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Jiddhu Krishnamurti (1895 - 1986)

Questioner (1): You have covered enough ground, couldn't we consolidate? I am not quite sure in myself about the relation between thought and fear; could we discuss this some more?

Questioner (2): When thought meets the unknown, it doesn't know what to do. Now if you have thought without time, if there is no time, then there is no fear.

Krishnamurti: Would you like to talk about that?

Audience: Yes.

Krishnamurti: What is time? I had to be here this morning in spite of the bad weather at half past ten and I was. If I did not come on time, I would keep you all waiting. There is time by the watch - yesterday, today and tomorrow. There is time to cover a certain distance - between here and the moon, to go from here to Montreux, and so on. There is also time to cover the distance between the image of myself - or the image I have projected of myself - and what "I should be", and the distance between what "I am" and what "I should like to be", between fear and the ending of fear. We must understand this.

Questioner: Can you give practical examples as you go along?

Krishnamurti: I am not good at giving practical examples. What I am saying is fairly simple. I am not a philosopher, I don't spin theories.

So there is time as yesterday, today and tomorrow; and there is time - at least we think there is time - between what I am and what I should be, between the fact of fear and the eventual ending of fear. Both are time, aren't they? - chronological time, and time as invented by thought. "I am this" and "I should change to that" and to cover that distance between what I am and what I should be I need time. That also is time. It will take me many days, or many weeks, to do certain exercises properly, to loosen up my muscles - to do that I need time; I shall take perhaps three days, or a week: that's time.

So when we talk about time, let us be clear what we are talking about. There is chronological time, as yesterday, today and tomorrow; and there is the time which we think is necessary to achieve an ending to fear. Time is part of fear, isn't it? I am afraid of the future - not of what might happen in the future but of the idea of the future, the idea of tomorrow. So there is psychological time and chronological time. We are not talking about chronological time, time by the watch. What we are talking about is, "I am all right now, but I am afraid of the fu ture, of tomorrow." Let's call that psychological time.

Now I am asking, is there such a thing as psychological time at all, or is it merely an invention of thought? "I shall meet you tomorrow, under a tree, near the bridge" - that is chronological time. "I am afr aid of tomorrow and I don't know how to meet that fear of tomorrow" - that is psychological time, isn't it?

Questioner: How about if I say, " Why must this beautiful thing come to an end?"

Krishnamurti: That is also psychological time, isn't it? I feel a particular relationship to something beautiful and I don't want it to end. There is the idea that it might come to an end and I won't like it to end, and I am afraid of it. So that's one part of the structure of fear.

The other is, I have known security, certainty, and tomorrow is uncertain and I am afraid of that - that is psychological

time, isn't it? I have lived a life of quasi-security, but tomorrow is dreadfully uncertain and I am frightened of it. Then arises my problem: how am I not to be afraid? All that is involved, surely, is it not, in psychological time? The knowledge of yesterday, of many thousand yesterdays, has given to the brain a certain sense of security, knowledge being experience, remembrance, memories. In the past there has been security for the brain; tomorrow there may be no security at all, I might be killed.

Knowledge as time gives to the brain a sense of security. So knowledge is of time. But I have no knowledge of tomorrow, therefore I am afr aid. If I had knowledge of tomorrow I would not be afr aid. So knowledge breeds fear, and yet I must have knowledge. You are following? I must have knowledge to go from here to the station, I must have knowledge to speak English, or French, or whatever it is; I must have knowledge to carry out any kind of function. I have accumulated knowledge about myself as the experiencer, and yet that experiencer is frightened of tomorrow because he does not know tomorrow.

Questioner: What about repetition?

Krishnamurti: It is the same thing, it is mechanical. After all, knowledge is repetitive. I add to it or take away from it, but it's a machinery of accumulation.

Questioner: What about the people who have terrible tragedies, who have seen people slaughtered and tortured?

Krishnamurti: What has that got to do with what we are talking about?

Questioner: Well, you see, they remain with that fear.

Krishnamurti: We are talking about the relationship between thought and fear.

Questioner: But even so, people have been telling me how their fear remains in them and they can't get rid of it because for them man is a beast.

Krishnamurti: It is the same problem, surely. That is, I have been hurt, by a snake or by a human being. That hurt has left a deep mark on my brain and I am afraid of snakes or of human beings - which is the past. Also I am afraid of tomorrow. It is the same problem, isn't it? - only one is in the past, the other is in the future.

Questioner: It's only difficult when you say, "Knowledge ofyesterday

has given security." Some people find the knowledge ofyesterday has given them insecurity. Krishnamurti: Knowledge gives security and it also gives insecurity, doesn't it? I have been hurt by human beings in the past - that's knowledge. That remains deeply rooted and I loathe human beings, I am frightened of them.

Questioner: One isn't speaking of psychological knowledge but of physical torture.

Krishnamurti: Yes, physical torture which is again in the past.

Questioner: But you know that in the present people go on doing it.

Krishnamurti: You are mixing up two facts. We are talking about fear and its relationship to thought. There are physical tortures going on in the world, people are extraordinarily brutal and I like to think about it and get terribly excjted. I feel morally righteous about it and I can't do anything, can I? Sitting in this tent I can't do anything about what is happening in another place. But I like to get neurotically excited about it, and to say, "It's terrible what human beings are doing." No? What can I actually do? Join a group that is going to stop this torture of human beings? Make a demonstration in front of somebody? - and yet the torture will go on. What I am concerned with is how to change the human mind so that it will not torture human beings physically or psychologically in any way. But if I am neurotic I like to keep on thinking, "How terrible this world is."

Now let's come back. I am afraid of what human beings have done to me, or to another human being, and that knowledge is a scar in the brain. That is, knowledge of the past not only gives certainty but also uncertainty, that I may be hurt tomorrow, therefore I am afraid. Now why does the brain retain the memory of that hurt of yesterday? In order to protect itself from future hurts? Let's think it out. That means, I am always facing the world with that hurt and therefore I have no relationship with another human bring, because the hurt is so deep. And I resist every human relationship because I might get hurt again. Therefore there is fear. Knowledge of the past hurt brings fear of fu ture hurt. So knowledge brings fear - yet I must have knowledge.

Knowledge has been accumulated through time. Scientific,

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technological knowledge, knowledge of a language and so on need time. Knowledge, which is the product of time, must exist, otherwise I can't do anything, I can't communicate with you. But also I see that knowledge of a past hurt says, "Be careful not to be hurt in the future." So I am afraid of the future.

So how am I, who have been scarred very deeply, how am I to be free of that and not project that knowledge into the future, saying, "I am afraid of the future." There are two problems involved, aren't there? There is the scar of pain,

Can the mind be free of that scar? Now let's examine that.

I am sure most of us have some kind of psychological scars. Haven't you? - of course. We are not talking about the physical scars which affect the brain - we can leave that aside for the moment. There are the psychological scars of hurt. How is the mind, the brain, to be fr ee of them? Must it be free of them? Is not the memory of being hurt a protection against the future? Verbally, in many ways you have hurt me; there is a memory of it. If I forget that, I come innocently to you next morning and you hurt me again. So what am I to do? Think it out, Sirs, go on.

Questioner: Isn't it important for me to find out why I am psychologically capable of being hurt?

Krishnamurti: It is fairly simple. We are very sensitive, there are a dozen reasons. I have an image about myself and I don't want you to hurt that image. I think I am a great man, you come along and put a pin into it and it hurts me. Or I feel terribly inferior and I meet you, who feel extraordinarily superior, and I get hurt. You are clever, I am not - I get hurt. You are beautiful, I am not. The knowledge of being hurt, not only physically but psychologically, inwardly, has left a mark on the brain as memory. Memory is knowledge. Why should I be free of that knowledge? If I am free, you are going to hurt me again. Therefore that knowledge acts as a resistance, as a wall. And what happens in relationship between human beings when there is this wall between you and me?

Questioner: We can't meet. Krishnamurti: Exactly. So what do we do? Go on Sir, pursue it!

Questioner: Take away the wall.

Krishnamurti: But you are going to hurt me.

Questioner: It's only the image that is hurt.

Krishnamurti: No, Sir. Look, I come to you quite innocently. The root meaning of that word "innocent" is that you cannot be hurt. So I come to you open, friendly, and you say something to me which hurts me. Doesn't this happen to all of you? And what takes place? That leaves a mark - that's knowledge. What is wrong with that knowledge? That knowledge acts as a wall between you and me. Of course! Therefore what shall I do?

Questioner: You've got to break through.

Krishnamurti: First look at it, don't say, "Break through" - just look at it. You've hurt me and the knowledge of that remains. If I have no knowledge of it, you will hurt me again; and if I have that knowledge strengthened, it acts as a wall between you and me. Therefore between you and me there is no relationship. So knowledge of the past prevents a relationship between you and me. What shall I do?

Questioner: Examine it.

Krishnamurti: I have examined it, I have taken ten minutes in the examination of it and I see that examination, that analysis is totally useless.

Questioner: Is this where time comes in?

Krishnamurti: I have taken ten minutes - analysis implied ten minutes - and that ten minutes is a waste.

Questioner: If there were no time...

Krishnamurti: I have used time. Don't say there is no time.

Questioner: But if there were no time.

Krishnamurti: I don't know, that's a supposition. I have

ten minutes to see why I am hurt, to examine the hurt, to see the necessity of keeping that hurt as knowledge. I have asked myself: if I remove that hurt, won't you hurt me again? And I see, as long as that hurt remains, there is no relationship between you and me. All that has taken more than a quarter of an hour. And I see I have achieved nothing at the end of it. So I have found analysis has no value at all. What shall I do, having been hurt and remembering that hurt prevents all relationship?

Questioner: We have to accept being hurt.

Krishnamurti: No, I'm neither accepting nor rejecting, I'm looking. I don't accept or reject anything. My question then is, "Why am I hurt?" What is this thing that is being hurt?

Questioner: The knowledge of being afool in fact.

Krishnamurti: Sir, say something that's actual, don't imagine and then verbalize. First find out what it is that is being hurt. When I say I am hurt because you call me a fool, what is it that is being hurt?

Questioner: Your pride. The knowledge of being a fool is there.

Krishnamurti: No, Madam, it is not only that, please look at it, it is much deeper than that. I am hurt because you called me a fool. Why should I be hurt?

Questioner: Because of the image I have of myself.

Krishnamurti: Which means I have an image of myself as not being a fool. And when you call me a fool, or a blackguard, or a whatever it is, I get hurt because of my image. Why do I have an image about myself? As long as I have an image about myself I'm going to be hurt.

Questioner: Why do I have to care about the image that the other has of me, whatever that be?

Krishnamurti: The other has an image of me as a fool, or he has the image of me as a great intellect - it's the same thing, you follow? Now why do I have an image about myself?

Questioner: Because I don't like what I am. Krishnamurti: No, first why do you have it? Because you don't like yourself as you are? What are you? Have you looked at yourself without an image? Let's be simple. I have an image about you as being very clever, bright, intelligent, awake, enlightened - a tremendous image. And comparing myself with you I am dull. Measuring myself against you I find I am inferior - obviously. That makes me feel I am very dull, very stupid, and from that feeling of inferiority, of stupidity, I have many other problems. Now why do I compare myself with you at all? Is it that we have been brought up from childhood to compare? In schools we compare, through the giving of marks, through examinations. The mother says, "Be as bright as your elder brother." There is this terrible comparison going on all the time throughout life. And if I don't compare, where am I? Am I dull? I don't know. I have called myself dull in comparing myself with you, who are not dull, but if I don't compare, what happens?

Questioner: I become myself.

Krishnamurti: What is yourself"? Just see the cycle we go through, repeating these things over and over again without understanding them. So I come back to this: why do I have to have an image about myself - good, bad, noble, ignoble, ugly or dull. Why do I have an image about anything?

Questioner: It's a means of conscious acting. A man who is conscious and aware must automatically become involved in comparison.

Krishnamurti: Sir, I am asking: why do I compare? Comparison implies not only conflict but imitation, doesn't it?

Questioner: But surely it is necessary to evaluate.

Krishnamurti: Watch it please - comparison implies conflict and imitation, doesn't it? That's one side of it. In comparing myself with you I feel I am dull, therefore I must struggle to be as clever as you are. There is conflict and I then imitate what you are. That's implied in comparison: conflict and imitation. But also I see I must compare between this cloth and that cloth, this house and that house, measure whether you are tall or short, measure the distance between here and another place. You follow? But why do I have an image about myself? Because if I have an image about myself it's going to be hurt.

Questioner: Perhaps this image doesn't exist at all.

Krishnamurti: That's right, go on, investigate it. Why do I have an image about myself as something or nothing?

Questioner: I want to be secure, that depends on how secure the image is.

Krishnamurti: You are saying that you are seeking security in an image. Is that it? That image has been put toget thought. So you find security in the image which thought has built, and in that image thought is seeking security. Thought has created an image because it wants security in that image, so thought is seeking security in itself. Which is: thought is seeking security in the image which it has built, and that image is the product of thought; thought is memory, which is the past. So thought has built this image about itself? No?

Questioner: Sir, may I ask what to do with education? Because even parents start to compare their own children and say, "This child is cleverer."

Krishnamurti: I know. Parents are the most dangerous human beings! (Laughter) They destroy their children, because they are uneducated.

So the image is built by thought and thought is seeking security; so thought has invented an image in which it finds security, but it is still thought and thought is the response of memory, of yesterday. What has happened? Knowledge of yesterday has created this image. How am I not to be hurt? Not being hurt implies not having any kind of image - obviously. Now, how am I to prevent images? - images of the future, of which I am going to be frightened. Thought is time, thought is fear of the image of tomorrow in which there is no certainty. How is the mind, or the brain, not to have images at all and yet not be hurt? The moment it is hurt, it ixx to have an image. And being hurt, it protects itself with another image.

So my question is: apart from the physical aspect, where it has to protect itself against danger, polluted air, wars, etc., where protection is necessary - can the brain not be hurt at all? Which means, not to have any kind of image. Not to be hurt implies having no resistance. Having no resistance means having no image. Not to be hurt means vitality, energy, and that energy is dissipated when I have images. That energy is dissipated when I compare myself with you, compare my image with your image. That energy is dissipated in conflict, in trying to become your image, which I have projected for myself. That energy is wasted when I am imitating the image which I have projected about you. So the dissipation of energy is this factor. And when I am energetic, which can only take place when there is attention, I am not hurt. I don't know whether you are following all this? Let's understand it differently.

One observes that one is hurt. One is hurt because basically one has an image about oneself. That image has been built through the various forms of culture, education, civilization, tradition, nationality, economic conditions and social injustice.

That image is the past and therefore knowledge. Thought - whether it is my thought or the collective thought - has imprinted on the brain this sense of comparing an image with another image. The mother, the schoolteacher, the politician does it, as well as the mythology of the Christians; the whole civilization is based on building this image. And there it is, in the brain, which is thought. Now one discovers, one understands, that as long as one has an image, there must be hurt.

Questioner: The image is the hurt, isn't it?

Krishnamurti: So can the brain be free of all images and therefore never be hurt? That means to be fr ee of the knowledge of the past as image. Knowledge of the past is essential to speak a language; but as long as there is knowledge as an image, put together by thought, which is the "me" - which is the greatest image - and as long as I have the greatest image in "me", you have a perfect right to put pins into it. And you do!

So can the brain never be hurt? Sirs, to find this out for yourselves and live a life in which the brain is never hurt! Then only can you have relationship. But if in the relationship you are hurting me and I am hurting you, it comes to an end. And if in that relationship between you and me there is hurt and that relationship comes to an end, then I go to find another relationship - divorce you and join somebody else. And again there is going to be hurt. We think by changing a relationship we are going to be completely invulnerable. But all the time we are being hurt.

Questioner: If the images are gone, between what is the relationship? Relationship means a relevant word, and if the images are gone, what is the relationship between man and wife?

Krishnamurti: Why are you asking me? Find out if your image has gone, not because you want to ask me a question which I should answer. Find out if the images, which you have, have gone; then you will find out what your relationship is with another. But if I say, "It is love", it is just a theory. Throw it out, that has no meaning. But if you said: "I know I am hurt, all my life I have been hurt." Don't you know this? - a series of inward tears, a series of anxieties. These images exist!

Our question is: can the brain nevcr be hurt at all? And that you have to apply yourself to, not just talk about it. Go after it, say, "Have I got an image?" Obviously you have, otherwise you and I wouldn't be sitting here. And if you have an image, examine it, go into it and see the futility of analysis, because that prevents you from action. Whereas if you say now,"I move with the image", to move with the image means xxe thought that is building this; and thought is knowledge. So can the brain be full of knowledge in one direction and have no knowledge in the other? That mcans complete silence. You understand, Sir? To be completely silent, and out of that silence to use knowledge. You won't see this.

Questioner: What place is there for established relationship? Is there such a thing?

Krishnamurti: Go to the Registrar and get married. That establishes legally a relationship, and what goes on, my God! And what goes on also not legally! So it's your torture.

To come back, what is the relationship of thought to fear? We said, thought springs from knowledge of the past, knowledge is the past. In that knowledge thought has found security: I know my house, I know you, I am this, I am conditioned or not conditioned. I have asserted what I am in knowledge. But tomorrow I don't know, I am afraid of tomorrow. And also I am afraid of the knowledge which I have of the past, because I see there is also tremendous insecurity. If I live in the past, as most of us do, I am already dead and that feeling of living in the past is suffocating, and I don't know how to get rid of it and I am fr ightened of that, as I am frightened of tomorrow. So I am frightened of living and I am frightened of dying. What am I to do with the fears I have? Or is there only one fear. Apart from the physical fears and psychosomatic fears, is there only one fear, taking different forms?

Questioner: Is it thefear of nothingness, of the void?

Krishnamurti: Is it the fear of not being? The fear of not having any image: the being is the image, isn't it? Let's apply our minds and see actually whether the mind can be free of fear, both of the physical fears and the psychological fears which are much deeper, more neurotic. Let's apply ourselves, put our teeth into it, because one sees that when there is fear of any kind it is the most appalling thing. One lives in darkness, in a sense of void, disassociated, having no relationship, everything becomes ugly. Haven't you fear? - not only of the past, but also of the future; not only the fears of which one is conscious, but deep down.

Now when you look at this whole phenomenon of fear, at the various forms of fear, physical and psychological, with all their divisions, in all their varieties, when you see the whole structure of fear, what is the root of it all? Unless I discover the root of it, I shall go on manipulating the parts, modifying the parts. So I must find the root of it. What do you think is the root of all fears? - not just of one particular form of fear. Please don't answer me. Be sure for yourself, what is the root of it, discover it, unfold it, look at it.

Questioner: Sir, I would like to say that as an exercise we should hurt each other. I would like to hurt you, andyou should hurt these people; because of the conditions here - Ifeel the whole atmosphere is polite - you don't want to hurt these people.

Krishnamurti: The gentleman says, this atmosphere is polite, a bore. r don't want to hurt you and you don't want to hurt me; therefore it's a form of politeness and it doesn't amount to anything. Is that so? I don't mind your hurting me.

Questioner (1): I think relationship is not just sitting here and listening ! to you. I think if I hurt you, there would be a relationship between you and me, because then I have destrayed part of the image.

Questioner (2): That's nonsense! Is it possible for you to continue, as we have so little time?

Krishnamurti: You see, Sir, it's not a reaction, he is telling you something, he says, look: we have been through all this. We have examined the images - you having one, I having one, you hurting and I hurting, we've been through all that; it's not politeness.

Questioner: But you described images and we did not look into the images.

Krishnamurti: You were supposed to. How do you know?

Questioner: Maybe the others did.

Krishnamurti: How do you know? You see, how do I know that you have not washed away your images? It's my conceit which says you have not. Who am I to tell you whether you have, or not. It's up to you. So let's go back.

I want to find out about fear - not the parts of the various fears - but I really want to find out the root of it. Is it "not being"? - which is the "becoming", you follow? That is, "I am becoming something", "I want to be something". I have been hurt and I want to be free of hurts. All our life is this process of "becoming". Aggression is part of this becoming. And the "not becoming" is an immense fear; "not being" is a fear, isn't it? Is that the root of it?

Questioner: Sir, I try to find out the root offear. I see I can't think about the fear, so the mind becomes silent so that I can justfeel that fear; and then all Ifeel is a deep, inner tension; but I can't get beyond that point.

Krishnamurti: But why is one tense about it? I just want to find out. Why should I have any tension about it? Because if there is tension I want to go beyond it, I am so eager, so greedy! Sir, just look. We think, don't we, each one of us, in terms of becoming - becoming enlightened, breaking down the images: "You don't listen to my image", "I don't listen to your image" - you follow? This whole process is a form of "becoming" or "being". When the "being" is threatened - which is "not becoming" - there is fear. Right?

What is there to become? I can understand that I can become healthier, I can grow my hair longer, but psychologically, what is there to become? What is becoming? Changing images? Changing one image for another image? - obviously. But if I have no image at all and I see the reason for not having one logically, I also see the truth, that images prevent relationship, whether it is the hurt image, or a pleasant image - it is both, obviously. If I have a pleasant image about you, you are my friend, if I have an unpleasant image about you, you are my enemy. So not to have images at all! Work this out, apply it, not just accept it, but actually apply it. Enquire and apply and live it. Then one finds - if you do apply, do work at it - there is a mind, there is a brain, that can never be hurt, because there is nothing to be hurt.

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