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Word Gems 

exploring self-realization, sacred personhood, and full humanity


Jiddu Krishnamurti
1895 - 1986

“Watch the mind. Don't correct it. Don't say, "This thought is good, that thought is not good," just watch it. Then you will see that there is a watcher and the watched. There is a division. The moment there is a division there is conflict. Now, can you watch without the watcher?”




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Editor’s prefatory comments:

Jiddu Krishnamurti has been an important teacher in my life. I began learning about the “true” and “false” selves about 15 years ago, and his insights served to inaugurate this vital area of enquiry.

He was the one to make clear that “guru” signifies merely “one who points,” not “infallible sage.” Pointing the way is what even the best teachers provide, but no more. One must walk the path of enlightenment alone, no one can do this for us.




School Dialogue, Brockwood Park, England - 31 January 1970

In a school like this, what is order and what is discipline? The word "discipline" means "to learn". A "disciple" is one who learns, not who conforms, not who obeys; he is one who is constantly learning. And when learning ceases and becomes merely accumulation of knowledge then disorder begins. When we stop learning in our relationship, whether we are studying, playing, or whatever we are doing, and merely act from the knowledge that we have accumulated, then disorder comes.

Discipline is learning. You say something, such as, "Don't give the dogs too much food" or, "Go to bed early" or, "Be punctual", "Keep the room tidy". You tell me that and I am learning.

Life, living, is a movement in learning and if I resist your telling me what to do, the resistance is the assertion of my own particular accumulated knowledge; therefore I cease to learn and so create a conflict between you and me.

Questioner: Does this apply to students only or to anybody?

Krishnamurti: To life, not only to students, to human beings.

Questioner: But everybody is not a disciple.

Krishnamurti: Everybody is learning. "Disciple" means "one who learns". But the generally accepted meaning is that a disciple is one who follows someone, some guru, some silly person. But both the follower and the one who is followed are not learning.

Questioner: But if we follow somebody who is not silly?

Krishnamurti: You cannot follow anybody. The moment you follow somebody you are making yourself an idiot and the one whom you follow is also an idiot - because they have stopped learning. So, what do you do about discipline, about order? Are you learning about everything? - not only about geography, history and all the rest of it, but learning about relationship? We are living together in this house, each pulling in a different direction, each wanting something, each resisting somebody else saying, "Oh, he or she has become authoritarian." All such assertions, all such resistances, and doing what one thinks one wants to do - does not all that create disorder?

If you say, "I'm doing what I want to do; I'm being natural; it's my nature and you are not going to tell me what to do" - if you say that, and I say the same, what then takes place? What is our relationship? Can we ever do anything "naturally"? This is a very serious question, if you follow what I mean. Are you natural, any of you? Of course you are not! You are influenced - by your father, by your mother, by society, by your culture, by the climate, the food, the clothes, the propaganda. You are completely influenced and then you say, "I must be natural!" It has no meaning. You say, "I want to do what I think is the right thing" or, "I am a free person". You are not! You are not free. Freedom is something tremendous and to start out saying, "I am free" has no meaning. You don't even know what it means.

Questioner: Then how can you say, "It is tremendous"?

Krishnamurti: It is tremendous when one is free, but one is not. Can one realize that one is not free? Freedom means freedom from fear. It means freedom from any form of resistance. Freedom means a movement without isolation. It means having no resistance at all. So are you free? We are frightened, we resist, we are isolated within our own little ideas, wants and desires, obviously. So when you say "freedom" and "natural", those two words have no meaning. You can only be free when you have understood how deeply you are conditioned and are free of that conditioning. Then one can be free, then one is natural...

Here we must have space; the house itself is limited in size, so what will you do? Outwardly there is limited space and also how are you going to have inward space? ...

When you sit very quietly, or lie down very quietly, the body is completely relaxed, isn't it? Have you ever tried to sit very, very quietly? Not to force it, because the moment you force it, it is finished...

So you sit or lie down very, very quietly. Don't force it, don't fidget. If you fidget, then watch it, don't say, "I must not." Then, when you sit very quietly, you watch your mind. First, you watch the mind. Don't correct it. Don't say, "This thought is good, that thought is not good" just watch it. Then you will see that there is a watcher and the watched. There is a division. The moment there is a division there is conflict.

Now, can you watch without the watcher? Is there a watching without the watcher? It is the watcher that says, "This is good and that is bad", "This I like and that I don't like" or, "I wish she hadn't said this or that", "I wish I had more food". watch without the watcher - try it some time. That's part of meditation. Just begin with that. That's good enough. And you will see, if you have done it, what an extraordinary thing takes place... your body becomes very, very intelligent. Now the body is not intelligent because we have spoiled it. You understand what I mean? We have destroyed the natural intelligence of the body itself. Then you will find that the body says: "Go to bed at the right time." It wants it, it has its own intelligence and activity. And also if it wants to be lazy, let it be lazy.

Oh, you don't know what all this means! You try it. When I come back in April we'll sit down together twice a week and go into all this, shall we? Good! I feel you ought to leave this place highly intelligent. Not just pass some exams, but be tremendously intelligent, aware, beautiful persons. At least that is how I feel for you.



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