YOU ARE THE WORLD
CHAPTER 4 - 3RD FEBRUARY 1969
1ST PUBLIC TALK AT UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA BERKELEY
So we must be concerned first with understanding what the problem is, not what to do; that will come later.
Most of us want to do something, we want to commit ourselves to a particular course of action and unfortunately that leads to more chaos, more confusion, more brutality. We must, I think, look at the problem as a whole, not at a particular part of that problem, not at a segment or a fragment of it, but at the whole problem of living, which includes going to the office, the family, love, sex, conflict, ambition and the understanding of what death is; and also if there is something called God, or truth, or whatever name one might give it. We must understand the totality of this problem. That is going to be our difficulty, because we are so used to act and react to a given problem and not to see that all human problems are interrelated. So it seems that to bring about a complete psychological revolution is far more important than an economic or social revolution - upsetting a particular establishment, either in this country or in France, or in India - because the problems are much deeper, much more profound than merely becoming an activist, or joining a particular group, or withdrawing into a monastery to meditate, learning Zen or Yoga.
Before you ask the speaker questions, first let us look at the problem. This is not something that you come to listen to for an hour or so and then forget about. We are concerned with human problems. You and I have to work very hard this evening. You are not here merely to gather a few ideas with which you agree, or disagree, or to try to find out what the speaker has to say. You will find that he has to say very little, because both of us are going to examine the problems, not taking any decision, but understanding the problems; and that very understanding will bring about its own action. So please - if I may suggest - listen, neither agreeing nor disagreeing, not coming to any conclusion. Listen without any prejudice, without preconceived ideas, because for centuries we have played this kind of game with words, with ideas, with ideologies and they have led nowhere - we still suffer, we are still in turmoil, we are still seeking a bliss that is not pleasure.
As we said, we are concerned with the whole problem of living, not one particular part or portion of it. So first let us see what our problems are, not how to solve them, not what to do about them, because the moment we under- stand what the problem is, that very understanding brings about its own action; I think that is very important to realize. Most of us look at problems with a conclusion, with an assumption; we are not free to look, we are not free to observe what actually is. When we are free to look, to explore what the problem is, then out of that observation, that exploration, there comes understanding. And that understanding itself is action, not a conclusion leading to action. We will go into it and perhaps we will understand each other as we go along.
You know, wherever one goes in the world, human beings are more or less the same. Their manners, behaviour and outward pattern of action may differ, but psychologically, inwardly, their problems are the same. Man throughout the world is confused, that is the first thing one observes. Uncertain, insecure, he is groping, searching, asking, looking for a way out of this chaos. So he goes to teachers, to yogis, to gurus, to philosophers; he is looking everywhere for an answer and probably that is why most of you are here, because we want to find a way out of this trap in which we are caught, without realizing that we, as human beings, have made this trap - it is of our own making and nobody else's. The society in which we live is the result of our psychological state. The society is ourselves, the world is ourselves, the world is not different from us. What we are we have made the world because we are confused, we are ambitious, we are greedy, seeking power, position, prestige. We are aggressive, brutal, competitive, and we build a society which is equally competitive, brutal and violent. It seems to me that our responsibility is to understand ourselves first, because we are the world. This is not an egotistic, limited point of view, as you will see when you begin to go into these problems.
What is the problem when we observe the actual world around us and in us? Is it an economic problem, a racial problem, Black against White, the Communists against the Capitalists, one religion opposed to another religion - is that the problem? Or is the problem much deeper, more profound, a psychological problem? Surely it is not merely an outward, but much more an inward problem.
As we said, man by nature is aggressive, brutal, competitive, dominating; you can see this in yourself if you observe yourself. And if I may suggest, what we are going to talk over together this evening and during the next three evenings, is not a series of ideas to which you listen. What the speaker has to say is a psychological fact which you can observe in yourself. So if you will, use the speaker to observe yourself. Use the speaker as a mirror in which you see yourself without any distortion and thereby learn what you actually are.
So what is important is to learn about yourself, not according to any specialist, but to learn by actually observing yourself. And there you will find that you are the world: the hatreds, the nationalist, the religious separatist, the man who believes in certain things and disbelieves in others, the man who is afraid and so on. By observing the problem we are going to learn about ourselves. What is the problem that confronts each one of us? Is it a separate, particular problem, an economic or a racial problem, or the problem of some particular fear or neurosis, of believing or disbelieving in God, or of belonging to a particular sect - religious, political or otherwise? Do you look at the problem of living as a whole, or take a particular problem and give all your life to it, all your energy and thought? Do we take life as a whole? Life includes our conditioning brought about by economic pressures, by religious beliefs and dogmas, by national divisions, by racial prejudices. Life is this fear, this anxiety, this uncertainty, this torture, this travail. Life also includes love, pleasure, sex, death, and the question which man has been asking everlastingly, which is: Is there a reality, a something "beyond the hills", something which can be found through meditation? Man has always been asking this question and we cannot merely brush it aside as having no validity because we are only concerned with living from day to day; we want to know if there is an eternal thing, a timeless reality. All this is the problem, there is not one particular problem. When you observe this, you will find that all problems are interrelated. If you understand one problem completely, then you have understood all the problems.
As human beings, looking at this map of life, one of our major problems is fear. Not a particular fear, but fear: fear of living, fear of dying, fear of not being able to fulfil, of failure, fear of being dominated, suppressed, fear of insecurity, of death, of loneliness, fear of not being loved. Where there is fear, there is aggression. When one is afraid one becomes very active, not only to escape from fear but that fear brings about an aggressive activity. You can observe this in yourself if you care to. Fear is one of the major problems in life. How is it to be solved? Can man be free of fear forever, not only at the conscious level but also at the hidden, secret levels of his mind? Is that fear to be resolved through analysis? Is that fear to be wiped away by escaping? So this is the question: How is a mind that is afraid of living, afraid of the past, of the present, of the future, how is such a mind to be completely free of fear? Will it be free of it gradually, bit by bit - will it take time? And if you take time - many days, many years - you will get old and fear will still continue.
So how is the mind to be free of fear, not only of physical fear, but also of the structure of fear in the psyche, of psychological fears? You understand my question? Is fear to be dissolved completely, freed instantly, or is fear to be gradually understood and resolved little by little? That is the first question. Can the mind, which has been conditioned to think that it can gradually resolve fear, by taking time, through analysis, through introspective observation, gradually become free of fear? That is the traditional way. It is like those people who, being violent, have the ideology of non-violence. They say, "We will gradually come to a state of non-violence when the mind will not be violent at all". That will take time, perhaps ten years, perhaps a whole lifetime, and in the meantime you are violent, you are sowing the seeds of violence. So there must be a way - please do listen to this - there must be a way to completely end violence immediately; not through time, not through analysis, otherwise we are doomed as human beings to be violent for the rest of our lives. In the same way, can fear be ended completely? Can the mind be freed wholly from fear? Not at the end of one's life but now?
I do not know if you have ever asked such a question of yourself. And if you have, probably you have said, "It cannot be done" or "I don't know how to do it". And so you live with fear, you live with violence and you cultivate either courage or resistance or suppression or escape, or pursue an ideology of non-violence. All ideologies are stupid because when you are pursuing an ideology, an ideal, you are escaping from "what is", and when you are escaping you cannot possibly understand "what is". So the first thing in understanding fear is not to escape, and that is one of the most difficult things. Not trying to escape through analysis, which takes time, or through drink, or by going to church, or various other kinds of activities. It is the same whether the escape is through drink, through a drug, through sex or through God. So can one cease to escape? That is the first problem in understanding what fear is and in dissolving it and being free from it entirely.
You know, for most of us freedom is something we don't want. We want to be free from a particular thing, from the immediate pressures or from immediate demands, but freedom is something entirely different; freedom is not licentiousness, doing what you like - freedom demands tremendous discipline, not the discipline of the soldier, not the discipline of suppression, of conformity. The word "discipline" means,to learn; the root meaning of that word is "to learn". And to learn about something - it doesn't matter what - demands discipline, the very learning is discipline; not, you discipline yourself first, and then learn. The very act of learning is discipline, which brings about freedom from all suppression, from all imitation. So can you be free of fear, from which springs violence, from which spring all these divisions, religious and national, such as "my family" and "your family"?
Fear, when one knows it, is a dreadful thing. It makes everything go dark, there is no clarity, and a mind that is afraid cannot see what life is, what the real problems are. So the first thing, it seems to me, is to ask ourselves whether one can actually be free of fear, both physically and inwardly. When you meet a physical danger you react, and that is intelligence; it is not fear, otherwise you would destroy yourself. But when there are psychological fears - fear of tomorrow, fear of what one has done, fear of the present - intelligence does not operate. If one goes into it psychologically, inwardly, one will find for oneself that our whole social structure is based on the pleasure principle, because most of us are seeking pleasure and where there is the pursuit of pleasure there is also fear. Fear goes with pleasure. This is fairly obvious if you examine it.
How is the mind to be free of fear so completely that it sees everything very clearly? We are going to find out whether the mind is capable of freeing itself from fear altogether. You understand the question? We have accepted fear and lived with it, as we have accepted violence and war as the way of life. We have had thousands and thousands of wars and we are everlastingly talking about peace; but the way we live our daily life is war, a battlefield, a conflict. And we accept that as being inevitable. We have never asked ourselves whether we can live a life of complete peace, which means without conflict of any kind. Conflict exists because there is contradiction in ourselves. That is fairly simple. In ourselves there are different contradictory desires, opposing demands, and this brings conflict. We have accepted all these things as inevitable, as part of our existence; we have never questioned them.
One must be free of all belief, which means of all fear, to find out if there is such a thing as reality, a timeless state. To find that out there must be freedom - freedom from fear, freedom from greed, envy, ambition, competition, brutality; only then is the mind clear, without any complication, without any conflict. It is only such a mind that is still and it is only the still mind that can find out if there is such a thing as the eternal, the nameless. But you cannot come to that stillness through any practice, through any discipline. stillness comes only when there is freedom - freedom all this anxiety, fear, brutality, violence, jealousy. So can ind be free - not eventually, not in ten or fifty years, immediately?
I wonder, if you ask that question of yourself, what your answer will be? Whether you will say that it is possible, or not? If you say it is impossible, then you have blocked yourself, then you can't proceed further; and if you say it is possible, that also has its danger. You can only examine the possible if you know what is the impossible - right? We are asking ourselves a tremendous question, which is: "Can the mind, which throughout centuries has been conditioned politically, economically, by the climate, by the church, by various influences, can such a mind change immediately?" Or must it have time, endless days of analysis, of probing, exploring, searching? It is one of our conditioning's that we accept time, an interval in which a revolution, a mutation, can take place. We need to change completely, that is the greatest revolution - not throwing bombs and killing each other. The greatest revolution is whether the mind can transform itself immediately and be entirely different tomorrow. Perhaps you will say such a thing is not possible. If you actually face the question without any escape and have come to that point when you say it is impossible, then you will find out what is possible; but you cannot put that question "What is possible?" without understanding what is impossible. Are we meeting each other?
So we are asking whether a mind that is afraid, that has been conditioned to be violent, to be aggressive, can transform itself immediately. And you can only ask that question (please follow this a little) when you understand the impossibility and the futility of analysis. Analysis implies the analyser, the one who analyses, whether it be a professional analyst or yourself analysing yourself. When you analyse yourself there are several things involved. First, whether the analyser is different from the thing he analyses. Is he different? Obviously, when you observe, the analyser is the analysed. There is no difference between the analyser and the thing he is going to analyse. We miss that point, therefore we begin to analyse. I say "I am angry, I am jealous" and I begin to analyse why I am jealous, what are the causes of this jealousy, anger, brutality; but the analyser is part of the thing he is analysing. The observer is the observed and as one sees that, sees the futility of it, one will never analyse again. It is very important to understand this, to really see the truth of this - not verbally: verbal understanding is not understanding at all, it is like hearing a lot of words and saying, "Yes, I understand the words". To actually see that the analyser, the observer, is the observed, is a tremendous fact, a tremendous reality; in that there is no division between the, analyser and the thing analysed and therefore no conflict. Conflict exists only when the analyser is different from the thing he analyses; in that division there is conflict. Are you following this? Perhaps you will ask questions afterwards.
Our life is a conflict, a battlefield, but a mind that is free has no conflict and to be free of conflict is to observe the fact 48 of the observer, the analyser, the thinker. There is fear and the observer says "I am afraid" - please do follow this a little bit, you will see the beauty of it - so there is a division between the observer and the thing observed. Then the observer acts and says, "I must be different", "Fear must come to an end", he seeks the cause of the fear and so on; but the observer is the observed, the analyser is the analysed. When he realizes that non-verbally, the fact of fear undergoes a complete change.
Sirs, look, it is not mysterious. You are afraid, you are violent, you dominate, or you are dominated. Let's take something much simpler. You are jealous, envious. Is the observer different from that feeling which he calls jealousy? If he is different, then he can act upon jealousy and that action becomes a conflict. If the entity that feels jealousy is the same as jealousy, then what can he do? I am jealous; as long as jealousy is different from "me" I am in a state of conflict, but if jealousy is me, not different from me, then what am I to do? I don't accept it, I say "I am jealous". That is a fact. I don't evade it, I don't run away from it, I don't try to suppress it. Whatever I do is still a form of jealousy. Therefore what happens? Inaction is total action. Inaction with regard to jealousy on the part of the observer as the observed, is the cessation of jealousy. Are you getting this? Are we communicating with each other?
Krishnamurti: Go easy, don't say "Yes". It is quite difficult. (Laughter) Because if you really understand this you are free of jealousy, you will never again be jealous. That is why it is very important to understand the whole of this conflict, this struggle that is going on inwardly, which expresses itself outwardly as violence. So can the mind be completely free of envy, which is jealousy? It can be free only when there is 49 the realization that the observation is the observed and therefore there is no division. You understand? Look, Sirs, there is conflict in what we call relationship, between persons, between neighbours and so on. All relationship as it is now, is conflict - right? I think that is fairly obvious. Our relationships between each other, between human beings throughout the world, are based on an image which we have built about ourselves or about another. The husband builds an image about the wife and the wife builds an image about the husband - the image of pleasure, pain, insult, nagging, domination, jealousy, irritability, whatever it is. Gradually through many years an image has been built about the wife, or about the husband. The two images have relationship. Relationship means actual contact. To be related means to be in touch with something and you cannot be related to another if you have an image about him - obviously. So is it possible to live without an image and yet be related? Relationship brings con- flict because we are not related; our relationship is between the images. Is it possible for a mind to be free of all image-making? You understand the question?
I'll show you how it is possible. Don't accept it verbally but do it, then you will see what relationship actually means. It is the most extraordinary thing to be related. Then there is no pain, no conflict. What is the machinery that builds these images, about the President, or your wife, or your neighbour, or about God, or whatever it is? What is the structure and nature of this image which we have about ourselves or another? If I were married - which I am not - I would build an image about my wife, what she has said, what she has done, the pleasures she has given me sexually or otherwise, the fears, the domination, the nagging, all that. Gradually, day after day, I have built an image about her and she has built an image about me. This is a fact, not a supposition, and now I am asking myself whether I can be free of these of these images. You can only be free of the image when whatever is said - whether in anger, or in jealousy, in irritation, in flattery, or as an insult - you are completely aware at the moment of it being said, so that when you are flattered or insulted you see the truth of it and you are free of it. Which means that the mind must be completely attentive, so that it does not retain the particular experience of pleasure or pain which builds the image; that is, to be attentive at the moment when the wife or the husband says something pleasant or unpleasant. That attention, that choiceless awareness, gives freedom to look, to see the truth or the falseness of what is being said" then the mind no longer records it as memory. I do not know if you have ever tried it - probably you have not. The mind becomes extraordinarily active, alert, sensitive; then relationship, which is really one of the major problems of life, has quite a different meaning. Then relationship is the beauty of love without the image. However much one may say "I love you", love is not there. Love is something entirely different, love is not pleasure, love is not desire. To understand love one must understand pleasure and pleasure goes with fear, with pain - you cannot have one without the other.
So those are our problems. Those are the problems of every human being whether he lives in an affluent or primi- tive society. Man is suffering, man is in travail, and our problem, our question, is: whether the mind can transform itself completely, totally and thereby bring about a deep, psychological revolution - which is the only revolution. Such a revolution can bring about a different society, a different relationship, a different way of living.
Would you like to ask any questions? You know it is one of the most difficult things to ask questions. We have got a thousand questions we must ask, we must doubt everything. We mustn't obey or accept anything; we must find out for ourselves, we must see the truth for ourselves and not through another. And to see that truth one must be completely free. One must ask the right question to find the right answer, because if you ask the wrong questions you will inevitably receive wrong answers. So to ask the right question is one of the most difficult things - which doesn't mean the speaker is preventing you from asking questions. You must ask a question deeply, with great seriousness, because life is dreadfully serious. To ask such a question means that you have already explored your mind, already gone into yourself very deeply. So only the intelligent, self-knowing mind can ask the right question and in the very asking of it is the answering of it. Please don't laugh. This is most serious, because you always look to another to tell you what to do. We always want to light our lamp in the light of another. We are never a light to ourselves: to be a light to ourselves we must be free of all tradition, all authority, including that of the speaker, so that our own minds can look and observe and learn. To learn is one of the most difficult things. So to ask a question is fairly easy, but to ask the right question and to receive the right answer is something quite different.
Now, Sir, what is the question? (Laughter)
Questioner: I came here tonight with a prepared question, which I gave up in the course of your talk because I began to see some of what you are getting at. I was going to ask you about Gandhi. I was going to ask your opinion, but now I have another question. Krishnamurti: What, Sir?
Questioner: It may seem hard to some of the audience...
Krishnamurti: Ask anything you like, Sir.
Questioner: When the equipment wasn't working properly and the people at the back couldn't hear, it seemed to me that a man of your experience would have known what to do in those circumstances. One wondered, were you feeling some residual fear yourself?
Krishnamurti: He is asking, when the loudspeakers didn't function was I afraid? Why should I be afraid? It was a fault of the machinery and why should I be concerned about myself? I am afraid there was no fear. (Laughter) You see, Sir, the gentleman asked, "Would you offer an opinion about Gandhi?", or about X Y Z. Only fools offer opinions. Why should one have an opinion about another? It is such a waste of time and energy. Why should one clutter up one's brain, one's mind, with opinions, judgments, conclusions? They prevent clarity and that clarity is denied when the mind observes with a conclusion.
Questioner: Our mind is clean, our mind is not involved in thought when it is perceiving only. It feels inside what is going on, it feels fear, or not, in another person, inside the person, without thinking what he is doing, what's going on.
Krishnamurti: The questioner is saying - if I understand it rightly - "What is the mind, what is this mind that understands?" Is it thought that understands? Is that the question, Sir?
Krishnamurti: We'll explore it, you will see it. When one says that one understands something, what is the state of the mind that says "I understand"? The word "understanding" can be used in two different ways. Either I understand verbally what you are saying, that is I hear the words and I understand the meaning of the words, because you and I both speak English, use certain words which have a certain meaning and we say we understand those words. When understanding actually takes place - which is action in which there is feeling - there is attention, everything is involved when you say "I understood something very clearly". What is that state of mind that says "I have understood"?
Questioner: Total awareness.
Krishnamurti: Now go into it a little bit more, Sirs. Doesn't awareness, doesn't understanding take place when the mind is not drawing a conclusion, has no opinion, when the mind is attentively listening, and then it says "I have understood"? We are asking what is the state of that mind which says "I have understood" and therefore acts immediately. Surely such a state of mind is complete silence in which there is no opinion, in which there is no judgment, no evaluation. It is actually listening out of silence. And it is only then that we understand something in which thought is not involved at all. We won't now go into what thought is and the whole process of thinking; that will need a lot of time and this is not the occasion. When we talk about understanding, surely it takes place only when the mind listens completely - the mind being your heart, your nerves, your ears - when you give your whole attention to it. I do not know if you have ever noticed that when you give total attention there is complete silence. And in that attention there is no frontier, there is no centre, as the "me" who is aware or attentive. That attention, that silence, is a state of meditation. We can't go into what is implied by that word and how to come upon it, but we will go into it if we have time during the coming evenings.
when you are listening to somebody, completely, attentively, then you are listening not only to the words, but also the feeling of what is being conveyed to the whole of it not part of it.
Questioner: I find certain very serious contradictions in what you have said. I think that to begin with you said that only fools give opinions, that it is stupid. Krishnamurti: The gentleman says that I am giving opinions, evaluations, which contradict what I am saying. Have I given an opinion, a conclusion, a judgment? I have only said: look at the facts. It is not my fact or your fact, but the fact that man is violent. That's not an opinion, that's a fact. Man is a frightened animal, that's a fact. Man is jealous, man lives in conflict, his life is a battlefield and so on. These are not opinions, not judgments, this is actually what is going on inwardly in each one of us. How you translate it, what you do about it and whether you bring to it certain prejudices and conclusions, that is offering opinions. But we are only concerned with facts.
Questioner: I have a question here which I must ask. What is the basis of learning, which you say is difficult? You find yourself engaged in a specific task which is difficult. What is the basis for an action if you dispense with will and faith. How do you endure?
Krishnamurti: I think I have understood. The questioner says, "What is learning?" Is learning different from action? Right, Sir?
Questioner: No. The question is: Why do you choose life or death! It is a matter of life and death if you engage in this activity. Where do you find in yourself the reservoir of strength to do a specific task which allows you to stay alive?
Krishnamurti: I understand. Where do you find the energy - I am putting it differently - where do you find the energy to live rightly? Right?
Questioner: Yes. You don't will a thing, it comes by itself, if you do it with an undivided self.
Krishnamurti: That's right.
Krishnamurti: I understand, Sir. That's just it. How do you live without will - right? - without contradiction, with- out the opposites? How do you live without conflict at all and at the same time act?
Questioner: Yes. You can choose to die.
Krishnamurti: You can't choose to die, you have to live but...
Questioner: The question is how!
Krishnamurti: Wait, Sir. The questioner says, "What is the method, what is the system I can learn which will help me to live without contradiction, to live actively, in a state of constant learning?" Is that the question?
First of all, what do we mean by learning? I am not offering an opinion, I am looking at the fact. Is learning a process of accumulation of knowledge? From that knowledge I act; that is, I have stored up experiences, memories, and from that I act. Or is learning a constant process without accumulation and therefore learning is acting? Go slowly. We'll go into it. It is not that I first learn and then act according to what I have learnt, but learning is acting; the learning is not separate from acting. One is going to learn about fear, or about what 56 to do, how to live. But if you have a system that tells you how to live, or a method that says, "Live this way", then you are conforming to the method which is established by somebody else. Therefore you are not learning, you are conforming and acting according to a pattern, which is not action at all, it is just imitation. So if you learn what are the implications of methods, or of systems, then you will put away methods and systems; then you are learning about what you are doing and the very learning about life is the activity of life - right? Have I made it clear? Living, learning and acting are not three separate things, they are indivisible.
Questioner: I did not get the point why it is detrimental for oneself to analyse; it's a difficult point.
Krishnamurti: Aren't you tired after an hour and a half? Questioner: Not at all.
Krishnamurti: Not at all? Why not? (Laughter) Wait a minute, Sir. Why not? If you had been listening attentively - I am not criticizing you - you"d be tired, wouldn't you?
Questioner: I don't think so.
Krishnamurti: Sir, the speaker has been working and to keep up with him you have to work too. It is not "he speaks" and "you listen" but we are taking the journey together, learning about ourselves, about the world, about what is happening in relationship with the world. And to learn about all this, obviously your mind must be tired after a long day's work and sitting here. You must be tired! But it doesn't matter, I'll go into this question and after that we'll stop.
The speaker said, that in the process of analysis several things are implied - time, for one thing. Obviously, to analyse implies spending day after day doing it. Secondly the analyser must analyse very, very carefully, otherwise he will go wrong. In order to analyse correctly he must be free from prejudice, from conclusions, from fear. If in the process any distortion takes place, that analysis will only create further limitations. And we also explained that the analyser is not different from the thing he analyses. When you understand all this, not just one part of it - the time, the process of analysis, the decisions, the conclusions which will prevent you from proceeding further with a clear analysis, and seeing that the analyser is the analysed - when you see the totality of this you will never analyse again. When you don't analyse, then you see things directly because the problem becomes intense, urgent. It's like a man who has an ideology of nonviolence and is therefore concerned with how to become nonviolent, but not how to be free, now, from all violence. We are concerned with freedom from violence now, not tomorrow.
When one observes this whole process of analysis - which has become the fashion - and sees what is implied in it, not only verbally but deeply, then one rejects it. When you deny something false you are free to look; then you see what truth is. But you must first deny what is false.