Saanen 7th Public Dialogue 7th August 1973.
This is the last dialogue and I suppose you have had enough of it too. So what shall we talk over together this morning?
Q: Can we talk about the world is you and you are the world?
Q: What is the responsibility in relationship?
Q: And our responsibility for society and education.
K: I thought we had been through all that. I thought we went into all this not only during these discussions, dialogues, but also in all the seven talks that we have had here - didn't we.
Look, sir, this is the last dialogue, at least for this year. But I go on with the dialogues all over the world, you won't. Now what shall we discuss this morning which we have not gone into thoroughly and deeply?
Q: Would you go into the question of what is occupation? What do you mean by occupation, the totality of it.
K: But I went into it the other day.
Q: Can we keep silent for some time?
Q: Can we go into this question of observation, awareness, and meditation? And could we go into it much more deeply and widely.
Q: Could we end up with creation?
Q: What is a serious mind?
Q: Could we talk over the danger of putting questions from an intellectual level?
K: We have got it all now.
Q: I want to understand why when this world is so rotten, that science and art, yoga and all that danger is taught in the schools in which K's name is mentioned.
K: What is it really you want to discuss this morning?
Q: Could you discuss the question of livelihood, which we have not completely understood?
Q: It is only through the transformation of the present mind, creating a new human being, that will bring about a new society.
K: We have been through all this, haven't we.
Q: Laughter is a way out of the trap in which we are caught.
K: Now what shall we discuss?
Q: What is true love?
K: I give it up! We have been through all this more or less, pretty widely and deeply in all the talks and discussions, and at the last discussion you say, what is true love.
Q: You have used the word wisdom, can't you use the word happiness, and what is happiness?
K: I give it up!
Q: The other day you talked about freedom and fear, and I would like to go much more into freedom in relation to fear.
Q: I would like to know what real insanity is.
K: I don't think one has to go into that, you can watch it!
Now, sir, just a minute. Can we discuss relationship with regard to behaviour, which includes all this, what is behaviour, and what value has orderly behaviour in our life and therefore expressed in the outer world. That is one problem. The other is, to find out if there is something really sacred in our human living. And it was also mentioned, what is the mind that is capable of living in the world, with all its problems, livelihood and so on, and also keep one's total sanity, and discover for ourselves if there is something really transcendental. That includes, I think, all the questions. Right? And that includes what is a serious mind.
So what is behaviour in relation to the world, and in relation to our immediate relationships, and what value has this behaviour? Does behaviour come, flower, out of order? That is one problem we are going to discuss. And the other is, what relationship has this order in ourselves, if we have that order, with regard to the world outside of us? What is the interaction between the man who is bringing about order within himself and with regard to the world in which he has to earn a livelihood, in which he has to do all kinds of things, what relationship has this behaviour, which is order, in that? And can the human mind ever find out, or come upon something which is not transient, which is not put together by thought, which is something totally sacred? And in the understanding of order, coming upon that, may be the way of meditation. Now would that include all your questions? Don't shatter it all at once. Do we all agree to that?
K: Right, let's proceed. No? What is behaviour? Is it the outcome of virtue? Is it the outcome of a mechanical order? Is it the outcome of a trained mind which has understood punishment and reward and therefore behaves? You have understood my question? We are enquiring together, talking over together as two friends concerned with this question of behaviour. We realize that there must be order in the world, and that order born out of our order because we are the world. Now is that order a mechanical process? Right? Mechanical in the sense a practice, a pursuit of a pattern, pursuit of an idea, pursuit of a slogan, and in conforming to that pattern, slogan, sanction and so on there is a mechanical order, and out of that mechanical order behaviourism becomes very superficial. And is that order? You have understood my question? So let us talk about it a little.
Most of us live a very disorderly life. And to us an orderly life is the persistent, consistent following of a particular pattern. Right? And I say to myself, is that order. That is, does order come about, out of which behaviour, through a mind highly disciplined, highly conforming to an idea, to a conclusion, is that order and behaviour? Please, won't you join me? Don't say, no, or yes. Most of us behave within a certain pattern, a framework, and one sees that is not order, that is mere mechanical repetition. So what is virtue in relation to behaviour? Right? And is virtue a mechanical thing? One is vain, one practises not to be vain, one endeavours through time, or days, to cultivate humility. And one hopes through that a certain form of behaviour will come. Is that order? You are following all this? Is virtue a repetitive pursuit of a certain idea?
Q: Ordinarily it is so.
K: And is that really virtue? And if it is a mechanical thing, then our behaviour will also be mechanical and therefore superficial. And therefore our relationship to the world, and the world's relationship to us is inevitably superficial. Right? So one must find out if one's behaviour, one's behaviour, is mechanical, in the sense we have described it; or is that behaviour - I mean by behaviour conduct, conduct in our relationship, conduct economically, socially, conduct which is the outcome of a totally different kind of order, which is not mechanical. Right? That's what we are discussing.
As that gentleman pointed out, most of us behave automatically - right? - behaviour being for most of us a reaction, and action out of that reaction. Right? And is order a disciplined conformity to a pattern of idea? Please, discuss with me, I am talking to myself.
Sir, may I put it this way. What to you is order? What is to you disorder? You understand? What is order, and what is disorder? What is disorder to you?
Q: Lack of permanency.
K: Sir, you are entering into theories again. What is disorder to you in your life, are you aware of disorder in your life? And what is that disorder? Are you aware that you live in disorder? Yes?
K: I am glad. Now what is that disorder to you, what does it mean?
K: Please stick to one thing. Are you aware that one's life is disorderly? And what do you mean by that word disorderly? Sir, it is no good discussing this thing theoretically, abstractly. It would be worthwhile to discuss directly, taking ourselves, and looking at ourselves and seeing for ourselves what our life is. And you say, our life is disorder, and what do you mean by disorder? Contradictory desires? Contradictory actions? Contradictory beliefs? Contradictory endeavours, purposes? Would you call all that disorder, which is contradiction - let's keep to that word, contradiction - within oneself? Having a contradiction in our desires, in our thoughts, in our purposes, in our resolutions, you say that is disorder. Right? Do you go along from there?
All right, what is order then?
K: Sweeping everything under the carpet, is that order?
K: Please, sir, you have told me disorder is a way of living in which there is contradiction, in action and so on. Then I am asking you, what is order. Is order sweeping everything which you think is disorder, putting it in a drawer and closing it, and seeking order? You have understood my question? Sweep it under carpet and then go out and find order.
K: Sir that is what we are saying in different words. So we say that is disorder. Then what is order to you, is it the opposite of disorder?
Madame, would you mind stopping taking notes because this is application to yourself and not to somebody else.
Now what is order? The opposite of disorder?
Q: The ending of disorder.
K: Now how do you end disorder? I agree with you, sir, I think it is. Order comes about naturally when there is no disorder. Now how do I, who live in disorder, end that and not create a conflict, an opposite, which then becomes the contradiction, all that, not to enter into another trap of disorder? Now how am I to be free of disorder?
Q: Face it.
K: Are you doing it? Don't, please, theorize. Are you facing the disorder that you live in your daily life now? Then how do you face it?
K: Are you doing it?
Q: Trying to.
K: There is no question of trying. You see you are all so easily pushed with words. I live in disorder. I am fully aware of it. And you tell me, look at it, observe it, get familiar with it, know all the intricacies of disorder, learn about disorder. Right? So I am learning. That is, I learn by observing disorder, and I must find out what I mean by learning, otherwise - please listen to this - otherwise what I have learnt I will then try to apply, and therefore that breeds disorder. Right, you are following this? So I must learn about disorder; learning must be a constant renewal of observation, without the accumulation of observation. Have you understood this? Have I made this clear? No. I'll repeat it in a different way.
We are now talking about what is learning. I want to learn, the mind wants to learn about disorder. It observes. And from that observation it has learnt something, what it has learnt becomes the knowledge, and - please listen - it has become knowledge and with that knowledge next time it observes. So it is observing from the past. Therefore it is not learning. Therefore learning means a constant renewal of observation without a conclusion. Have you got this?
Q: I have understood this very well. I have understood it intellectually, and there I am, left with what was before.
K: Now why do you do that? Why do you translate what is being said intellectually as an idea, why do you do that? Why can't you listen to what the poor chap is saying? Why don't you listen to find out, not intellectually come to a conclusion? That requires attention, that requires a certain order in your mind, to say, "Look, I am going to listen. I am not concerned with a conclusion, I want to find out what he is talking about." But if you draw a conclusion from what he is talking about you are not listening. That is simple. That means you are not listening. We have known each other since 1940, so we can go on.
Look sir, it is very important to find out what it means to learn. Either it is a learning in order to have knowledge from which future action can take place. That's simple. Or there is a learning which is never accumulating. I want to learn about disorder and there are so many disorders I have in my life, there are so many contradictory desires, purposes and so on, I want to learn about them. So I must find out what it means to learn about a thing that is constantly changing, constantly in movement. As it is a living thing the mind must come to it and look at freshly, mustn't it. If it is a dead thing I can look at it with dead eyes, but if it is a living thing the mind, or the observation must constantly be moving with the living thing. Right?
So I have found out one thing: learning means constant observation about a living thing and therefore if there is a conclusion then observation is limited. Right? I have said this, now you chew on it, find out.
Now I am learning, I am learning about disorder. I observe it, I see that I say one thing, do another, talk about helping and I am lazy, and a dozen activities of disorder. And in the observation of disorder I see without any motive, or without any intention, slowly the flowering of order takes place. That is, I have observed very carefully what is disorder in my life. I have observed it without drawing any conclusions, without any desire to store up a memory from which I direct the learning. So my mind is free to observe disorder; in that enquiry order comes naturally. Now what is that order which is really virtue because it is a living thing, what is that order? What is the relationship of that order to the world about me? Can I go on, have we understood so far? Are we sharing this at all, a little bit?
K: I am asking if there is order. My mind now has really lived in order and I say, what is the relationship of that order to the world - the world in which I have to earn a livelihood, the world in which I have to act, acquire money and so on, what is the relationship of that order which has come about naturally in the mind, how does it act in the world? Right? That is what you are talking about in earning a livelihood. Right? Are you following all this? Now what is the relationship, what is the action of that order in this world?
Q: We can't know until we do it.
K: Aren't you doing it now? Please, what is the action of that order?
Q: Understanding what is happening at the moment.
K: Now at the moment, this is the moment, not at the moment there. This is the moment. What have you understood at this moment, how to act, or what is action when there is order, when there is the cessation of disorder and therefore order, and therefore a sense of great intelligence in operation? So I am finding out in intelligence there is no disorder. Where there is intelligence there is order. Now what is that intelligence to do, or how does it act in this world? I have found out this intelligence, this intelligence has come about. Now I have to go out and earn a livelihood, what does that intelligence tell me to do? You understand, I have to act, I have to have bread, butter, I have to clothes, shelter, how does that intelligence operate?
Q: It is sharing.
K: Look sir, I have learnt, I have observed and I am learning what intelligence is, which is order, which is the highest form of virtue. It is a marvellous thing, if you understand it. And that intelligence has to earn a livelihood, it has to go out and earn. What will it do? The intelligence will dictate what action must take place, mustn't it? Intelligence will tell me what to do - not disorder. I wonder if you have understood this.
Q: I think we have divided the world into the mental world and the technological world.
K: Sir, I have said - I won't go back to it, if you don't mind, we have been through all that - we said the world with all its technology, art, science, colleges, universities, the world, all that world is me. I have created that world. That world is me, we are that world and that world is us. Don't let's go back.
I am observing the disorder. Order comes with its intelligence, and that intelligence has to function in this world. Now how is that intelligence going to earn a livelihood, earn a livelihood in which there is no competition. Right? It won't compete, it is not ambitious, it is not seeking the pleasures of possession and money. But it has to have money, it has to have shelter, clothing. So can you eliminate the causes of disorder which are competition, envy, the desire to be successful, you know, the whole activity of disorder? Are you getting it?
Q: You might find something that you want to do because you want to do it and for no other reason.
K: You and I are talking of two different things, sir. The question is, find out what you like to do and then there will be no disorder. What an easy way out, isn't it? Can I find out what I want to do? And what is it that I want to do? Write poems? Paint pictures? Go round the world begging? I want to write a book, paint. I want to write a book: what is my motive for writing a book? To earn a livelihood? So what is my motive which tells me I want to do this?
So let's proceed. What is important is whether your enquiry, your observation of this disorder has brought about this intelligence, and that intelligence then will function in this world intelligently which will not create disorder. You have understood? If you haven't that intelligence then you are bound to create disorder, whatever you do - not only in yourself but in the world.
So behaviour then - behaviour, conduct, behaviour means conduct, conduct from a self-interested, self-centred activity is one thing; conduct of a mind that is really intelligent is another. Right? For most of us conduct is self-interest, or conduct is the activity of the self in relation to another, which must inevitably create disorder. So I have found this out. And I mean that I have found it, you understand, like finding a marvellous jewel. And then I have found out what my action is in life. And that intelligence in action is never contradictory. That is one thing.
The next is, the next question is, as we talked about: is there anything sacred in life, in life not only in the living of daily life but beyond it, is there anything that is really holy, untouched by the human mind? Aren't you interested in this - are you really? I don't know. I want to find out, not caught up in an illusion, not in a vision, not in some kind of marvellous experience which then I would call sacred, but I want to find out. I want to find out not according to my temperament - please listen to this - not according to my temperament, my idiosyncrasy, my wishes, my desires, because they are the outcome of my conditioning, and if any of those activities exist they must inevitably lead to illusion. Right? So I must be astonishingly - the mind must be astonishingly sensitive to illusions and visions, experience. And I see very clearly the danger of it.
So my enquiry is based on a freedom which will not direct my enquiry in any direction. Right? Have we understood each other? Are we going along with each other? Because the mind can so easily deceive itself. I was told the other day by an Italian scholar that in the old days of Mesopotamia where St Paul wandered about, he saw a great vision, and this scholar said, "You know in those days when you had a sunstroke it was considered a great blessing because the sun blessed you. All life came from the sun". So this gentleman, St Paul, had a sunstroke and saw this marvellous vision and that converted him totally to Christianity and all the rest of it. You understand what I am talking about?
So one has to be extraordinarily alert to every form of deception. In the enquiry if there is anything sacred, holy the mind must be so sensitive to any deception. Right? Because one can invent so many things, one can have visions galore. One can have experiences multiplying by the thousand, but they are all based on a conditioning of the mind. So the mind says, I am going to watch, I am going to observe very closely and never be deceived, therefore tremendous honesty. You understand? Right?
Then is there anything sacred? People have said there is, and there is nothing, just live for this life and make a good thing of it, if you can't bear with it, or identify yourself with the State, with the leader, with the big brother, you know, all that. The mind is also very alert to all that. Right? Then it says, now I want to find out because without coming upon that life has very little meaning, because life then becomes a transient, meaningless thing - being born, suffering, joy, passing pleasures, anxieties, you know all that, and death. And without finding out what is really sacred, if there is such a thing, life has no meaning whatsoever. And in the finding of it, that may the unifying factor of all life. You understand? Unifying factor of all life - the life of nature, the life of animals, all living things, that may be the one unifying factor which will bring human beings and nature and all of us together. You understand?
So my enquiry must be total - you understand? It must be total, that is, my enquiry into behaviour, order, virtue, disorder, relationship with the world and with my wife, husband, girl, boy. It must be an enquiry that includes the whole of my living, not just part of it. So I have enquired into my relationship with you who are my wife, my child, my son, my brother, my husband, and that enquiry lead to relationship with me and the world, and therefore enquiry has revealed that the world is me, and me is the world - the reality of it, not just the verbal statement of it, because the description is not the described.
So I have enquired into behaviour because that is very important, how the mind behaves in every direction, in the world of science, in the world of business, in the world of labour, in the world of writing a book - conduct, whether it is self-centred conduct, self-interest, or conduct based on identification with something greater. This activity of the self brings about disorder. So I have seen it, understood it, and my enquiry now is, having enquired into all this, my enquiry says, is there anything sacred?
I also have enquired what it means to love, and the mind finds that love isn't pleasure, love isn't mere desire, love isn't merely the pleasures of sex, or the pleasures of imagination, the pleasures of ideas. That has lead to immense disorder. And also you enquire into this extraordinary thing called death - we went into that the other day.
So I have enquired into the whole field of existence so I am not deceived. The mind is very clear about all this, not as a conclusion, not as an idea, but actually. Then it moves into the field where man has enquired and been caught in various forms of illusions, substituting images and making the images sacred, the symbols instead of reality and worshipping the symbols and forgetting the reality, building around the symbol, the image, great and marvellous cathedrals, temples and mosques. I see all that. And the cropping up of these innumerable gurus with their systems, with their crazing for power, money, the degradation of their activity. I see all that. So the mind is going to be caught in any of this. Right? Are you following all this? Are we together?
It now says, what is there sacred? And it starts with the enquiry not knowing anything that is sacred. You understand? The moment you say something is sacred it is already conditioned. If you say love is sacred, if you say my vision, Krishna, Buddha, Christ, that is all conditioning, tradition. So I start - the mind starts with the enquiry not knowing a thing about what is sacred. Right? Can we do it?
Q: Yes, you start with nothing.
K: Good luck! You know what it means, madame, to start with nothing. You understand what it means? No motive, no will, no 'me' with all its complex activities, to start with absolutely nothing. Can you do it? You understand - no attachment, a body, an organism that won't distort perception. You understand? Because the body reacts, and acts on the mind, and the mind acts on the body, so unless the body is extraordinarily quiet, sensitive, so that it is completely in order. You understand what it means? Are you following all this?
There is no distraction of the body, no distraction of thought, or any motive engendered by thought, no purpose, no intention, no knowledge - knowledge must exist in a certain field, in the enquiry into if there is anything sacred knowledge has no place. So the mind is completely empty of everything that thought has put together. Right? And when it is capable of saying, "I really know nothing", that state of complete emptiness which is complete disassociation with the world, and all the world which has made the 'me'. Are you following all this? Then that nothingness is the most sacred thing.
Intelligence is nothing. You follow? Now in the discovery of that then it operates, it functions in the life of everyday. When I am not a Hindu, a Buddhist, a Christian, nothing. You understand all this? And this is meditation. You understand? A meditation because in the enquiry of this, not the search, in the enquiry, there is no leader, there is no teacher, there is no guru, there is no salvation, saviour. The first thing is, learn never to follow anybody in this field. You can follow a doctor, he will teach you, a surgeon, he will teach you, there you have to observe, learn from somebody; here there is nobody from whom you can learn. Therefore nobody, including the speaker sitting here, he has nobody. Therefore the mind in meditation is intelligence in action. Have you understood this? That means the body must be completely still, you understand, be aware of its gestures, its movements, its fiddling about, be aware of all that. Have a good body, even though one may have a disease, be crippled, that pain mustn't interfere so that the mind is not distorted by pain. Food matters enormously, what you eat, and so on and so on.
So all this is the process of meditation - not the systems, not the leaders, not those who give you mantras for thirty-five dollars, and all that tommy rot. And one must give one's life to this. Every other form of life is a wasting of life. You have a short life to live, don't let's waste it. Now sirs I have talked enough.
Saanen 7th Public Dialogue 7th August 1973.
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