Identity is there when division, separation and discrimination are there. In the state free of identity it is not that nothing is identified in daily life, such as bread and butter etc. It is that what we generally identify in the outside world is arbitrary. Bread is only bread as long as I retain the frame of reference as a human perceiving through my physical and organic sensory organs. Perceived through an electron microscope, for example, the same ‘object’ appears entirely different. Life free of identity is to be constantly aware, as much as possible, how arbitrary all identifications are. This is the meaning of ‘all things are without self’. Continue reading
I can feel my brain from the inside. Who this ‘I’ is that is feeling this, I do not know. I feel the quivering of the brain cells in hot anticipation of the next data input – much like a junkie waiting for the needle. I send sweet caresses to my brain cells, telling them that everything is alright and comforting them.
I feel the brain like the CPU of my computer. I see how its activity level jumps to 89% and then up to 100% when data input tells it to process signs of a possible threat to its safety and the safety of the ‘me’. Continue reading
This question is put to us by Krishnamurti and it can open up a deep understanding of how our minds work. I escape by “doing”. To “do” is a tiny word that is a symbol for the activity of my psycho-physiological stream of existence. Anything and everything that this psycho-somatic nervous system re-cognizes as being ‘appropriate, ‘useful’, ‘satisfying’, ‘purposeful’ etc. is entered into with gusto and a sense of comfort: our system says “I know what to do now”. The sense of familiarity and of being embedded in a larger frame of reference are comfort zones for this system, the ‘individual’. It doesn’t make sense to this little mind to cease its activity for longer than a spit second. Continue reading
My Comment: In the last section of this excerpt from Krishnamurti’s booklet The Urgency of Change, he gives a concise wording of what it means to “see” in the way he uses that term. K brings the term “attention” also into this context, which he points out, comes from ‘to attend to’. We hear him calling to us to be in a state of silence when we listen to others and when we look and “see” what is happening around us and within us. Only then will we be completely ‘with’ what is going on – and not have an internal dialog of evaluation, measurement, comparison, judgement etc. that is “noise” and the movement of the past – which then prevents us from attending fully to the other person or the situation or to our own internal questions to ourselves. Our attention and our ‘seeing’ are then fragmented and can only lead to more confusion and conflict. Continue reading
by Feng-kan, one of Han Shan’s companions in the Tientai Mountains
(Translator’s note: The Sea of Samsara, or Life and Death, and hence of Suffering. The Sanchieh – Three Worlds – into which we are born and reborn include those of Desire, Form, and Formlessness.)
My Comments: “forever immersed in scenes” we are. Unable, it seems, to just be with ‘what is’ – our mind continually interprets and evaluates everything we perceive. We come into this world and soon we see ourselves as ‘me’, the subject, with around us ‘the world’, the object. We are told time and time again that this is an illusion and that our way of perceiving life is highly delusional. To me it appears that I am about to fall over the edge into the Abyss of seeing that all I have ever experienced and felt to be true is of no reality whatsoever. Is this hopelessness? I don’t know. The word ‘hope’ must be another one of the conjurer’s tricks of my mind, so I place no stock in it. Is there a ‘deeper level’ in my being that is not of this ephemeral world of words? Yes, there is. It is that which keeps me steady in a very strange sort of way, for it is a stability that makes it possible for this manifested hallucination to continue to play games with my mind. Continue reading
My Comment: There is so very much food for thought and deep reflection in this portion of the chapter “Conditioning” from The Urgency of Change. I haven’t the space to go into my reflections on this today so it remains for me to encourage you to delve into it yourself. Continue reading
My Comment: This portion of “The Urgency of Change” by Krishnamurti leads us to the point where the churning of the mind subsides. He points to the dynamic of the mind imagining itself separate from its own movement as judgement, evaluation, liking, disliking etc. and how this movement of separating oneself from ‘what is’ perpetuates the past.
We can see how he is describing with other terms what in yoga is called ‘the modifications of the mind’ or in zen the ‘mind formations’. The Sanskrit term used is VRTTI. The endpoint of yoga is citta-vrtti-nirodha, which is when these mind modifications come to rest on their own because they implode due to their realization they lack any substance whatsoever. That is a longer topic of its own, but this excerpt below gives us some valuable pointers on how this dynamic plays out. Enjoy! Continue reading