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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The I Who Says "I suffer''

~Jiddu Krishnamurti

What is the meaning of suffering? What is it that suffers? When one says "I suffer," who is it that suffers? What is the center that says "I am in an agony of jealousy, of fear, of loss?" What is that center, that "essence,'' of a human being who says "I suffer?'' Is it the movement of thought, as time, which creates the center? How does that I come into being, which, having come into being says, "I suffer, I am anxious, I am frightened, I am jealous, I am lonely.'' That I is never stationary, it is always moving: "I desire this, I desire that and then I desire something else,'' it is in constant movement. That movement is time, that movement is thought.

There is a concept in the Asian world that the I is something which is beyond time; and further, the concept that there is a higher I still. In the Western world the I has never been thoroughly examined. Qualities have been attributed to it, Freud and Jung and other psychologists have given attributes to it but have never gone into this question of the nature and the structure of the I which says "I suffer.''

The I, as one observes, says "I must have that,'' a few days later it wants something else. There is the constant movement of desire; the constant movement of pleasure; the constant movement of what one wants to be and so on. This movement is thought as psychological time. The I who says "I suffer'' is put together by thought. Thought says, "I am John, I am this, I am that.'' Thought identifies itself with the name and with the form and is the I in all the content of consciousness; it is the essence of fear, hurt, despair, anxiety, guilt, the pursuit of pleasure, the sense of loneliness, all the content of consciousness. When one says "I suffer,'' it is the image that thought has built about itself, the form, the name, that is in sorrow.

Excerpt from The Wholeness of Life Part II: 5th Public Talk Ojai California 16th April 1977 `Out of negation comes the positive called love'

Image Source: Foter.com

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Book Review: The Open Path: Recognizing Nondual Awareness by Elias Amidon

No matter what your core beliefs are, whether you believe in a higher power, God, Brahman (the absolute, ultimate reality), atman (soul, spirit, essence, eternal consciousness), that there is no separate self, or you are not aligned with any particular spiritual tradition or religion, in The Open Path: Recognizing Nondual Awareness, author Elias Amidon, offers readers insight into and pointers for recognizing pure awareness and living a selfless life. The Open Path includes:

  • Insight and pointers to the recognition and realization of pure awareness. 
  • Recognizing and releasing attachments, identification with and fixations to: thoughts, beliefs, opinions, likes/dislikes, stories, the illusion of a separate self (ego, imaginary self) which creates unnecessary separation and suffering. 
  • The recognition that by openly embracing the oneness of existence, of being, of life, the veil of separation vanishes and the suffering and conflict that was once there as a result of seeing separateness in everything—disappears.
  • Guided instruction, inquiry, exercises, meditation and prayer.

The more selfless you become, the less unnecessary suffering you will create, project and perpetuate in your life. The Open Path provides the insight and tools—pointers to pure awareness, that can be used to help identify and release the thoughts, notions, and beliefs that mask it and that create unnecessary suffering.

This book is an eye opener, especially if you are not familiar with nonduality (Advaita) or Sufism. I highly recommend it; because, not only can we all become more selfless in our lives and stop creating and projecting unnecessary suffering, but there is also so much unnecessary suffering in the world as a result of selfishness, separation, greed and the desire for power that negatively impacts our lives, our families, communities and that ultimately spreads throughout the world, that can only change when we become selfless through recognizing and releasing the mental barriers and notions that come from a conditioned mind and by living life from pure awareness, which can be realized with the insight and tools Elias has provided us with by way of this wonderful guidebook: The Open Path: Recognizing Nondual Awareness.

—Pamela J. Wells (selflessbeing.com)


Excerpt from Jiddu Krishnamurti’s Book "The First and Last Freedom"

I Would Like to discuss or consider the question of self-deception, the delusions that the mind indulges in and imposes upon itself and upon others. That is a very serious matter, especially in a crisis of the kind which the world is facing. But in order to understand this whole problem of self-deception we must follow it not merely at the verbal level but intrinsically, fundamentally, deeply.

We are too easily satisfied with words and counter-words; we are worldly-wise; and, being worldly-wise, all that we can do is to hope that something will happen. We see that the explanation of war does not stop war; there are innumerable historians, theologians and religious people explaining war and how it comes into being but wars still go on, perhaps more destructive than ever. Those of us who are really earnest must go beyond the word, must seek this fundamental revolution within ourselves. That is the only remedy which can bring about a lasting, fundamental redemption of mankind.

Similarly, when we are discussing this kind of self-deception, I think we should guard against any superficial explanations and rejoinders; we should, if I may suggest it, not merely listen to a speaker but follow the problem as we know it in our daily life; that is we should watch ourselves in thinking and in action, watch how we affect others and how we proceed to act from ourselves.

Truth is not something to be gained. Love cannot come to those who have a desire to hold on to it, or who like to become identified with it. Surely such things come when the mind does not seek, when the mind is completely quiet, no longer creating movements and beliefs upon which it can depend, or from which it derives a certain strength, which is an indication of self-deception. It is only when the mind understands this whole process of desire that it can be still. Only then is the mind not in movement to be or not to be; then only is there the possibility of a state in which there is no deception of any kind.

Source: Excerpt from Jiddu Krishnamurti’s Book "The First and Last Freedom"