Krishnamurti Subtitles

Knowledge and the transformation of man

San Diego - 18 February 1974

Conversation with A.W. Anderson 1

0:37 Krishnamurti in Dialogue
with Dr. Allan W. Anderson
0:42 J. Krishnamurti was
born in South India
0:45 and educated in England.
0:47 For the past 40 years
0:48 he has been speaking
in the United States,
0:50 Europe, India, Australia,
and other parts of the world.
0:55 From the outset of his life's work
0:56 he repudiated all connections
0:58 with organised
religions and ideologies
1:01 and said that his only concern was
1:03 to set man absolutely
unconditionally free.
1:07 He is the author of many books,
1:09 among them The Awakening
of Intelligence,
1:12 The Urgency of Change,
1:14 Freedom From the Known,
and The Flight of the Eagle.
1:19 This is one of a series of dialogues
1:21 between Krishnamurti and
Dr. Allan W. Anderson,
1:24 who is professor of
religious studies
1:26 at San Diego State University
1:28 where he teaches Indian
and Chinese scriptures
1:30 and the oracular tradition.
1:33 Dr. Anderson, a published
poet, received his degree
1:37 from Columbia University
1:38 and the Union Theological Seminary.
1:40 He has been honoured
1:42 with the distinguished
Teaching Award
1:43 from the California
State University.
1:48 A: Mr. Krishnamurti, I was very taken
1:51 with a recent statement of yours,
1:53 in which you said that
it's the responsibility
1:57 of each human being to bring
about his own transformation,
2:04 which is not dependent
on knowledge or time.
2:08 And if it's agreeable with you
2:09 I thought it would
be a splendid thing
2:12 if we explored together
the general
2:15 area of transformation itself,
2:19 and after we have done that,
2:21 perhaps the other related areas
2:23 would begin to fall into place
2:26 and we could bring about
in conversation
2:27 a relationship among them.
2:31 K: Don't you think, sir,
2:38 considering
what's happening in the world,
2:44 in India, in Europe,
and in America,
2:49 the general degeneration
in literature, in art,
2:56 and specially
in the deep cultural sense,
3:02 in the sense - religion...
3:04 A: Yes.
3:05 K: ...there is
a traditional approach,
3:13 a mere acceptance
of authority, belief,
3:20 which is not really
the religious spirit.
3:25 Seeing all this, the confusion,
3:28 the great misery,
3:31 the sense of infinite sorrow,
3:40 any observant
and most serious people would say
3:46 that this society cannot
possibly be changed except
3:56 only when the individual,
the human being,
4:00 really transforms himself
4:05 that is, regenerates himself
4:11 And the responsibility of that
4:14 depends on the human being,
not on the mass,
4:19 or on the priests,
or on a church, or a temple,
4:22 or mosque, or whatever,
4:23 but on a human being,
4:25 who is aware of
this enormous confusion,
4:31 politically,
religiously, economically,
4:34 in every direction
there is such misery,
4:42 such unhappiness.
4:46 And when you see that,
4:49 it is a very serious thing
4:56 to ask oneself
4:58 whether a human being,
like oneself or another,
5:03 whether he can really deeply
5:06 undergo
a radical transformation.
5:10 And when that question
is put to him
5:17 and when he sees
his responsibility
5:20 in relation to the whole,
5:22 then perhaps we can discuss
5:26 what relationship
has knowledge, and time,
5:33 in the transformation of man.
5:36 A: I quite follow.
5:39 We need then
to lay some groundwork
5:41 in order to move into
the question itself.
5:44 K: Because most people
5:48 are not concerned
with the world at all.
5:51 Most people are not concerned
seriously with the events,
5:57 with the chaos, with the
mess in the world at present.
6:02 They are only concerned
very superficially:
6:05 the problem of energy, problem
of pollution, and so on,
6:11 such superficial things.
6:13 But they are really
not deeply concerned
6:16 with the human mind,
6:21 the mind that is
destroying the world.
6:25 A: Yes, I quite follow.
6:28 What you have said places
in a very cardinal way
6:32 the radical responsibility
on the individual as such,
6:36 if I've understood
you correctly. K: Yes.
6:38 A: There are no Five-Year plans
6:39 that we can expect
to help us out.
6:42 K: You see, the word
'individual' is really
6:44 not a correct word,
6:46 because individual,
as you know, sir, means
6:50 undivided,
indivisible in himself.
6:55 But human beings
are totally fragmented,
6:58 therefore
they are not individuals.
7:00 They may have a bank
account, a name, a house,
7:03 but they are not really
individuals in the sense
7:06 a total, complete, harmonious,
whole, unfragmented.
7:13 That is really what it
means to be an individual.
7:17 A: Would you say then
that to move, or make passage,
7:22 or perhaps a better word
simply would be 'change'
7:25 since we are not talking
about time,
7:27 from this fragmented state
7:31 to one of wholeness,
which could be regarded
7:36 as a change in the level
of the being of the person.
7:40 K: Yes.
A: Could we say that?
7:42 K: Yes, but you see, again,
the word 'whole' implies
7:47 not only sanity,
7:53 health, and also the word
'whole' means holy, h-o-l-y.
8:00 All that's implied in
that one word 'whole'.
8:04 And human beings
are never whole.
8:10 They are fragmented,
they are contradictory,
8:14 they are torn apart
by various desires.
8:20 So, when we talk of
an individual,
8:24 the individual
is really a human being
8:28 who is totally,
completely whole,
8:33 sane, healthy,
and therefore holy.
8:39 And to bring about
such a human being
8:44 is our responsibility :
in education,
8:48 politically,
religiously, in every way.
8:54 And therefore it is the
responsibility of the educator,
8:58 of everybody, not just
myself, my responsibility,
9:03 it is your responsibility as
well as mine, as well as his.
9:08 A: It's everyone's responsibility.
K: Absolutely,
9:11 because we have created
this awful mess in the world.
9:15 A: But the individual is the
one who must make the start.
9:19 K: A human being,
each human being.
9:22 It does not matter whether he is a
9:24 politician, or a businessman,
9:26 or just an ordinary person
like me, in the street,
9:31 it's our business
as a human being
9:34 to realise
the enormous suffering,
9:39 misery, confusion
there is in the world.
9:42 And it's our responsibility
to change all that,
9:45 not the politicians,
not the businessman,
9:48 not the scientist.
It's our responsibility.
9:52 A: When we say
'our responsibility'
9:57 and we have two uses of
the word 'individual' now.
10:00 There is the general
use of it, meaning
10:05 a quantitative measure...
10:07 K: Yes, quantitative measure.
10:08 A: ...and then this
qualitative reference
10:11 that we simply needed,
10:14 it seems to me, to
discern as a possibility.
10:19 I am reminded again of the statement
10:23 that you made that I quoted earlier,
10:26 that it is the responsibility
of each, each human person.
10:30 K: Human being, yes.
A: Right.
10:31 K: Whether he is in
India, or in England,
10:33 or in America, or wherever he is.
10:35 A: So we can't slip out of this
10:37 by saying we have created this,
10:40 therefore we must
change it. K: No, no, no.
10:43 A: We get back to, well,
10:45 if the change is
going to start at all,
10:47 it's going to be
with each. K: Yes, sir.
10:49 A: With each.
K: With each human being.
10:51 Therefore the question
arises from that :
10:58 does a human being realise
with all seriousness
11:09 his responsibility
not only to himself,
11:15 but to the whole of mankind?
11:19 A: It wouldn't appear so
from the way things go on.
11:23 K: Obviously not.
Each one is concerned
11:25 with his own petty
little selfish desires.
11:30 So responsibility implies
11:36 tremendous attention,
care, diligence,
11:41 not negligence, as
now it is going on.
11:46 A: Yes, I do follow that.
11:49 The word 'we' that we
used in relation to each
11:54 brings about the
suggestion of a relationship
11:58 which perhaps we could
pursue here a moment.
12:05 There seems to be
something indivisible
12:08 apparently between what
we refer to by each,
12:13 or the individual person,
12:16 as the usage is usually construed.
12:19 It seems to be an indivisible
relation between that
12:25 and what we call the whole,
12:27 which the individual doesn't sense.
12:29 K: Sir, as you know, I have
been all over the world
12:36 except behind the Iron Curtain
and China-Bamboo Curtain.
12:40 I have been all over,
12:42 and I have talked to and seen
12:44 dozens and thousands of people.
12:47 I have been doing this
for 50 years and more.
12:52 Human beings,
wherever they live,
12:56 are more or less the same.
12:59 They have their problems
of sorrow, problems of fear,
13:04 problems of livelihood,
13:08 problems of
personal relationship,
13:12 problems of survival,
13:16 and this enormous problem
of death,
13:20 it is a common problem to all of us.
13:22 There is no Eastern problem
and Western problem.
13:27 The West has its
particular civilisation,
13:32 and the East has its own.
13:35 And human beings
are caught in this trap.
13:40 A: Yes, I follow that.
13:42 K: They don't seem to be able
to get out of it.
13:46 They are going on and on
for millennia.
13:52 A: Therefore the question is :
how does he bring this about
13:55 as an each, as a one?
13:59 The word 'individual,' as
you have just described,
14:02 seems to me
14:04 to have a relationship to the
word 'transform' in itself,
14:09 And I would like to ask you,
14:11 whether you would agree in this.
14:16 It seems that many persons
have the notion that
14:18 to transform a thing
means to change it utterly
14:22 without any relationship
whatsoever to what it is as such.
14:28 That would seem to ignore
that we are talking about form
14:32 that undergoes a change,
which form itself still abides.
14:36 K: Yes, sir, I understand.
A: Otherwise
14:38 the change would involve
a loss, a total loss.
14:41 K: So are we asking
this question, sir :
14:44 what place has knowledge
14:49 in the regeneration of man,
14:53 in the transformation of man,
14:55 in the fundamental,
radical movement in man?
15:03 What place has knowledge
and therefore time?
15:07 Is that what you are
asking? A: Yes, yes, I am.
15:09 Because either
we accept that a change
15:14 - that is a genuine change -
15:16 means the annihilation
of what preceded it,
15:18 or we are talking about
15:20 a total transformation
of something that abides.
15:24 K: Yes. So let us look at
that word for a minute.
15:27 A: Good.
15:29 K: Revolution,
15:33 in the ordinary sense of
that word means, doesn't it,
15:38 not an evolution, gradual
evolution, it's a revolution.
15:46 A: It doesn't mean
that, right. I agree.
15:50 K: By revolution is generally meant,
15:53 if you talk to a communist,
15:55 he wants to overthrow
the government,
15:58 if you talk to a
bourgeois, he is frightened,
16:03 if you talk to an intellectual,
16:05 he has various
16:11 criticisms about revolution.
16:13 Now, revolution is either bloody...
16:18 A: Yes.
K: ...or revolution in the psyche.
16:23 A: Yes.
K: Outward or inner.
16:26 A: Outward or inner.
K: The outward is the inner.
16:31 The inner is the outward.
16:33 There is not the difference
16:34 between the outward and the inner.
16:36 They are totally
related to each other.
16:38 A: Then this goes back to
what you mentioned earlier
16:40 that there is no division,
even though intellectually
16:45 you make a distinction
between the I and the we.
16:49 K: That's right.
A: Yes, of course.
16:50 K: So, when we talk
about change,
16:55 we mean not the mere
bloody revolution,
17:02 physical revolution,
17:04 but rather the revolution
in the makeup of the mind.
17:11 A: Of each.
K: Of human beings.
17:13 A: Right.
K: The way he thinks,
17:16 the way he behaves,
the way he conducts himself,
17:19 the way he operates, he functions
- the whole of that.
17:26 Now, whether that
psychological revolution
17:33 - not evolution
in the sense 'gradualness' -
17:36 what place has knowledge
in that?
17:41 A: What place has knowledge
in something that occurs...
17:45 K: In the regeneration of man,
17:49 which is the inward revolution
which will affect the outer.
17:55 A: Yes, which is not
a gradual progress.
17:57 K: No, obviously. Gradual
process is endless.
18:01 A: Exactly.
So we are talking about
18:03 an instant qualitative change.
18:07 K: Again, when you use
the word 'instant',
18:10 it seems as though, oh,
suddenly it is to happen.
18:15 That's why
I am rather hesitant
18:17 in using the word 'instant'.
18:19 We will go into it in a minute.
18:21 First of all, sir,
let's be clear
18:23 what you and I are
talking about, if we may.
18:29 We see objectively
the appalling mess the world is in.
18:36 Right? A: Yes.
18:38 K: The misery, the confusion,
the deep sorrow of man.
18:44 A: Oh yes.
18:47 K: I can't tell you what I feel
when I go round the world.
18:54 The pettiness, the shallowness,
the emptiness of all this,
18:58 of the so-called
Western civilisation,
19:01 if I may use that word,
19:04 into which the Eastern
civilisation is being dragged.
19:10 And we are just scratching
on the surface all the time.
19:17 And we think the mere change
on the surface,
19:23 change in the structure,
is going to do
19:25 something enormous
to human beings.
19:27 On the contrary,
it has done nothing!
19:32 It polishes a little bit
here and there,
19:34 but deeply, fundamentally
it does not change man.
19:38 So, when we are discussing
19:43 we must be, I think,
fairly clear
19:46 that we mean
the change in the psyche,
19:50 in the very being
of human beings,
19:53 that is, in the very structure
and nature of his thought.
19:58 A: The change at the root.
K: At the root, yes.
20:00 A: At the root itself.
20:02 K: And therefore when
there is that change,
20:04 he will naturally bring
about a change in society.
20:08 It isn't society first,
20:12 or individual first,
20:13 it is the human change
which will transform the society.
20:18 They are not two separate things.
20:21 A: Now I must be very careful
20:23 that I understand this precisely.
20:27 I think I discern now, why,
in the statement you said,
20:32 'which is not dependent
on knowledge or time'.
20:36 Because
when this person changes,
20:39 this each human being changes,
20:43 the change that begins
in society is a change that is
20:47 in a non-temporal relationship
with the change
20:51 in each human being.
K: That's right.
20:54 After all, human beings
have created this society.
20:59 By their greed,
by their anger,
21:01 by their violence,
by their brutality,
21:04 by their pettiness,
they have created this society.
21:07 A: Precisely.
K: And they think,
21:10 by changing the structure,
21:12 you are going to change
the human being.
21:14 This has been
the communist problem,
21:15 this has been
the eternal problem,
21:19 that is, change the environment
then you change man.
21:23 They have tried that
in ten different ways
21:26 and they haven't done it,
21:27 succeeded in changing man.
21:29 On the contrary, man conquers
the environment as such.
21:35 So, if we are clear
that the outer is the inner,
21:42 the inner is the outer,
21:44 that there is not the division:
21:46 the society and the individual,
21:49 the collective and
the separate human being,
21:55 but the human being is the whole,
he is the society,
22:01 he is the separate human
individual, he is the factor
22:07 which brings about this chaos.
22:13 A: Yes, I am following
that very closely.
22:15 K: Therefore he is the world
and the world is him.
22:18 A: Yes. Therefore if he changes,
everything changes.
22:24 If he doesn't change,
nothing changes.
22:28 K: I think
this is very important,
22:30 because we don't realise,
I think,
22:34 this basic factor that
22:41 we are the world
and the world is us,
22:44 that the world is not
something separate from me
22:47 and me separate
from the world.
22:51 You are born in a culture
22:53 - Christian, or Hindu,
22:54 or whatever culture
you are born in -
22:56 you are the result
of that culture.
23:00 And that culture
has produced this world.
23:07 The materialistic world of
the West, if one can call it,
23:13 which is spreading
all over the world,
23:18 destroying their own culture,
their own traditions,
23:22 everything
is being swept aside
23:25 in the wake of
the Western culture,
23:29 and this culture has produced
this human being,
23:35 and the human being
has created this culture.
23:41 A: Exactly.
K: I mean
23:42 he has created the paintings,
the marvellous cathedrals,
23:46 the marvellous technological
things, going to the moon,
23:50 and so on, so on
- human beings have produced it.
23:53 It is the human beings
that have created
23:55 the rotten society
in which we live.
23:58 It is the immoral society
in which we live,
24:01 which human beings
have created.
24:04 A: Oh yes, there is
no doubt about that.
24:05 K: And therefore
the world is you,
24:08 you are the world,
there is no other thing.
24:13 If we accept that, if we see that,
not intellectually,
24:17 but feel it in your heart,
in your mind,
24:19 in your blood
that you are that,
24:21 then the question: is it
possible for a human being
24:28 to transform himself inwardly
and therefore outwardly?
24:34 A: I am very concerned to
see this as clearly as I can,
24:41 in terms of two texts
that come to my mind,
24:45 which we could say
possess an inner meaning,
24:50 and because of this
inner-outer thing
24:53 that we have spoken about,
24:54 in the divided approach
that is made to scripture,
25:00 there is a tremendous irony here.
25:02 I am thinking of that
- to me wonderful -
25:08 text in St. Johns gospel,
25:11 in the third chapter,
which says
25:16 - and I will try to translate
this as the Greek has it -
25:20 'The one who is doing the truth
is coming to the light'.
25:26 It isn't that
he does the truth
25:28 and then later he comes
to the light. K: Quite.
25:30 A: And it isn't that
25:32 we could say from the
pulpit, 'I will tell you
25:35 what the truth is,
if you do it,
25:37 then you will see the light'.
25:40 Because we are back again to what
you mentioned earlier:
25:43 the non-temporal relationship
between the action,
25:49 which itself is the
transformation... K: Quite.
25:53 A: ...and the marvellous
vista of understanding
25:57 which is not an 'if then' thing,
but is truly concurrent.
26:02 And the other one that
I thought of,
26:06 that I was hoping
you might agree
26:08 in its saying the same thing,
26:09 so that I understand it well
26:12 in terms
of what you have said
26:16 - and again I will try
to translate it
26:19 as literally as I can -
26:21 'God is love, and the
one abiding in love
26:29 is abiding in God and
God is abiding in him'.
26:32 K: Quite, quite.
26:34 A: I put the 'ing'
on all those words
26:37 because of the character
of the language itself.
26:43 One wouldn't want
to translate that for
26:45 pulpit reading perhaps,
26:47 but that's the real sense of it.
26:49 And this 'ing-ing' along
gives the feeling
26:52 that there is an activity here
26:55 that is not bound temporally.
K: Of course,
26:58 it isn't a static state.
27:00 It isn't something
you intellectually
27:02 accept
and leave it like that.
27:04 Then it is death,
there is nothing in it!
27:07 A: Yes.
27:09 K: That's why, you see, sir,
27:15 we have divided
the physical world
27:17 as the East and the West.
27:19 We have divided religions,
27:22 Christian religion and
Hindu, Muslim, Buddhist.
27:26 And we have divided the world
into nationalities,
27:30 the capitalist and the socialist,
27:32 the communist and the
other people, and so on.
27:35 We have divided the world
27:38 and we have divided ourselves
27:43 as Christians, non-Christians,
27:46 we have divided ourselves
into fragments
27:50 opposing each other,
27:52 so where there is a division,
there is conflict.
27:57 A: Precisely.
27:59 K: I think that is a basic law.
28:02 A: Where there is a division,
there is conflict.
28:04 But in terms of that word
28:06 it appears that people
believe to start with
28:08 that that division is there,
28:10 and they operate on
that radical belief.
28:12 K: That's why I am saying
it's so important to understand
28:16 from the beginning
in our talk, in our dialogue,
28:22 that the world
is not different from me
28:24 and that I am the world.
28:26 It may sound rather...
28:30 very simplified, simplistic,
28:33 but it has got
very deep fundamental meaning,
28:38 if you realise what it means,
28:41 not intellectually, but inwardly,
28:44 the understanding of it,
therefore there is no division.
28:50 The moment I say to myself
28:52 and I realise that I am the world
28:53 and the world is me,
I am not a Christian, nor a Hindu,
28:58 nor a Buddhist
- nothing, I am a human being.
29:02 A: I was just thinking
when you were saying that
29:07 how certain kinds of
philosophical analysis
29:11 would approach that,
29:13 and in terms of the spirit
of what you have said,
29:16 this really is almost
a cosmic joke,
29:20 because on the one hand,
as you said,
29:22 it might sound simplistic.
29:24 Some would say it is,
29:25 therefore we don't have
to pay attention to it,
29:27 others would say,
well, it's probably
29:30 so much in want of clarity
even though it's profound
29:35 that it is
some kind of mysticism.
29:38 And we are back and forth
with the division again
29:41 as soon as that happens.
K: Again, that's right.
29:42 A: So, I do follow you.
29:44 K: So, if that is clear,
29:48 that human mind
has divided the world
29:56 in order to find
its own security,
29:59 which brings about
its own insecurity.
30:05 When one is aware of that,
30:07 then one must - inwardly
as well as outwardly -
30:11 deny this division
30:15 as we and they, I and you,
30:19 the Indian and the European,
and the Communist.
30:23 You cut at the very root
of this division.
30:27 Therefore, from that
arises the question:
30:33 can the human mind,
30:36 which has been so conditioned
for millennia,
30:40 can that human mind,
30:43 which has acquired
so much knowledge
30:46 in so many directions,
30:49 can that human mind change,
30:54 bring about a regeneration
in itself,
31:02 and be free to reincarnate now?
31:12 A: Now.
K: Now.
31:13 A: Yes.
K: That is the question.
31:15 A: That is the question,
31:17 exactly, reincarnate now.
31:22 It would appear from what you
have said that one could say
31:24 that the vast amount of
represented knowledge,
31:33 an accretion of centuries,
31:36 is a discussion we have
been having with ourselves,
31:41 regardless of which culture
we are speaking about,
31:44 as a commentary on this division.
31:47 K: Absolutely.
31:48 A: And without really
grasping the division itself.
31:53 And of course since the division
is infinitely divisible...
31:56 K: Of course,
the moment you divide...
31:59 A: Exactly. Then we can have
tome after tome after tome,
32:02 libraries after libraries,
mausoleums of books without end,
32:07 because we are continually
dividing the division.
32:09 K: That's right.
A: Yes, I follow you.
32:11 K: And you see, that's why
32:17 culture is different
from civilisation.
32:21 Culture implies growth.
32:25 A: Oh yes, oh yes.
32:28 K: Now, growth in the
flowering of goodness.
32:36 A: A lovely phrase, lovely phrase.
32:39 K: That is culture, real culture,
32:43 the flowering in goodness,
you understand, sir?
32:46 And that doesn't exist.
32:50 We have civilisation:
you can travel
32:53 from India to America
in a few hours,
32:56 you have better bathrooms,
32:58 better this and better that,
and so on,
33:00 with all the complications
that it involves.
33:03 That has been
the Western culture
33:06 which is absorbing the East now.
33:08 So goodness
is the very essence of culture.
33:16 Religion is
the transformation of man.
33:21 Not all the beliefs, churches,
33:22 and the idolatry of the
Christians or the Hindus.
33:29 That's not religion.
33:31 So we come back to the point:
33:35 if one sees all this
in this world,
33:38 observes it,
not condemn it or justify it,
33:42 just to observe it,
33:43 then, from that, one asks:
33:47 man has collected such
enormous information, knowledge,
33:53 and has that knowledge
changed him into goodness?
33:58 You follow, sir?
A: Oh yes, I follow.
34:00 K: Into a culture that
34:02 will make him flower
in this beauty of goodness.
34:08 It has not. A: No, it has not.
34:11 K: Therefore it has no meaning!
34:14 A: Excursions into defining
34:17 is not going to help us.
34:19 K: You can give
explanations, definitions,
34:22 but definitions are not
the reality.
34:26 A: No, of course not.
34:27 K: The word isn't the thing.
34:29 The description isn't the
described. A: Precisely.
34:34 K: So we come back again.
A: Yes, let's do.
34:39 K: Because, personally,
I am tremendously concerned
34:45 with this question:
how to change man.
34:51 Because I go to India
every year
34:56 for three months
or five months,
34:58 and I see
what is happening there,
35:00 and I see what is happening
in Europe,
35:02 I see what is happening
in this country, in America,
35:05 and it's something I can't
tell you what shock it gives me
35:11 each time
I come to these countries.
35:13 The degeneration,
the superficiality,
35:21 the intellectual concepts
35:27 without any substance,
without any basis
35:32 or ground, in which
the beauty of goodness,
35:36 of reality, can grow.
35:40 So saying all that,
35:45 what place has knowledge
in the regeneration of man?
35:50 That is the basic question.
35:54 A: That's our point of departure.
K: Departure.
35:56 A: Good.
35:57 And the knowledge
that we have pointed to so far,
36:00 that has emerged
in our discussion,
36:03 is a knowledge which in itself
36:06 has no power to effect
this transformation.
36:10 K: No, sir, but knowledge
has a place.
36:12 A: Yes, I didn't mean that.
36:14 I mean
what is expected of this
36:17 knowledge that we pointed to,
36:19 that is accumulated
in libraries,
36:21 is an expectation
which it in itself
36:24 cannot fulfil. K: No, no.
36:29 Now we must now go back
to the word again,
36:31 the word 'knowledge',
36:32 what does it mean 'to know'?
36:36 A: Well,
I have understood the word,
36:39 in a strict sense, this way:
36:42 knowledge is the
apprehension of 'what is'
36:45 but what passes for
knowledge might not be that.
36:48 K: No.
What is generally accepted
36:50 as knowledge is experience.
36:52 A: Yes,
what is generally accepted.
36:54 K: We will begin with that,
because that's what...
36:56 A: Yes, let's begin with
what's generally accepted.
36:58 K: The experience which yields
37:03 or leaves a mark
which is knowledge.
37:08 That accumulated knowledge,
37:10 whether in the scientific world,
37:12 or in the biological world,
or in the business world,
37:16 or in the world of the mind,
the being, is the known.
37:24 The known is the past,
therefore knowledge is the past.
37:31 Knowledge
cannot be in the present.
37:34 I can use knowledge
in the present.
37:39 A: But it's funded from the past.
K: Yes.
37:41 But it has its roots in the past.
37:46 Which means... That's
very interesting,
37:49 whether this knowledge
which we have acquired
37:54 about everything... A: Yes.
37:58 K: I personally don't
read any of these books,
38:02 neither the Gita, the
Bhagavad-Gita, or the Upanishads,
38:05 none of the psychological
books, nothing.
38:08 I am not a reader.
38:10 I have observed tremendously
all my life.
38:15 Now, knowledge has its place.
38:23 A: Oh yes, yes.
K: Let's be clear on this.
38:25 A: Oh yes, in the practical order.
38:27 K: In the practical, technological.
38:30 I must know where I am
going, physically, and so on.
38:34 Now, what place has that,
38:39 which is human experience as
well as scientific knowledge,
38:43 what place has that in
changing the quality of a mind
38:48 that has become brutal,
38:52 petty, selfish, greedy,
38:56 and all the rest of that?
38:58 What place
has knowledge in that?
39:01 A: We are going back to
the statement we began with,
39:03 namely that this transformation
39:06 is not dependent on knowledge,
39:09 then the answer would have to be:
it doesn't have a place.
39:12 K: Therefore let's find out
39:17 what are the limits of knowledge.
A: Yes, yes, of course.
39:21 K: Where is the demarcation?
39:26 Freedom from the known... A: Yes.
39:31 K: ...where does that freedom
39:35 A: Good.
39:36 Yes, now I know precisely
the point at which
39:42 we are going to move from.
39:43 Where does that freedom begin,
39:46 which is not dependent
39:47 on this funded accretion
from the past. K: That's right.
39:50 So the human mind is constructed
on knowledge. A: Yes.
40:01 K: It has evolved through
millennia on this accretion,
40:07 on tradition, on knowledge.
40:11 A: Yes.
K: It is there,
40:15 and all our actions are based
on that knowledge.
40:20 A: Which by definition
must be repetitious.
40:23 K: Obviously, and it is a repetition.
40:29 So, what is
the beginning of freedom
40:43 in relation to knowledge?
40:48 May I put it this way
40:50 to make myself clear? A: Yes, yes.
41:00 K: I have experienced
something yesterday
41:04 that has left a mark.
41:07 That is knowledge,
41:09 and with that knowledge
I meet the next experience.
41:15 So the next experience is
translated in terms of the old,
41:22 and therefore that experience
is never new.
41:27 A: So in a way, if I
understand you correctly,
41:29 you are saying that
41:31 the experience
that I had yesterday,
41:34 that I recall... K: The recollection.
41:37 A: ...the recollection upon
my meeting something new,
41:42 that appears to have
some relationship to it,
41:47 I approach on the
basis of holding my
41:50 previous knowledge up
as a mirror,
41:52 in which to determine
the nature of this new thing
41:57 that I have confronted.
K: Quite, quite.
41:59 A: And this could be
a rather crazy mirror.
42:02 K: Generally it is.
42:05 So, you see, that's what
I mean. A: Yes, I follow.
42:09 K: Where is freedom
42:14 in relation to knowledge?
42:18 Or is freedom
something other than
42:21 the continuity of knowledge?
A: Must be something other.
42:25 K: Which means, if one goes
into it very, very deeply,
42:30 it means
the ending of knowledge.
42:36 A: Yes.
42:39 K: And what does that mean?
42:44 What does it mean
to end knowledge,
42:48 whereas I have lived
entirely on knowledge.
42:53 A: It means that immediately.
K: Ah, wait, wait,
42:56 see what is involved in it,
43:02 I met you yesterday,
43:04 and there is the image
of you in my mind,
43:09 and that image
meets you next day.
43:14 A: Yes.
K: The image meets you.
43:16 A: The image meets me.
43:19 K: And there are a dozen images,
43:22 or hundred images.
So the image is the knowledge.
43:27 The image is the tradition.
43:31 The image is the past.
43:35 Now can there be
freedom from that?
43:41 A: If this transformation that
you speak of is to happen,
43:45 is to come to pass,
43:46 there must be.
K: Of course. Therefore
43:50 we can state it,
but how is the mind,
43:54 which strives, acts,
functions on image,
44:01 on knowledge, on the known,
44:06 how is it to end that?
44:14 Take this very simple fact:
you insult me, or praise me,
44:19 that remains a knowledge.
44:25 With that image, with
that knowledge I meet you.
44:30 I never meet you.
44:32 The image meets you.
44:34 A: Exactly.
44:36 K: Therefore there is no relationship
between you and me.
44:41 A: Yes, because between us
this has been interposed.
44:44 K: Of course, obviously.
44:45 Therefore,
how is that image to end,
44:49 never to register,
44:52 you follow, sir? A: I can't depend
44:53 on someone else
to handle it for me.
44:54 K: Therefore what am I to do?
44:56 How is this mind,
44:59 which is registering,
recording all the time
45:03 - the function of the brain
is to record, all the time -
45:07 how is it
to be free of knowledge?
45:14 When you have done
some harm to me,
45:17 personally, or collectively,
whatever it be,
45:20 you have insulted me,
you have flattered me,
45:23 how is the brain
not to register that?
45:27 If it registers, it is already
an image, it's a memory,
45:31 and the past then
meets the present.
45:35 And therefore
there is no solution to it.
45:38 A: Exactly.
45:40 K: I was looking at that word
the other day
45:42 in a very good dictionary:
45:44 tradition.
45:47 It means, and of course
the ordinary word 'tradere'
45:49 is to give, hand over,
to give across.
45:52 But it also has another
peculiar meaning - not peculiar -
45:57 from the same word
- betrayal.
46:00 A: Oh yes, traduce.
K: Traduce.
46:04 And in discussing in India
this came out:
46:08 betrayal of the present.
46:12 If I live in tradition,
I betray the present.
46:19 A: Yes, I do see that.
46:20 K: Which is knowledge
betrays the present.
46:25 A: Which is, in fact,
a self-betrayal.
46:27 K: Yes, that's right.
A: Yes, certainly.
46:29 K: How is the mind,
46:32 which functions on knowledge,
46:37 how is the brain, which is
recording all the time...
46:42 A: Yes. K: end,
46:44 to see
the importance of recording
46:51 and not let it move
in any other direction?
46:57 That is, sir, let me to put
it this way, very simply:
47:00 you insult me, you hurt me
47:05 by word, gesture,
by an actual act,
47:10 that leaves
a mark on the brain,
47:15 which is memory. A: Yes.
47:18 K: That memory is knowledge,
47:22 that knowledge
is going to interfere
47:25 in my meeting you next time,
47:29 Now how is the brain,
and also the mind,
47:34 how is the brain to record
47:38 and not let it interfere
with the present?
47:44 A: The person must, it seems
to me, take pains to negate.
47:47 K: No, no.
See what is implied,
47:49 how am I to negate it?
47:52 How is the brain,
whose function is to record,
47:57 like a computer, it is recording...
48:00 A: I didn't mean to suggest
that it negates the recording.
48:05 But it's the association,
the translation of the recording
48:09 into an emotional complex.
48:11 K: How is it
- that's just the point -
48:13 how is it to end
this emotional response
48:20 when I meet you next time,
you who have hurt me?
48:25 That's a problem. A: That's the place
48:28 from which we,
in the practical order,
48:30 in our relation to ourselves,
must then begin.
48:34 K: Yes.
A: Exactly.
48:38 There is an aspect of this
that interests me very much
48:44 in terms of
48:46 the relation between
the theoretical and the practical.
48:49 K: Sir, to me
theory has no reality.
48:59 Theories have no importance
49:02 to a man
who is actually living.
49:06 A: May I say
what I mean by theory?
49:11 I don't think I mean
what you think I mean by it.
49:16 I mean theory in the sense of
49:18 the Greek word 'theorea', spectacle,
49:21 what is out there that I see.
49:24 And the word is therefore
very closely related
49:26 to what you have been talking
about in terms of knowledge.
49:29 And yet it is the case
that if we see something,
49:33 that something is
registered to us in the mind
49:41 in terms of a likeness of it,
49:44 otherwise we should
have to become it
49:47 in order to receive it,
49:49 which in a material
order would annihilate us.
49:52 It seems to me, if I
followed you correctly,
49:55 that there is a profound
confusion in one's relationship
50:00 to that necessity
for the finite being
50:03 and what he makes of it.
50:06 And in so far he is making
the wrong thing of it,
50:10 he is in desperate trouble
50:12 and can only go on
repeating himself,
50:16 and in such a repetition
increasing despair.
50:21 Have I
distinguished this correctly?
50:24 K: You see,
50:31 religion is based
on tradition.
50:36 Religion is vast propaganda,
as it is now.
50:41 In India, here, anywhere,
50:45 of theories, of beliefs,
of idolatry, worship,
50:52 essentially based on the
acceptance of a theory.
51:00 A: Yes, yes.
K: Essentially based on an idea.
51:07 A: A statement, a postulate.
K: Ideas, put out by thought.
51:12 A: Right.
51:15 K: And obviously,
that's not religion.
51:23 So religion, as it exists now,
51:29 is the very denial of truth.
51:35 A: Yes, yes. I am
sure I understand you.
51:41 K: And if a man like me or...
51:46 wants to find out,
discover what that truth is,
51:50 he must deny the whole
structure of religion as it is,
51:58 which is idolatry,
propaganda, fear,
52:04 division
- you are a Christian, I am a Hindu,
52:07 all that nonsense -
52:10 and be a light to oneself.
52:16 Not in the vain sense
of that word.
52:19 Light, because the world
is in darkness,
52:25 and a human being has
to transform himself,
52:30 has to be a light to himself.
52:33 And light is not lit
by somebody else.
52:38 A: So there is a point at which
52:41 he must stop repeating himself.
52:43 Is that correct?
K: Correct, sir.
52:45 A: In a sense,
52:48 we could use the analogy
perhaps from surgery:
52:51 something that
has been continuous
52:55 is now cut.
K: Yes.
52:57 A: And cut radically,
not just fooled around with.
53:04 K: We haven't time
to fool around any more,
53:07 the house is on fire.
53:10 At least I feel this
53:13 things are coming to such a pass
we must do something,
53:17 each human being.
Not in terms of better housing,
53:21 better security,
more this and that,
53:23 but basically
to regenerate himself.
53:30 A: But if the person believes
53:35 that in cutting himself
from this accretion
53:41 that he is killing himself,
53:44 then he is going to
resist that idea.
53:46 K: Of course, of course.
Therefore he has to understand
53:52 what his mind has created,
53:56 therefore he has to
understand himself.
53:59 A: So he starts observing
54:01 K: Himself, which is the world.
54:04 A: Yes. Not learning five
languages to be able to...
54:07 K: Oh, for God's sake, no, no.
54:10 Or going to schools where
you learn sensitivity
54:13 and all that rubbish.
54:16 A: The point that you are making,
it seems to me,
54:20 is made also by the great
Danish thinker, Kirkegaard,
54:25 who lived a very trying life
in his own community,
54:31 because he was asking them,
it seems to me,
54:33 to undertake
what you are saying.
54:36 He was saying, 'Look,
if I go to seminary
54:39 and I try to understand
what Christianity is
54:42 by studying it myself,
54:44 then what I am doing is
appropriating something here,
54:48 but then when do I know
when I have appropriated it fully.
54:52 I shall never know that point,
54:54 therefore I shall
forever appropriate it
54:56 and never do anything
about it as such
55:00 as a subject.
55:02 The person
who must risk the deed,
55:05 not the utterance
55:07 - what someone
has said before -
55:08 or not simply thinking through
55:10 what someone
has thought before,
55:12 but actually embodying
55:15 the meaning through
the observation of myself
55:19 in relation to that. K: Quite, quite.
55:20 A: And that has always seemed
to me a very profound insight.
55:25 But one of the ironies
of that is, of course,
55:28 in the Academy we have an
endless proliferation of studies,
55:34 in which scholars
have learned Danish
55:36 in order to understand
Kirkegaard. K: Oh no.
55:40 A: And what they are doing
is to a large extent,
55:43 if I haven't misjudged the
spirit of much that I have read,
55:48 is simply perpetuate the very thing
he said should be cut.
55:56 I do have this very
strong feeling that
56:00 profound change would
take place in the Academy,
56:03 of which
you know I am a member,
56:05 if the teacher were not only
56:14 to grasp this
that you have said,
56:17 but take the risk
of acting on it.
56:21 Since if it isn't acted on,
56:22 if I've understood you correctly,
56:24 we are back again
where we were.
56:27 We have toyed with the idea
56:29 of being
valiant and courageous,
56:31 but then we have
to think about
56:33 of what is involved
before we do,
56:34 and then we don't do.
K: Quite.
56:36 A: We think and don't do.
K: Therefore, sir,
56:38 the word is not the thing.
56:40 The description is
not the described,
56:43 and if you are not concerned
with the description,
56:46 but only with the thing, 'what is',
56:50 then we have to do something.
56:52 When you are confronted
with 'what is' you act,
56:56 but when you are
concerned with theories
56:58 and speculations and beliefs,
56:59 you never act.
57:01 A: So there isn't any hope
for this transformation,
57:03 if I have understood
you correctly, if
57:06 I should think to myself that
this just sounds marvellous:
57:10 I am the world
and the world is me,
57:12 while I go on thinking
57:14 that the description
is the described.
57:17 There is no hope.
57:18 So we are speaking
about a disease over here,
57:21 and we are speaking
about something
57:22 that has been stated
as the case,
57:26 and if I take what has
been stated as the case
57:29 as 'the case',
57:31 then I am thinking that the
description is the described.
57:34 K: Of course.
A: And I never get out.
57:36 K: Sir, it is like
a man who is hungry.
57:40 Any amount of description
of the right kind of food
57:44 will never satisfy him.
He is hungry, he wants food.
57:50 So all this implies,
doesn't it, sir,
57:56 several things.
57:58 First, can there be
freedom from knowledge
58:02 - and knowledge has its place -
58:07 can there be freedom
58:12 from the tradition as knowledge.
58:16 A: From the tradition
as knowledge, yes.
58:19 K: Can there be freedom from
58:22 this separative outlook:
me and you,
58:27 we and they, Christian,
and all this divisive
58:33 attitude or activity in life.
58:36 Those are the problems
we have to...
58:39 A: That's what we must attend to
58:42 as we move through our dialogues.
58:44 K: So, first, can the mind
be free from the known,
58:52 and not verbally, but actually?
A: But actually.
58:57 K: I can speculate about
58:58 what is freedom,
and all the rest of it,
59:00 but see the necessity,
the importance
59:05 that there must be
freedom from the known,
59:08 otherwise
life becomes repetitive,
59:10 a continuous
superficial scratching.
59:15 It has no meaning.
A: Of course.
59:18 In our next conversation together
59:21 I hope we can begin
where we have just left off.