Quote of the Day

Jul 20, 2021
Why has man always talked about religion? From the ancient Egyptians and before them, religion has played an extraordinary part in life - why? Is it that we are seeking happiness, peace, an end which will not be destructive, secure, peaceful, and demanding that and not finding it in life, not finding all that in our daily life, we project. Thought projects something that is enduring, something that is eternal, something that cannot be corrupted, something beyond all imagination, all thought. One projects that as opposite of our own condition and then worships that. This is what has happened, if you have observed, not only now but throughout history. Man wants to escape from himself because he lives in a constant, bitter anxiety, struggle, pain. And he wants to find something beyond all that. So he lives in a world of make-belief. This is a fact, and that is not a fact. Can we be free of the non-fact and live with facts, and transform the facts? You understand what I am saying? Please let's move together, we have got a lot to talk together this morning.

Which means, a mind that has no escape. After all, the rituals, all that goes on in the name of religion, has actually nothing whatsoever to do with our daily life, and therefore it is an escape from this daily torture. It may not be torture, it may be a conflict, may be pain, may be anxiety. So a mind that escapes from what actually is going on is not a religious mind. That is not a dogmatic statement. It is logical, sane, rational. And if it isn't actual religion, believing something, we commit ourselves to some form, or follow somebody who has clever interpretations and we commit ourselves to that. So the mind is never free to observe itself. And all such escapes, all such commitments, is negligence. It is not a dogmatic statement. So don't brush it aside as being dogmatic. We are investigating the very complex process of living. And if we do not understand that, if we are not free of our sorrow, of our pain, of our anxiety, of our depression, of our neurosis, to find what truth is becomes an illusion, meaningless. What we have to do first is to clear the decks, as it were. Lay the foundation in our life, in our daily life so that there is not a shadow of conflict, which we talked about the other day.

So we are saying, together we are investigating, and seeing, can such a mind come about? Not through will, because that is again meaningless. Not through compulsion, not through reward or punishment. We have tried all that. And we are still where we are! So if we are serious, and life demands that we be serious, circumstances demand that we be serious. The world, which is destroying itself through nationalism, division and so on, seeing all that, merely verbally discussing, arguing has very little value, but if we are serious to find out whether the human mind, human condition can be changed, radically, then such a mind must inevitably enquire, not only into various parts of life but the whole structure of life, the whole pattern of living.
Public Talk 4 Brockwood Park, England - 07 September 1980 Read full text