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The Observer is the Observed

Bombay, India. Public Talk 25th January, 1948

This meeting will be held hereafter at 6 o'clock every Sunday evening here, and the discussions at Carmichael Road will be on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays at 6 o'clock.

Perhaps some of you will remember what I was discussing in my talk last Sunday. I was saying that in understanding what is, we shall find the truth of a problem; and it is extremely difficult to understand what is, because what is is never static, it is constantly in motion. A mind that wishes to understand a problem must not only understand the problem completely, wholly, but must be able to follow it swiftly, because the problem is never static. The problem is always new, whether it is a problem of starvation, a psychological problem, or any problem. Any crisis is always new; therefore, to understand it, a mind must always be fresh, clear, swift in its pursuit. I think most of us reaLize the urgency of an inward revolution, which alone can bring about a radical transformation of the outer, of society. This is the problem with which I myself and all seriously-intentioned people are occupied. How to bring about a fundamental, a radical transformation in society, is our problem; and, as I said last Sunday, this transformation of the outer cannot take place without inner revolution. Because, society is always static, any action, any reform which is accomplished without this inward revolution, becomes equally static; so there is no hope without this constant inward revolution, because, without it, outer action becomes repetitive, habitual. The action of relationship between you and another, between you and me, is society; and that society becomes static, it has no life-giving quality, as long as there is not this constant inward revolution, a creative, psychological transformation; and it is because there is not this constant inward revolution that society is always becoming static, crystallized and has therefore constantly to be broken up.

So, our problem, is it not?, is whether there can be a society which is static, and at the same time an individual in whom this constant revolution is taking place. That is, revolution in society must begin with the inner, psychological transformation of the individual. Most of us want to see a radical transformation in the social structure. That is the whole battle that is going on in the world - to bring about a social revolution through communistic or any other means. Now, if there is a social revolution, that is, an action with regard to the outer structure of man, however radical that social revolution may be, its very nature is static if there is no inward revolution of the individual, no psychological transformation. So, to bring about a society that is not repetitive, not static, not disintegrating, that is constantly alive, it is imperative that there should be a revolution in the psychological structure of the individual; for without inward, psychological revolution, mere transformation of the outer has very little significance. That is, society is always becoming crystallized, static, and is therefore always disintegrating. However much and however wisely legislation may be promulgated, society is always in the process of decay; because revolution must take place within, not merely outwardly.

I think it is important to understand this, and not slur over it. Outward action, when accomplished, is over, is static; and if the relationship between individuals, which is society, is not the outcome of inward revolution, then the social structure, being static, absorbs the individual, and therefore makes him equally static, repetitive. Realizing this, realizing the extraordinary significance of what I have said, which is a fact, there can be no question of agreement or disagreement. It is a fact that society is always crystallizing and absorbing the individual; and that constant, creative revolution can only be in the individual, not in society, not in the outer. That is, creative revolution can take place only in individual relationship, which is society. We see how the structure of the present society in India, in Europe, in America, in every part of the world, is rapidly disintegrating; and we know it within our own lives. We can observe it as we go down the streets. We do not need great historians to tell us the fact that our society is crumbling; and there must be new architects, new builders, to create a new society. The structure must be built on a new foundation, on newly discovered facts and values. Such architects do not yet exist. There are no builders, none who, observing, becoming aware of the fact that the structure is collapsing, are transforming themselves into architects. So, that is our problem. We see society crumbling, disintegrating; and it is we, you and I, who have to be the architects. You and I have to re-discover the values and build on a more fundamental, lasting foundation; because if we look to the professional architects, the political and religious builders, we shall be precisely in the same position as before.

Now, because the individual, you and I, are not creative, we have reduced society to this chaos. So, you and I have to be creative, because the problem is urgent; you and I must be aware of the causes of the collapse of society and create a new structure based, not on mere imitation, but on our creative understanding. Now, this implies, does it not?, negative thinking. Negative thinking is the highest form of understanding. That is, in order to understand what is creative thinking, we must approach the problem negatively; because a positive approach to the problem - which is that you and I must become creative in order to build a new structure of society - will be imitative. To understand that which is crumbling, we must investigate it, examine it negatively, not with a positive system, a positive formula, a positive conclusion.

So, why is society crumbling, collapsing as it surely is? One of the fundamental reasons is that the individual, you, have ceased to be creative. I will explain what I mean. You and I have become imitative, we are copying, outwardly and inwardly. Outwardly, when learning a technique, when communicating with each other on the verbal level, naturally there must be some imitation, copy. I copy words. To become an engineer, I must first learn the technique and use the technique to build a bridge. So, there must be a certain amount of imitation copying, in outward technique. But, when there is inward, psychological imitation, surely, we cease to be creative. Our education, our social structure, our so-called religious life, are all based on imitation; that is, I fit into a particular social or religious formula. I have ceased to be a real individual; psychologically, I have become a mere repetitive machine with certain conditioned responses, whether those of the Parsi, the Hindu, the Christian, the Buddhist, the German or the Englishman. Our res- ponses are conditioned according to the pattern of society, whether it is Eastern or Western, religious or materialistic. So, one of the fundamental causes of the disintegration of society is imitation and one of the disintegrating factors is the leader, whose very essence is imitation.

So, in order to understand the nature of disintegrating society, is it not important to enquire whether you and I, the individual, can be creative? We can see that when there is imitation, there must be disintegration; when there is authority, there must be copying. And since our whole mental, psychological make-up is based on authority, there must be freedom from authority to be creative. Have you not noticed that in moments of creativeness, those rather happy moments of vital interest, there is no sense of repetition, no sense of copying? Such moments are always new, fresh, creative, happy. So, one of the fundamental causes of the disintegration of society is copying, which is the worship of authority.

Please do not agree with me. It is not a question of agreement, but of understanding what is. If you merely agree with me, you will make me your authority; but if you understand, you will cease to worship authority, because the problem is not a matter of substituting one authority for another, but of being creative. When you try to become creative, then you need authority; but when you are creative, there is no authority, there is no copying. There is a difference between becoming and being. Becoming admits time, and being is free of time. In becoming you must have authority, an example, an ideal, you must have tomorrow. In being, there is the cessation of time, therefore there is immediate revolution, which we will discuss as we go along during the many talks we are going to have here.

So, it is important to understand first that our approach to any problem must be negative, because any positive approach is merely imitation. And to understand this crumbling social structure, we must approach it negatively, and not through a system, whether that of the left or of the right; and in that approach, we will find that negative thinking is the highest form of understanding, which alone is going to solve the many difficulties of our whole existence.

I have several questions, and I will go ahead with the answers. In all these talks I will make introductory remarks, as I have done just now, and then answer questions.

Question: What is your solution to the problem of starvation?

Krishnamurti: Now, let us first examine the question itself. As I said last Sunday, I have not studied this question. I am considering it now for the first time, So, we are going to examine and understand this problem together, which means you are not going to become the listeners, the observers, and I the one who answers. We are going to examine this problem very carefully together, step by step, because it is your problem as well as mine. So, please do not wait for an answer, but see the implications, the significance of this question, all that is implied in it. Because, as I said, the problem contains the answer; the answer is never outside the problem. If I can understand the problem with all its significance, then the answer is there; but if you have an answer, then you will never understand the problem, because the answer, the conclusion, the formula, intervenes between the problem and yourself. Then you are merely concerned with the answer, and not with the problem itself.

Now the question is, "What is your solution to the problem of starvation?" Will any solution bring about an end to starvation? Will any system - which is always implied in a solution - put an end to starvation, whether the system be of the modified right, or of the extreme left? Will the modification of capitalistic society, or a communistic system, put an end to starvation? That is what is implied in this question. When you ask about a solution, you mean a system, don't you? I am not putting into the question something that isn't there. We have several systems: the fascistic, the communistic, the capitalistic systems. As they have not solved the problem of starvation, have you a system that will solve it? So, can any system bring about the ending of starvation?

Now, systems become more important than feeding people when the system intervenes between the problem and yourself. Let me put it this way. Why have systems become important? Why have these intervening systems, whether of the left or of the right, become important? They have become important because we think they will solve the problem, that by outward application of certain legislative action, that is, by the outward compulsion of the possessors, of those who have in their hands the things, the machinery, we are going to put an end to the problem. We think that by compulsion we are going to transform society and put an end to starvation. I hope you are following this. We give importance to systems because we think through compulsion, through legislation, through outward action, we can end starvation. Obviously, to a certain extent that is true - we need not even discuss it. But that is not the whole problem, is it? Why have food, clothing, and shelter, become so important in man's life? They are necessary, that is an obvious fact. It would be stupid, one would have to be quite disarranged mentally, to say that they are not necessary. But why have they assumed such overwhelming importance? Do you understand? Or rather, I hope I am making myself clear - it is more polite to put it that way! Why have property, relationship, idea, ideology, become all-consuming - for they are the same thing as food, clothing and shelter, only on a different plane of thought. That is, we look to a system to solve this problem; we say this or that is the best system, the communistic, the socialistic, or the capitalistic, and there we stop. Surely, this is not the answer. If we go a little deeper into the problem, we will ask ourselves why these things, made by the hand or by the mind, have become so extraordinarily significant in our lives. Is it because we need food, clothing, and shelter? But why have they become such a dominating influence in our lives? Surely, if I can find out the truth of that question, then food, clothing, and shelter, however necessary, will become of secondary importance. Then I shall not give undue significance to these things, because I shall not mind whether I have a little more or a little less. Therefore, it is irrelevant to me whether society is organized by this or by that group - I shall not kill, I shall not join either of them to be destroyed by the other. Do you follow? When systems become important, the problem itself becomes secondary; because emphasis is laid on the system, and not on the problem. That is what is happening in the world at the present time. If the whole world were concerned with feeding man, surely, then, the problem would be very simple. The scientists have already discovered enough to make possible the feeding, clothing, and sheltering of man. That is an irrefutable fact. But we do not avail ourselves of these possibilities because we are more concerned with systems than with the feeding of man. We say, `My system is better than your system', and we are preparing to destroy, butcher, liquidate each other. Therefore, what happens? The poor man who is hungry, remains hungry. Whereas, if we do not look to systems, but find out what are the implications of the problem itself, then systems can be used, but they will not become our masters.

So, what are the implications of the problem? Why has man, that is, why have you and I, given such an extraordinarily dominant significance to things, to property, to food, clothing, and shelter? We give importance to sensate values, which are food, clothing and shelter, because we use them as a means of psychological self-expansion. That is, food, clothing, and shelter are used by the individual for his own psychological aggrandisement. After all, property has very little meaning in itself. But, psychologically, property becomes of extraordinary significance, because it gives you position, prestige, name, title. So, since it gives you power, position, authority, you hold on to it; and on that you build a system which destroys the equitable distribution of things to man. So, as long as you and I psychologically use property, name, belief - which are the same as food, clothing, and shelter, on a different level - there must be starvation, there must be conflict between man and man. I may not seek power through property, but I become the commissar, the bureaucrat, wielding enormous power, which again brings tension between man and man. As long as you and I, or any group of people, are using food, clothing and shelter as a means of exploitation, of power, the problem of starvation will continue. A system is not the solution to the problem, because a system is in the hands of the few; therefore, the system becomes important. This does not mean that there must not be a system to regulate man and his greed; but this problem can be solved radically, fundamentally, and for all, not through any system, but only when you and I are aware that we are using property, things made by the hand or by the mind, as a means of self-expansion. After all, remove your name, your title, your property, your B.A.'s and M.A.'s, and what are you? You are really a nonentity, aren't you? Without your property, without your medals and all the rest of it, you are nothing. And to cover up that emptiness, you use property, you use name, family. The psychological emptiness of man ever seeks to cover itself with property, which is food, clothing, and shelter.

So, the problem of starvation is much more psychological than legislative; it is not a matter of mere enforcement. If we really see the truth of this, we will stop using things as a means of self-expansion and therefore we will help to bring about a new social order. Surely, that is the truth of it: that you and I use things made by the hand or by the mind as a means of self-expansion, and therefore we give extraordinary significance to sensate values. But if we do not give a wrong significance to sensate values, that is, if we do not give the predominating importance to food, clothing, and shelter, then the problem is simple and very easily solved. Then the scientists will come together and give us food, clothing and shelter; but they will not do it now, because, like you and me, they belong to a society which uses things as a means of self-expansion. The scientists are like the rest of us; they may be different in the laboratory, but they are conditioned like you and me. They are nationalistic, psychologically seeking power, and so on. Therefore, there is no solution through them. The only solution to this problem is in ourselves. That is the truth; and if you really understand it, there will be a revolution, that inward revolution which is creative; and therefore there will be a society which is not merely static but creative because it represents you and me. Sir, in understanding what is, which is the problem, truth is discovered. It is the immediate perception of truth that is liberating, not ideation. Ideas merely breed further ideas, and ideas are not in any way going to give happiness to man. Only when ideation ceases is there being; and being is the solution.

Question: You say we can remain aware even when in sleep. Please explain.

Krishnamurti: This is really a very complex problem needing very careful observation and swift following of thought, and I hope you and I will be able to do it together. I am going to explain this question. Please follow it in yourselves, and not merely listen to my verbal explanation; follow it step by step as I go into it.

Consciousness is made up of many layers, is it not? Consciousness is not merely the superficial layer; it is made up of many, many layers, the layers being the hidden motives, the unrevealed intentions, the unsolved problems, memory, tradition, the impingement of the past on the present, the continuation of the past through the present to the future. All that, and more, is consciousness. I am considering what consciousness actually is, not a theory. The many layers of memories, all thoughts, the hidden problems which are not solved and which create memory, the racial instincts, the past in conjunction with the present creating the future - all that is consciousness.

Now, most of us are aware, are functioning, only within the superficial layers of consciousness. I hope you are interested in all this; but whether you are interested or not, it is a fact. If merely for information, listen to it. First, I have not read using any special terminology, any jargon of the psychologists; nor have I read any of your sacred books, either of the East or of the West. But in being aware of oneself, one discovers all these things. In oneself is the whole of wisdom. Self-knowledge is the beginning of understanding, and without self-knowledge, there is no right thinking, there is no basis for thought. In understanding this, we are exploring self-knowledge, we are exploring consciousness; and you can explore it directly while I am talking, you can be aware of yourself and have direct experience; or you can merely listen verbally, for information: you can take your choice, it is up to you.

So, most of us function in the superficial layers of consciousness; therefore we remain shallow, and therefore our action brings further responses, further reactions, further misery. There is release, liberation, only when the whole of consciousness is thoroughly understood. It is not a matter of time - which we will go into later, during the course of these talks. So, since we function only in the superficial layers of consciousness, naturally it creates problems; it never solves problems, but is always the breeding ground of problems. That is, as most of the activities of our daily existence are the response of those superficially cultivated layers, the whole bag of layers is always breeding more and more problems. Now, when you have a problem created by the superficial layers of consciousness, you try to solve it superficially, like a dog worrying a bone, gnawing at it, struggling with it - that is always the case with the superficial layers of consciousness; and you do not find a solution. Then, what happens? You go to bed, you sleep on it; and when you wake up, you find you have solved the problem, or you see a new way of looking at it and you can solve it. This happens all times to all of us. It is not something extraordinary or mysterious, it is well-known. Now, exactly what has happened? This upper layer of consciousness, the man, the superficial man, has thought about the problem all day long, worried over it, trying to translate it according to his demands, to his prejudices, to his immediate desires. That is, he is seeking an answer, and therefore cannot find it. Then he goes to sleep, and when he is asleep, the superficial consciousness, the upper layer of the mind, is somewhat quiet, relaxed, free from the incessant worry over the problem. Then, into that superficial layer, the hidden projects its solution; and when you wake up, the problem has a different significance. That is a fact. You do not have to become an occultist, you do not have to become very clever to understand it - which would be absurd. If you observe it for yourself, you will see that it is an obvious, everyday fact. But this does not mean that you have to go to sleep to have your problem answered. The problem is there; and if you can approach it openly, without any conclusion, without any answer intervening between you and the problem, then you are immediately and directly in relationship with the problem, and therefore you are open to the hints of the unconscious.

Have I explained it too quickly? Perhaps I have. But it doesn't matter, Sir. We are going to meet again several times, because this is a question one has to go into much more deeply. We have touched only one part of it, although most of us are content to leave it at that level.

The next point involved in this question is the intimation of the unconscious. Surely, our life is not mere superficial existence. There are vast, hidden resources, treasures of extraordinary importance, of extraordinary delight and greatness and joy, which are always hinting, intimating; and because we are not capable of receiving them directly when we are awake, they become symbols, as dreams, when we sleep. That is, the unconscious, the deep layers, the layers which have not been explored, are always giving intimations, hints of extraordinary significance; but the superficial consciousness is so occupied with its daily existence, its daily worries, its pursuit of bread and butter, that it is incapable of receiving the intimations directly. Therefore the intimations become dreams; and dreams require interpreters, so the psychologists come in and make money. Whereas, there need be no interpretation if there is immediate and direct contact with the unconscious; and this can take place only when the conscious mind is continually being quiet, constantly having an interval, a space between action and action, between thought and thought.

Then the other point involved in this is the subjective experience of conversation with another. I do not know if you have ever remembered, when you wake up, having had a long talk with somebody - remembering words, or a word, with extraordinary potency and meaning. This must have happened to you - you remember having a discussion with a friend, with a man whom you respect, with an ascetic, guru or Master. Now, what is that? Is it not still within the field of consciousness? It is still a part of consciousness; therefore it is a self-projection which is translated upon awakening as a conversation with somebody, a direction received from a Master. The Master is still within the framework of consciousness, and it is therefore a projection of the self into the image of the Master. The remembering of a word and the giving of significance to it is one of the ways in which the unconscious functions to impress itself upon the conscious mind. So, this remembering of an event within the field of consciousness is still the intimation or the projection of thought; it is a creation of thought, and therefore not the real. The real comes into being only when thought ceases, when thought no longer creates. The next point involved in the question - and I hope you do not mind my exploring it further - is whether during sleep it is possible to meet a person objectively. Do you understand? That is, can I, during sleep, meet someone objectively, not subjectively? Now that implies identification of thought as the `I'. What is the `I'? What is thought, identified? When I say `Krishnamurti', I mean thought in which there is identification as the man. The man is thought, objectified, which is a continuity; and, surely, it is possible to meet that continuity objectively. This has been proved over and over again - objectively, not subjectively. That is, thought, which is like a wave, a moving wave, is identified, given a name; and that, surely, you can meet objectively.

So, those are some of the things involved in this question of remaining aware even in sleep. But all these explanations have no significance whatsoever without self-knowledge. You may repeat what I have said, but repetition is a lie; it is merely propaganda, and it is not true. These things must be experienced, not repeated; and you must experience what is; be aware of the many layers of consciousness which expresses itself in so many different ways.

So, there is a very narrow margin of division between the waking-consciousness and the sleeping-consciousness; but since most of you are almost entirely occupied with the waking consciousness, with its worries, its beliefs, the daily anxieties of earning a livelihood, the tension of relationship between yourself and another, all these are preventing the exploration of yourself at a deeper level. And you do not have to explore - surely, the hidden projects itself with an enormous quickness when the mind is not superficially active. Have you not noticed it when you are sitting quietly, not occupied with the radio, when the mind suddenly has a new idea, a new feeling, a new joy; but, unfortunately, what happens? When that creative expression comes into being, you immediately translate it into action, and you want a repetition of it. Therefore, you have lost it. So, the problem of awareness, which we have now dealt with partly, is really very creative, if you can understand it fully. I will go into it later, into the significance of what it is to be aware, But it is important to understand, is it not?, that there cannot be right thinking and therefore right action without self-knowledge; and self-knowledge is not merely the comprehension of the superficial layers, but the complete understanding of the whole consciousness. This is not a matter of time; for, if the attention is there, there is immediate perception, and the urgency of that perception depends on how honest one is. The more one is alert, passively aware, the more one comprehends the deeper layers of consciousness; and I assure you, there is an extraordinary joy in it, in discovering, in fathoming one's whole being. If you pursue understanding, it escapes you; but if you are passively aware, then it unfolds and gives its extraordinary depths.

Shall I go on to the next question? Are you tired? Alright, I shall go on with it.

Question: You say that full awareness of the problem liberates us from the problem. Awareness depends on interest. What creates interest, what makes one man interested and another indifferent?

Krishnamurti: Now, again we are going to examine the question, the problem itself. So, do not intervene with an answer. We are going to discover the content of the problem, and not search out a conclusion. Because, if we have a conclusion, the problem is not understood; if we have answers to our various problems, the pro- blems are never examined. We either quote the Bhagavad Gita, or one of our latest leaders, or a guru, and so never look at the problem itself - which means, we are never directly in relationship with the problem because there is always an intervention between us and the problem in the shape of a conclusion, in the shape of a quotation or an answer. There is never a direct relationship between you and the problem, so the problem loses its significance. To be aware of the problem directly, you have first to be aware that you are intervening, putting a screen between yourself and the problem. Are you? Become directly aware of your own problem, not somebody else's, and you will see what happens. Let us experiment with that. You will see how quickly you can dissolve the problem, if you follow what I am going to suggest.

If you have a problem, what is your first response to that problem? Your instant response is that you are looking for an answer. You want to solve it, which mean; you want to run away from the problem by means of an answer; that is, you are more concerned with the discovery of the answer than with the study of the problem. Your guru, your Bhagavad Gita, intervene, which means they are really an escape from the problem. That is a fact, that is what is happening to you. Now, if that is a fact, what happens? You are not concerned with the problem which you are trying to understand; so naturally the problem falls away, and therefore you are not directly in contact with the problem. But what happens when you are directly confronted with the problem without any intervention, when you are directly related to the problem? The problem ceases to be a problem - you understand it entirely, immediately. So, to be aware of a problem implies awareness of the interventions, that is, of the escapes, of the answers, of the unconsciously or consciously seeking in order to avoid the problem - which means that you are not really concerned with the understanding of the problem. So, to have that awareness of a problem, dissolves the problem; it liberates us from the problem.

Every moment, the problem is a new problem; the problem is a challenge. Life is a challenge and a response; and when there is a challenge, which is always new, I respond according to my conditioning; but if I can meet the challenge without the conditioning - which is the answer, the conclusion, the quotation - then my mind, being fresh, is able to meet the challenge anew. Therefore, it is capable of instantaneously understanding the problem. Please, it is not a question of your accepting my word for it - experiment with it and you will soon see how extraordinarily awareness dissolves the problem. You taste that awareness in moments of great crisis, when you have got to solve something, when something extraordinarily serious takes place in your life. Then you are not seeking an answer, a guide, an authority. That means you are not escaping from the problem, from the crisis, which means that you are meeting the challenge anew, afresh.

To continue with the question. "Awareness depends on interest. What creates interest...?" Why are you interested. Are you not interested now? You are actually listening to me; why? Either you are mesmerized by my words, or there is interest, obviously, I hope you are not mesmerized by my words. Therefore, there is interest. Why are you interested? Because I am interested. I am urgently interested in that which I am saying, and not only for the moment. I am interested vitally in solving the problems of man, which is myself; and because I am enthusiastically, keenly interested, you also are interested. But the moment will come, as soon as you leave this place, when you will fall back into the routine of your property, your ownership, your job, and all the rest of it. You are interested, because I am interested, because I am tremendously concerned. So interest is catching, only then it is not lasting. There is good influence, and bad influence; and since I am not interested in influencing you one way or the other, you lose interest. And to be influenced is wrong, it is fatal; because if you can be influenced by one, you can be influenced by another; like fashion, influence changes and therefore has no significance. But, if you are earnest in yourself, then you are alive, not only now but constantly, to the enormous significance of the crisis. And if you are not interested, it is your misery. What makes one man interested, and another indifferent? What makes you not interested - that is the problem, not the indifference of another. Why are you indifferent? That is the problem, isn't it? Why are you indifferent to the problem of starvation, to the problem of consciousness, to the problem of finding a solution for all existing problems? What makes you indifferent? Why aren't you interested in all this? Have you ever sat down and thought about it? Obviously, we are not interested for the very simple reason that we want distractions: the guru, the leader, the Bhagavad Gita, the Bible and so on. They are all distractions, and distraction dulls the mind. The very function of a guru is to dull your mind. That is why you go to him - to pacify yourself, to give yourself satisfaction. Otherwise, if you did not seek satisfaction, you would never go to a guru. You want satisfaction, and therefore your mind is made dull; and in what can a dull mind interest itself? It is interested in everyday existence, how to put on a new sari beautifully. So, we are caught in the ways of dullness because to think very earnestly is to be discontented, which is very painful; and most of us do not want to invite sorrow. We want to avoid sorrow, and so our whole structure of thought is a confusion, is a distraction.

So, what is important is not who is indifferent, but why you yourself are so superficial. Why are you caught in this extraordinary net of suffering? Surely, the answer lies in discovering for ourselves the causes that make us dull, insensitive - insensitive to human suffering, to the trees, to the heavens, to the birds; insensitive to our human relationships. To be sensitive means pain; but we must be painfully sensitive in order to understand. But we stop on this side of pain and try to escape from it, which reduces us to imitative machines.

The Observer is the Observed

Bombay, India. Public Talk 25th January, 1948

Jiddu Krishnamurti texts. The Observer Is the Observed. Contains reports of spontaneous discourses about life and reality, given at different times between 1945 and 1948.


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