“This vast, measureless space lies outside the measure of thought, and thought is the known. Meditation is the emptying of consciousness of its content, the known, the ‘me’.”
The selections in this book present the core of Krishnamurti’s teaching on meditation, taken from discussions with small groups, as well as from public talks to large audiences. His main theme is the essential need to look inward, to know ourselves, in order really to understand our own—and the world’s—conflicts. We are the world, says Krishnamurti, and it is our individual chaos that creates social disorder. He offers timeless insights into the source of true freedom and wisdom.
This statement by Aldous Huxley is found in the wonderful biography by his wife, Laura Archera Huxley: This Timeless Moment (p. 312). It sums up the spirit that Huxley came to embody and exemplify throughout his life. The spirit that I experience as the basic attitude of many here in this community that Alia and I live in is akin to this. Continue reading
In conversation with Krishnamurti in July of 1961, Laura Archera Huxley (Aldous Huxley’s wife) asked the following question:
“What is a religious man?”
We are so heavily addicted to rational thinking that it seems at times almost impossible to open up to a direct realization of what Ramana is talking about. Of course we should be able to get a felt sense of this Fact that is all around us, in our face and completely obvious – but that is not the case. Most of our waking hours and in our dream experiences we move through a card-house made of living images that are ephemeral, fleeting and passing.
What we call happiness are experiences within this card-house and they do not satisfy that deep longing inside for HOME that is the bed-rock of Existence rather than the shifting sands of the content of our consciousness.
The following statements express some views as to ‘how’ we can access our Natural State.
How easy it is to deceive oneself, to project desirable states which are actually experienced, especially when they are pleasure. There’s no illusion, no deception, when there’s no desire, conscious or unconscious, for any experience of any kind, when one’s wholly indifferent to the coming and going of all experience, when one’s not asking for anything.
Why be mean when there are soaring mountains and flashing streams?
Krishnamurti Notebook July 26, 1961
Here you will get to know what is, not what you expect to hear. Duality arises when consciousness arises. I am present and I know that I am present – that is duality. I am and I am not conscious of being present – that is unicity. There is only one, ‘but when this conscious presence is there, then there is a sense of duality.
Questioner: Is a Realized person aware of everything?
N. Actually no one is realized, there is only pure knowledge (the sense of I Am). It is only for reasons of communication that we say a person is realized. The knowledge has realized that it is knowledge; that is all that has happened. I am not the body, I am not the words; when knowledge recognizes this it is called Self-Realization.
Q: The knowledge Maharaj is giving is for jnanis (awakened ones). What happens to the very simple man who is not able to comprehend this?
N: Bhajans (devotional songs) and meditation. By meditation the knowledge which is immature will gradually grow into maturity.
Q. A thousand years ago people were primitive. They could not have understood this. It is only for developed minds.
N. Whether primitive or civilized, people can understand this. Even in those days there must have been some to whom this knowledge did appear and they instinctively understood.
This knowledge is not new; it has always been in existence. People came to know instinctively.
Q. Why is it that India seems to be the cradle of this knowledge? No other country seems to have this knowledge.
N: That is not so. This manifestation is the expression of the Absolute, and the manifestation may take various forms in various countries. Where it takes what kind of expression is immaterial; basically all is the manifestation of the Absolute. There is no cause and effect, no reason why one thing should be in one place and something else in another.
What is to be found out is what one is, by oneself.
Q. Can the Guru give a push toward that knowledge?
N. You think that you are one individual and the Guru is another individual but that is not so. Guru is the knower of this consciousness, which is temporary.
Understand this curious situation: while I am talking to you there is unbearable pain in the body (cancer).
I have understood firmly that there are no individuals separate from one another, no knowledge separate as worldly knowledge and spiritual knowledge. There is no Guru and no disciple, there is no God and no devotee. There are no opposites – they are a polaristic duality, not two separate parts, but two parts of the same one. I am convinced of that and yet I am talking to you. You accept it as knowledge and I give it as knowledge. Understand this amusing factor.
The talks emanate spontaneously out of me; prior to the emanation of the words there is no meaning fabricated inside. There is no part played by the mind. It is direct spontaneity.
Q. What is the definition of consciousness as used by Maharaj?
N. Consciousness, as it is used here, is this sense of being alive, of being present, the sense of existence. It is the love of being that is the source and cause of all desires.
source: Prior to Consciousness, December 9, 1980
When I become quiet and have let go of chasing my images and my desires for a short while I get a glimpse of what is meant by this statement:
This statement stands out for me today: “What is the thing that is hurt? The image that each one has built about himself, that is what is hurt.” I was watching this ‘image builder’ yesterday in myself, just noticing how it seems to be incessantly creating image after image without respite. Included in this image about ‘myself’ are my reactions to those I meet, to my surroundings, to all situations I am in. The image builder says, for example: “I am not the kind of person who likes things this way, something is wrong. I am not the kind of person who agrees with what this person is saying, something is wrong. I am not the kind of person who can agree to things being done this way, something is wrong. ” Alternately “I am the kind of person who likes this kind of person, this situation, this food, this drink, this wording…” It’s a crazy world. Continue reading
My Comment: What can this mean – to transcend the domain of consciousness? Isn’t everything we know, our entire existence the “domain of consciousness”? Also the statement “The Absolute… does not know Itself” presents us with a seemingly insurmountable riddle. In Zen this is termed a ‘koan’. Here we can ask ourselves: is my entire perception limited to what comes through my organs of sensory perception? Is there a very, very subtle realm that is not of the ‘objective’ world? Can I negate the entire world that I see as ‘objects’ to be known, not to escape the world into some romantic ‘nirvana’ state, but to examine my potential and possible scope of perception? Continue reading
Sitting is a term that has a deep meaning in Zen. Krishnamurti calls it ‘complete negation which is the highest form of passion’. Sitting in this sense calls for all of our energy on all levels.When there is any loss of energy through identification with our fears, desires, ambitions, visions, regrets, opinions, etc. etc. then we do not have the energy required for this highest form of passion. Continue reading
…we do not ask. We want to be told. One of the most curious things in the structure of our psyche is that we all want to be told because we are the result of the propaganda of ten thousand years. We want to have our thinking confirmed and corroborated by another, whereas to ask a question is to ask it of yourself. What I say has very little value. You will forget it the moment you shut this book, or you will remember and repeat certain phrases, or you will compare what you have read here with some other book – but you will not face your own life. And that is all that matters – your life, yourself, your pettiness, your shallowness, your brutality, your violence, your greed, your ambition, your daily agony and endless sorrow – that is what you have to understand and nobody on earth or in heaven is going to save you from it but yourself.