The Life and Death of Krishnamurti by Mary Lutyens

Posted: July 27, 2013 in Book Notes
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  • His teaching was not intended to bring comfort but to shake people into awareness of the dangerous state of the world for which every individual was responsible since, according to him, every individual was the world in microcosm.
  • For discipleship, it was necessary to take leaps in the dark, to live dangerously, to feel strongly enough to be able to jump out of the window, to change oneself radically.
  • You must struggle for the same freedom. There must be constant turmoil within… I wish I could invent a new language but as I cannot I would like to destroy your old phraseology and conceptions. No one can give you liberation, you have to find it within… Liberation is not for the few, the chosen, the select.
  • You cannot help until you yourself are beyond the need of help.
  • Truth does not give hope; it gives understanding… If you would seek the Truth you must go out, far away from the limitations of the human mind and heart and there discover it – and that Truth is within yourself. Is it not much simpler to make Life itself the goal than to have mediators, gurus, who must inevitably step down the Truth and hence betray it? … Do not quote me afterwards as an authority. I refuse to be your crutch.
  • Of course there is neither good nor evil. Good is that of which you are not afraid; evil is that of which you are afraid. So, if you destroy fear, you are spiritually fulfilled… When you are in love with life, and you place that love before all things, and judge by that love, and not by your fear, then this stagnation which you call morality will disappear.
  • I maintain that Truth is a pathless land, and you cannot approach it by any path whatsoever, by any religion, by any sect. That is my point of view and I adhere to that absolutely and unconditionally… If you first understand that, then you will see how impossible it is to organize a belief. A belief is purely an individual matter, and you cannot and must not organize it. If you do, it becomes dead, crystallized; it becomes a creed, a sect, a religion, to be imposed on others.
  • Truth cannot be brought down, rather the individual must make the effort to ascend to it.
  • The moment you follow someone you cease to follow Truth.
  • I want to do something in the world and I’m going to do it with unwavering concentration.
  • Pure love is like the perfume of the rose, given to all. The sun does not care on whom it shines…
  • Look, one must have no beliefs or even ideas for they belong to all kinds of reactions and responses… if you are alert, free from ideas, beliefs, etc. in the present, then you can see infinitely and this perception is joy.
  • In everything, in all men, there is the totality, the completeness of life… By completeness I mean freedom of consciousness, freedom from individuality. That completeness which exists in everything cannot progress: it is absolute. The effort to acquire is futile, but if you can realize that Truth, happiness, exists in all things and that the realization of that Truth lies only through elimination, then there is a timeless understanding… By continually being self-recollected you become fully conscious, and then you liberate the mind and the heart and know harmony, which is completeness.
  • On the problem of sex: It has become a problem because there is no love. When we really love there is no problem, there is an adjustment, an understanding. It is only when we have lost the sense of true affection, that profound love in which there is no sense of possessiveness, that there arises the problem of sex. It is only when we have completely yielded ourselves to mere sensation that there are many problems concerning sex. As the majority of people have lost the joy of creative thinking, naturally they turn to the sensation of sex which becomes a problem, eating their minds and hearts away.
  • Choiceless awareness
    • Choice implies direction, an action of the will. K, as he explained it, was talking about awareness from moment to moment of all that was taking place inside oneself without any effort to change or direct it. It was a matter of pure observation, of looking, which would lead to self-transformation without effort.
  • No social reform would ever end human misery; people would always transform any new system into what they themselves were; throughout history every utopian revolutionary movement had reverted to the old order of things because the people in them had not changed at all; society of any kind was the result of the individual and the individual was the result of the society; the individual was you and me; society could not be transformed from the outside; it could be transformed only by transforming totally the human being, by each one of us, within himself.
  • There is a maturity that is not to be forced, not to be artificially stimulated.
  • One must be an individual, sane and balanced, not belonging to any race, country or to any particular ideology. Then perhaps sanity and peace will come back to the world.
  • Without changing our daily life we can’t have peace, and war is a spectacular expression of our daily conduct.
  • Thought inevitably breeds the feeling of ownership, that possessiveness which consciously or unconsciously cultivates jealousy. Where jealousy is, obviously love is not; and yet with most people, jealousy is taken as an indication of love… Thought is the greatest hindrance to love.
    • We fill our hearts with the things of the mind and therefore keep our hearts ever empty and expectant. It is the mind that clings, that is envious, that holds and destroys… We do not love and let it alone, but crave to be loved; we give in order to receive, which is the generosity of the mind and not of the heart. The mind is ever seeking certainty, security; and can love be made certain by the mind? Can the mind, whose very essence is of time, catch love, which is its own eternity?
  • The ignorant man is not the unlearned but he who does not know himself, and the learned man is stupid when he relies on books and knowledge and on authority to give him understanding. Understanding comes only through self-knowledge, which is awareness of one’s total psychological process. Thus education, in the true sense, is the the understanding of oneself, for it is in each of us that the whole of existence is gathered.
  • How necessary it is to die each day, to die each minute to everything, to the many yesterdays and to the moment that has just gone by! Without death there is no renewing, without death there is no creation. The burden of the past gives rise to its own continuity, and the worries of yesterday give new life to the worries of today.
    • The past and the unknown do not meet at any point; they cannot be brought together by any act whatsoever; there is no bridge to cross over nor a path that leads to it. The two has never met and will never meet. The past has to cease for the unknowable, for that immensity to be.
    • To be free of authority, of your own and that of another, is to die to everything of yesterday, so that your mind is always fresh, always young, innocent, full of vigor and passion.
  • As the eyes were closed, the body, the brain seemed to plunge into unfathomable depths, into states of incredible sensitivity and beauty.
  • The urge for the repetition of experience, however pleasant, beautiful, fruitful, is the soil in which sorrow grows.
    • It’s the thing that every human craves for and because they crave it, it eludes them.
  • Truth cannot be exact. What can be measured is not truth. That which is not living can be measured and its height be found.
  • … whether one found a talk more or less meaningful depended more on one’s own state of receptivity than on what he said.
  • It was the escape from loneliness that brought sorrow, not the fact of loneliness, of death; grief was self-pity, not love.
  • The self looks at all its inner states of being with its own conditioned mind and therefore what it sees is a replica of itself; what we are is what we see. The conception of a superior self which can direct one’s other selves is an illusion, for there is only one self.
  • Very simply put, thought is the response of memory, the past… When thought is functioning it is the past, therefore there is no new living at all; it is the past living in the present, modifying itself and the present.
    • All continuity is thought; when there is continuity there is nothing new.
  • The bondage is the demand for its continuation.
  • The only way to avoid sorrow is to be without any resistance, to be without any movement away from sorrow, outwardly or inwardly, to remain totally with sorrow without wanting to go beyond it.
  • Substitute for thinking the act of attention – the power to look.
  • Meditation is one of the greatest arts in life – perhaps the greatest, and one cannot possibly learn it from anybody. That is the beauty of it. It has no technique and therefore no authority. When you learn about yourself, watch yourself, watch the way you walk, how you eat, what you say, the gossip, the hate, the jealousy, if you are aware of all that in yourself, without any choice, that is part of meditation.
  • Fear arises from the desire for security.
    • If there is complete psychological security there is no fear, but there can never be psychological security if one is wanting, desiring, pursuing, becoming.
    • … thought is always trying to find a place where it can abide, abide in the sense of hold. What thought creates, being fragmentary, is total insecurity. Therefore there is complete security in being absolutely nothing – which means not a thing created by thought. To be absolutely nothing means a total contradiction of everything you have learned… You know what it means to be nothing? No ambition – which does not mean that you vegetate – no aggression, no resistance, no barriers built by hurt… The security that thought has created is no security. That is the absolute truth.
  • … fear is darkness and death is light.
  •  To know is not to know and the understanding of this fact that knowledge can never solve our human problem is intelligence.
  • The very suffering transformed into passion is enormous.
  • We are using the word mind to imply the senses, the capacity to think, and the brain that stores all the memories as experience, as knowledge… Knowledge corrupts the mind. Knowledge is the movement of the past, and when the past overshadows the actual, corruption takes place… We are using the word corruption to mean that which is broken up, that which is not taken as a whole.
  • [On god] Desire cannot possibly reach it, words cannot fathom it, nor can the string of thought wind itself around it.
  • All that we have learned, all that we are , the whole content of our consciousness, is the past stored in our memory as thought, and the cluttering up of the brain with the past means that there is no true insight because everything is seen through a cloud of thought which must always be limited by the self.
  • The content of our consciousness is the common ground of all humanity… a human being living in any part of the world suffers, not only physically but also inwardly.
  • Death means the ending of the known.
  • When you’re angry, anger is you. You are not different from anger.
  • We have invented God. Thought has invented God, that is we, out of misery, despair, loneliness, anxiety, have invented that thing called God. God has not made us in his image – I wish he had. Personally I have no belief in anything. The speaker only faces what is, what are facts, the realization of the nature of every fact, every thought, every reactions – he is totally aware of all that. If you are free from fear, from sorrow, there is no need for God.
  • Meditation at that hour was freedom and it was like entering into an unknown world of beauty and quietness; it was a world without image, symbol or word, without waves of memory. Love was in the death of every minute and each death was the returning of love. It was not attachment, it had no roots; it flowered without pause and it was a flame which burnt away the borders, the carefully built fences of consciousness. Meditation was joy and with it came benediction.
  • Everything on earth, on this beautiful earth, lives, dies, comes into being and withers away. To grasp this whole movement of life requires intelligence, not the intelligence of thought, or books, or knowledge, but the intelligence of love and compassion with its sincerity.
  • Surely creation can take place only when thought is silent… Science is the movement of knowledge gathering more and more and more. The “more” is the measurement, and thought can be measured because it is a material process. Knowledge has its own limited insight, its own limited creation, but this brings conflict. We are talking about holistic perception in which the ego, the “me”, the personality, does not enter at all. Then only is there this thing called creativity. That is it.
  • And when there is an end to sorrow there is passion; not lust, not sensory stimulation, but passion.
  • To learn about, to understand, oneself, all authority must be set aside… There is nothing to be learned from anybody, including the speaker… The speaker has nothing to teach you. The speaker is merely acting as a mirror in which you can see yourself. Then when you can see yourself clearly you can discard the mirror.
  • Intelligence is common to all of us and that will bring us together, not organization. If you see the importance that each one of us is free and that freedom implies love, consideration, attention, co-operation, compassion – that intelligence is the factor to keep us together.
  • Independence without freedom is meaningless. If you have freedom you don’t need independence.
  • A religious center, not in the orthodox sense of the word; a center where a flame is living, not the ashes of it.
  • It was a question of being, not of accomplishment.
  • Creation is something that is most holy. That’s the most sacred thing in life and if you have made a mess of your life, change it. Change it today, not tomorrow. If you are uncertain find out why and be certain. If your thinking is not straight, think straight, logically. Unless all that is prepared, all that is settled, you can’t enter into this world of creation.
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