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Quote of the Day

Jul 9, 2020
Questioner: I would like to know how the human mind's conditioning originated.

Krishnamurti: That's fairly simple. Let's finish what I was saying, I will come back to that.

Sir, what is there to know about oneself? - all our conditioning, the racial inheritance, the family inheritance, the psychological twists and inclinations and tendencies, the pressure of environment, a bundle of memories (which is what I am, an abstraction). There isn't very much to learn. I can only say that there is not much to learn after observing myself. But if you say, 'There isn't much to learn about yourself', than you remain just what you are. So one of the fundamental questions in this is, is it not? 'How does a human mind so conditioned change, un-condition itself?'

And what is the origin of this conditioning? That's fairly simple, isn't it? You can observe the animals, how aggressive they are to survive. There is the origin of it. You watch birds, how they mark out the area which is theirs, their property; territorial rights supersede sexual rights, and there is the origin of aggression. And we also hold property, to us property is immensely important, as are sexual rights and so on. But a much more worthwhile question is: 'Is it possible for a mind so heavily conditioned as ours to immediately - not gradually but immediately - be free of all conditioning? And we say it is possible only through meditation, not phoney meditation, not the meditation of long beards or short beards or long hair or no hair, but the meditation that comes into beings as one learns about oneself without accumulation. Then, in that meditation, there is a way of life which is completely peaceful, non-aggressive, not demanding that you be in society or out of society - that meditation brings its own action in which there is no conflict at all.

Questioner: Is meditation a whole way of life?

Krishnamurti: Obviously it is, but to understand meditation one has to observe. You have to observe how you look at the tree, whether there is a space between you and the tree, between the observer and the thing observed, which is the tree. How does that space come into being? The space comes into being because the observer has his own memories about that tree. Or when the observer separates himself from greed and says, 'I am not greedy and I must get rid of greed', and there is a space between the observer and the observed and then the conflict. But the observer is the observed because he, being greedy, says, 'I must not be greedy', and therefore creates a duality. So meditation is the most extraordinary thing if you know how to do it, and you cannot possibly learn from anybody; and that's the beauty of it. It isn't something you learn, a technique, and therefore there is no authority. Therefore if you will learn about yourself, watch yourself, watch the way you walk, the way you talk, how you eat, what you say, the gossip, the hate, the jealousy. If you are aware of it without any choice, all that is part of meditation, and as you go, as you journey, as that movement goes, all that movement is meditation. Then that movement is endless, timeless.
Talks in Europe 1967 | 5th Public Talk, London - 30th September 1967 Read full text