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Commentaries on living
Jiddu Krishnamurti (1895 - 1986) was a renowned lecturer and author. He was an inspiring yet humble mentor.
Krishnamurti sought no followers but simply invited his listeners to join him in partnership in the spirit of inquiry.
A keynote throughout his lifelong mission to free humanity from the conditioning of the mind was: Freedom from thinking, not freedom of thinking is the goal.
Krishnamurti offered no advice and gave no answers. What did he do? He asked you to dismantle how you think, and encouraged you to re-consider.
Have you noticed, in newspapers
and magazines, the amount of space given to politics, to the sayings of
politicians and their activities? Of course, other news is given, but
political news predominates; the economic and political life has become
all-important. It is so much easier to throw oneself into social and
political activity than to understand life as a whole; to be associated with
any organized thought, with political or religious activity, offers a
respectable escape from the pettiness and drudgery of everyday life.
With a small heart you can talk of big things and of the popular leaders; you can hide your shallowness with the easy phrases of world affairs; your restless mind can happily and with popular encouragement settle down to propagate the ideology of a new or of an old religion.
Krishnamurti never sought to please people or be popular. He never advocated a stance, viewpoint, opinion or perspective. He simply questioned every one of your assumptions, beliefs and memories.
Freedom from the known
Our society reveres knowledge. Krishnamurti asked us to consider meaning, value and conditioning. Knowledge is based on the past and the past can never be an appropriate response to the immediate.
Tao Te Ching, Chuang Tzu and I Ching are the three key books that inspired taijiquan. They are poetic, vague and potentially difficult to understand.
Many of the ancient insights are foreign to our consciousness. Krishnamurti does not consider these books at all but his insights offer a way into the Taoist texts.
It is only when they can be applied to life, to reality, that they come to make sense.
If Krishnamurti proves to be too challenging initially, do not push harder. Try something else instead.
The 5 Elements of Effective Thinking by Edward B Burger & Michael Starbird is an excellent book that will encourage new ways of thinking. Once these are familiar, consider re-visiting Krishnamurti.
An invitation to awaken
Krishnamurti offers two approaches to meditation: beautiful descriptions of what he saw around him, and actual discussions with people. The discussions can be quite a challenging read at first:
• Commentaries on Living (series 1)
• Commentaries on Living (series 2)
• Commentaries on Living (series 3)
The descriptions are easily accessible by any reader.
Page created 2 March 1995
Last updated 29 April 2021