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New Delhi 1966

New Delhi 2nd Public Talk 18th December 1966

If we may, we will continue with what we were talking about the other day when we met here. We were saying how urgently it is important that a total revolution in consciousness should take place. And we pointed out how throughout the world there is a general decline, a deterioration - a moral, ethical, religious decline. It is observable; this is not a matter of personal opinion, because we are not dealing with opinions but with facts. And these facts cannot possibly be understood if we approach them through any sense of personal inclination or temperament or responding immediately to environmental influences.

We said that there must be a radical transformation, a mutation in the mind, because man has tried every method, both outwardly and inwardly, to transform himself. He has gone to temples, churches, mosques; he has tried various political systems, economic order; there is great prosperity and yet there is great poverty. Man in every way - through education, through science, through religion - has tried to bring about a radical mutation in himself. He has gone to a monastery, he has given up the world, he has meditated endlessly, repeating prayers, sacrificing, following ideals, pursuing teachers, belonging to various sects. He has tried, if one observes through history, everything he can possibly try to find a way out of this confusion, this misery, this sorrow, this endless conflict. And he has invented a heaven. And in order to avoid hell, which is punishment, he has done also various forms of mental gymnastics, various forms of control; he has tried drugs, sex, innumerable ways that a very clever mind has thought out. And yet man throughout the world has remained as he was. Man has inherited animal instincts; and most of us have still the inherited animal instincts of greed, proprietorial rights, sexual rights, and so on and on. We are the result of the animal. And we have tried to escape from it, consciously or unconsciously. And yet we remain what we were, slightly modified through pressure through environmental influences, through threats, through necessity; we have somewhat changed here and there, but essentially we remain what we were. Deep down we are aggressive, violent, greedy, envious, brutal, violent - which is being shown throughout the world. And what is taking place in this country after years of preaching the philosophy of non-violence? Man is violent and the ideal of non-violence is only an immature approach to violence. What is important is to face the violence, understand it and go beyond it, and not invent an escape, an ideal called non-violence which has no reality whatsoever, which is being shown in this country and elsewhere.

So we see objectively, clearly, the necessity for man's total change. I think everybody intellectually is agreed on this point. Any serious man with deep intentions who is earnest, honest, not deceiving himself by theories or dogmas, is concerned with this: is it possible for a human being, whether he lives in Russia, America, here, or elsewhere, to bring about a total mutation, so that he lives differently, not like an animal everlastingly struggling, destroying one another, in conflict, in misery, in sorrow, always fearful, uncertain, always waiting for death with all the pain, anxiety, guilt and all the rest of it? And people have invented various philosophies. And the psychologists with their analysis have helped a little bit here and there, but the problem still remains. Is it possible to uncondition man totally, so that he lives in joy, in clarity, without confusion, without conflict?

Now, having stated the basic problem, which I think is clear, what can one do actually? One sees the problem of man's conflict, his brutality, his anxiety, his jealousies, his ambitions, his desire to hurt others, creating enmity. Is it possible to change this consciousness into something that is entirely different, that is not an ideal, that cannot be foreseen, that is not a premeditated result? You understand? Because if this mind which is confused, which is brutal, which is ugly - if this mind can project an ideal, a future, it will be according to its own pattern, only modified; and therefore the ideal, the purpose, the ultimate change in terms of what is, is still what is. Is it not?

You see the problem: if I am confused and out of that confusion I imagine clarity or create an ideal of clarity, it is still the result of confusion and therefore that so-called clarity, the so-called ideal, the so-called ultimate purpose will be the result of a confused mind and therefore will still be confused. Please see the importance of this. Because we are caught in this cage, in this trap of so-called civilization, we are always projecting an idea of `what should be', a philosophy, a doctrine and we are pursuing that, each of us according to his conditioning, according to his belief, according to his religion, according to the climate, circumstances, inclinations and so on. So, out of this he creates a future. And that future has its roots in the present, the present being the past. So, as long as the mind is capable of creating a formula for itself for the future, that formula is the result of the past - past experience, past knowledge, past information - and therefore the future, the ideal, is still the condition, is still the result of what has been. And so to change from `what is' to `what should be' is still what is, though modified.

Please do see and understand this extraordinarily clearly, not only verbally but actually. And that is where listening comes in. Because one can communicate verbally, as we do just now. You all, I hope, understand English, and we are communicating verbally. You are translating what I say into your own language, or you are hearing the words. But hearing the words is not actually listening. When you actually listen, not only do you listen to the words but your whole attention is there, otherwise you cannot listen. And when you give your whole attention to any problem, there is not only efficiency, clarity, a reasoned-out outlook, but you go beyond it. And that is what we are doing now. We are not only hearing, not only communicating verbally, but also together we are listening to what is true, not according to anybody. Truth is not Christian, Hindu, yours or mine. It is the fact. And to observe that fact you have not only to listen intently to that fact, but to prevent all translation of that fact. Because, if you translate, you are translating it according to your conditioning, according to your memories, according to your inclination, to your tendency, according to the pressure of circumstances. Therefore in that state you are not listening. And I hope this evening you are listening actually to facts, not to opinions, not to any conclusions.

As we were saying, there must be a radical revolution, a mutation of the mind, because man has lived two million years and more - according to the biologists and the archeologists - in misery, in sorrow, in conflict, killing each other, destroying each other, creating enmity. Religions have said `don't kill'. Religions have said `love one another', 'be kind', `be generous'. And religions have cultivated belief, organized propaganda of belief, dogma, ritual; they are not actually concerned with man's behaviour. But what we are concerned with is man's actual behaviour from day to day, because man must live in peace, otherwise he cannot do anything. In his laboratory he is at peace, and therefore he can invent, he can look. He may go to the moon, but he is not at peace either at home or in the office, outwardly or inwardly, and therefore he is confused, he is frightened. And so this radical change is essential, as we said, not according to a pattern, not according to some future ideal or some utopia, which are the inventions of a mind that is being conditioned and, wishing to free itself from its conditioning, invents a philosophy, an ideal, a purpose - which are the result of its own confusion and conditioning. That is clear. Also, that radical change must take place immediately.

We have divided time as the immediate and the ultimate. Please, I am not going to go into details, because it is too complex and I have not the time. But one can see what we have done. We all see the immediate necessity of change. We see that. And we say it is not possible to change immediately, we need to have time, we need days to bring about this change. Put it round the other way. There are the immediate problems of this country: starvation, disorder, inefficiency, corruption and the immature quarrels over a piece of land, burning each other or burning oneself and so on. And to the immediate every one reacts. We say, "We must do something about the immediate. It is all right to talk about the ultimate, but the ultimate is not so important as the immediate", And with that conception, with that formula that the immediate is far more important than the ultimate, we live. Isn't that so. You put it in different ways, but that is what is happening. The politician is concerned with the immediate, and so also the reformer and the so-called social worker. Everybody is concerned with the immediate, not with that thing which he calls the ultimate; for him the ultimate may be all right, but the immediate matters. So he has divided time as the immediate and the future. But the ultimate contains the immediate. The immediate does not contain the ultimate. So a man who is concerned with the immediate - he is the real mischief maker, whether he be a politician, a religious man, or a reformer. But if we have understood the ultimate, in the ultimate is immediate action.

So as long as we divide time as yesterday, today and tomorrow, as long as we think in terms of the immediate which is the environment, the circumstances to which we must answer immediately - as the politicians and all the people throughout the world are doing - then what takes place? I hope you are following all this. You know one is not used to giving one's attention for a long periods. You give perhaps your attention for two or three minutes, and the rest of the time you just casually listen. Therefore you don't take it in. And we are discussing a very serious problem. To understand it, to go with it, to flow with it you must give your whole attention all the time that you are here - not for a period, a minute or two, and then wander off. What we are dealing with demands a total receptivity, a total attention.

When you divide time as the immediate and the ultimate, you are not only creating conflict between 'what is' and 'what should be' - but also creating, an environment, circumstances which will be in contradiction to 'what should be'. Time is a movement, which man has divided into yesterday, today and tomorrow. It is a movement, and as long as you divide it you must be in conflict.

Please, this is important to understand. Because, if you do not follow this, I am afraid, you won't be able to follow what comes after. We are concerned with change, with total mutation in the whole of consciousness. And consciousness is conditioned to think in terms of yesterday, today and tomorrow; and it thinks in terms of change as 'what is' and 'what should be', and therefore 'what should be' demands further time. So change never takes place. Do you understand, sirs? When we think we are changing from this to that, that movement is static, it is not a movement at all. 'I want to change from this to that' - that is projected by a mind that is caught in what is, and that has, out of that confusion, out of that misery, out of that pain, created the future. So the future is already known. And therefore when the mind moves from 'what is' to 'what should be' that movement is static, it is not a movement at all, therefore it is not a change at all.

Man is violent. About that there is no question. He is violent in so many different ways, and that is a fact. He may occasionally be non-violent; but his whole psychological structure is based on violence, ambition, desire for power, position, domination, assertion, attachment to that thing he calls ownership, sex and so on. His whole structure is based on violence, and that is a fact. Then he invents non-violence, an idea, a theory, which is non-factual. And he says, "I am violent and I will move to non-violence. I will change from this to that". That change, that movement towards the ideal, is no movement at all, it is just static, it is merely an idea. What is actual is violence. So when he pursues the ideal he is avoiding the actual. And what he calls the ideal, the pursuit of the ideal the practice and the discipline - all that is merely the activity of a mind that has become static, that has become dull, that is not living. What is living is violence in different forms.

So the ideal has no importance whatsoever. And this is a very difficult pill to swallow for most people, because we have lived on ideals, we have been fed on ideals, we are conditioned to think in terms of ideals, in terms of purpose and significance and so on. So there is only the fact, and non-violence is not a fact. And when he says he will ultimately become non-violent, what he actually doing is sowing the seeds of violence, thinking that ultimately he will be peaceful. But he will not. That is fairly clear, fairly obvious. So as long as one thinks in terms of the future, of bringing about a change in terms of an ideal, in terms of what should be, he is merely continuing to live in violence; and therefore that movement has no value whatsoever.

Therefore, the problem arises: how is a mind to change totally, that is violent, greedy, or whatever it is? Greed, envy, ambition, competition, aggressiveness and also the so-called discipline which is imposed, which is conformity - all this is part of that violence; how is that violence to be totally changed, so that is in no longer violent, not in terms of time" not in terms of a future ideal? You understand the question now? My mind is no longer distracted or taken away, wasting its energy on ideals - what should be, what should not be. It is completely attentive to that one problem in which many other problems are involved. So there is no ultimate or immediate. There is only that problem - right? Like a man having cancer he has to decide immediately, and the immediate decision does not depend upon his fancy, on his environment, on his family, on what people say or do not say. It is an immediate urgency; and therefore when it is immediate, there is an immediate decision, not decision in terms of a mind wanting to act upon the fact.

So time as the means of overcoming, or destroying, or going beyond the fact has come to an end. You understand? Time as a means of change has come to an end. Therefore time as will comes to an end. Will is time, isn't it? 'I will do this' - the will is the result of determination, inclination, desire; all that is involved in that one word. And when I say, "I will become peaceful", the very assertion 'I will' implies time. And when I assert 'I will become', the movement to become is static, it is not alive, it is something dead. So, will and time have been put aside. Please see the importance of this. We are used to assertions, we are used to saying, "I will do this, "I must do this", "I should do this" - all that implies time. Doesn't it? Obviously, the 'will be', the should be', the 'must be' is the future tense of the word "to be". But the word "to be" is always the active present. And therefore when a man asserts he will do that, what is taking place is that he is using time as a means of achieving it, and the means and the end are projected by the mind that is conditioned, and therefore the end is still what is. Right? Sorry if it gives you a headache. It is really quite simple.

Man has lived by will and time, and we see that will and time have not changed man at all. That has been his favourite game of escape: he invents the future and all the rest of it and so remains what he is. You may believe in reincarnation, as probably most of you do. And if you believe in reincarnation what matters is how you live now, not what you are going to do tomorrow. But you don't believe in it to that extent, it is just a theory, a convenient hope, a pleasant idea and therefore has no value at all. So when you have eliminated time as will, you have only this problem. Then you are full of energy to tackle this problem, come to grips with this problem - which is a total revolution in the mind. And that is total revolution which is not ultimate, but which is immediate. And when there is no time as a means of achievement and no will as a way to that achievement, then you have only the central issue: how can the mind which is so conditioned change, bring about a complete mutation? That means a mind that is no longer struggling to become something. It is what it is: greedy, envious, ambitious, full of hate and all the animal things that have been cultivated and prolonged throughout the centuries. That is what actually is; and any effort to bring about a change in that structure of the human mind is still part of time and therefore is ineffective.

So what happens to your mind that is no longer thinking in terms of time, of the will to achieve? The speaker can explain what takes place, but it will be mere words. But if you do it for yourself, you will see what an extraordinary action takes place when you have abolished time - that means no longer yielding to circumstances, no longer concerned with personal inclination or tendency, no longer using will as a means of operation. If you do it, not theorize about it, if you actually do it as you would do when there is an urgency of disease or of a threat, you act immediately. Then there is no action of will, no time operating. Then there will be total action, not the fragmentary action of will and time; and a total action contains the immediate action to circumstances.

Look, sir! There is starvation in this country, overpopulation, total inefficiency of the Government. And that starvation each politician, each group, wants to solve according to his own pet theory. The Communist, the Socialist, the Congress, etc - they have theories on how to solve that problem. They will take this side or that side, they will go to America or to Russia according to their theory; but in the meantime people are starving. Right? You may not be starving, but there are people starving; probably we have all known what it is, not having enough food. The problem of starvation is not to be solved by politicians; never has it been. It is a world problem, and the world is divided by politicians, by the tribes which they represent - the American tribe, the Hindu tribe, the Muslim tribe, the African tribe. We are all tribes, we all belong to tribes - which is again a fact. So as long as the mind thinks in terms of tribes, in terms of formulas, starvation will go on. Please see this simple fact, sir. As long as you are a Hindu with your nationality, with your separate government and all the rest of it, you are going to have starvation, because each group wants to solve it in its own way and will not co-operate with another. The Communist is not concerned with the starvation of the people, nor the Congress, nor the Democrat, nor the Republican - they are not concerned, they want to be in power, in position. To solve the problem of starvation, we must be concerned only with how to feed the people, not who is going to feed the people, what is the system that is going to feed the people and so on. But nobody is concerned with solving the problem.

So when you are concerned with solving the problem, you are not concerned with the system at all. In the same way when you are concerned with the problem of a total change, you are not concerned with how to change it. You never will ask how, because the how is the method, and the method implies time, practice, and the end result is already known towards which you are practising and therefore it is not a change at all. So all that one can do is to be totally aware of the function of will and of time, and be totally indifferent to it, not battle against it but see the falseness of it. Then one will be only concerned with the central issue: how is one to bring about a total revolution? And when you are tremendously concerned with it, you will find that it is taking place without your wanting it.

Perhaps, if there is time, you will ask questions. You can discuss this. And if you are going to ask questions, please be brief, because I have to repeat them. Don't make long speeches.

Questioner: Sir, is that state possible?

Krishnamurti: A gentleman asks: is that state possible? The state which I have been talking about - is that right, sir? When you ask that question `is it possible?' are you asking out of curiosity?

Questioner: No.

Krishnamurti: Please, just listen. Are you asking out of curiosity, or are you asking it because you doubt it, or because in your own mind there is a feeling that it is not possible? If you say it is not possible, then you are blocking yourself, you are preventing investigation. If you say it is possible, that also will prevent you from investigation. Naturally, because you are already biased. So to find out if it is possible or not, you have to work, you have to investigate, you have to examine; and to examine you must be free. If you are biased, if you are inclined, if you are this or that, you are not free to investigate, to go into it. But to go into it is not a matter of time. You must give to it your whole mind and heart and your nerves, everything you have. But, you see, you are not so eager, intense. To go into it you need tremendous energy; and you can only have energy if there are no distractions, which the mind has invented in order not to face the fact, the fact being what you actually are. Your violence, your greed, your envy, your competition, your brutality, your wanting to achieve, to become somebody, and all the rest of it - that is the fact; and to face that fact demands complete energy. And to face that, you have to put aside time and will and you have to look.

That is why, sir, it is very important to know how to look, how to observe. Probably you have never observed a tree. Probably you have never observed your wife, or your husband, or your daughter. You have observed through the image you have built of your wife, and the wife looks at you through the image she has built of you, the image being memory. As you look at each other through the image that each one has created of the other, there is no observation at all. When you look at a tree, you have an idea, an image, a symbol, a meaning about that tree; and therefore the meaning, the symbol, the idea interferes with your observation of that tree. To look, there must be freedom from the image. And when you are free, you look, not with the intellect, not with emotion, but with love, with clarity, with something totally new. When you look at your children, your wife and your husband without the image, you will then be in real relation. Real relationship is affection, love. Without that, do what you will, there will be misery, there will be sorrow.

Questioner: Sir, what is the role of memory and the state that you are talking about?

Krishnamurti: What is the role of memory and the state we are talking about? Again this is a rather complex problem. All human problems are complex, they are not mechanical; therefore, one has to think about them anew.

What is the function of memory? And how does memory come into being? Before one can discuss what is the function of memory, one must find out how memory is built up. Have you ever noticed that when you respond to something totally, there is very little memory? Have you? When you respond with your heart, with your mind, with all your being, there is very little memory. Haven't you noticed it? It is only when you do not respond to a challenge completely that there is a conflict; then there is a pain, then there is a confusion. then there is a struggle. The struggle the confusion, the pain or the pleasure builds memory. This is simple. You can observe this in your daily life. You develop memory through a technique. You go to college, and learn a certain technique, because that technique gives you a job. And that cultivates a memory, because that memory is necessary to function efficiently in a particular job. That memory you must have, obviously; otherwise you cannot function. But I have psychological memory, what you have said to me, how you have hurt me, you have flattered me, you have insulted me. And you also have psychological memory. Therefore there are the images which I have built up of you and you have built up of me. Those memories remain. And those memories are added to, all the time. And it is those memories that will respond. Therefore, thought which is the result of memory, is always old, never new, and therefore never free. There is no such thing as freedom of thought - which is sheer nonsense.

Your memory has a place when you are functioning efficiently, and efficiency is necessary. Memory is necessary at a certain level. But when that memory becomes a mere mechanical action in human relationship, then it becomes a danger, then it creates mischief. All the tribal instincts are part of that memory. You are a Hindu, you are a Muslim, you are a Christian; you know the machinery of conditioning. There it is deadly. Because life is a movement, life is not something that you carve out for yourself in a little backyard; life is a total movement, an endless movement, not an evolutionary movement. It is one of your pet theories that, eventually, man is going to become perfect and that in the meantime he can sow hatred, in the meantime he can create havoc. So memory has a place and, when you function there naturally, it has to be efficient, reasoned, impersonal, clear and all the rest of it. But there is the state of mind where memory has very little place. When we are talking now, we are using the English language. The usage of English language is memory, obviously. But the state of mind that is using it is silent, it is not crippled by memory; and that is real freedom.

Questioner: Sir, where does the soul go after death?

Krishnamurti: Wait, sir.

Questioner: You have talked about the unconditioned mind and simplicity of mind. And I doubt if there is any way that we could get simplicity of mind and an unconditioned mind?

Krishnamurti: The gentleman asks: you have talked about the unconditioned mind, is there a way, a method to achieve that unconditioned mind?

Questioner: Without talking about it.

Krishnamurti: Without talking about it. I don't know what that means. Is there a way to uncondition the mind?

Now there are two states. First of all one must be very sensitive to words - sensitive, alive - you must feel the words. If you are not, then you use any word and it has no meaning. When you use the words "conditioned" and "a way", have you understood the word "conditioned?". Is the understanding merely verbal and therefore not real? Mere intellectual understanding of that word - which means to free the mind from its conditioning - is the dictionary meaning. And if you use that word in a dictionary meaning there is no depth to that word at all. But if you say, "Look, I have found I am conditioned, I have discovered it, I see it. I was aware this morning, for a minute, how conditioned I am. I think in terms of a Hindu; or I think in terms of hate or jealousy". Then, when you use that word `conditioned', it has a vitality, a depth, a perfume, a quality. And when you use the word "way", what is implied in that word `a way'? From this to that; a path, a method, a system, by practising which you will be able to uncondition yourself, to arrive at a state of non-conditioning. See the question! Is a method going to uncondition you? There is no method to uncondition you. We have played with these words, we have done all these things for centuries - the gurus, the monasteries, Zen, this or that method - with the result you are caught, you are a slave to the method, aren't you?, and therefore you are not free. The method will produce the result; but the result is the outcome of your confusion, of your conditioning and therefore it will still be conditioned. So, when you put that question you have already answered it.

That is why I said the other day: to ask a question is very simple, but to ask the right question is one of the most difficult things. And you must ask questions all your life, but they must always be the right questions. And if you ask a right question, you have the right answer; you don't have to ask anybody.

Questioner: One question, sir. The non-violence which Gandhiji tried to practise by himself, is that also to be denounced?.. Krishnamurti: Sir, do you remember what I said? Any practice of non-violence is violence.

Questioner: That is a statement which has to be proved.

Krishnamurti: To be proved by whom?

Sir, you have asked a question, you must have the courtesy also to listen to the answer.

Questioner: I asked a question.

Krishnamurti: Yes, we are all so impatient.

Questioner: The rest of the question I am not asking.

Krishnamurti: Yes, sir, I know. Can you practise non-violence when you are violent? Violence means not only physical violence but also psychological violence. When I discipline myself according to a pattern which I have established as the ideal, I am violent. You don't take all that into account. Discipline, as is practised by most people, is a suppression, is conformity, is a control of an idea, a pattern; that is violence, distorting the mind. This does not mean that there is not a discipline which has nothing whatsoever to do with control, suppression, conformity. That real discipline comes when you are confronted with the problem, and you are completely concerned with the problem.

Sir, look. Discipline, the right discipline, the real discipline, the only discipline that matters - not all the others - that comes in the very action of learning. When you are learning, not acquiring - when you are learning about anything, that very act of learning demands discipline. For instance, I am learning a language; and it is tremendously interesting to learn a language, and that very interest is its discipline. Now man is violent. To understand the problem of violence, really to understand it, to go with it to the very end of it, to enquire into it very deeply - that very enquiry is the beginning of discipline. You don't have to have any of the so-called discipline which man has practised and thereby destroyed himself and tortured his mind by imitating, by conforming to a form, a pattern.

Questioner: Where does the soul go after death?

Krishnamurti: Where does the soul go after death? Sir, it is a very important question. Perhaps we will deal with that question the next time that we meet, because it requires a great deal of going into, because the word 'soul', or the atman, or whatever word you use, is still part of your tradition. You repeat that word endlessly. You have not enquired if there is such a thing as the soul - which means there is a permanent entity in you which, when you die, goes somewhere. Is there something permanent in you? Have you found out anything permanent in you?

Questioner: Sir.

Krishnamurti: Yes? Sir, do be clear. Is there a permanent thing in you? You are changing, your body changes, unless you are dead. Everything is in a movement, but you refuse to accept that movement. And to say there is a soul, an atman, means that thought has thought about it, and has invented it. If thought can think about it, it is still within the field of thought and therefore it is part of the old, it is nothing new. As I said, thought is always old. Therefore, 'soul' is a word that you use without understanding, or going into. It is the result of thought, because man is frightened of death. As he is frightened of life, so he is frightened of death. Please, sir, leave that question, you are not paying attention.

Questioner: Conditioning.....

Krishnamurti: Wait a minute, sir. Wait. I think that is enough, sir, for this evening.

Look, sir. You have asked questions; each person is concerned with his question and he will not listen to another question. In answering the one question, if you have listened to it, your questions also will be answered; but we are so impatient - which means what? Each one is concerned with his own little problem, and the little problem does not contain the big problem. When you understand the big problem - ln that problem is the little problem - the little problem will be answered, and it will be answered rightly. As I said, it is very easy to ask questions. And one must, always ask questions, one must always have a spot of scepticism about everything, including about what the speaker is saying. But to ask the right question demands a great deal of intelligence, sensitivity to words, and awareness of one's own conditioning. Then out of that when you ask a question, it is full of light and delight.

December 18, 1966


New Delhi 1966

New Delhi 2nd Public Talk 18th December 1966

Texts and talks of Jiddu Krishnamurti. Krishnamurti quotes. Books about
J Krishnamurti. Philosophy.

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