Freedom, love and responsibility
The essence of goodness is a mind that is not in conflict
3rd Public Discussion Ojai, California
April 17, 1979
Krishnamurti: This is a discussion or a dialogue and what shall we talk about?
Questioner: Last Sunday we talked about the art of observation and the art of learning. It seems to me if we would find out exactly what that is perhaps we wouldn’t have to come back every year and ask you. We could observe things ourselves.
K: If we could find out what you mean by the art of listening, the art of observation, the art of learning, if we could find that out we need not come back every year here.
Q: Sir, could we tie into that perhaps the meaning of psychological registration?
K: Psychological registration, would you go into that.
Q: Is there any relationship between love and freedom?
K: What is the relationship between love and freedom. Is there any relationship at all.
Q: Psychological death.
K: Would you discuss psychological death.
Q: Is silence of the mind possible?
K: Silence of the mind.
Q: The meaning of life.
K: (Laughs) The meaning of life. (Laughter)
Q: Could you talk about peace and order?
K: Talk about peace and order.
Q: On Saturday you said god did not create man, but man created god. Would you elaborate on that subject?
K: Would you talk over together what you mean by man created god, god has not created man. Now which of these questions do you want to take up?
Q: Psychological death.
Q: Love and freedom.
K: Love and freedom.
Q: Meaning of life.
Q: Could we talk about quietening the mind?
K: Could you talk about quieting the mind.
Q: Is there an entity which is responsible?
K: Is there an entity in us which is totally responsible for all our actions. Is that it?
Q: Yes, or is there life without an entity that is responsible?
Q: Would you talk about sex?
K: Talk about sex. I don't know what there is to talk about sex.
Q: What is responsibility?
K: What is responsibility. Now just a minute, sir, you have asked about a dozen questions.
Q: Sir, what do you mean by ‘the answer to the question is the question itself’?
K: Of course.
Q: Can you take a silent journey right now (inaudible)
K: I don't know what you would like to talk over together this morning with all these questions: what do you think is the most important one of all these questions?
Q: Sir, freedom, love and responsibility.
K: Freedom, love and responsibility, is that what you want to talk about?
K: I wonder what we mean by responsibility. The word itself means to respond, respond either partially or completely, wholly. That's the meaning of that word, to respond in our relationship adequately, completely, partially, in a limited way. How do we respond in our relationship - relationship being, being in contact partially, wholly, objectively, or very narrow, personally, selfishly? That's implied in responsibility. I wonder what we mean, not only by the words but how inwardly we respond in our relationship with another. Do we respond to another according to our inclination, according to our tendencies, desires, or do we respond to the other's desires, to the other's idiosyncrasies, to the other's partiality, or do we respond totally, wholly, completely without being personal, selfish, narrow, limited? Right? So that is the question when we talk about relationship, responsibility.
And when we talk about freedom, what do we mean by that word? Each one translates that word according to his own opinion, experience, according to his own knowledge, conditioning, pleasure or displeasure. But does all that indicate freedom, I am asking. And also when we talk about love, what do we mean by that word? Love of the country, love of the family, love of the beautiful, love of one's wife, husband, children, the nation, love of god, love of virtue and so on, sexual, sensory, all that's implied. So this is a tremendous question, it is not just a thing to be played around with. What do we mean by these three words: love, freedom and responsibility?
Q: Love is related to vice, desire, for itself.
K: No, sir, when you say, 'I love you', what do you mean by that word? And what is the relationship of sensory responses, sensuousness, sex, to love? You follow? And freedom? That's a tremendous word - the content of that word, like love, freedom, is it possible for man to be free, or is he always free in the limited circle which he has woven round himself? And the word 'responsibility', if you undertake something to do you are responsible for doing it, and if you don't do it, do you feel guilty. All that is implied in that word 'responsibility' and 'relationship'. And are the three of these words, love, freedom, responsibility, are they separate or one whole? Are they a unitary process, holistic, or they are three separate activities and human beings are trying to integrate the three? I don't know if you are following all this. Which is it you are, in this dialogue, attempting to do?
We are two friends, sitting under a tree on a lovely morning, with a cool breeze and we are talking about these three things. We want to find out how serious we are because this is our life: love, freedom, responsibility and a sense of peace in the world, inward as well as outward. So two friends who are committed to the discovery, to the understanding, to the way of living these three things, separately or as a whole, indivisible. Which is it we are trying to do? You understand, sir? Which is it we are actually doing?
Q: Sir, it is always our freedom and our love, it is limited love and we are always in a circle instead of getting really out of it.
K: Sir, this question sir, is tremendously complex, you understand? Because everywhere throughout the world they talk about individuality: the individual love, the individual expression, the individual freedom, the individual responsibility and so on, so on. The individual has been so enormously given importance - to the individual, to the 'you' - and on that our civilization is based: individual freedom, individual expression, individual fulfilment, that's the culture in which we live. And on that all our social responses, economic striving and so on is based. What relationship has this whole individual concept to love, freedom, responsibility? You follow? This is a very complex and very serious question if you want to go into it fully. You may not want to, you may want casually to delve into something which demands all your attention and care. So I am just asking, if I may, when our culture is based on individuality - you understand? - the voting, the elections, the whole set-up of governments, freedom of choice, freedom of individual striving, individual ambition, individual competition - all that is our culture, religiously, socially and culturally. Individual painter - the old cathedrals in Europe were not there were no individuals, they built it. One doesn't know who built it and so on, so on.
So this question when we want to discuss it as two friends who really want to go into this, where shall we start? You understand?
Q: Let’s start by you saying what you would like to say from your heart about it.
K: Ah, we are two friends.
Q: Sir, is it possible for us to look at these three things as a whole (inaudible)
K: Look, madame, this is our question: the individual, freedom and responsibility, love. And the individual, the 'you', the 'me', is given tremendous importance in the context of all this. And how do you approach this question? As a friend I ask you, I say, look, how do you come to this question, how do you receive this question? Casually? Because you have nothing to do, because the golf course is full, there are too many players on the golf course so you say I might just as well sit under a tree and talk to you instead of playing golf?
Q: No, if I ask you very seriously how is that question the answer to your question and how is the answer in the question?
K: If you ask me how does the speaker approach the question, is that it?
Q: How is the question the answer to the question?
Q: In what way is it that the question is the answer to the question.
K: The question is, how do you approach. On that, if you can find out, the response will be right. If I approach it - if someone, if one approaches it, not I, or some, if you approach it from a very narrow, selfish point of view, your approach is limited and therefore your answer will be very, very, very limited because it is a tremendous, complex problem. So is your mind capable of meeting this challenge? Meeting it wholly or partially? Afraid that in answering fully your actions may bring about a radical change, therefore you are afraid and hold back? So you must You follow? This is very important to find out how we approach a question.
Q: Sir, is it possible to ask (inaudible) if the individual, as described (inaudible)
K: Sir, I am not describing the individual, that's a fact. That's our culture. That's your culture: the American culture, American civilization, American growth, evolution and so on is based on the individual. The individual achievement, the individual success, the individual competition, the individual creativeness - you follow? - all that is there. And what is the relationship, please, between that individual, love, freedom and responsibility?
Q: Sir, the problem is that freedom, love and responsibility is an ideal, I feel that is not an actuality at all.
K: That's right, sir. For most of us freedom, love, responsibility is just an idea, an ideal, it has no value at all, these ideals. What is real in our daily life is our individual desires, individual sexual demands, individual urge for self-fulfilment, and in that desire I must be free to fulfil. That's all we are concerned with, not about love, freedom, responsibility. Those are all just words.
Q: Sir, if we cannot answer the question because the question throws us into the distress of relativity and non-meaning, how do we deal with the stress of our incapacity to answer the question?
K: I am doing it, sir, (laughs) we are trying to find out. Sir, are we really concerned as two friends, talking over this matter, are you really concerned to find out for oneself, not to be talked at or preached at or persuaded to believe or not to believe, are we prepared to say, 'Look, let me look at my life first as it is and from there move'? You understand my question?
Q: If two friends met and they loved one another, would they not be sensitive to one another’s needs, to the whole of one another?
K: Perhaps. What has that got to do with this question?
Q: That’s what love is, in so far as we can comprehend it.
K: Sir, (laughs) how can we, we are all offering opinions, judgements; let's find out. Are you responsible, in the full meaning of that word to another, to your wife, to your girl, to your boyfriend or husband, are you totally responsible? That means care, it means attention, love, in which there is no personal demand.
Q: The individual in a group, the individual cannot have any relationship with the other people if he is striving for himself.
K: Obviously not.
Q: Sir, I am involved in a relationship, and I see pain, and I began to respond to it and then my mind, thought came into my mind and I see that I am not responding fully.
K: First of all, sir, let's be clear, that this is not a group therapy, that we are not confessing to each other our sins, our faults, and exposing each other, but we are trying to enquire into ourselves to what are we responsible for. 'Responsible', that word means to respond, sensuously, intellectually, emotionally, romantically, (laughs) from your heart, from your mind, sensuously. Now are we aware of our responsibility to another, intimate or not intimate? What does that responsibility involve? If one has a family, please just go with me for a little, if one has a family, wife, children, are you responsible for those children? That you care, that you have love for them, that you are concerned with their health, with their clothes, with their education, are you concerned that they become healthy, good citizens? Or you have no time at all for them because you have to go out and earn money as the man and the mother and the father, as they do now and have very little time for the children. So that's a fact. So where is your responsibility? You see, that's why, if we don't face that, it is no good talking about love, freedom and all the rest of it. The family is breaking up in this country. Right? Divorce, after two or three years of sexual relationship with a man, or with a boy or a girl, it breaks up, another relationship is formed, children may be born out of it, but there is a divorce, so gradually this word 'responsibility' is losing altogether its meaning. Please do pay attention to what we are saying!
Q: If I have a friend and I perceive a need that I see in this friend, my friend has a need, is this because I myself have a need, or is this responsibility?
Q: If I see a need in my friend, is it my need or his.
K: Suppose, suppose, I am not saying this, suppose, if I need an audience (laughs) like here for my fulfilment, for my pleasure, would you help me to fulfil my pleasure? My desire to have a large or a small audience to whom I can talk, would you help me, or would you say, don't be a fool? Then I am using you for my satisfaction, for my glory, for my aggrandisement and so on.
K: Look, sir, he asked a question, let's finish it, sir, you're all too... Please stick to one thing, would you, kindly? That is, are we responsible for the earth on which we live? You understand? The trees, the mountains, the waters, the forests and the beauty of the land, to maintain it, or we are gradually destroying everything because we must have more cars, more pleasure, more, more, more. Sir, you don't face all these things!
Q: Sir, I feel a special responsibility for my wife, for my child, for my piece of land, does that deny my responsibility for the whole?
K: No. On the contrary. There is - just would you listen, sir? - there is feeling of responsibility and feeling responsible for. You see the two different things? That is, one feels responsible for this grove, for this beautiful place, or you feel responsible, when you are walking down the road, you feel responsible to pick up a piece of paper that has been thrown down, you feel responsible. So wherever you are you are responsible for everything around you. But if you are merely responsible for this one little thing, that responsibility assumes a very narrow, rather shoddy little meaning.
Q: What is the greatest act of love, freedom and responsibility?
K: I am showing it to you, sir. Do you, if I may ask, if one may ask, do you feel responsible that way for the whole of mankind not just your children - if you have children, do you feel responsible for those children? To see that they have right education so that they won't be killed in a war, they won't become mediocre. Oh, you are not interested in all this. So one asks, what are you interested in? I think that is a legitimate question. You can talk about love, freedom and the beauty of the sky but it is only outside interest, but basically what are we interested in?
Q: In ourselves.
K: Yes, that's right, you are interested in yourself. Right? Wait, sir, perfectly right. Each one is interested in himself. On that our society, culture, religion is based. Right? Each one interested in himself, his progress, his expression - you know, all the rest of it. Now what relationship has one's self-centred activity to freedom? You understand? I want to be free - one wants to be free. Go on, sir, think it out.
Q: She says there is a relationship between responsibility to oneself and responsibility for the whole.
K: Responsibility to oneself and responsibility to the whole. What is yourself? Please, let's go into it, that one thing. What is yourself? Are you not the result of your parents, genetically, heredity, are you not the result of your culture, of your religion, of all the literature and so on; and you are that and the European is that, the Indian is that. Right? They are the product of their environment, of their culture, of their religion, of their social condition, economic and so on. And they have produced this society in which we live. Do you, as a human being, realise that we are all one, basically, not as an idea, but as a fact. Because when you go to India, you see the misery, the confusion, the anxiety, the despair of people, running to their petty little gods whom they have created; you come to Europe it is exactly the same thing, they have got their Jesus, their Christ, they run - you follow? - the economic position, they are starving, they are miserable, unhappy, disorder; you come here, it is exactly the same. So if you are responsible you are responsible for all mankind. You understand?
Q: Sir, when you say that humanity is basically one, do you mean that the condition is basically one, or that beyond the conditioning we are one?
K: No, I am sticking to the conditioning, not beyond. You can only find out what is beyond when you are free from one's conditioning. So if one realises that, that all human beings go through this extraordinary misery, confusion, anxiety, sorrow, right through the world. You understand, sir? - right through the world, not you go through it, but every human being goes through it - Africa, China, Australia, here, everywhere. And you are that also, you, you are part of all that. So if you are responsible you are responsible for all humanity in that sense.
Q: Sir, does irresponsibility connect with striving for individuality?
K: Yes, sir. That's right. Is irresponsibility, the questioner asks, striving for individual fulfilment, is that irresponsible. It is, obviously. You understand, sir? First to realise not verbally but in your heart, in your blood, in your whole thinking, that human beings right through the world go through the same agonies that one goes through: the loneliness, the despair, the depressions, the extraordinary uncertainty, insecurity, whether they live ten thousand miles away or two thousand miles, or here, they are all psychologically bound together. If one realises that profoundly in your guts, in your blood, in your heart, in your mind, then you are responsible.
Q: What is it that stands in the way of our seeing our responsibility? Not only seeing responsibility but seeing the whole.
K: Not seeing. First does one realise this tremendous fact? You see, madame, if you realise that, then what is your action?
Q: I will know when I realise that.
K: No, no, no, if you realise that you are not Mrs so-and-so, tremendously individual, but psychologically, inwardly you are like the rest of mankind, you may be blond, you may be white, you may be black, you may be brown, yellow, whatever it is, inwardly we are all similar though outwardly we may be dissimilar. If one realises that, what is your action, what will you do? What's your responsibility? Wouldn't you then ask a simple question: is it possible for me, for the person who sees this, is it possible for that person to change, not follow the current? That is the central question, that is the responsibility because if one can fundamentally change then you are no longer contributing to that stream, to that river, to that ocean of confusion, which is self-fulfilment. You follow? I must be better, I must do this, I must have more money, I must have a swimming pool, I must have, you know, all the rest of the thing that goes on.
Q: Sir, there is a difficulty here that some of the people here understand maybe intellectually that we have to change because we are the rest of the world. But then we are at the same time connecting our individual desire to change. That’s the difficulty.
K: Ah, no, sir, no, sir. It's not individual desire. This is important, understand? Look, sir: verbally, intellectually one may understand that psychologically we are all similar, that can easily be logically, reasonably, verbally clear, but the verbal clarity is not the feeling of it. You understand? The verbal statement, the acceptance after argument, reason, is not the fact or the feeling that you are the world.
Q: The, sir, what makes one go beyond the surface?
K: Wait. First I must realise that. First it must be an absolute, irrevocable truth. Then you ask, what is my responsibility. You follow?
Q: Sir (inaudible) to see and understand what is the world. If you are the world, understand, see it, what is the entity that is me?
K: What is the entity, what is the world?
Q: She says one’s responsibility is to see what is the entity that is the world.
Q: No, sorry, if you understand what is the world.
K: That's very simple: what is the world. There is the outer world and there is the inward world. Right? The outward world, you know what is happening, I don't have to describe the outward world, with all the confusion, anger, jealousy, arrogance, self-fulfilment, wars, whether you have a war here or in Vietnam, it is war on this earth; and inwardly we are confused, we are unhappy, we are disagreeable, we are selfish, you know. So this inner has created the outer, and the outer then encourages the inner. Right? It is simple, this fact. So I say, seeing all this, what is your responsibility?
Q: Our responsibility is to bring transformation in ourselves.
K: There is no you -transformation of yourself - you haven't understood this thing.
Q: And for this, the observer is the observed is the key. Because if the observer is the observed, then the anger in my mind looks at anger and it’s the end of it
K: Sir, if you realise that you are essentially psychologically like the rest of the unfortunate mankind, what is your response?
Q: You observe why I am not.
K: All right, sir, if you observe that and you realise that you have to bring about a transformation, right sir? - why don't you do it? (Laughs)
Q: I don’t stay with it long enough I suppose.
K: You stay long enough with your job to earn a livelihood, you spend years and years and years, to get money, all the rest of it, why don't you spend a day with this? Do you understand what I mean? Give time to find out.
Q: Sir, people have real needs, part of our responsibility I think, is to meet some of those needs.
K: Of course, we are saying that, we agreed. But if you spend all your time, as one does, acquiring one's needs and giving perhaps an occasional glance at this misery of mankind, well, your occasional glance has very little value.
Q: Can love exist without freedom?
K: (Laughs) Can love exist without freedom - what do you mean by freedom? You have freedom in this country to do what you like to do. Right? Yes, sir. You have freedom of speech, opportunity to work - if you want to, some kind of work - gardener, factory, cook, any kind of work, you have an opportunity to do it here. You are free to go from one place to another to get a job. You are free to think what you like and express what you think. People may not listen, that's a different matter, you are free. But go to Russia, you are not. So what do you mean by freedom? Freedom of choice? Freedom to choose what you want to do - which you are doing now. And is that freedom, to choose? A man who is clear, sees exactly, he doesn't choose, there is no choice, he does it. So choice may be the denial of freedom. You don't see all this.
Q: Sir, excuse me, I think that we miss the central point of your statement that we are the world, and I think that is the central point.
K: Yes, sir, in this discussion.
Q: Yes, and the understanding seems to be intellectual.
K: So if it verbal, intellectual, how will you make or find out not to make this truth merely verbal? You follow? Sir, you tell me something very serious, something that is very, very, very important, and you want to convey it to me, and you express what you have to say in words, clear, precise, actual, the meaning of every word you have employed. I accept that, I say, 'You are perfectly right, I see your reason, your logic, there is clarity, there is sanity behind it', but it is all up here, I don't feel it. I don't say, 'By Jove, how true this is'. And to me, the mere verbal expression and clarity of verbal statements have very little meaning if I don't live it, find out the truth of it. So is it one of our difficulties, amongst others, is it one of our difficulties that we have become so terribly verbal, superficial, intellectual in that sense, I understand words, one understands words very quickly - get on with it. There is no depth in our enquiry, is that it?
Q: There is no depth to our enquiry.
K: Yes, sir. How will you acquire this depth of enquiry?
Q: Possibly by trying to understand why, what is standing in our way, why don’t we feel it.
Q: We habitually approach the question with conclusions. We want a conclusion on a superficial level. And if we don’t find a conclusion on this superficial level then we wait for someone else to answer the question for us.
K: That's right, sir. You see, I want to tell you a story, will you listen to it? A story, not amusing or serious story, but I want to tell you something, will you listen to it? Listen not only with the hearing of the ear, which is, the meaning of the word, the intent of the expression, the feeling behind it, so that he wants to tell you something and will you listen to it completely with your heart, with your mind? Or will you say, 'Yes, I agree with you, what you have to say, it is a nice morning I am going back to my daily life'? You follow?
And that gentleman asked at the beginning of this questioning if we could discuss seriously the art of listening, the art of seeing, the art of learning. If we could go into that, desperately, we want to find out. You understand? If we could go into that, not superficially, to the very depth of it, perhaps that may solve our problems. Because that involves a great deal of attention, a great deal of comprehension together. I can't listen to - I mean one can't listen to one's own voice eternally! (Laughs) So could we go into that before you ask the question what is love, what is freedom, what is responsibility. You may tell me something true but I may not be capable of receiving it. I may not know what you mean by it, I must listen to you with empathy, with sympathy, with affection, with care, with real deep attention to find out what you are saying. You know, if you have a small child who wants to tell you a story or something that has happened to him, would you listen with care? Or you are so busy with your percolator, with your ambition, with your husband's quarrel that you have no time to listen? You understand my question? You'd listen to that child, wouldn't you?
Q: We always listen through conditioning...
K: No, find out how to listen, sir. Not conditioning. Will you listen to the child completely? Or you have no time? To your daughter, to your son, he wants to tell you something and will you listen casually - and the child knows that you listen casually, so he loses touch with you immediately, he has no confidence in you because you are concerned about yourself, all the rest of it, so he goes to somebody else, or he runs away from it. You follow? This is happening, for god's sake! So will you learn the art of listening? As we said the other day, art means to give everything its proper place. You understand? Its proper place, everything, the word means that. Then I want to listen, I mean, the art of listening. When you want to say something to somebody will you pay complete attention or it's partial attention, disinterested, casual listening? Or is it saying, 'Please, I want to understand, for god's sake, tell me what you mean', so that you are fully, completely attentive to what is being said. You follow? Not interpreting, not saying, well, I disagree, you go off and talk about something else, when he is telling you, 'I love you'. Will you listen? Or only listen when it gives you satisfaction? Or when something is said that will give you pleasure? You won't listen to a man that wants to hurt you. So - you follow? - listening implies a tremendous attention.
Q: Would you listen to a lot of small talk?
K: Would you listen to a lot of small talk. That depends, I wouldn't personally, but
Q: There are two kinds of listening, you have to decide what you want to listen to.
K: Ah! That's just it. (Laughs) If you decide what you want to listen, you shut off listening altogether.
Q: Sir, how can you tell the difference? As the man said, what is small talk is insignificant.
K: You are all talking small talk. (Laughter) Therefore I am listening casually. But if you are serious and say, 'Look, I want to understand something completely, tell me', then we can meet each other. That's why, sir, do you remember a story, that fact which is quite extraordinary if you go into it, you have heard of the Buddha, Buddhism? The Buddha, 500 BC. He talked about love and all the rest of it, long before Christ, long before. And he preached for fifty years and he had two disciples amongst many who really understood, not intellectually, understood him, lived with him, comprehended his depth, his beauty, and they came every day to listen to him. They didn't say, 'Well, I'll just listen to you, I've got it all', and went away, they came because there was beauty in what he was saying. And these two disciples died before he died. You understand what it means? I wonder if you understand what I am...
So, sirs, and ladies, do you want to learn how to listen? And the art of seeing, seeing something, the trees, the hills, the mountain, your wife, your friend, whatever it is, to see it as though for the first time, not the routine. To look at the familiar face, and look at it as though you are meeting it for the first moment. That can be possible only when all the memories that you have accumulated about that person drop away and you can look. You understand? And we went into the question of learning. If you have gone into it you will find out what it means. Learning which is not merely the accumulation of knowledge, and acting from that knowledge, therefore that action is always, ever incomplete, and therefore it always brings regrets, confusion, misery. And we said there is a different way of learning which is not the action of memory. We went into that a little bit. So if you want to learn this thing you become terribly serious - even for an hour!
Q: Would you explain how man created god?
K: Would you explain how man created god.
Q: If we can’t listen, what good would your explanation be?
K: What would you, as you point out, madame, what would you say if you were not conditioned by your religion, by your fears, what would you say about god? Of course god is a marvellous investment, you can preach about god and make a lot of money - as they are doing. So - please listen to this very carefully - in India they are conditioned one way - you understand? - they believe in different gods, you come to Europe, they believe in a certain god and god's son, absolute, and so on. And there are people who have never, never, never heard of Christ, and they're so they say, 'What if he is - who is he? My god is more important than that man'. So it all depends on your conditioning. Right? One doesn't see this. When the mind is free from that conditioning what is god? So that's why, man out of his fear, out of his loneliness, out of his extraordinary hopeless state he says, there must be something that will protect me. Right? The father image, he worships something. So man creates god.
So, sirs, we have come to the point - what time is it, sir?
Q: Twenty five to one.
K: So would you - two friends talking over, are they listening to each other? Are we listening to each other?
Q: How is your question an answer to your question?
K: You are going back to that, sir.
Q: That’s what I don’t understand.
K: Look, sir, I asked yesterday, no, the day before yesterday, we said what is the root cause of sorrow. You understand? Can sorrow ever end? We put that question, not only personal sorrow but the sorrow of mankind, the collective misery of mankind. And if one answered it - you understand? - the root cause, you'd say, yes, let's it would become an argument, I would go into it and you would say, how am I to go beyond that - shoot back. You follow? But if you really asked the question with all your heart and mind, that very question will answer, because in the question is the answer, not outside the question. Look, what is the root cause of sorrow? That's the question. That's the challenge. How do you respond to it? Either you say, 'I don't know', which would be logical, sane - I don't know, because you may never have even asked such a question. But if you are here, you are good enough to be here, and you say, 'What is the root cause of it?', I will tell you, I can tell you but what - it will become intellectual, then you will say, 'If that is so, help me', or find out how to be free of this thing. Back again. You follow? If you put the question with all your intention, with all your seriousness, the question then begins to reveal.
Q: So then it all boils down to how much care you have in finding out, no matter what the question is, that is the great true point (inaudible)
K: Look, questions can be silly, very, very personal, or very superficial, or meaningless questions. But if one asks such a serious question as this, whether mankind, whether you as a human being, related to the rest of the world, whether you as a human being can end your sorrow, which means to discover the root of sorrow, then you have to give your tremendous attention to a very serious question, it isn't a casual, superficial question. Mankind has asked this question, you may not have. Men who are very, very, very serious, who have devoted their life, given up everything - you follow? - to find this out. What is the root cause of it?
Q: When I see my inability to resolve a problem I am not capable of solving it, it is confusing
K: Now wait a minute, I have understood your question. That is, I see - this is what you are saying - I see the problem, I am incapable of solving it.
K: Just a minute, sir. I see the problem very clearly but I am incapable of resolving it. Right? Why? Why is one - please listen to this - why is one incapable of solving a psychological problem, why? Is it that you are educated to rely on another to solve it for you? You understand?
Q: First we rely on memory
K: No, just look at it. Why is it that you are incapable of solving your own human anxiety? Let's take anxiety, that's a common problem of all mankind, anxiety: anxious of tomorrow, anxious about, anxiety, you understand that word. Why can't a human being solve it?
Q: Because of its magnitude.
K: No, you have already come to a conclusion that it is enormous. Is it, I am, sir no, I am asking a question, is it that you have been educated, conditioned to rely on another? - psychologists, psychotherapists, Gestalt, Freudian, the latest and so on, the priest, the pope, the professor, the specialist, so we are always relying on somebody else. Right? If you don't rely on somebody else what will you do, and you have got to solve it. You understand my question? There is nobody on earth who is going to solve it for you. You have tried all these methods, you have been to Japan, Zen, every type of search you have done and you haven't solved your anxiety, so you realise nobody can possibly help me with this. I have got to solve it.
Q: Beethoven, he had many problems, he didn’t solve them, instead he created music.
K: Ah! He had a great talent for music, marvellous. I have heard them - marvellous. But his life was pretty (laughs) like the rest of mankind. So what are you trying to say? Talent is a danger. Right? Because through that you can escape from yourself. So, sir, as nobody can solve your anxiety, group therapy, oh, all the things that mankind has tried, not only this generation, through past history - you understand? - thousands of years they have tried, always saying 'God help me, please help me, somebody', and nobody has helped you. They help you to escape, so you are left with this thing, what will you do? You don't say then, 'I have no capacity', you have got to answer it. Or you just carry on, say, 'I am anxious, I can't solve it' and die that way. That's what most people do. But you say life isn't just anxiety for the rest of my life, I am going to resolve it. Then you begin to find out what anxiety is. The moment you apply you have capacity. But one loses that capacity when one depends on another. That's common wisdom, common sense.
Q: Sir, do we all have that capacity?
K: Absolutely. Sir, haven't you a capacity to earn a livelihood, money, cars, sex, houses, swimming pools? One has tremendous capacity and energy, only we apply it in one direction and not to this at all!
Q: Shall we give up listening to you?
K: Perhaps we should give up listening to you - perhaps you have already given up! (Laughter)
Q: There’s a difference between
K: No, sir, just listen. Wouldn't you go and see something beautiful every day? Wouldn't you? Beautiful trees, the mountains, every day the light changes, different shadows, the wind, the breeze moves through different leaves, you go and see it every day. In the same way, when somebody is telling truth, you go and listen, there is such variety, such shapes, such...
Q: But then we become dependent on you.
K: Ah, you see, you see, I said sir, just physically, I said carefully, I said when you look at those mountains every day, they are not mountains, they are beauty, the rocks, hills, valleys, shadows, the movement of the clouds over the mountains, the line of the mountains, the depth, the variety of light, all day it is changing. But we say, 'Well, it is mountain, I have got to go and play golf' - it is finished. But if you are interested in beauty and seeing beauty then you go there every day, you look at it out of the window. In the same way when you are speaking something extraordinarily beautiful, like Beethoven, sir, you hear him every day, every day you hear, every day it is different.
Q: Sir, thank you for sharing your great enlightenment with us. Now what would you say to that?
Q: Thank you for sharing your great delight with us.
Q: Thank you for sharing your enlightenment with us. Now what do you say to that.
K: Qu'est-ce qu'il dit? I don't understand. I think we had better stop, we will continue on Thursday.
Q: You spoke of telling a story, was the story about the Buddha?
K: No, just a story. You didn't hear? That child wants to tell you a story, how you listen to that story. That's all.