Krishnamurti & the Art of Awakening

Krishnamurti Quote of the Day

Public Talk 28th December, 1947 | Madras, India

Question: I have listened to what you have been saying and I feel that to carry out your teachings I must renounce the world I live in.

Krishnamurti: Sir, you cannot renounce the world, can you? What is the world? The world is made up of things, relationships and ideas. How can you give up things? Even if you give up your house you will still have a 'kurtha'. You may renounce your wife but you will still be in relation with someone, with the milkman, for instance, or the man who gives you food. And you cannot renounce belief, can you? I wish you would. Begin there, if you must renounce something, renounce the wrong valuations which you have given to everything. Wrong valuations create havoc and it is from these wrong valuations which cause misery that you want to escape. You don't want to understand that you are giving wrong values. You want to escape from the result of wrong values but if you understood the world, which is - ideas, relationship, things - and their true significance, then you would not be in conflict with the world. You cannot withdraw from the world, to withdraw means isolation and you cannot live in isolation. You can live in isolation only in an asylum, but not by renouncing the world. You can only live truly happily with the world when you are not of the world, which means you don't give wrong values to the things in the world. This can happen only when you understand yourself the giver of wrong values.

Sirs, it is like a stupid man trying to renounce stupidity. He will still be stupid, he may try to become clever but he will remain stupid. But if he understood what stupidity is, that is, himself, surely then he would reach great heights. Then he would have wisdom. It is not by renouncing that you can find Reality. By renouncing you escape into illusion; you do not discover that which is true. So, what I have been saying is that one must give right values to things, to relationship, to ideas and not try to escape from the world. It is comparatively easy to go away into isolation, but it is extremely arduous to be aware and to give true values. Sirs, things have no value in themselves. The house has no value in itself but it has the value you give it. If psychologically you are empty, insufficient in yourself, the house becomes very important because you identify yourself with the house, and then comes the problem of attachment and renunciation. It is really stupid, and if you understood your inward nature, your inward hollowness, then the problem would have very little meaning. Everything becomes extraordinarily significant when you are trying to use it to cover up your own loneliness. Similarly with relationship, with ideas, with belief. So, there is richness only in understanding the significance of what is, and not in running away into isolation.

Tags: isolation, renounciation

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