Krishnamurti with Pupul Jayakar 6
This second conversation between Krishnamurti and Pupul Jayakar from 1982 was recorded at Brockwood Park. They ask: Is it possible to keep the mind very young, and yet ancient? What is consciousness? Is it possible to completely end the whole content of my consciousness, of human consciousness, which has grown through millennia? Can the brain ever be free from its own bondage? Is it possible to look at life as a whole, without fragmentation?
Pupul Jayakar, was a trustee of Krishnamurti Foundation India, and for decades was a friend of Krishnamurti’s. She helped publish many of his books in India, along with writing a biography which was published soon after his death. Her other books include The Earth Mother, The Buddha, and God is Not a Full-Stop.
Pupul Jayakar: Sir, I was wondering whether one could discuss the wonder and nature of birth in the human mind, not birth as having a baby, but a mind that is jaded, old, incapable of perception, can it renew itself, or totally have a new perception? I think that is a problem with many of us. As one grows older one finds that the quickness of the mind, the capacity to perceive, and take in deeply, perhaps dims.
Krishnamurti: Are you asking, is it possible to keep the mind very young, and yet ancient?
PJ: Yes. You used the word ‘ancient’, I also would like to go into the nature of what is meant by the word ‘ancient’. If we could go into the nature of that first because you have used it, and I have heard you use it several times. Obviously it is not… that ancient quality is unrelated to time as yesterday.
K: Yes, let’s go into it.
PJ: What is the nature of the ancient?
K: After all, human brain, as far as one understands, and if you have listened to some… on television, the scientists talking about the quality of the brain and the brain works and so on, it has its own protective nature, protective chemical reaction when there is a shock, when there is a pain and so on. We are after all, or our brains are very, very ancient, very, very old. It has evolved from the ape, the human… the ape standing up, and so on till now. It has evolved through time through tremendous experiences, acquired a great deal of knowledge, both the outward knowledge as well as inward knowledge, and so it is really very, very, very, ancient. And it is not as far as I can understand, as far as I can see, it is not a personal brain, it is not my brain and your brain. It can’t be.
PJ: But obviously your brain and my brain have a different quality of the ancient in them.
K: Wait. Don’t let’s talk of mine or yours for the moment.
PJ: By making a statement…
K: I am just exploring the beginning, laying a few bricks. If that is granted, that we are very old, very ancient, in that sense, and that our brains are not individualistic brains, we may have reduced it, we may think it is individual – it is personal, it is my brain – but it can’t have evolved through time as my brain.
PJ: No, obviously.
K: I mean absurd to think that. No, it may be obvious but most of us think it is a personal brain, it is my brain. Therefore from that is born the whole individualistic concept. Leave that for the moment.
Now are we saying such an ancient mind – brain or mind, for the moment leave the mind alone, let’s look at the brain – such an ancient brain, which has been so conditioned, and has lost, or it may be very, very deeply embedded in the unconscious, in the deep down, that it is becoming very, very coarse, superficial, artificial and vulgar. You follow what I mean?
PJ: But an ancient mind, as you just now said, is the result of evolution in time.
K: In time, of course. Evolution means time.
PJ: In time. Now the search which has gone on for centuries…
K: Since the beginning of time man must have asked.
PJ: …has been whether it is possible to free this of that, because with time also is inbuilt with this ageing quality, is built in with the sense of the ancient.
K: Yes. I understand that question.
PJ: So are you talking – when you say it is necessary to have an ancient mind – are you talking of a brain which has also inbuilt in it…
K: …the quality of its own deterioration. Of course.
PJ: Why is that necessary? It is so.
K: No, it is so because experience, knowledge has limited it, has conditioned it, has narrowed it down. Right? The more we acquire knowledge, the more there is the limitation of itself.
PJ: No, you seem to be implying two things. One is the sense of the ancient, and the weight of the past, which gives it a sense of being very old.
K: It is old.
PJ: Because it has experienced for millions of years…
K: Which has conditioned it, which has narrowed it down – limited.
PJ: But the ancient you are talking about, are you talking about that which it has experienced through time?
K: We will go into that for the moment. First let us see how ancient it is in the normal sense of that word. And how it has in its own million years of experience has limited itself. Therefore there is the quality of its deterioration. And the modern world, living in the modern world, with all the noise, with all the terrible shocks, and the agonies of war and so on, has made it still more limited, more in conflict. Because the very limitation brings its own conflict.
PJ: Sir, there is a mind, which because the sense of these million years, gives to it a density and weight.
K: Yes, yes, quite.
PJ: Then there is a mind which is brittle.
K: Which is?
PJ: Brittle, which is easily corroded.
K: No, the mind and the brain, let’s for the moment – which are you talking about?
PJ: I am talking of the brain.
K: Brain, don’t use the word ‘mind’.
PJ: All right, I’ll use the word ‘brain’. The brain has a certain weight to it, and a density to it, which…
K: Yes, a coarseness to it, a heaviness to it – quite.
PJ: A heaviness to it. Now is that what you mean by the ancient?
PJ: Is that what you mean by the ancient?
K: Not quite. I just want to go into it a little bit slowly. If we admit that the brain is, by its own evolution, has conditioned itself, and therefore it has the inherent quality of its own destruction, and whether that quality can ever be stopped, in the sense of its deterioration, can the brain cells renew themselves in spite of its conditioning? Do you follow what I am saying? In spite of its agonies, failures, miseries, all the complex modern world in which we live, whether that brain can renew itself so as to achieve its originality, not originality in the sense of individuality, but originality in its origin.
PJ: Would you say that a baby, the brain cells of the baby are original in that sense?
K: No. Of course not. Of course not.
PJ: So what is meant by an original… originality of the brain cells?
K: Let’s go into it a little bit. What is – the word ‘original’, what does it mean? Unique, special.
PJ: No, it has a quality of ‘for the first time’.
K: Pristine quality.
K: Original means that. Untouched, uncontaminated by knowledge.
K: Can it – that’s the question – can such a brain which has been conditioned for a million, or two million years, reach that, or wipe away its conditioning and reach that quality of the pristine freshness of the brain? I don’t know, it may be a wrong question altogether.
PJ: But it is, I think scientifically they would say that the brain cells are dying all the time.
K: All the time.
PJ: Therefore the number of brain cells available…
K: And also are renewing itself. Apparently certain cells die and certain cells are reborn. It is not dying all the time so that the brain goes to pieces, dies.
PJ: No, but the very fact of ageing is that the renewal does not keep pace.
K: Yes, that’s it. Yes. That’s the whole point, isn’t it, really – is it possible for a brain that has been conditioned, and therefore, as you put it, the built-in quality of its own deterioration, can that quality stop, end, disappear?
K: That is, can the brain keep young, young in the sense fresh, alive, has a quality of its originality.
PJ: Yes. How would you…
K: …proceed from that. I think we have to go into the question, what is consciousness? Right? Because that’s part of our brain, part of our whole being, which is our consciousness. Right? What is consciousness? Not only being conscious of things, outwardly and inwardly, but the whole content of consciousness. Because without the content there is no consciousness, as we know it. So can the content, which makes up this consciousness, can that content end by itself so that there is a totally different dimension to consciousness? You follow? Because the brain or the mind has this quality of consciousness. Right? That is consciousness. The content is the consciousness.
PJ: Yes, that is so.
K: That is so. The content is pleasure, belief, excitement, sensation, reactions, faith, agony, pleasure, suffering, affection, and so on, it’s the whole of that, is consciousness. And as long as the content, which is all this, exists, it must, because of its conflict, its confusion within consciousness, must wear itself out. And that’s why the brain becomes old – in the sense old, ageing, dies. There is no freshness to it.
PJ: Now, sir, is the content of consciousness identical with the brain cells?
K: Yes. Of course.
PJ: Then as the content of consciousness, because of its very nature wears itself out…
K: …through conflict. No, no – be careful.
PJ: Yes, I understand that. That very process is wearing out the brain cells.
K: Is conflict – the disturbance, the shocks, the pressures, the…
PJ: So the physical and the psychological are really the same thing really there.
K: Yes. And psychological, that’s right. Physical reactions, psychological reactions, they are both reactions.
PJ: Because the brain is physical. The content of consciousness is psychological.
K: Which is also a process of the physical. Of course.
K: So it is psychological as well as the physical, with all their reactions bring about the thought of pain, the thought of agony, the thought of pleasure, the thought of achievement, ambition and so on, so on, and belief, faith, is all this.
PJ: Which creates disturbance and… But the nature of the brain cells is to continually die.
K: Yes. They carry on. The tradition carries on.
PJ: It is inbuilt, that also is inbuilt.
K: Of course.
K: And also its own protection, its own reaction, chemical reactions, from what one hears, the cells with their reactions, they produce their own chemicals to protect itself.
PJ: But so is time inbuilt.
K: Of course, after all that is the product of time.
PJ: Time is inbuilt in the brain cells.
K: Now the question really is whether all this consciousness with its content can end, in the sense conflict totally end.
PJ: But with conflict totally ending will time end?
K: Yes. After all that is what the sannyasis, the monks, the real thoughtful people have enquired whether time has a stop. Right? Of course, they have all asked this question.
PJ: Yes but you are talking of time now as the psychological process of conflict.
K: Conflict, yes.
PJ: Not time as duration, or the watch, or…
K: No, no, no. So what is it that we are trying to find out, or rather investigate together?
PJ: What is it that will bring this quality of birth into the mind?
K: Quality of birth in the sense… No, let’s be clear what you mean by ‘birth’. A new, a fresh element enter into it.
PJ: Continual – I won’t use the word ‘continual’.
K: No, you can’t.
PJ: Let me cut out ‘continual’. But a being born and with the freshness of birth, and purity of birth…
K: No, wait a minute – careful. ‘Birth’ you mean what – a baby is born, and his brain already has the quality of its father, mother, and also the tradition, it is gradually – bring all that out.
PJ: But ‘birth’ also has that quality of the new. Birth is, it was not, and it is.
K: Ah, you are using ‘birth’ in the sense – just let me clear – the old being born. The ancient mind, the ancient brain, which is neither yours nor mine, it is the universal brain, is reborn in a baby.
PJ: It is reborn in a baby.
K: And the baby as it matures, the brain is the common brain.
PJ: But what is reborn in a mind which is free? Is it the ancient reborn?
K: No, let’s be clear, Pupulji. First, is it possible to be free of this conditioning of the brain, which has brought about its own decay, and whether that consciousness can totally end all its conflict. Then out of that comes the new birth. I don’t know if you follow what I am saying. As long as my brain – sorry, my hay fever – as long as one’s brain, that is one’s consciousness, is in conflict, there can be no new element enter into it. That’s obvious. Would you grant that? Not verbally, but see the fact, that as long as I am fighting, fighting, fighting, struggling to become something.
PJ: I think one sees that.
K: All right. Now if one sees that, not merely verbally, but actually inwardly sees it, then the question arises whether it is possible to end it – end what I mean, end suffering, end fear.
PJ: You see, Krishnaji, the danger comes in that you can end it without renewal. Please listen. There is a possibility of ending all these things and yet diminishing.
K: Ah, no, we mean two different things by the word ‘ending’.
PJ: Ending what?
K: Ending that which is.
PJ: Ending that which is.
K: Which is my consciousness – all the thoughts that I have had, all the complexities that have been accumulated through time, the ending of that. So we will have to be clear what we mean by ending. Either you end it by deliberate act of will, or deliberate ideal, purpose, by a superior goal.
PJ: You see, Krishnaji, when actually ending happens, which is this coming to a stop, the real standing still of the mind, it happens without any reason.
K: Yes. Sometimes, sometimes – let’s go slowly.
PJ: Sometimes it happens without reason. It is not due to any single thing.
PJ: So is it that you throw yourself to chance?
K: No, no, no. Let’s be clear first, Pupulji, what do we mean by ‘ending’. Is the ending – does the ending create its own opposite?
PJ: No because…
K: Careful, let me… We generally mean that. I end this in order to get that.
PJ: No, I am not talking of that ending.
K: So I mean by ending, the total perception of that which is, total perception of my consciousness, the whole, the complete perception of that consciousness which is insight, that insight has not a motive, a remembrance, it is immediate perception, and the ending of it is… there is something beyond which is not touched by thought. That is what I mean by ending.
PJ: Is it that the million years which you call the ancient…
K: No, that’s part of the ancient brain, naturally.
PJ: No. Is it that the totality of that million years sees itself?
K: Yes, that’s all. That is the real problem.
Pupul, let’s make it a little more simple, or a little more definite. We do say, don’t we, see the point, that our consciousness has been cultivated through time? Right?
PJ: Yes, that’s easy.
K: Just a minute. And any reaction to the ending of that is furthering another series of reactions. Which is, if I desire to end it, then that very desire creates another object to be gained.
K: So is there a possibility of perceiving without the movement of the future? You understand what I am saying? The ending has no future, only ending. But if the brain says, I cannot end that way because I need a future to survive. I don’t know if I am conveying it.
PJ: Yes, because inbuilt in it is the future.
K: Yes, of course. So is there an ending, the psychological demand, conflicts, ending of all that, ending without the thought of what will happen if I end? I don’t know if I am conveying anything. Because, look, I can give up something if you guarantee me something else. I will give up suffering if you will guarantee me that I will be happy with the ending of it. Or there is some extraordinary reward awaiting for me. Because my whole brain is constructed – as part of that consciousness is reward and punishment. Punishment is the ending, and the reward is the gaining. Now as long as these two elements exist in the brain, the future, the continuation of the present will go on, modified and so on. Right? So can these two principles, reward and punishment, end? When suffering ends the brain is not seeking a future existence in paradise.
PJ: But even if it is not seeking a future in paradise, suffering itself corrodes the brain. Suffering itself corrodes the brain.
K: Yes. But you see, Pupulji, this is very important to understand that the brain is seeking constantly security, it must have security. That’s why tradition, remembrance, the past has extraordinary significance. Right? It needs security. The baby needs security. Our brains need security – security being food, clothes and shelter. Security is faith in god, faith in some ideal, faith in a future better society – all these are contributory causes which makes the brain say, I must have deep security otherwise I can’t function. Right? So physically there is no security, because it is going to die, it knows it is going to die. Psychologically it has no security, actually. Am I going too fast?
PJ: No, it is not that. With all this…
K: Part of my consciousness.
PJ: …I still say that there is one central demand.
K: Which is to survive.
PJ: No, sir.
K: What is the central demand?
PJ: The central demand is to have a mind… to have a brain which gives the flavour of a new existence.
K: Ah, now – wait, wait, who demands it? Just a minute. Who actually wants such a brain? Not the vast majority of people. No. They say, please stay things as they are.
PJ: No but we are not talking about the vast majority. I am discussing with you, or ‘X’ is discussing with you.
K: Let’s be clear.
PJ: So it is basically that – there are many ways of getting security. There are many ways of getting security.
K: I question – no – I question whether there is security in the sense we want security.
PJ: So the brain will never understand…
K: Oh yes it will.
PJ: The brain will never understand because inbuilt in its very…
K: No, but that’s why I am saying perception is important.
PJ: Perception of what?
K: Perception of actually what is, first. Move from there slowly, slowly.
PJ: Perception of ‘what is’ includes the creative things it has done, the stupid things it has done, what it considers worthwhile, what it considers not worthwhile, so the perception of all these and the ending of all this.
K: No, no, just a minute, careful, Pupul, let’s go slowly, if you don’t mind. Perception of what is actually going on. Right? Both physically, outwardly, and inwardly. What is going on around me and psychologically, inwardly what is happening. That is ‘what is’.
K: Now, the question is: can ‘what is’ be transformed? Right? Which is my consciousness, which is part of the brain.
PJ: But in the emptying of that consciousness, an emptying of that consciousness…
K: No, by you asking that question, is that possible? You understand? Is it possible to empty, or to wipe away the whole of the past? The past is the time, the whole of my past, whole of the content of my consciousness is the past, which may project the future, but it still has it roots in the past. Right? Now is it possible to empty these things? Really this is a tremendous question, not just an ideological or intellectual question. Is it psychologically possible not to have the burden of a thousand yesterdays? The ending of that is the beginning of the new, is the new.
PJ: You used a phrase just now: is it possible not to have the burden of a thousand yesterdays. Is the problem in the burden, or in the thousand yesterdays?
K: The thousand yesterdays is the burden. You can’t separate the two.
PJ: No, no, no.
K: How do you separate the two?
PJ: Because the thousand yesterdays is a fact.
K: Is a fact. Oh, you mean in that sense. But I am talking of…
PJ: The burden is when I have given a special content to many of these experiences which I have had, but the thousand yesterdays are…
K: Just a minute. Would there be a thousand yesterdays if there was no remembrance of those thousand years of sorrow, or whatever it is, can I separate – I can separate by the calendar.
PJ: Yes you can, sir. You can separate a thousand yesterdays from the burden of the thousand yesterdays.
K: Show me how. Let’s be clear first what we mean. When we say a thousand yesterdays, by the encyclopaedia, or by a book, or by a calendar, I can say Egypt was four thousand…
PJ: No, but let us take one’s own life.
K: Yes, one’s own life, which is forty, fifty or eighty, ninety, or whatever it is, or twenty.
PJ: Now you can separate the thousand yesterdays of one’s own life from the pain, sorrow, burdens, all that which is the burden of the thousand yesterdays.
PJ: So you can cut away the…
PJ: The pain and the sorrow and the…
K: Can you?
PJ: Why not?
K: Cut away – what do you mean ‘cut away’?
PJ: Perceive. You just now said it. Perceive what is.
K: But it is not a cutting away in the sense – you see cutting away implies two parts.
PJ: You see this is where the difficulty comes in. Can I cut away the fact of my thirty years, fifty, sixty years? No, I can’t do that. My body is sixty-five years old.
K: Of course. I never said that. I can’t commit suicide. I have lived eighty-seven years – am I eighty-seven, yes, or eighty-eight, what am I, eighty-seven – I have lived for eighty-seven years, of course it exists, but I am talking about the remembrances – that. Of course I am talking about that. I am saying a thousand yesterdays exist.
PJ: They can be cut away. You can divide.
K: Ah, I can’t divide. My body has not existed for a thousand yesterdays. I mean thousand yesterdays in the sense…
PJ: You are talking of the ancient mind of man.
K: I can’t cut it away. This whole brain, and all the material processes of the organism is part of that.
PJ: Then what do I do with the ancient mind? With the ancient mind, not – you see, sir, one has understood what one has to do with the superficial yesterdays, with the burden of the superficial yesterdays.
K: Do you know what that means? Have I really wiped, or ended a thousand yesterdays, with all its superficialities, its pettiness, its narrowness, its brutalities, cruelty, its ambition and so on, which are all superficial – can I wipe all that away, can that all end? I can say, I can cut away – but who is the knife, which is the knife, which is the entity that is cutting it? It is part of that.
PJ: No, but I am not cutting away one thing.
K: I am cutting away the whole thing.
PJ: If I were to discriminate and say, “I will cut away this, and not this”.
K: No, that is too silly.
PJ: But when I say I am cutting away, I am cutting away the whole burden.
K: Now wait a minute, Pupulji, I understand. Don’t say, if I may say, “I” cutting away.
PJ: I am not cutting away.
K: Let’s be clear on that.
PJ: Let’s cut, remove the ‘I’.
K: You see I do object – if you don’t mind, cutting away doesn’t mean – you see when you cut something there are two parts.
PJ: Yes, what I am trying to get at is – you see this is where a lot of confusion takes place.
K: I know, verbal confusion takes place – semantic.
PJ: You cannot cut away the eighty-seven years, or the sixty-five years, sixty-six years.
K: Of course not. You are not eighty-seven!
PJ: I am sixty-six. But you can cut away – cut – that word is wrong.
K: Don’t use that word.
PJ: You were using the word, seeing of ‘what is’.
K: The ending of ‘what is’, that is totally different.
PJ: Why do you want to draw a distinction between the ending of ‘what is’ and cutting away?
K: Ending, to me, means there is no continuation of something that has been.
PJ: What is in cutting away?
K: Cutting away implies – you know, when I cut a piece of wood there are two parts of the same thing.
PJ: Well I think it is a semantic thing.
K: Semantic. But I am asking: is it first of all possible to completely end the whole content of my consciousness, of human consciousness which has grown through millennia. And that content is all this confusion, vulgarity, coarseness, and pettiness, and triviality of a stupid life.
PJ: But it is also the goodness.
K: Oh yes, that’s all included. Now wait a minute, I must be very… Goodness is something entirely different. Goodness has no opposite. Goodness is not the outcome of that which is not good. The ending of that which is not good is goodness. That’s a different matter.
Now is it possible to end all this conflict? If there is no ending to conflict – conflict can be modified…
PJ: No, sir. There is an ending to conflict.
K: Why do you say that?
PJ: There is an ending to conflict.
K: Is there? Or a forgetfulness of that which has caused conflict, or really end it, so that…
PJ: Do you mean to say, sir, the very fact of ending of conflict is the birth of the new?
K: Yes. You understand the implications of conflict, the depth of it, not the superficiality that I am no longer British, or French, or I don’t belong to this country, or to that country, or that religion, or that race. Those are all very superficial things. I am talking of the deep embedded…
PJ: You are talking of conflict as separation from another, the sense of separateness.
K: Separateness. That is the real thing. Isolation. Which inevitably breeds conflict. Is that possible? What does it mean? So the brain is completely… there is no conflict. Now wait a minute. Problems may arise – you follow? – but those problems are dealt with immediately – ended. Problem means conflict.
PJ: Why should problems arise?
K: The word, the common usage according to the dictionary, a problem is something thrown at you, which is a challenge. Problem means that. Something you have to face. We resolve the problem intellectually, or physically and so on and so on, which is still creating further problems. Like the politicians, what they are doing. You conquer, and the results of that conquering is some other factors which brings you another series of problems. You keep this problem going all the time.
I am saying there is no problem. Physically or psychologically there is no problem; if I can’t live at Brockwood for a few months, all right, I won’t live at Brockwood, if nobody feeds me, all right – you follow? There is no problem. If a new thing arises, either my brain is incapable of solving it and therefore it becomes a problem…
PJ: You mean to say, sir…
K: That’s the whole point of it.
PJ: …for the birth of the new…
K: That’s it, you are getting it. Must be. And therefore the birth of the new is the most ancient. You follow?
PJ: Can we go into that a little? Would you say a little about it?
K: After all that is the ground beyond which there is no other ground. That is the origin beyond which there is no other origin. (Pause)
You see, Pupulji, this is really a problem – not a problem – this is really a question whether the brain can ever be free from its own bondage. After all, ending something is not total freedom. Right? I can end, say for example, my hurts – if I have hurts – I can end it very simply. But the images that I have created about myself, those images get hurt, and the maker of the images is the problem. Right? So it leads more and more to something else, which is: to live a life without a single image, and therefore there is no hurt and no fear, and if there is no fear there is no sense of safety, god, comfort and all the rest of it.
Would you say the most ancient, of which very few may – no I won’t even say that – which is the origin of all life. It must be ancient of ancient, beyond all thought of old or new. That is the origin of all life. When the mind, which includes the brain, when that mind reaches that point of that ground which is totally original, new, uncontaminated – is that possible? Meditation has been one of the means to reach it. Silencing the mind has been the way that one hopes will help, will bring about that coming to it. You see we are all making efforts to come to it. That’s what I am saying. It requires no effort. The very word ‘effort’ means conflict. You see that which has no conflict cannot be approached through conflict. Of course not.
PJ: In this sense, does it really mean that there is no partial approach at all in your teaching?
K: Impossible. How can there be? If I approach it through various parts, which the Hindus have said – Karma Yoga and all the rest of it, it is just partial. You can’t approach it.
That is the real problem.
PJ: What do you do? You are an ordinary human being.
K: No, you can’t do anything. First of all, you can’t do anything. You can only do physical activities. Psychologically you cannot do anything.
PJ: What do you mean physical activities?
K: Creating a garden, building houses, technological, blah blah blah.
PJ: But the physical is going on. Physical is going on.
K: It is going on.
PJ: So what does one do?
K: But if there is no psychological fears there will be no division of countries and so on, so on – there would be no division. You follow?
PJ: Yes, but the fact is that there is psychological fear.
K: That’s just it. Therefore you will never get, a brain which has lived in psychological isolation, which means conflict, can never possibly come to that ground. That ground which is the origin of all life. Obviously not. How can my petty mind, worrying about my beastly little self come to it?
PJ: That is more futile, sir, then the whole of life’s more futile if after doing everything you haven’t taken the first step. Then where are you?
K: What is the first step? Just a minute, go into it, what is the first step?
PJ: I would say the first step is seeing whatever is.
K: Seeing ‘what is’. Wait a minute. How do you see it, how do you approach it? On that depends the totality of ‘what is’, or only you see the partial of ‘what is’. If you see the totality of ‘what is’ – finished.
PJ: See, it doesn’t just work like that.
K: Of course not. Because our minds, our thoughts are fragmented, therefore I approach the life, or ‘what is’ actually with my fragmented mind, fragmented brain which has broken up…
PJ: And, again I’ll say with time, the fragmented gets less. Don’t jump on me. But it is so.
K: I know what you are going to say. Simple.
PJ: With time the fragmented gets less. And it is possible to listen to you, for the mind to be still, not to make any movements, not to make any effort, but that is still not the first step.
K: No. When you say, please, you used the words, the first step to observe, or to perceive ‘what is’. Right? That’s what you said. If I perceive it partially, then you know, that leads to further complications. Right? Partial perception creates partial problems. Right? Now is it possible to see the whole complex of ‘what is’? To see the whole and not the fragment. That means – wait a minute – that means I have to see if I lead a life fragmented, a life of fragmentation. That is where I would begin. Because if I approach life, which is my consciousness, which is the way of thought, feeling, actions and all that, if I approach it fragmentarily then I am lost. That’s what is happening in the world. They are totally lost. Those people who govern us, those people who tell us what is right or wrong, all the rest of it. Is it possible to look at life as a whole without fragmentation? Pupul that is the…
PJ: Why doesn’t the ancient mind see this?
K: It can’t, won’t. How can total complete order…
PJ: But you said that ancient…
K: Just a minute, that is the ancient, the original ground is the most ancient.
PJ: No, that is there.
K: No, no.
PJ: What do you mean, no?
K: Unless – it is there as an idea, which is what all people have maintained. God is there. That is just an idea, a concept, a projection of our own desire to be comfortable, to be happy, to be – all the rest of it.
Can I live a life, can a human being live a life in which there is no fragmentary action? (Pause)
If somebody says, “Where am I to begin?” I would say begin there. Find out for yourself if you lead a fragmentary life. You know what a fragmentary life is – saying one thing and doing another, the whole fragmented way of living, which is isolation, and therefore I have no relationship with my wife, or with the rest of humanity. So begin there. You know what that means, what tremendous enquiry you have to make to find out?
PJ: What is enquiry?
K: Observation. To observe very clearly without any bias, without any direction, without any motive, how my life is fragmented. Just to observe it. Not say, I am fragmented, therefore I must be whole. The idea of becoming whole is another fragmentation. So, the implications of observing the way of fragmentation. Which means thought itself is a fragment. Right? And that is the cause of fragmentation. I am becoming something different from you.
PJ: So the birth of the new…
K: …is not possible unless you have this. Obviously.
We had better stop.
Krishnamurti at Brockwood Park, 23 June 1982