The Pool of Wisdom
BY WHAT AUTHORITY
6. OMMEN CAMP FIRE TALK, 1927
Once there was a mountain whose head was hidden beyond the clouds; around it there were vast plains, and valleys upon valleys. In search of that mountain-top, people gathered from all quarters of the world; people of many nationalities and of many types came there to discover the truth, which the mountain held. Some came to examine the flora and the fauna of the mountain-side, others came to examine scientifically its strata, its height and its width, how much shadow it cast. People came to worship it, to rejoice in its glory, to see it and to carry back that memory to their homes and cherish it in their hearts. Some came to paint it, some came to photograph it, some came to take away little bits of earth and stone from the mountain, some came to perform ceremonies round about it, some came in order that they might tell of the truth of that mountain to others, some came and talked and heard their own echo -their laughter reached their own ears, back from the mountain.
Others came wanting knowledge, and desiring that the mountain should give them the solution for all their troubles. But its head was beyond the clouds, nearer the heavens, and there were very few who had climbed to the very top and who beheld from there the full view of all the peoples, all the temperaments, all the valleys and all the plains. So is Truth.
You who have gathered here from forty different countries, have come to worship the Truth, to discover the Truth, but you have come with your own understandings, with your own doubts, with your own encouragements, with your own wisdom, to discover, to understand, that which I have been holding up to you. You have come to see me, the Truth, and you have come partly understanding, partly prejudiced, partly judging, partly perverting the Truth. He needs to be a strong man who would climb the mountain-top, who would understand the entire Truth in all its nakedness, in all its perfection. He needs to have a strong heart and a strong mind to contain it and to hold it, and strong eyes to see the vision, to see the glory of that Truth. People who come to worship an image, to worship the rocks of the mountain, only perceive a part of it and then return home convinced in their own little understandings, in their own little knowledge, in their own little wisdom. But unless you have the entire Truth, the absolute Truth in all its profundity, in all its simplicity, you are not the Truth. The part does not make the entire Truth; one aspect of the Truth does not give the full understanding of the whole Truth.
I have been desiring to give you the full Truth which abides within me, and which I have learned, through centuries, through many lives, to conquer and to establish well in my heart. You have come from different hinds, with your different temperaments, with your different understandings, with your different wisdoms, and before you can accept this Truth fully, before you can understand it in all its nakedness, in all its simplicity, there must be purity of mind and tranquillity of heart. You all desire immediate solutions for your passing shadows of sufferings, passing shadows of afflictions, passing shadows of joys, and because the solution is never without, but is of your own understanding, of your own knowledge, of your own wisdom that abides within you, you are disappointed. Because you cannot understand the Truth in its entirety, there is puzzlement, there is confusion, there is questioning, there is doubt. You want all your sorrows, all your griefs, all your accumulations of ages to be swept aside by one brief momentary glimpse of the Truth. How can you keep the river clean, pure, undefiled, if the source is sullied? So you must return to the source and there begin anew, begin again to tread the very stages that you have already trodden; go over them in your minds, interpret them anew, so that you will grow straight as the fir tree on the mountain-top in solitude and in firmness. But this requires complete renunciation, your going through greater sorrows, greater pleasures and greater ecstasies, if you would arrive at that mountain-top which holds its head above the clouds of human understanding. So you have to begin where all people begin, for there only lies knowledge, there lies wisdom, there lies understanding which is in the mind and in the heart. If you have not a pure mind and a clean heart, if you have not a mind that has understanding and a heart that is sympathetic and affectionate, then whatever authority, whatever knowledge of books or of persons you may possess, it will all wither away as the leaf in the autumn.
So those who would climb to the heights of understanding and of Truth in all its fullness, in all its greatness and simplicity, must keep their minds and their hearts clean, strong and perfect. To do that you must watch, examine, criticize yourself and change constantly. You must needs be a strong man, you must needs be a man that is experienced in wisdom, before you can understand Truth in its fullness, in its greatness. If you would climb to those heights where lies the Truth, you must watch all your actions, you must watch all your thoughts, you must watch all your affections, for they are limiting if they are not clean, if they are not pure, if they are not strong in proportion to the Truth. And who can help the weak man to climb to the mountain-top? He can only help himself, he can only gather strength to climb from within himself. And so those who would desire the Truth that will destroy their sorrows, their fleeting affections, their passing desires and impermanent afflictions, must possess a strong, pure and clean heart. You must have wisdom, you must have experience, you must have the intuition that guides, and if you have not those, many suns will set, many years will pass, before you can perceive the Truth. And to acquire these, you must doubt, you must question every action, every thought that springs within you, and never be satisfied until you have gained that Truth which abides within you, till you are certain of your own Truth, till there is this certainty which is born out of great uncertainty -uncertainty of your purpose, uncertainty of your goal, uncertainty of your determination. Out of these uncertainties, immense, strong, purposeful certainty will be born.
Likewise beware of authority. Authority may comfort for a moment, but it is not the Truth, it is not lasting, it is not permanent; it is like the cloud across the fair sky, it passeth away and you are left naked, burning in the brilliant sun. So if you would have that knowledge which is your own, which is of your own creation, which is the outcome of your own experience, then you must go within, cleanse yourself of all those things which you have accumulated, cleanse yourself of those impurities; and, little by little, as the sun rises in the morning and disperses the mist by its warm rays, so in you there will be born the strength, the determination, the purpose to achieve the mountain-top. And there lies the only comfort, for what you gather from your own experience, from your own knowledge, is lasting, is permanent; and nobody, whoever he may be, can destroy that which you have created with your own hands, with your own sufferings, with your own afflictions. Out of that comes the desire to live nobly; for who can give the desire to live nobly except yourself? What heart, except his own, can prompt and urge a human being to tread the path of peace, the path of Liberation and of Happiness? Others may encourage, others may discourage, but in you alone lies the power to tread, in you alone lies the determination, in you alone lies the wisdom. If you would attain that Truth, if you would become perfect in the knowledge of that Truth, you must go through this process of renunciation, setting aside those things which have no value, putting aside your little knowledge in order to acquire greater knowledge, putting aside your little wisdom in order to acquire greater wisdom; and so when you reach the abode where there is no cloud of doubt, of misjudgement, where there is no question of perverting judgment, or of false thoughts, of false emotions, of fleeting affections, then you are truly in possession of the Truth, then truly are you like myself -the Beloved.
So those who have come from far-off lands to worship the mountain, will worship it, will photograph it, will carry away the earth and the stone which they have gathered, will examine the fairies, the angels, round about the mountain; but those who have climbed to the top will become the mountain, those who have reached the summit will know the delight of helping, of giving, of liberating others.
So, friends, you who have gathered from different nations to worship the mountain, should beware of what you take back; beware whether it be part of the Truth, or the full Truth. If it be part, then let there be a burning desire within you to reach the very mountain-top, to become the Beloved, to become the Truth itself. And when you have reached that stage, as I have, when you have become the Beloved, as I have, then you will be able to give those waters of life that are eternal, then you will be able to satisfy the thirsty, then you will be able to give balm to the afflicted, then you will be the redeemers of the world. You are all walking by the light of the candle, but because I hold you in my heart, I would give you the light of the sun.
Now, this is our last evening, and you are all going away to different countries with part of the Truth; you are going away with greater burdens than you know of, you are going away to enrich your own lives and the lives of others. With a sun in your heart, with delight in your mind, you must create those things which are lasting, those things which will give eternal comfort to others. For one who has reached Liberation, for one who has achieved, for one who is in full possession of the Truth, there is no sorrow in parting. And because in me you all exist, for me there is no separation; but because you do not possess me, for you there is separation and sorrow. There is separation for those who, because of their little understanding of Truth, have not conquered the Truth, have not become part of the Truth. But if you bear that Truth in your heart, if you bear me, who am the end of all search, in your heart, then there will be no separation. In that strife, in that struggle to attain the mountain-top, there is unity both in affliction and in joy. So, friend, wherever you may go, if you have that Truth, you will not be lonely, you will not be depressed, you will need no comfort from without, you will need no truth except this one Truth.
The Pool of Wisdom
BY WHAT AUTHORITY, 6. OMMEN CAMP FIRE TALK, 1927
Jiddu Krishnamurti The Pool of Wisdom; philosophy revolutionary truth public talks pool wisdom.