Krishnamurti & the Art of Awakening

Krishnamurti Quote of the Day

Public Talk, March 7th, 1948 | Mumbai, India

Aren't you under the belief that your thoughts are separate from yourself? This very question implies that, doesn't it? - that there is the controller and the controlled, the observer and the observed. Now, do we know this process to be a fact, that there is the observer and the observed, the controller and the controlled? Is this separation real? It is real in the sense that we are indulging in it. But is it not a trick of the mind? Please, in this question a great deal is involved, so don't accept or deny, don't defend or put aside what I am suggesting. Most of you believe that the thinker is separate, the higher self, the Atman, the watcher, dominating the lower self, and so on. Why is there this separation? Isn't this separation still within the field of the mind? When you say the thinker is the Atman, the watcher, and the thoughts are separate, surely that is still within the field of the mind.

Now, is it not that the mind, the thinker, has separated himself from his thoughts in order to give himself permanency? Because he can always modify his thoughts, he can always change his thoughts, put a new frame around them, while he remains apart and therefore gives himself permanency. But without the thoughts, the thinker is not. He may separate himself from his thoughts, but if he ceases to think, he no longer exists, does he? So, this separation of the thinker from his thoughts is a trick of the thinker to give himself security, permanency. That is, the mind perceives that thoughts are transient, and therefore it adopts the cunning trick of saying that it is the thinker apart from its thoughts, it is the Atman, the watcher, apart from action, from thought. But, if you observe the process very closely, putting aside all your acquired knowledge of what others have said, however great, then you will see that the observer is the observed, that the thinker is the thought. There is no thinker apart from thought; however widely, deeply and extensively he may separate himself or build a wall between himself and his thoughts, the thinker is still within the field of his thinking. Therefore, the thinker is the thought; so when you ask, `How can thought be controlled?', you are putting a wrong question.

When the thinker begins to control his thoughts, he does so merely to give himself continuity, or because he finds his thoughts are painful to him. Therefore, he wants to modify his thoughts, while he remains permanent behind the screen of words and thoughts. When once you admit that, which is true, then your disciplines, your pursuit of the higher, your meditations, your controls, all collapse. That is, if you are willing to look at the obvious fact that the thinker is the thought, and when you become fully aware of that fact, then you no longer think in terms of dominating, modifying, controlling, or canalizing your thoughts. Then the thought becomes important, and not the thinker. The emphasis then is not on the controller and how to control, but the thought which is controlled becomes important in itself. Understanding the thought process is the beginning of meditation, which is self-knowledge. Without self-knowledge, there is no meditation; and meditation of the heart is understanding. To understand, you cannot be tethered to any belief.

Tags: meditation, thought

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Question: Why is your teaching so purely psychological?
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