Observation Without Analysis


We are going to go into this question of analysis. To the speaker, analysis is the denial of action; action being always in the active present. Action means not ‘having done’ or ‘will do’, but doing. Analysis prevents that action in the present, because in analysis there is involved time, a gradual peeling off, as it were, layer after layer, and examining each layer, analysing the content of each layer. And if the analysis is not perfect, complete, true, then that analysis being incomplete, must leave a knowledge which is not total. And the next analysis springs from that which is not complete.

Look, I examine myself, analyse myself and if my analysis is not complete, then what I have analysed becomes the knowledge with which I proceed to analyse the next layer. So in that process each analysis becomes incomplete and leads to further conflict, and so to inaction. And in analysis there is the analyser and the analysed, whether the analyser is the professional, or yourself, the layman; there is this duality, the analyser analysing something which he thinks is different from himself. But the analyser, what is he? He is the past, he is the accumulated knowledge of all the things he has analysed. And with that knowledge – which is the past – he analyses the present.

So in that process there is conflict, there is the struggle to conform, or to force that which he analyses. Also there is this whole process of dreaming. I don’t know whether you have gone into all this yourself, or probably you have read other people’s books, which is most unfortunate; because then you merely repeat what other people have said, however famous they are. But if you don’t read all those books – as the speaker does not – then you have to investigate yourself, then it becomes much more fascinating, much more original, much more direct and true.

In the process of analysis there is this world of dreams. We accept dreams as necessary, because the professionals say, ‘You must dream, otherwise you go mad’, and there is some truth in that. We are enquiring into all this because we are trying to find out whether it is possible to change radically, when there is so much confusion, so much misery, such hatred and brutality in the world; there is no compassion. One must, if one is at all serious, enquire into all this. We are enquiring not merely for intellectual entertainment but actually trying to find out if it is possible to change. And when we see the possibility of change, whatever we are, however shallow, however superficial, repetitive, imitative, if we see that there is a possibility of radical change, then we have the energy to do so. If we say it is not possible, then that energy is dissipated.

So we are enquiring into this question, whether analysis does produce a radical change at all, or whether it is merely an intellectual entertainment, an avoidance of action. As we were saying, analysis implies entering into the world of dreams. What are dreams, how do they come into being? I don’t know if you have gone into this; if you have, you will see that dreams are the continuation of our daily life. What you are doing during the day, all the mischief, the corruption, the hatred, the passing pleasures, the ambition, the guilt and so on, all that is continued in the world of dreams, only in symbols, in pictures and images. These pictures and images have to be interpreted and all the fuss and unreality of all that comes into being.

One never asks why should one dream at all. One has accepted dreams as essential, as part of life. Now we are asking ourselves (if you are with me) why we dream at all. Is it possible when you go to sleep to have a mind that is completely quiet? Because it is only in that quiet state that it renews itself, empties itself of all its content, so that it is made fresh, young, decisive, not confused.

If dreams are the continuation of our daily life, of our daily turmoil, anxiety, the desire for security, attachment, then inevitably, dreams in their symbolic form must take place. That is clear, isn’t it? So one asks, ‘Why should one dream at all?’ Can the brain cells be quiet, not carry on all the business of the day?

One has to find that out experimentally, not accepting what the speaker says – and for goodness sake don’t ever do that, because we are sharing together, investigating together. You can test it out by being totally aware during the day, watching your thoughts, your motives, your speech, the way you walk and talk. When you are so aware there are the intimations of the unconscious, of the deeper layers, because then you are exposing, inviting the hidden motives, the anxieties, the content of the unconscious to come into the open. So when you go to sleep, you will find that your mind, including the brain, is extraordinarily quiet. It is really resting, because you have finished what you have been doing during the day.

If you take stock of the day, as you go to bed and lie down – don’t you do this? – saying, ‘I should have done this, I should not have done that’, ‘It would have been better that way, I wish I hadn’t said this’ – when you take stock of the things that have happened during the day, then you are trying to bring about order before you go to sleep. And if you don’t make order before you go to sleep, the brain tries to do it when you are asleep. Because the brain functions perfectly only in order, not in disorder. It functions most efficiently when there is complete order, whether that order is neurotic or rational; because in neurosis, in imbalance, there is order, and the brain accepts that order.

So, if you take stock of everything that has been happening during the day before you go to sleep, then you are trying to bring about order, and therefore the brain does not have to bring order while you are asleep: you have done it during the day. You can bring about that order every minute during the day, that is if you are aware of everything that’s happening, outwardly and inwardly. Outwardly in the sense of being aware of the disorder about you, the cruelty, the indifference, the callousness, the dirt, the squalor, the quarrels, the politicians and their chicanery – all that is happening. And your relationship with your husband, your wife, with your girl or boyfriend, be aware of ill that during the day, without correcting it, just be aware of it. The moment you try to correct it, you are bringing disorder. But if you merely observe actually what is, then what is, is order.

It is only when you try to change ‘what is’ that there is disorder; because you want to change according to the knowledge which you have acquired. That knowledge is the past and you are trying to change ‘what is’ – which is not the past – according to what you have learnt. Therefore there is a contradiction, therefore there is a distortion, therefore this is disorder.

So during the day, if you are aware of the ways of your thoughts, your motives, the hypocrisy, the double-talk – doing one thing, saying another, thinking another – the mask that you put on, the varieties of deception that one has so readily to hand, if you are aware of all that during the day, you don’t have to take stock at all when you go to sleep, you are bringing order each minute. So when you do go to sleep you will find that your brain cells, which have recorded and hold the past, become totally quiet, and your sleep then becomes something entirely different. When we use the word ‘mind’, we include in that the brain, the whole nervous organism, the affections, all the human structure; we mean all that, not something separate. In that is included the intellect, the heart, the whole nervous organism. When you go to sleep then, the process has totally come to an end, and when you wake up you see things exactly as they are, not your interpretation of them or the desire to change them.

So analysis, for the speaker, prevents action. And action is absolutely essential in order to bring about this radical change. So analysis is not the way. Don’t accept, please, what the speaker is saying, but observe it for yourself, learn about it, not from me, but learn by watching all these implications of analysis: time, the analyser and the analysed – the analyser is the analysed – and each analysis must be complete, otherwise it distorts the next analysis. So to see that the whole process of analyses, whether it is introspective or intellectual analysis, is totally wrong! It is not the way out – maybe it is necessary for those who are somewhat, or greatly, unbalanced; and perhaps most of us are unbalanced.

We must find a way of observing the whole content of consciousness without the analyser. It is great fun if you go into this, because you have then rejected totally everything that man has said. Because then you stand alone; when you find out for yourself, it will be authentic, real, true, not dependent on any professor, any psychologist, any analyst and so on.

So one must find a way of observing without analysis. I’m going to go into that – I hope you don’t mind my doing all this, do you? This is not group therapy! (Laughter) This is not an open confession, it is not that the speaker is analysing you, or making you change and become marvellous human beings! You have to do this yourself, and as most of us are second-hand or third-hand human beings, it is going to be very difficult to put away totally all that has been imposed on your minds by the professionals, whether by religious or scientific professionals. We have to find out for ourselves.

If analysis is not the way – and it is not, as far as the speaker is concerned, as he has explained – then how is one to examine or to observe the total content of consciousness? What is the content of consciousness? Please don’t repeat what somebody else has said. What is your total content? Have you ever looked at it, considered it? If you have, is it not the various recorded incidents, happenings, pleasurable and non-pleasurable, various beliefs, traditions, the various individual recollections and memories, the racial and family memories, the culture in which one has been brought up – all that is the content, isn’t it? And the incidents that take place every day, the memories, the various pains, the unhappiness, the insults, all that is recorded. And that content is your consciousness – you, as a Catholic, or Protestant, living in this western world with the search for more and more and more, the world of great pleasure, entertainment, wealth, incessant noise of the television, the brutality – all that is you, that’s your content.

How is all that to be exposed? – and in the exposing of it, is each incident, each happening, each tradition, each hurt, each pain to be examined one by one? Or is it to be looked at totally? If it is to be examined bit by bit, one by one, you are entering into the world of analysis and there is no end to that, you will die analysing – and giving a great deal of money to those who analyse, if that’s your pleasure.

Now we’re going to find out how to look at these various fragments, which are the content of consciousness, totally – not analytically. We are going to find out how to observe without any analysis at all. That is, we have looked at everything – at the tree, at the cloud, at the wife and the husband, at the girl and the boy – as the observer and the observed. Please do give a little attention to this. You have observed your anger, your greed or your jealousy, whatever it is, as an observer looking at greed. The observer is greed, but you have separated the observer because your mind is conditioned to the analytical process; therefore you are always looking at the tree, at the cloud, at everything in life as an observer and the thing observed. Have you noticed it? You look at your wife through the image which you have of her; that image is the observer, it is the past, that image has been put together through time. And the observer is the time, is the past, is the accumulated knowledge of the various incidents, accidents, happenings, experiences and so on. That observer is the past, and he looks at the thing observed as though he were not of it, but separate from it.

Now can you look without the observer? Can you look at the tree without the past as the observer? That is, when there is the observer, then there is space between the observer and the observed – the tree. That space is time, because there is a distance. That time is the quality of the observer, who is the past, who is the accumulated knowledge, who says, ‘That is the tree’, or ‘That is the image of my wife.’

Can you look, not only at the tree, but at your wife or your husband, without the image? You know, this requires tremendous discipline. I am going to show you something: discipline generally implies conformity, drill, imitation, conflict between what is and what should be. And so in discipline there is conflict: suppressing, overcoming, the exercise of will and so on – all that is implied in that word. But that word means to learn – not to conform, not to suppress, but to learn. And the quality of the mind that learns has its own order which is discipline. We are learning now to observe, without the observer, without the past, without the image. When you so observe, the actual ‘what is’, is a living thing, not a thing looked upon as dead, recognizable by the past event, by past knowledge.

Look, sirs, let’s make it much simpler than this. You say something to me which hurts me, and the pain of that hurt is recorded. The memory of that continues and when there is further pain, it is recorded again. So the hurt is being strengthened from childhood on. Whereas, if I observe it completely, when you say something which is painful to me, then it is not recorded as a hurt. The moment you record it as a hurt, that recording is continued and for the rest of your life you are being hurt, because you are adding to that hurt. Whereas to observe the pain completely without recording it, is to give your total attention at the moment of the pain. Are you doing all this?

Look, when you go out, when you walk in these streets, there are all kinds of noise, all kinds of shouting, vulgarity, brutality, this noise is pouring in. That is very destructive – the more sensitive you are the more destructive it becomes, it hurts your organism. You resist that hurt and therefore you build a wall. And when you build a wall you are isolating yourself. Therefore you are strengthening the isolation, by which you will get more and more hurt. Whereas if you are observing that noise, are attentive to that noise, then you will see that your organism is never hurt.

If you understand this one radical principle, you will have understood something immense: that where there is an observer separating himself from the thing he observes, there must be conflict. Do what you will, as long as there is a division between the observer and the observed, there must be conflict. As long as there is division between the Muslim and the Hindu, between the Catholic and the Protestant, between the Black and the White, there must be conflict; you may tolerate each other, which is an intellectual covering of intolerance.

As long as there is division between you and your wife, there must be conflict. This division exists fundamentally, basically, as long as there is the observer separate from the thing observed. As long as I say, ‘Anger is different from me, I must control anger, I must change, I must control my thoughts’, in that there is division, therefore there is conflict. Conflict implies suppression, conformity, imitation, all that is involved in it. If you really see the beauty of this, that the observer is the observed, that the two are not separate, then you can observe the totality of consciousness without analysis. Then you see the whole content of it instantly.