Bombay 6th Public Talk 24th February 1954
I think, if we can understand the problem of frustration, we shall have a mentality that is not merely, intellectual, but an integrated activity. Our religions, our social activities are based on frustration and sorrow. If we can go into this question of frustration, which is really the problem of duality, we may be able, for ourselves as individuals, to come on to this creativity, which is not a mere capacity or gift but a totally different action. If we can go into this question of what is duality and the conflict between `what is' and `what should be', then perhaps we shall understand the mind that is without root, because most of our minds have roots.
The very existence of mind indicates, does it not?, thought having root in the past. It is that root which creates duality. Is it possible not to give continuity to that root in the present or in the future? It is only t a mind that is without root, that can be truly religious and therefore capable of radical transformation, for reality to come into being. I would like to go into that, which may be rather a difficult question; but if we can deal with it simply, not philosophically, then perhaps we may be able to see and understand it for ourselves. But the difficulty is going to be, that most of us have read so much about this problem of duality; we know the problem according to some philosophy, according to some teacher, but we do not know it directly, without it being pointed out. If we can discuss the problem of duality, not intellectually or philosophically, but observe the activities of our own minds as I talk, then perhaps we will see the problem in a different manner. If you can listen, not to my description but to the activities of your own minds as I begin to describe, as I begin to verbalize, then it will be a direct experience, which is far more vital and significant than merely discovering a dual process in all of us, which some philosopher or some religious teacher or some book has indicated. But the difficulty is going to be that those of you who listen, have already come to a conclusion or you have heard what I have said previously, and so your mind is full of the ashes of memory of what I have said; therefore it will not be a fresh experience, something real, living. Those of you who are here for the first time will only be puzzled because I may be using words that have a different significance than yours. But knowing all the difficulties of the ashes of memory, of previous knowledge and experience, of coming here for the first time and listening to something so very philosophical and difficult and therefore brushing it aside, you have to listen with a freshness of mind. That freshness of mind cannot come into being if you do not observe your own process of thought, as I begin to talk about this problem of frustration and duality.
I am not telling you anything, I am only stating facts. You and I can understand the fact can look at is it without any condemnation without any judgment, can merely observe it and be aware of it entirely - not as the observer watching but to see what is actually happening to actually experience the process how the mind creates duality and therefore brings into being frustration upon which our whole culture, religions, social activities are based. If we can understand this, then we shall find out what true freedom is.
The difficulty is that most of you treat these talks as lectures, as something to be listened to, something to be remembered, something in which you will have many experiences, thrills, emotional excitations. But that is not at all what is intended, at least from my part. What is important is to have this religious revolution, a radical fundamental religious transformation, because all other changes have no meaning, all other revolutions merely end in further misery. If we can see the truth of that, the importance of a radical religious revolution, and that it alone can bring about a radical change in our relationships towards all men, then these talks will be not merely an intellectual or an emotional excitement or amusement but something that will have significance in our daily life. So, we have to listen as though we are hearing it for the first time, we have to listen with a freshness; and that freshness cannot come into being if you do not watch your own minds as I begin to talk, as I go into the problem.
The problem is is it not? one of struggle, conflict, the constant struggle of `what I am' and `what I should be', the conflict between `what is' and `what might be'. The mind is everlastingly striving, struggling, accommodating, adjusting, disciplining, controlling according to `what should be'. That is all we know. This `should be' is more important to us than `what is'. We have these ideological patterns, and the mind is constantly adjusting itself to those patterns. The adjustment is the action of will, through compulsion, through persuasion; and this brings about struggle, and the struggle produces frustration. This is not oversimplification. This is what actually happens with each one of us: `I am this and, in the future, I should be that'. But the future, what should be, the ideal, is the projection of `what is', it is a contradiction of `what is'. The mind sees `I hate', and it says, `I should love', so the mind is everlastingly adjusting, forcing, disciplining itself into a state which it calls love. I never know love but my mind pursues what, it thinks, is love - which is an idea, the opposite of what I am. The projection of an idea of what love is, is not love, because it is a reaction of what I am, which is `I hate'. In my struggle to capture that love, I am violent and I have the idea of non-violence; so I practise, I discipline, I control, I shape my life according to that background, according to that particular pattern, and that pattern I never fulfil. I can never be that because, when I do reach it, the mind has already invented another pattern. So I keep on changing from one pattern to another. So my life is a series of frustration, sorrow, always striving for one thing after another. So my whole life is a series of struggles and unhappiness, and that is all I know.
What is important is not `what should be', but `what is'. What is, what I know, is the fact. The other is not. If the mind can pursue totally `what is', without creating the opposite, then I will find out what is love - not the love as the opposite of hate. But the problem involved in understanding what is hate, requires awareness in which there is no condemnation. Because, the moment I condemn, I hate, I have created already the opposite. I hope I am making it very clear and simple. If we can see this thing, it is really an extraordinary release from all the frustrations that we have developed.
We are an unhappy people; our religion is unhappy it is the product of unhappiness, of strife, of frustration; our Gods and the very culture that we have is the result of this frustration. So, we have to understand not merely verbally, intellectually, but very deeply, the fact of what I am, the fact of what is. The fact is `I hate, I am violent', that is all. But the mind does not want to accept that fact; therefore it creates the opposite - that is, it condemns the fact and so creates the opposite. The very condemnation is the process of creating duality. Now if I can be aware that my mind condemns, that through condemnation I create the opposite and therefore bring into being struggle, that very realization of the fact that condemnation creates the opposite in which there is conflict, that very awareness, stops the whole process of condemnation - not through any compulsion but merely through the awareness of the fact. So I have only the fact that I hate, without any mental projection of the opposite.
You understand, Sirs, what an extraordinary release it is when you have no opposite? Then you can deal with the fact. Then the thing that I have called hate, if I do not condemn it, is not hate. But I condemn hate and wish to transform it into love, because my mind has its root in the past. The valuation is the judgment of the past; and with that background I approach hate and wish to transform that hate into what I call love; this brings about conflict, struggle, with all its disciplines, controls, and so-called meditations.
Now, can there be freedom from the past? Can there be freedom from thought projecting itself into the future? I hate; that hate is the result of the past, a reaction; then thought condemns it and projects it into the future as `I must love; so thought establishes a root in the present and in the future; thus, thought is continuous; and in that continuity there is the struggle to continue in the form of the opposite. What I am trying to find out is whether the mind can ever be free totally, and not have root. The moment mind has root, it must project, it must stretch out; the stretching out is the opposite; so thought is continuous, it never comes to an end; it is the continuity of my conditioning, of my background to the future; and therefore there is never freedom. I am trying to find out if the mind can ever be in a state in which it is not establishing roots through experiences. Without being in that state, the mind is never free, it is always in conflict. Therefore, to a mind that has root, there is always frustration; and whatever be its activity - social, cultural, religious - still it is the outcome of frustration; therefore it is not the real religious transformation in which there is the cessation of all projection of thought taking root in the mind.
Can the mind ever be without root? You do not know. All that you can do is to find out, to see if the mind can be without root - like the Sea, living, having its being without root, without establishing itself in a particular place, in a particular experience, in a particular thought. Sir, it is only the mind that is without root, that can know what is real. Because, the moment the mind experiences and establishes that experience in memory, that memory becomes the root, the past; then that memory demands more and more experiences; therefore there is constant frustration of the present. Frustration implies, does it not?, the condemnation of the state of the mind as it is. The mind as it is, is full of tradition, time, memories, anger, jealousy. Can we understand that mind without condemnation - that is, without the creation of the opposite? The moment we condemn `what is', we do not understand it. The very understanding of `what is' can only happen without condemnation; then only, there is freedom from `what is'.
To me, a mind which has no struggle of duality, is the really religious mind - not the mind which is struggling to conquer anger, not the mind ,that is struggling to become nonviolent; such a mind is only living in the struggle of the opposite. It is only the true religious mind that has not the conflict of the opposite; such a mind never knows frustration; such a mind does not struggle to become something, it is what it is. In understanding what it actually is, the mind is no longer putting roots in memory.
Please just listen to this; it does not matter whether it is false or true, but find out for yourself. A mind that has continuity in memory will always be frustrated, will always be struggling to be something. The becoming is the taking root - in an idea, in a person, in an object. Once the mind has taken root, then the problem arises: `How is it to free itself?' The freeing of itself becomes then the opposite; and the struggle then is `How to free oneself?' But if one sees, understands, is aware of the truth of how the mind is always taking root in every experience, in every reaction, then, in that awareness, there is no choice, there is no condemnation, therefore no creation of the opposite, and therefore there is no struggle. Then the mind has no root but it is living, it has no continuity but is in a state of being in which time is not. I think, it is important to understand this not merely verbally or intellectually, but actually to see how the mind is creating the struggle and the dual process.
The action of the mind that is without root, is creative because that mind is no longer in a state of frustration, from which it paints, it writes or seeks reality. Such a mind does not seek - seeking implies duality; seeking implies struggle, the stretching out of the past into the future, in thought, which establishes itself in the root of the future. If the mind can see that, be aware of it, then there is an astonishing release from all struggle; and therefore there is a happiness and bliss; and that happiness and that bliss is not the opposite of sorrow, misery or frustration. These are not just words, they are direct states which the mind takes hold of and establishes itself in the experience. They are actually states which cannot be experienced by a mind that is struggling to become the opposite.
All this requires, does it not?, awareness of the process of the mind. What I mean by awareness is of the total process of existence - sorrow, pain, love, hate, feeling, the emotions, all of which is the mind. Is it not therefore important to see how your mind works, how it operates, how it projects, how it clings to the past, to tradition, to the innumerable experiences, and so prevents the experience of reality? To be aware of all that is not what the modern or the ancient teachers or the psychologists or the gurus say; what other people have said is merely information and has really no significance at all; but one has to discover for oneself this whole process of the mind. This discovery is not possible by the withdrawal in a dark corner of a mountain, but by living from day to day. You have also to see that what you had discovered may have already become the root, from which you act - that is, you have to discover how the mind uses the very discovery as an experience from which it thinks, and therefore that experience becomes the hindrance and leads to frustration. To see all this is awareness. That awareness can only happen when there is no condemnation - which means really the breaking down of all conditioning of the mind, so that the mind is in a state in which it is no longer establishing roots, and therefore it is a mind without anchor, and therefore there is real experience. It is only such a mind that can know and see that which is eternal.
Sirs, in answering these questions, watch your own minds creating duality. How the mind is expecting an answer. It poses a question out of its own frustration, out of its own sorrow, out of its own troubles and confusion. It puts a question and makes it a problem, and it waits for an answer. On receiving an answer, it says: `How am I to get there?' The `how' is the struggle - the struggle between the problem and the answer, between `what is' and `what should be'. The method is `how', the method is the struggle; and therefore, the method in its very nature produces frustration. So it is the most stupid mind which says `How am I to do this?', `How am I to get there?', `I am this, but I would like to be that and so how'?
What is important is `what is' and not `what should be'. The understanding of `what is' demands cessation of condemnation, that is all. Don't say: `How am I not to condemn'? Then you will be back again in the same old process. But see the truth of the statement that condemnation produces struggle and therefore duality and therefore the struggle towards the opposite. Just see that, just realize that fact; then there is the revealing of `what is' which is the problem.
Question: I know loneliness, but you speak of a state of aloneness. Are they identical states?
Krishnamurti: We know loneliness, don't we?, the fear, the misery, the antagonism, the real fright of a mind that is aware of its own loneliness. We all know that. Don't we? That state of loneliness is not foreign to any one of us. You may have all the riches, all the pleasures, you may have great capacity and bliss; but within there is always the lurking shadow of loneliness. The rich man, the poor man who is struggling, the man who is writing, creating, the worshipper - they all know this loneliness. When it is in that state, what does the mind do? The mind turns on the radio, picks up a book, runs away from `what is' into something which is not. Sirs, do follow what I am saying - not the words but the application, the observation of your own loneliness.
When the mind is aware of its loneliness, it runs away, escapes. The escape, whether into religious contemplation or going to a cinema, is exactly the same; it is still an escape from `what is'. The man who escapes through drinking is no more immoral than the one who escapes by the worship of God; they are both the same, both are escaping. When you observe the fact that you are lonely, if there is no escape and therefore no struggle into the opposite, then, generally, the mind tends to condemn it according to the frame of its knowledge; but if there is no condemnation, then the whole attitude of the mind towards the thing it has called lonely, has undergone a complete change, has it not?
After all, loneliness is a state of self-isolation, because the mind encloses itself and cuts itself away from every relationship, from everything. In that state, the mind knows loneliness; and if, without condemning it, the mind be aware and not create the escape, then surely that loneliness undergoes a transformation. The transformation might then be called `aloneness' - it does not matter what word you use. In that aloneness, there is no fear. The mind that feels lonely because it has isolated itself through various activities, is afraid of that loneliness. But if there is awareness in which there is no choice - which means no condemnation - then the mind is no longer lonely but it is in a state of aloneness in which there is no corruption, in which there is no process of self-enclosure. One must be alone, there must be that aloneness, in that sense. Loneliness is a state of frustration, aloneness is not; and aloneness is not the opposite of loneliness.
Surely, Sirs, we must be alone, alone from all influences, from all compulsions, from all demands, longings, hopes, so that the mind is no longer in the action of frustration. That aloneness is essential, it is a religious thing. But the mind cannot come to it without understanding the whole problem of loneliness. Most of us are lonely, all our activities are the activities of frustration. The happy man is not a lonely man. Happiness is alone, and the action of aloneness is entirely different from the activities of loneliness.
All this requires, does it not?, awareness, a total awareness of one's whole being, conscious as well as the unconscious. As most of us only live on the superficial consciousness, on the surface level of our mind, the deep underground forces, loneliness, desperations and hopes are always frustrating the superficial activity. So it is important to understand the total being of the mind; and that understanding is denied when there is awareness in which there is choice, condemnation.
Question: Surely, Sir, in spite of all that you have said about following, you are aware that you are being continually followed. What is your action about it, as it is an evil according to you?
Krishnamurti: Sir, we know that we follow - we follow the political leader, the Guru; or we follow a pattern or an experience. Our whole culture, our education, is based on imitation, authority, following. I say all following is evil, including the following of me. Following is evil, destructive; and yet, the mind follows, does it not? It follows the Buddha or Christ, or some idea, or a perfect Utopia, because the mind itself is in a state of uncertainty but it wants certitude. Following is the demand for certitude. The mind, demanding certitude is creating authority - political, religious or the authority of oneself - and it copies; therefore everlastingly it struggles. The follower never knows the freedom of not following. You can only be free when there is uncertainty, not when the mind is pursuing certainty.
A mind that is following, is imitating, is creating authority, and therefore has fear. That is really the problem. We all know that we do follow, we accept some theories, some ideas, an Utopia, or something else because, deep down in the conscious as well as in the unconscious, there is fear. A mind that has no fear does not create the opposite, it has no problem of following; it has no Guru, it has no pattern; it is living.
The mind is in a state of fear, fear of death, fear of something; and to be free, it does various activities which lead to frustration; then the problem arises: `Can the mind be free from fear, not how to be free?' `How to be free from fear' is a schoolboy question. From that question, all problems arise - struggle, the achieving of an end, and therefore the conflict of the opposites. Can the mind be free from fear?
What is fear? Fear only exists in relation to something. Fear is not an abstract thing by itself, it is in relation to something. I am afraid of public opinion, I am afraid of my boss, my wife, my husband; I am afraid of death; afraid of my loneliness; I am afraid that I shall not reach, I shall not know happiness in this life, I shall not know God, Truth, and so on. So fear is always in relation to something.
What is that fear? I think that if we can understand the question of desire, the problem of desire, then we will understand and be free from fear. `I want to be something', that is the root of all fear. When I want to be something, my wanting to be something and my not being that something create fear, not only in a narrow sense but in the widest sense. So, as long as there is the desire to be something, there must be fear.
The freedom from desire is not the mental projection of a state which my desire says I must be in. You have simply to see the fact of desire, just be aware of it - as you see your image in a mirror in which there is no distortion, in which you see your face as it is and not as you wish it to be. The reflection of your face in the mirror is very exact; if you can be aware of desire in that sense, without any condemnation, if you merely look at it seeing all its facets, all its activities, then you will find that desire has quite a different significance.
The desire of the mind is entirely different from the desire in which there is no choice. What we are fighting is the desire of the mind - the desire to become something. That is why we follow, that is why we have gurus. All the sacred books lead you to confusion, because you interpret them according to your desire, and therefore you see only the reflection of your own fears and anxieties; you never see the truth. So it is only the mind that is really in a state in which there is no desire, that does not follow, that has no guru. Such a mind is totally empty of all movement; only then, the bliss of the real comes into being.
February 24, 1954
Bombay 6th Public Talk 24th February 1954
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