Amsterdam, Holland | 5th Public Talk 26th May 1955
Question: Will you please explain what you mean by awareness?
Krishnamurti: Just simple awareness! Awareness of your judgments, your prejudices, your likes and dislikes. When you see something, that seeing is the outcome of your comparison, condemnation, judgment, evaluation, is it not? When you read something you are judging, you are criticizing, you are condemning or approving. To be aware is to see, in the very moment, this whole process of judging, evaluating, the conclusions, the conformity, the acceptances, the denials. Now, can one be aware without all that? At present all we know is a process of evaluating, and that evaluation is the outcome of our conditioning, of our background, of our religious, moral and educational influences. Such so-called awareness is the result of our memory, - memory as the 'me', the Dutchman. the Hindu, the Buddhist. the Catholic, or whatever it may be. It is the 'me', - my memories, my family, my property, my qualities, - which is looking judging, evaluating. With that we are quite familiar, if we are at all alert. Now, can there be awareness without all that, without the self? Is it possible just to look without condemnation, just to observe the movement of the mind, one's own mind, without judging, without evaluating, without saying 'It is good', or 'It is bad'? The awareness which springs from the self, which is the awareness of evaluation and judgment, always creates duality, the conflict of the opposites, - that which is and that which should be. In that awareness there is judgment, there is fear, there is evaluation, condemnation, identification. That is but the awareness of the 'me', of the self, of the 'I' with all its traditions. memories, and all the rest of it. Such awareness always creates conflict between the observer and the observed, between what I am and what I should be. Now. is it possible to be aware without this process of condemnation, judgment, evaluation? Is it possible to look at myself, whatever my thoughts are, and not condemn, not judge, not evaluate? I do not know if you have ever tried it. It is quite arduous, - because all our training from childhood leads us to condemn or to approve. And in the process of condemnation and approval there is frustration, there is fear, there is a gnawing pain, anxiety, which is the very process of the 'me', the self.