Quotes

"Truth is a pathless land"

I maintain that Truth is a pathless land, and you cannot approach it by any path whatsoever, by any religion, by any sect. That is my point of view, and I adhere to that absolutely and unconditionally. Truth, being limitless, unconditioned, unapproachable by any path whatsoever, cannot be organized; nor should any organization be formed to lead or to coerce people along any particular path. If you first understand that, then you will see how impossible it is to organize a belief. A belief is purely an individual matter, and you cannot and must not organize it. If you do, it becomes dead, crystallized; it becomes a creed, a sect, a religion, to be imposed on others.

Click for full text: From J. Krishnamurti, Total Freedom: The Essential Krishnamurti (San Francisco: HarperSanFrancisco, 1996)

"We all want to be famous people, and the moment we want to be something we are no longer free"

We all want to be famous people - and the moment we want to be something, we are no longer free. Please see this, for it is the real clue to the understanding of the problem of freedom. Whether in this world of politicians, power, position and authority, or in the so-called spiritual world where you aspire to be virtuous, noble, saintly, the moment you want to be somebody you are no longer free. But the man or the woman who sees the absurdity of all these things and whose heart is therefore innocent, and therefore not moved by the desire to be somebody - such a person is free.

Click for full text: From J. Krishnamurti, This Matter of Culture (London: Victor Gollancz Ltd., 1978)

"Have a complete break with the past and see what happens"

Stop being a Brahmin, a Hindu, a Christian, a Muslim. Stop your worship, rituals, take a complete retreat from all those and see what happens. In a retreat, do not plunge into something else, do not take some book and be absorbed in new knowledge and new acquisitions.Have a complete break with the past and see what happens. Do it, and you will see delight. You will see vast expanses. When your heart is open, then reality can come. Then the whisperings of your own prejudices, your own noises are not heard. That is why it is good to take a retreat, to go away and to stop the routine, not only the routine of outward existence but the routine which the mind establishes for its own safety and convenience.

Click for full text: From J. Krishnamurti, The Collected Works of J. Krishnamurti, Vol. VI 1949-1952: The Origin of Conflict (Dubuque, Iowa: Kendall/Hunt Publishing Company, 1991)

"Education, in the true sense, is the understanding of oneself, for it is within each one of us that the whole of existence is gathered"

The ignorant man is not the unlearned, but he who does not know himself, and the learned man is stupid when he relies on books, on knowledge and on authority to give him understanding. Understanding comes only through self- knowledge, which is awareness of one's total psychological process. Thus education, in the true sense, is the understanding of oneself, for it is within each one of us that the whole of existence is gathered.

What we now call education is a matter of accumulating information and knowledge from books, which anyone can do who can read. Such education offers a subtle form of escape from ourselves and, like all escapes, it inevitably creates increasing misery. Conflict and confusion result from our own wrong relationship with people, things and ideas, and until we understand that relationship and alter it, mere learning, the gathering of facts and the acquiring of various skills, can only lead us to engulfing chaos and destruction.

Click for full text: From J. Krishnamurti, Education and the Significance of Life (New York: Harper Collins, 1953)

"War is the spectacular and bloody projection of our everyday living"

Surely, to discover truth, there must be freedom from strife, both within ourselves and with our neighbours. When we are not in conflict within ourselves, we are not in conflict outwardly. It is the inward strife which, projected outwardly, becomes the world conflict. War is the spectacular and bloody projection of our everyday living. We precipitate war out of our daily lives; and without a transformation in ourselves, there are bound to be national and racial antagonisms, the childish quarrelling over ideologies, the multiplication of soldiers, the saluting of flags, and all the many brutalities that go to create organized murder. Education throughout the world has failed, it has produced mounting destruction and misery. Governments are training the young to be the efficient soldiers and technicians they need; regimentation and prejudice are being cultivated and enforced. Taking these facts into consideration, we have to inquire into the meaning of existence and the significance and purpose of our lives. We have to discover the beneficent ways of creating a new environment; for environment can make the child a brute, an unfeeling specialist, or help him to become a sensitive, intelligent human being. We have to create a world government which is radically different, which is not based on nationalism, on ideologies, on force. All this implies the understanding of our responsibility to one another in relationship; but to understand our responsibility, there must be love in our hearts, not mere learning or knowledge. The greater our love, the deeper will be its influence on society.

Click for full text: From J. Krishnamurti, Education and the Significance of Life (New York: Harper Collins, 1953)