this present time when there is so much killing, confusion and sorrow?
To merely deny craving, to merely oppose its many expressions is not to transcend it but to continue in it.
Compulsion does not create understanding, whether it is from outside or from within.
To understand there must be no judgment or comparison, no acceptance or denial, for all identification prevents that passive awareness in which alone the discovery of what is true is made.
These talks will be utterly useless if you do not experience as you are listening.
Condemnation, judgment and comparison do not bring the experience of understanding; on the contrary they will stop experience
In the outer world there is no hope, no clarity, no creative and renewing understanding, there is only bloodshed and confusion and mounting disaster.
Instead of trying to control these wandering thoughts become aware of them, think-out, feel-out every thought, comprehend its significance, however pleasant or unpleasant;
Search to understand, not to know; for in understanding, the dual process of the knower and the known ceases.
Understanding comes when your whole being is deeply and silently aware.
Without understanding oneself meditation becomes a process of self-hypnosis inducing experiences according to one's conditioning, one's belief.
Effort made to be free without the liberating action of Truth is still within the enclosing walls of the self.
If you saw the truth about self-expansion problems would begin to fade away.
Our difficulty lies in that we have built around ourselves conclusions which we call understanding.
Understanding is not substitution; mere change of patterns, of conclusions, does not yield understanding.
It is truth alone that frees, not the activity of will.
As we have got a very difficult subject to deal with it requires a great deal of patience and we must not jump to conclusions.
I am not here to give you ideas but on the contrary, I am here to discuss together with you if we can, seriously and earnestly, the problem of living.
We use the present as a passage to the future.
Understanding is a total responsibility of your entire being, a perception which comes to you of the entire picture and not of a part only.
When the mind is dull, it is unwilling to look at 'what is' but wants to change itself into something else, thus bringing another element into the problem.
[Understanding] involves change of will altogether and not merely change in will.
You cannot overcome a hindrance; the hindrance has to be understood by approaching it without condemnation, without judging, without a desire to alter it.
A truth, probably heard by you, ceases to be a truth when you merely repeat it; it will be a truth to you only when you, for yourself, have discovered it to be true.
As long as the mind is moving from the known to the known, it is 'dead', and a 'dead' thing cannot understand anything.
Is understanding to come through effort, or is there a state in which effort has ceased for understanding to be?
Why do we not realise that our pursuit of drunkenness, God or an ideal is only the pursuit of our escape from facing the actual, and therefore reduces us to a state of dullness and insensitivity?
Is not knowledge different from understanding and does the mere accumulation of knowledge yield understanding?
As it is, our existence is pretty awful and merely to understand verbally what is being said and use it as a pattern to translate everyday existence will not bring about understanding.
You will have understanding only when you consider the problem, when you accept it, look at it, become aware of its significance completely, and even love it.
If I want to understand what is, I must give my whole attention, my whole being to it and not be distracted by the opposites.
There is always in the 'thinker' a sense of permanency, a sense of continuity.
Most of you agree with what we have discussed so far in regard to the falseness of the trick played by the mind on itself; yet you have not seen the real depth of this problem and, therefore, it has not brought about clarification and transformation in you.
I am going to explain presently that truth can be understood instantaneously.
Outward action, when accomplished, is over, is static; and if the relationship between individuals, which is society, is not the outcome of inward revolution, then the social structure, being static, absorbs the individual, and therefore makes him equally static, repetitive.
Question: Can we realize on the spot the truth that you are speaking of, without any previous preparation?
Surely, meditation is understanding - meditation of the heart is understanding.
Self-knowledge is the beginning of meditation - not the knowledge that you pick up from my books, from authorities, from gurus, but the knowledge that comes into being through self-inquiry, which is self-awareness.
Peace can come into being only when the confusion which we have created is completely understood, not on the verbal level, but inwardly;
I cannot understand myself if I am tethered to anything - property, idea or thing.
Sincerity can never be simple; sincerity is the breeding ground of the will, and will cannot uncover the ways of the self.
It is only the righteous man that develops his will as a means of resistance, and a man of will can never find truth, because he is never free.
Freedom cannot be given; freedom is something that comes into being when you do not seek it;
Is silence to be cultivated, carefully nurtured and strengthened? And who is the cultivator? Is he different from the totality of your being?
We are saying: Be dead to love; it doesn't matter. Live entirely in your intellect and in your verbal manipulations, your cunning arguments.
You cannot brush the past aside. It is there.
An ambitious man, whether he be a merchant, a politician, or a so-called saint is essentially a self-contradictory human being.
Have the teachings attributed to the great teachers - Christ, Buddha, Hermes and others - any value for the attainment of the direct path to truth?
The energy which seeks truth creates its own discipline without any form of imposition; and as the river finds the sea, so that energy finds its own freedom.
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.
Is there an action which is not the result of effort, which is not the action of will?
Will is the outcome of the conflict of choice, but discernment is choiceless.
There are two kinds of will - the will that is born out of desire, want, craving, and the will that is of discernment, comprehension.
The change in will is submission to the authority of ideal and conduct. The change of will is discernment, intelligence, in which there is not the conflict of antitheses.
The will to exist, the will to become perfect, the will to succeed, the will to acquire, the will to find God, is the urge of egotism.
Will living according to a pattern, an ideal, following it ruthlessly, meditating upon it, bring you to the discovery of yourself?
Is each one aware of the mechanical process of the intellect, of the will, which destroys the spontaneous, the real?
Creative emptiness is not to be run after or sought by devious ways. It must happen. Truth is.
The desire to be satisfied creates will, which maintains itself by its own continual effort.
Being poor inwardly, psychologically, spiritually, one thinks of enriching oneself through possessions, with ever increasing complex demands and problems.
You may be able to overcome greed through the mere exertion of the will of denial, but that does not lead to understanding, to love, for such a will is the product of conflict and therefore cannot free itself from greed.
Understanding is not brought about through the mere exertion of a one-sided will but through that experimental approach which has that peculiar quality of wholeness.
All overcoming is a form of ignorance and violence; only understanding can free thought from bondage.
It is only when we are really inwardly free from greed, not merely in our outward relationship and action, that there can be peace and disinterested action.
The motive for cultivating the opposite matters greatly; if it is a desire to escape from the struggle and pain of envy, then its opposite becomes identical with itself and so there is no freedom from envy.
Without self-knowledge, to make a choice between the opposites must inevitably lead to further ignorance and sorrow.
In opposition there is no understanding.
This abandonment of the self is not an act of will;
An intelligence which is the product of desire, of self-expansion, is ever creating resistance, and it can never bring about tranquillity.
It is truth alone that frees, not the activity of will.
[Understanding] involves change of will altogether and not merely change in will.
You cannot overcome a hindrance; the hindrance has to be understood by approaching it without condemnation, without judging, without a desire to alter it.
You will have understanding only when you consider the problem, when you accept it, look at it, become aware of its significance completely, and even love it.
All greatness, like love, comes to you. If you pursue love it will never come, but if you are open, still, not demanding, it will come.
So, as long as the thinker is separate from his thought, there will be problems, one after the other, innumerable problems;