Question: People talk of experiences beyond the senses. There seems to be a fascination in such experiences but the lives of those who claim to have had them seem to be as mediocre as before. What are these experiences? Are these experiences part of enlightenment, or a step towards it? And if so, what is enlightenment?
Jiddu Krishnamurti – It is strange, is it not, that you are always talking about enlightenment, about what the speaker has said, or what somebody else has said? You never say: “Look, it is my life. I am in great pain, sorrow; how am I to resolve all this?”
Everywhere the speaker has been, there has always been this kind of question. You do not question how you will live in this world which is so corrupt, where there is no justice; and you are part of all that. Why do we not ask a really deep fundamental question about ourselves?
Why is it we never ask: “I don’t seem to have loved; I know all the descriptions of love; I know when I say to my girl friend or my wife, `I love you’ – I know it is not love, it is sex, sensory pleasure, desire, companionship; I know that all that is not that bloom that flowers, that has beauty, that has creativeness”? But you ask about enlightenment – why? Is it that you are frightened, that you cannot bear to see what you are – the shoddiness, the ugliness, the pettiness, the vulgarity, the mediocrity of it all? And, if you discover what you actually are, you say please help me, tell me what to do. The father figure comes into being then.
Apparently we never face ourselves. We avoid it at any cost. That is why we become so irrational and why we are exploited by all these people. It is really a tragedy: grown up people – at least we think we are grown up – playing with all this, and not coming to the root of things, which is ourselves. We have to be forced, urged, compelled to face ourselves, by somebody.
We never, never under any circumstance face this thing; that is why there is no change in us. Life, the living of everyday, is a vast, tremendous, experience, with its joys, pleasures, anxieties, its burden of sorrow and injustice all around us; and the poverty, overpopulation, pollution; and the lack of energy in ourselves. Life is such a complex experience.
Yet we are bored with it. We cannot face it. We do not feel responsible for it. We separate ourselves from all this. That separation is fallacious, unreal, irrational, because we are that, we have created that, each one of us. We are part of all that and we do not want to face it. So being bored, being exhausted by the trivialities of life, we go and ask somebody, pay him, to initiate us, to give us a new name, in the hope of having new experiences.
So, we must understand the nature of our daily living, the daily irritations, the daily angers, boredom, loneliness and despair. Yet, instead of facing all that, understanding it, cleaning it up, we want super-extra-sensory experiences, when we have not even understood the activity of the daily response of the senses.
When one has really understood and lived so that the life of everyday boredom, loneliness, the ache for something better, is cleansed away; when one is free of all that and the depths are cleared, when the foundation is laid, then when one goes beyond it one will see that a mind that is asking for extrasensory experiences is still in the state of being conditioned by the senses. Then there is a mind that has no experience whatsoever.