you and i have created it

What is the relationship between yourself and the misery, the confusion, in and around you? Surely this confusion, this misery, did not come into being by itself. You and I have created it, not a capitalist or a communist or a fascist society, but you and I have created it in our relationship with each other. What you are within has been projected without, on to the world; what you are, what you think and what you feel, what you do in your everyday existence is projected outwardly, and that constitutes the world. If we are miserable, confused, chaotic within, by projection that becomes the world, that becomes society, because the relationship between yourself and myself, between myself and another is society—society is the product of our relationship—and if our relationship is confused, egocentric, narrow, limited, national, we project that and bring chaos into the world.

Jiddu Krishnamurti, The First and Last Freedom, p 36

a feeling for all living things

It is odd that we have so little relationship with nature, with the insects and the leaping frog, and the owl that hoots among the hills calling for its mate. We never seem to have a feeling for all living things on the earth. If we could establish a deep, abiding relationship with nature, we would never kill an animal for our appetite, we would never harm, vivisect, a monkey, a dog, a guinea pig for our benefit. We would find other ways to heal our wounds, heal our bodies. But the healing of the mind is something totally different. That healing gradually takes place if you are with nature, with that orange on the tree, and the blade of grass that pushes through the cement, and the hills covered, hidden, by the clouds.

Jiddu Krishnamurti, Krishnamurti to Himself, p 10

born today

Recognizing two exemplary humans born on this day, May 12…

1895J. Krishnamurti – Indian philosopher who renounced his foretold role as guru and head of the Order of the Star in the East.

From his biography on the Krishnamurti Foundation site:

“Krishnamurti belonged to no religious organization, sect or country, nor did he subscribe to any school of political or ideological thought. On the contrary, he maintained that these are the very factors that divide human beings and bring about conflict and war. He reminded his listeners again and again that we are all human beings first and not Hindus, Muslims or Christians, that we are like the rest of humanity and are not different from one another. He asked that we tread lightly on this earth without destroying ourselves or the environment. He communicated to his listeners a deep sense of respect for nature. His teachings transcend man-made belief systems, nationalistic sentiment and sectarianism. At the same time, they give new meaning and direction to mankind’s search for truth. His teaching, besides being relevant to the modern age, is timeless and universal.”

*Krishnamurti is not one to follow, for he spoke against all leaders and authority, but his words are insightful and, in my opinion, worth reading.
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1921Farley Mowat – Canadian writer and conservationist who just passed away last week on May 7th at the age of 92.

From the tribute Captain Paul Watson of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society wrote for his friend:

“Canada has lost their greatest literary treasure, the world has lost one of our most inspirational conservationists and Sea Shepherd and I have lost a wonderful friend.

Canada will one day name a national park in his honour for he has earned his place as a truly Canadian hero through talent, imagination, vision, courage and passion. Canada has a long history of contempt for people that they later almost canonize as heroes long after they die – people like Grey Owl, Louis Riel, Dr. Norman Bethune, Tommy Douglas, etc.

For despite his unpopularity with the conservative Harper government, Farley has always had the love and the respect of the Canadian people and he will not be forgotten.”

*My dog is named Farley, partly in honor of Farley Mowat, and I can see a spirit in him similar to that of his namesake.

guest post from j. krishnamurti

Is the observer different from the thing which he observes?

You, the observer, are observing the fact, which you term as being lonely. Is the observer different from the thing which he observes? It is different only as long as he gives it a name; but if you do not give it a name, the observer is the observed. The name, the term, acts only to divide; and then you have to battle with that thing. But, if there is no division, if there is an integration between the observer and the observed, which exists only when there is no naming – you can try this out and you will see – , then the sense of fear is entirely gone. It is fear that is preventing you from looking at this when you say, you are empty, you are this, you are that, you are in despair. And fear exists only as memory, which comes when you term; but when you are capable of looking at it without terming, then, surely, that thing is yourself. So, when you come to that point, when you are no longer naming the thing of which you are afraid, then you are that thing. When you are that thing, there is no problem, is there? It is only when you do not want to be that thing, or when you want to make that thing different from what it is, that the problem arises. But if you are that thing, then the observer is the observed, they are a joint phenomenon, not separate phenomena; then there is no problem, is there? Please, experiment with this, and you will see how quickly that thing is resolved and transcended, and something else takes place. Our difficulty is to come to that point, when we can look at it without fear; and fear arises only when we begin to recognize it, when we begin to give it a name, when we want to do something about it. But, when the observer sees that he is not different from the thing which he calls emptiness, despair, then the word has no longer a meaning. The word has ceased to be, it is no longer despair. When the word is removed, with all its implications, then there is no sense of fear or despair. Then, if you proceed further, when there is no fear, no despair, when the word is no longer important, then, surely, there is a tremendous release, a freedom; and in that freedom there is creative being, which gives a newness to life. To put it differently: We approach this problem of despair through habitual channels. That is, we bring our past memories to translate that problem; and thought, which is the result of memory, which is founded upon the past, can never solve that problem, because it is a new problem. Every problem is a new problem; and when you approach it, burdened with the past, it cannot be solved. You cannot approach it through the screen of words, which is the thinking process; but when the verbalization stops – because you understand the whole process of it, you leave it – , then you are able to meet the problem anew; then the problem is not what you think it is. So, you might say at the end of this question, “What am I to do? Here I am in despair, in confusion, in pain; you haven’t given me a method to follow, to become free.” But, surely, if you have understood what I have said, the key is there: a key which opens much more than you realize if you are capable of using it.

(From The Collected Works, Vol. V Ojai 4th Public Talk 24th July 1949)

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some words from j. krishnamurti

seen on www.atheistmemebase.com/

When it comes to philosophy and spirituality, I am an anti-ideologue. I like to sift through it all and take only the pieces that fit into my own puzzle. However, from what I have read of his work, J. Krishnamurti is one of the few thinkers that comes into the closest alignment with my outlook on life. Perhaps it was his own volatile distaste for organized religion and organization in general that endears him to me. Having been co-opted at an early age by prominent Theosophists to serve as the predicted leader of a new organization called The Order of the Star in the East, Krishnamurti renounced this role while still a young man, dissolved the Order, and returned all the money that had been donated for its work. He then went around the world talking to people for the rest of his life.

Much of what is considered New Age thinking has its roots in Krishnamurti’s ideas (which in turn were perhaps somewhat informed by the Buddha’s). Ironically, many New Age teachers who were inspired by him seem to have glossed over some of his key points opposing organization, formalizing and branding their own cobbled-together philosophies in order to capitalize (both monetarily and ego-massagingly [note: not an actual word]) on the spiritual seeking behavior so endemic to human beings.

Enough of my words, though, here are some of Krishnamurti’s:

“As I was saying, if we do not understand the nature of effort, all action is limiting. Effort creates its own frontiers, its own objectives, its own limitations. Effort has the time-binding quality. You say, ‘I must meditate, I must make an effort to control my mind’. That very effort to control puts a limit on your mind. Do watch this, do think it out with me. To live with effort is evil; to me it is an abomination, if I may use a strong word. And if you observe, you will realize that from childhood on we are conditioned to make an effort. In our so-called education, in all the work we do, we struggle to improve ourselves, to become something. Everything we undertake is based on effort; and the more effort we make, the duller the mind becomes. Where there is effort, there is an objective; where there is effort, there is a limitation on attention and on action. To do good in the wrong direction is to do evil. Do you understand? For centuries we have done ‘good’ in the wrong direction by assuming that we must be this, we must not be that, and so on, which only creates further conflict.” – Collected Works, Vol. XI,229,Action

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