Madras 4th Public Talk 3rd December 1961
The last few times when we were here, we have been talking about the necessity of a new mind. We mean by a new mind, not a mind that has been brought about through various forms of changes; but a new mind which is only possible in mutation, a complete, radical revolution. It is not mere fancy, it is not something to be desired, but it is to be worked for very arduously. One has to go into the whole problem and the machinery of thinking, very deeply. It is not something that you meditate about, sitting under a tree. It is not brought about by following some philosophy or attending some of these talks. It cannot be brought about casually, facilely. It has to be brought about, worked out in daily life. I mean by `being worked out', not complying to a particular pattern laid down by any of us through imitating, conforming disciplining but rather by enquiring into every activity, into every thought, into every feeling that happens during the day. Because without self-understanding, without knowing the ways of thought and feeling, this is a mere conjecture, a mere speculation of what the new mind should be.
It is definitely possible to bring about a totally new mind. But there are certain indications, certain necessary characteristics which do bring about that quality of newness. They are affection or love and integrity. Most of us do not know what it means to be affectionate. To us, it is a word which we casually use without much significance. Love is of course something very carefully guarded, something with which we ar not so familiar, though we use the word so glibly, so facilely - love of the country, love of truth, love of life and many many loves that we talk about; and I do not think it has anything to do with this. The ingredient - if I may use that word - which is absolutely necessary is the quality of affection and integrity. I don't mean by integrity any form of pattern of belief, nor do I mean it as integrity according to the experience through which one has to live; but I mean that integrity that comes about when you begin to observe every movement of your own thought and when no thought is hidden. You do not wear a mask, you do not any longer pretend to be something other than what you actually are; and therefore there is no discipline, no fancy, no worship; and out of that comes the external sense of integrity I mean that kind of integrity, not the man who has belief and lives according to that belief, not the man who is sincere But with certain ideals, not the man who follows a certain discipline or tries to bring about an integration emotionally or intellectually. Such efforts do not bring out integrity. On the contrary, they increase conflict, misery. Whereas the integrity that we are talking about is the quality of seeing the fact every minute, not trying to translate the fact in terms of pleasure and pain, but letting the fact flower without choice, without opinion - out of which seeing comes integrity which is never altered. Now these two, affection and integrity, are necessary.
You see, affection or love is a rare thing. It does not exist in the family. It does not exist in any relationship. It comes out of emptiness in the mind - not seeking, not wanting, not desiring. But that cannot come if we do not understand the urgent need for the ending of sorrow. Because, for most of us, sorrow is our shadow; it is always there; the sorrow that we are aware of - sorrow of death; sorrow of quarrel; sorrow of smile; sorrow that exists when you see a villager going day after day, carrying burdens and working night and day for hours; sorrow that comes when you see poverty, when you see a man so dull and stupid; sorrow that comes when there is no fulfilment, when there is only frustration and bitterness; sorrow that exists with anxiety, with guilt. There are so many kinds and varieties of sorrow, and each one of us is caught in it in some manner or other, by force of circumstances or through our own ignorance. Sorrow is always there like a shadow from which you cannot possibly escape. You know your own sorrow. It is necessary to go into the whole process of sorrow and literally end it, without continuing with it for a single day, because any problem that continues day after day, perverts the mind and disintegrates the quality of the brain. Every problem has to be dealt with immediately and solved and not be carried over to the next minute, so that the mind and the brain are eternally young, innocent, fresh, unspoiled by any problem or experience.
So the quality of a new mind cannot be brought about if there is sorrow. Sorrow must be understood quite differently and one cannot escape from it. You may be free from the pain of sorrow but you create greater problems of sorrow. Your gods, books, ceremonies, your wife, your husband have all become mere means of escape from the fact that the mind is empty, sorrowful. How can there be a new mind which demands freshness, youth and innocency, if this is not understood? What I mean by `understanding' is the facing of the fact that one is in sorrow - not merely to find the cause of sorrow which is real. You seek the cause, and the cause may be desires, ambition, or perpetual discontent. The cause may be that you are not loved and you want to be loved, or that you want to have more money, more capacity, more power. We know the reasons, but we go with that sorrow like a burden, day after day, year after year, till we end in the grave. Knowledge will not wipe away sorrow, however wide, however extensive be the frontiers of knowledge. Nothing will wipe it away and so there is no escape. No religion, no leader, no guru, nothing can wipe it away; you will have to do it yourself - which means facing it and cutting at the root of it. That is one of the problems.
Then the other is that you have the real thing, a fresh, innocent mind. For this, the mind must be stripped of authority, and it is a difficult thing to be free of authority. You may be free from external authority or compulsion, or perhaps consciously or unconsciously, you may do away with the law. You may not want to pay taxes but you are forced to pay taxes though you want to cheat the Government in some way or other. But you obey and you have got to obey external demands, the external laws. Then there is the internal authority; in trying to seek the light of experience, the light of understanding, the very light of knowledge becomes the authority. So the experience, the knowledge, the memory, becomes a burden which prevents the innocency of the mind.
So you have to understand authority, which is basically the desire for success, to be somebody not only in this external world, in this rotten society, but also inwardly. We set up authority - the authority of the guru outwardly, the authority of the book either the Gita or the Marxist, outwardly, and also the authority inwardly which is experience - which is more demanding, much more restrictive, much more insistent. One has to understand this. The response to a challenge is experience. We cannot escape from challenge. Life is all the time giving us challenges every minute, and we have been responding every minute, consciously or unconsciously. And the response is according to our background, the culture in which we have been brought up socially, morally, the values of that particular society with its religious sanctions and respectability. So we are constantly piling up experience. If you observe and go into the question of experience very deeply, you see that experience does not bring freedom from conflict. I do not know if you have noticed it. Every fact, every feeling or thought, translates itself in terms of the past, consciously or unconsciously; the present response is conditioned according to the past and added to the past, which again responds to a new challenge and thereby conditions the further response.
If I may point out, this is not a mere talk. This is not a thing to which you are listening, agreeing or disagreeing; but you are actually investigating your own mind and actually examining your own heart, so that you will be able to perceive the working of your own brain with all its reactions, memories, wounds and incidents, so that, when you leave here - if you have really, deeply understood - you will not merely repeat certain phrases that you have heard or compare with what you have heard already, what you have learnt already, but you will have found out for yourself; otherwise this seems to me to be a real waste of time. So you have to listen genuinely, honestly.
Listening is quite difficult. When you actually compare what you listen to with something else that you have read, you are actually not listening at all. Or when you do listen to a word, to a phrase, to an idea, you resist it; because it is something new, it must be disturbing; therefore that prevents you from listening. Or when you hear, you translate it immediately into action and see the impossibility of such an action; and therefore, you resist what you hear. But if you could really listen - that is, listen without any resistance, neither accepting nor rejecting, neither translating nor comparing, but actually listening - , then you will find such listening - not that you agree with it or disagree with it - sets a new movement going. That listening is not the acceptance of propaganda, it is not something to which you will take avidly, hoping to resolve your problems. So there is the act of listening, which in itself is an extraordinary thing if you do it, unconcerned with the immediate problem. You know, most of us are concerned with the immediate, `immediate' being in terms of the future, in terms of many tomorrows; but those many tomorrows are still in terms of the immediate. The short view is translated in terms of the long view which every politician throughout the world does, as also, unfortunately, the so-called spiritual people do. What we are talking about is neither the short nor the long, but the understanding of every thing that is taking place in us, psychologically, inwardly, facing every fact from moment to moment and moving with that fact.
So authority is an evil thing; like power, whether the authority is the domination of the wife over the husband or the domination of the husband over the wife, or the authority of the parents over the children though they say that they are the new generation, the new hope. But we see that the children conform to the pattern that we have established. This is what we call education. And so there is no new generation, no new hope; it is always the past carrying on through the new generation.
So, authority is really the desire to be secure, and the desire to be secure is expressed as ambition and authority. We are never for a single moment without authority - the authority of morality, the authority of the State, the authority of law, the authority of what is right and what is wrong. Do follow all this please, do listen please. We must do something about it, for which we have to be tremendously revolutionary. But the old are not going to do anything about it, because they are fairly secure, their minds are half-asleep and half-dead. And the young obviously want the pleasures of life; they want to enjoy themselves, they want to make a success of life, and so, they won't listen either. But, perhaps, between the two, there may be somebody who will listen and perhaps will like the freedom of revolution - not the economic, social revolution but that revolution that comes into being, when you actually and really deny all authority.
There is a most extraordinary sense of freedom that comes into being when you are no longer carrying the burden of authority of anybody. You have no guru, no book, no Krishnas, no Ramas and Sitas and no gods that man has created out of his fear and imagination, so that you are awake every minute of the day, even in the darkness of the night.
To be free, you have to examine authority, the whole skeleton of authority, tearing to pieces the whole dirty thing. And that requires energy, actual physical energy, and also, it demands. psychological energy. But the energy is destroyed, is wasted when one is in conflict. The moment you begin to understand the whole process of conflict, inwardly and outwardly, then you will not only see that facing the fact gives you abundant energy, but also begin to understand this conflict - between belief and yourself, between yourself and what should be, between your ideals and yourself, in the desire to be superior or to fulfil, and in all the things that man has invented. You also understand the accepting of conflict as inevitable, and so making conflict as something extraordinary. So when there is the understanding of the whole process of conflict, there is the ending of conflict, there is abundance of energy. Then you can proceed, tearing down the house that you have built throughout the centuries and that has no meaning at all.
You know, to destroy is to create. We must destroy, not the buildings, not the social or economic system - this comes about daily - but the psychological, the unconscious and the conscious defences, securities that one has built up rationally, individually, deeply and superficially. We must tear through all that, to be utterly defenceless, because you must be defenceless to love and have affection. Then you see and understand ambition, authority; and you begin to see when authority is necessary and at what level - the authority of the policeman and no more. Then there is no authority of learning, no authority of knowledge, no authority of capacity, no authority that function assumes and which becomes status. To understand all authority - of the gurus, of the Masters and others - requires a very sharp mind, a clear brain; not a muddy brain, not a dull brain. But you are so unfortunate. Those of you who are listening, do not apply yourselves consistently and persistently to go into this. Perhaps you may do it for a couple of days or for an hour or two, or you are not listening at all; but inevitably you will revert to the pattern, because in that pattern is safety, there is respectability, there is money and profit; there is something to be gained and so you become slaves to authority, otherwise no religion could possibly exist.
The authority of the priest is very strong throughout the world because each of us wants to be secure, safe in what he is doing, never to be disturbed - that is what we really want. We do not want truth. We do not want God, we do not want understanding; we want more and more safety, more and more security and therefore we pile up authority, not only the authority of the book, of the guru, but also our own authority of theory and knowledge. But when you tear down the house of authority totally, destroy it completely, then there is the freedom which has its own extraordinary sense of security. The free mind has no fear and therefore in that state there is security - not the security of a petty, little mind, because such a mind is merely seeking security, safety. But the mind that is free, having no fear of any kind, not wanting to be anything, has no authority, and therefore is everlastingly capable of affection and integrity. The man who loves is completely, everlastingly fearless.
But you see, unfortunately, most of us here will do very little about it. When you go home, go into yourself, step by step, to discover where is your authority and why you cling to it. Please go into it very deeply yourself, take time off and go into it. You sec for yourself the authority of your wife, the domination of your family, your children and also wherein you dominate - the whole process of authority. If you go into it very deeply, step by step, then you will find out how completely, how unknowingly, the burden of authority falls off, you do not have to do anything about it. Just follow the fact where it will lead you. Let the flower of authority blossom, and watch it blossoming without preventing it, because it is an extraordinary flower, and you will see the outward symptoms of it. Please follow the outward symptoms, the outward facts, go into it every minute, every second, as you talk to your wife or your husband, as you talk to your boss when you go to office - watch it every minute. Out of that watching, listening, looking, you will find yourself out of it all.
Or instead of watching, looking, seeing, you are so sensitive a man, so sharp, clear that you jump to it immediately, totally; in a flash, you have understood the whole structure. That is: God, the temples of God, books, knowledge, experience - everything has gone and you are left with a mind that is no longer burdened. Therefore, the mind is capable of understanding the significance and the importance of knowledge and not being burdened by it. So either way one has to work, and nobody wants to work this out because he wants something. Nobody wants to go and search it out, because in that there is no success, no prospect. They do not come out of it with more money, with bigger houses, with more cars. But that is all that most of us want - profit, gain. There are so very few of us who are not money-minded, who are not profit-minded, who are not utilitarian. Very few go into themselves sharply, incessantly, clearly, so that every movement, every thought, every feeling is uncovered and understood. Try it sometimes and see what an extraordinary thing it is. But you will block yourself if you condemn, or if you justify. If you give value to what you see, then you stop it, then you stop the flowering of the fact of what you are actually. You actually authority. Don't you? You love to he B.A.'s, engineers, scientists and so on, arid you fall on your knees before a person who is the President of something or other. You never find a man without degrees, without a title. We have valued words, words which bring profit. That is all we are concerned about - so that all our life becomes very shabby, empty, dull. Very few of us see immediately the truth of a fact, because we have never kept the mind free, sharp, clear, sensitive. When you see something very clearly, that acts immediately. Even to follow deeply to the root of authority, you need to have a sensitive mind; but that sensitivity is not brought about by fancy, meditation. It comes into being when you watch a tree, birds, animals, ants, etc.
Please watch yourself how you walk, talk, dress, eat. See and try sometimes when you have leisure, how you are making yourself very important. Go and try. Then you will see for yourself what an extraordinary thing it is to love, to have affection. Any love, any affection, which has a motive, which has a purpose, is no love at all; and we only love when we have no motive.
You are listening here obviously hoping to get something or other. But you are not going to get anything at all. You will go empty-handed. You are not really listening to what the speaker is saying. You are only hearing something which is going on. So you are not tearing down the house that you have built about yourself.
The ending of sorrow is the denial of authority. It is only the dull mind that is a sorrowful mind, not the sensitive mind. It is only the mind that has accumulated knowledge and is held by it, that has sorrow - not the sensitive mind, not the enquiring mind, not the mind that is questioning, asking. Such a mind is not asking for a reply, is not questioning to find out, but it puts the question, because it is a marvellous thing to put the question without seeking an answer, because the question then becomes unravelled, it begins to open the doors and windows of your own mind. and so, through this questioning, watching, listening, your mind becomes extraordinarily sensitive. Therefore, such a mind is capable of affection and that affection has its own integrity. And such affection, such integrity, has the catholicity to bring about a new mind. Not ideas, not theories, not listening to innumerable talks and reading innumerable books and repeating endless phrases, but only these two, affection without motive and integrity, bring about a new mind. Then you will know for yourself what is a new mind. You know there is a difference between the mind and the brain is that the brain is essentially sensuous. It has been built up through the centuries, educated and conditioned. It is the storehouse of memory. And this brain controls all our thoughts, shapes our thinking; and every thought shapes the brain to function in a particular way. If you notice a scientist, an engineer, a specialist or a technician, you find that when he has been trained, year after year, for a particular groove endlessly, he may become an excellent mechanic, a marvellous technician. But his mind, the totality of his mind, is very little, because he has not investigated the whole question of the mind. To him, the little thing - the specialized life - is everything. Its response answers to every demand of the immediate. So our brain becomes all-important. It has its own importance; but to go beyond the brain, it is necessary to have a brain that is highly sensitive and quiet, not asleep, not drugged by all the mechanical things.
After all, the greater part of the brain is the residuary result of the animal - as the biologist will tell you - and the remaining part of the brain is still undefined. We live our life in the very small part, never investigating, never stirring, never jumping out of that little place with which we are familiar. So you will find as you go into yourself, as you observe every thought and follow every emotion flowering, that the brain can be extraordinarily sensitive and quiet, the brain can be completely still. Then out of that stillness, the flowering of the mind begins. But that is mutation and we will discuss it another time.
I am only pointing it out because, unless authority and sorrow have come to an end completely, totally, deep down in the hidden recesses of our heart and mind, unless the mind is completely free of authority and sorrow, you can never have the brain still. An angry, distorted brain that is being trodden down by society, by frozen respectability - that brain can never be quiet; and when it is quiet, it is a dead brain. It is only a quiet, sensitive, alert brain that can begin to function, and is the foundation for the discovery of a different mind. Therefore, one has to begin very near, to go very far. To begin, what is near is yourself. You are the nearest thing to yourself - not your property, not your wife, not your children and not your gods; but only yourself. If you begin to unravel authority, then you will find out how easily it slips away from you, though it looks fearful, though it may be shattering for the moment. If you begin in spite of the fears, of the hopes and despairs, then, after that, sweetly and innocently comes a mutation; and it is that mutation that can answer all the problems in society, in civilization, in any culture. Without that we just become machines - not even very clever machines. So, if you are to be completely, totally free, look into yourself; and you cannot look into yourself if you have authority and there is sorrow.
December 3, 1961
Madras 4th Public Talk 3rd December 1961
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