Krishnamurti & the Art of Awakening
A Quiet Space | moderated by Clive Elwell

Stillness


Displaying posts 1 - 30 of 85 in total
Sun, 18 Feb 2018 #1
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 4464 posts in this forum Offline

Clive asked: "What does K mean by the stillness induced by thought?

Huguette replied: Does it mean the stillness “achieved” through effort? Stillness which is induced by effort is stillness induced by thought (self). Effort itself is thought, induced by desire, fear, etc., which is again thought, no?

If I make the effort to repress, suppress or deny the urge to smoke, the effort is a mental battle - the desire to smoke against the desire not to smoke - isn’t it? The urge or desire to smoke is also thought - the memory of past smoking, the projection of that memory into the future. Isn't it?

Doesn’t the same battle go on when thought tries to force itself to be still, or when it pretends not to see its own movements or to deny the actuality of its own activity of effort? The urge there is not to smoke but to resolve problems, fulfill desires, achieve ambitions, and so on.

The effort or battle which underlies "induced stillness" might be subtle, but subtle thought is thought, just as unconscious thought is thought.


Clive: All that you describe appears to be so, Huguette. Yet I am still left with my original question. As effort implies battle, conflict, as you say, in what way can this state be described as "stillness", when it clearly isn't? Where is the stillness?

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Sun, 18 Feb 2018 #2
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 4464 posts in this forum Offline

On the previous threat, we read a scientific description of the thinking process, which I would say K accepted. He often said thought is matter – often corrected by Bohm to “Thought is a material process” (in the brain cells). So does this imply that when there is stillness of the mind, that movement in the brain cells has ceased, or at least been very much reduced?

And if this is the case, what is it that can stop/reduce the electro-chemical activity? Is the cause (if there is such a cause) also a material process?

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Sun, 18 Feb 2018 #3
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 624 posts in this forum Offline

#1:

Clive Elwell wrote:
As effort implies battle, conflict, as you say, in what way can this state be described as "stillness", when it clearly isn't? Where is the stillness?

You had asked what K meant by “stillness induced by thought”. I don’t know where that came from or if it is an exact quote. Of course I don’t know what K meant but certainly he expressed things to that effect in different ways. It makes sense that one can “force oneself” not to act or appear to be greedy, afraid, jealous, angry, but that stillness is pretense or inattention, isn’t it? Such apparent stillness does not stop the movement of greed, fear, jealousy, anger, etc.

There's no stillness in it, that's the point. If I’m still in order to get a reward or to escape punishment, it is “pretend stillness”, false stillness induced by violent or aggressive means, by effort, by thought, isn’t it? Violence might induce apparent compliance but it can't force inner compliance, compliance in the whole of consciousness. There's no inner steadiness in that. Inwardly, there is conflict which is glossed over or not attended to. No?

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 19 Feb 2018 #4
Thumb_profiel Wim Opdam Belgium 743 posts in this forum Offline

Juan E wrote:
. And again, if i remember well, i think it is in one of the 12 dialogues between He and Dr. Bohm in "Truth and Actuality" ...

The memory is partly right, Juan.
The meaning and place is right but the detail 12 dialogues must be three instead of 12. If i am right 12 belongs to "the ending of time" ;-)

Truth will unfold itself for those who enquire their own actions and only to them and for them and to or for no one else.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 19 Feb 2018 #5
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 4464 posts in this forum Offline

Juan E wrote:
Do you mean, "change"? ... When thought as identity stops totally.

What does "Change" - I assume you mean in a fundamental sense - mean in terms of the activities of the brain cells? How can the two be connected?

I seem to remember K has said there is a physical mutation in the brain cells themselves, did he not?

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 19 Feb 2018 #6
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 4464 posts in this forum Offline

Juan E #7 wrote:
Which means: no more worries about "what is it that can stop/reduce the electro-chemical activity (of those brain cells)?." ;-)

Juan, if you don't mind, please don't interpret questions that I put as a form of "worrying". This is unwarrented.

Juan E wrote:
, but why thought wants to know "what is it that can stop/reduce the electro-chemical activity of the brain cells" that itself is using to ask this question?

Is it correct to say that thought is using the electro-chemical activity of the brain cells? Is it not that thought IS the EC activity, itself?

The question of "why does thought want to know", why does thought try to explain things, is a different matter. But it is a very relevant question, and I am going to touch upon it in my next post.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 19 Feb 2018 #7
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 4464 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
There's no stillness in it, that's the point. If I’m still in order to get a reward or to escape punishment, it is “pretend stillness”, false stillness induced by violent or aggressive means, by effort, by thought, isn’t it? Violence might induce apparent compliance but it can't force inner compliance, compliance in the whole of consciousness. There's no inner steadiness in that. Inwardly, there is conflict which is glossed over or not attended to. No?

The excerpts that Wim posted on the “Stepping out of the Stream thread” have very pertinent things to say about stillness. Like:

But such stillness cannot be cultivated, because if you cultivate a still mind, it is not a still mind, it is a dead mind.

Looking at this last sentence, I am wondering if “the stillness cultivated by thought” is just a matter of pretence, as you said, Huguette. Could it be the outcome of severe and consistent control? A lot of people these days are practising “meditation” (with the emphasis on the word “practice”), and its effect in reducing stress, reducing conflict and violence, bringing so called peace, are well publicised. But one wonders what damage this actually does to the brain? To have to hold the mind in a straight-jacket seems a dreadful thing. It denies the very essence of freedom.

So, a mind that is caught in the net of words, cannot understand truth.

This is really radical, isn't it? We are so conditioned to solve problems, to try to clear up confusion, to seek truth, through the use of words. It seems almost instinctual.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 #8
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 624 posts in this forum Offline

#12:

Clive Elwell wrote:
To have to hold the mind in a straight-jacket seems a dreadful thing. It denies the very essence of freedom.

Well said ... and chilling.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 #9
Thumb_profiel Wim Opdam Belgium 743 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:

Clive Elwell wrote:

To have to hold the mind in a straight-jacket seems a dreadful thing. It denies the very essence of freedom.

Well said ... and chilling.

LIKE observing a ball in the stream isn't as tiring as keeping her under water.

Truth will unfold itself for those who enquire their own actions and only to them and for them and to or for no one else.

This post was last updated by Wim Opdam Wed, 21 Feb 2018.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 #10
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 624 posts in this forum Offline

It took me a while to understand your point, Wim. It’s a good way of expressing that there’s no effort in observation and there’s effort in “induced stillness”. Is this what you’re saying? More or less?

This post was last updated by Huguette . Tue, 20 Feb 2018.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 #11
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 624 posts in this forum Offline

#12:

Clive Elwell wrote:
I am wondering if “the stillness cultivated by thought” is just a matter of pretence, as you said, Huguette. Could it be the outcome of severe and consistent control?

When I talk about "pretence", I mean the pretence of "pretending to oneself", self pretending to self. If I pretend to others that I'm confident when in fact I'm feeling scared, I don't see that as division if inwardly, I face the fact of fear. What fascinates me is self pretending to itself - that "I" am not afraid when I am, not angry when inwardly (where it counts) I am, and so on. Do you see what I mean?

I've long been fascinated by the question of self-pretence. Although it is clear that the root of it is fear, I've still wondered why fear is not "concealed" by self-pretence in all instances. Habitual "sever and consistent control", as you put it, further clarifies it for me.

This post was last updated by Huguette . Tue, 20 Feb 2018.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 #12
Thumb_profiel Wim Opdam Belgium 743 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:

It took me a while to understand your point, Wim. It’s a good way of expressing that there’s no effort in observation and there’s effort in “induced stillness”. Is this what you’re saying? More or less?

Yes, that one part of the message, the other part is that only by observing there is the opportunity for learning, as long as one is busy to controle the ball there is no energy for observing.

Truth will unfold itself for those who enquire their own actions and only to them and for them and to or for no one else.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 #13
Thumb_profiel Wim Opdam Belgium 743 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
I've long been fascinated by the question of self-pretence. Although it is clear that the root of it is fear, I've still wondered why fear is not "concealed" by self-pretence in all instances. Habitual "sever and consistent control", as you put it, further clarifies it for me.

It's not clear to me that fear is the root of self-pretence.

What to think of self-overestimation !

Truth will unfold itself for those who enquire their own actions and only to them and for them and to or for no one else.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 #14
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 4464 posts in this forum Offline

Juan E wrote:
You have perfectly understood my question, why complicate things further, then?

I would not say that the realisation that the thinker is not separate from the thought is an unnecessary complication!

This implied message, this assumption, is really the basis of our world, is it not? And overwhelmingly people approach one from this reality - that there is a permanent entity, independent of "one's" thoughts, feelings, convictions, etc. It is all to easy to get carried along by this assumption, when it is coming onto one from all directions.

So if someone takes the time to point out the true state of affairs, I would be grateful, not regard it as a "complication"

:-)

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 #15
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 4464 posts in this forum Offline

Wim Opdam wrote:
LIKE observing a ball in the stream isn't as tiring as keeping her under water.

Wonderful, and I suspect original, analogy, Huguette!

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 #16
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 4464 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
What fascinates me is self pretending to itself - that "I" am not afraid when I am, not angry when inwardly (where it counts) I am, and so on. Do you see what I mean?

Not wanting to be personal, but I find more and more that it seems impossible to really deceive oneself. With awareness, all those motives for action that previously were perhaps well hidden, become revealed. It is impossible to ignore them, or escape from them.

And indeed when they are faced, they are not a problem.

Of course it can always be argued that at some level there are still hidden motives, that we are not aware of. One is open to this.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 #17
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 624 posts in this forum Offline

Wim Opdam wrote:
It's not clear to me that fear is the root of self-pretence.

What to think of self-overestimation !

Don't I pretend to myself because of an idealized self-image? I see that idealized self-image, and self-overestimation, as being rooted in fear. How do you see it then?

This post was last updated by Huguette . Tue, 20 Feb 2018.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 #18
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 624 posts in this forum Offline

#23:

Clive Elwell wrote:
Not wanting to be personal, but I find more and more that it seems impossible to really deceive oneself. With awareness, all those motives for action that previously were perhaps well hidden, become revealed. It is impossible to ignore them, or escape from them.

And indeed when they are faced, they are not a problem.

Of course it can always be argued that at some level there are still hidden motives, that we are not aware of. One is open to this.

Not wanting to be personal either, my friend! :0)

Where there's understanding and awareness, as you say, the motives that lead to self-pretence are not a problem. So I'm not talking about YOU, or ME, or anyone in particular!

As for hidden motives, don't they always give some kind of intimation of their presence? Some malaise, some discomfort, some unspecified anxiety which gives an indication that "something" is moving at the deeper levels of consciousness? To me, if there's absolutely no clue, no hint, no intimation ... there's nothing hidden. Not saying it's so.

Personally, I can't say that I'm always so attentive as to be immediately aware of every hint or intimation from the subsconscious!

This post was last updated by Huguette . Tue, 20 Feb 2018.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Wed, 21 Feb 2018 #19
Thumb_profiel Wim Opdam Belgium 743 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
Don't I pretend to myself because of an idealized self-image? I see that idealized self-image, and self-overestimation, as being rooted in fear. How do you see it then?

Hi Huguette,

Is taking for real, what is not truth, always rooted in fear ?

When i think of myself as perfect, is that always based on fear, can that not simply be a wrong image. Only when i know I'm not or want to be, I pretend to be what i'm not.

Is that not the difference between the self-image, the reality and the actuality ?

The reality is that humanity will find a solution for all our problems, but that is neither an actuality nor truth, seems to me.

Escaping "that" feeds fear.

Truth will unfold itself for those who enquire their own actions and only to them and for them and to or for no one else.

This post was last updated by Wim Opdam Wed, 21 Feb 2018.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Wed, 21 Feb 2018 #20
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 624 posts in this forum Offline

Hi Wim,

Is any “image” a right image or a wrong image? Is the living being an image?

Do I have to think I’m anything - perfect, imperfect, good, bad, inferior, superior, smart, stupid, and so on? Even tall, short, shy, outgoing, fair, dark, bald, myopic, and so on - is it necessary to think about what I am, be proud or ashamed of it, wish I were different? Can’t I just live without thinking about what I am, without holding to values or conclusions about it?

I can say I’m tall because I’m tall but I don't "go around" thinking about it, comparing my height to others, do I? Unless there's fear.

Why do I think I’m perfect then, or better than others, worse than others? Why do I compare myself to others and others to me?

Taking for real what is not truth is a mistake. If I think sugar is salt, that’s a mistake that will spoil my recipes and I won’t make the mistake again. Pretending is not making a mistake. Self-pretending is when I realize - consciously or unconsciously - that I’m not perfect (or something else) and I don’t face the fact, isn’t it?

Why does someone pretend?

This post was last updated by Huguette . Wed, 21 Feb 2018.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Wed, 21 Feb 2018 #21
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 4464 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
Wonderful, and I suspect original, analogy, Huguette!

Sorry about this! I now notice that it was Wim's alalogy, not Huuette's.

"LIKE observing a ball in the stream isn't as tiring as keeping her under water."

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Wed, 21 Feb 2018 #22
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 4464 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote #25:
As for hidden motives, don't they always give some kind of intimation of their presence? Some malaise, some discomfort, some unspecified anxiety which gives an indication that "something" is moving at the deeper levels of consciousness? To me, if there's absolutely no clue, no hint, no intimation ... there's nothing hidden. Not saying it's so.

I begin to wonder if "hidden" is an appropriate word here.

First comes a pretence. One is pretending that one's motive for an action is so-an-so. usually based on some image of being 'noble'. But this is false, and then comes the realisation that it IS false. And then comes the realisation of what the true motive is.

Not saying this happens all the time; how could one tell? But if it doesn't come immediately, it often comes later. At some depth the mind has been working on it.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Thu, 22 Feb 2018 #23
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 4464 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
Why do I think I’m perfect then, or better than others, worse than others? Why do I compare myself to others and others to me?

Is it that basically the brain is a comparing machine, a measuring machine? (not saying that there is no possibility it might be something other that that). In the good old days this was a very important function (of course it still is an essential function) in the material, physical dimension, and perhaps was the basis of our evolutionary "success" (a very twisted success). but like so many other things that had a proper function in the physical world, lie fear, measurement became internalised, it became part of the psyche, where it does all sorts of damage, causes all sorts of suffering.

?

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Thu, 22 Feb 2018 #24
Thumb_profiel Wim Opdam Belgium 743 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
Do I have to think I’m anything - perfect, imperfect, good, bad, inferior, superior, smart, stupid, and so on? Even tall, short, shy, outgoing, fair, dark, bald, myopic, and so on - is it necessary to think about what I am, be proud or ashamed of it, wish I were different?
Can’t I just live without thinking about what I am, without holding to values or conclusions about it?

Where the "I" is present, there is danger. !

We do not seem to realize that, even see it as a necessity.

Thinking is relatively new in the human creation,
and as with every tool, skill is needed to act correctly.

Every image is incomplete , not the object of thought itself,
some are good in the sense they don't contradict the real thing,
some are false in the sense they are based on illusion or in contradiction with the 'what is situation.

This are some of the hopefully good images I have about this ;-)

P.s.: Are right or wrong good concepts in this ??

Truth will unfold itself for those who enquire their own actions and only to them and for them and to or for no one else.

This post was last updated by Wim Opdam Thu, 22 Feb 2018.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Thu, 22 Feb 2018 #25
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 624 posts in this forum Offline

#32:

Clive Elwell wrote:
Is it that basically the brain is a comparing machine, a measuring machine?

Yes, comparing and measuring are seen to be functions or capacities of the brain. And when those capacities are used to compare and measure useful or necessary things, it is in harmony with the “natural order of things” - an action of intelligence, as I see it. It is not done from the perspective of the self. I might say, where appropriate, that “I” am doing those things but, in these instances, “I” is a functional, utilitarian expression which does not reflect psychological division, as I see it.

But when “I” compare “myself” to “others” in ways that aren’t useful or necessary, or measure “myself” as superior or inferior, isn’t that indicative of psychological division, disorder, disharmony, self-centredness? Isn’t it rooted in self-centred fear? Isn’t it carrying over the measuring and comparing functions into the psychological field where they are inappropriate and conflictual? As Wim says at #33. “Where the "I" is present, there is danger!”

This post was last updated by Huguette . Thu, 22 Feb 2018.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Thu, 22 Feb 2018 #26
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 624 posts in this forum Offline

#33:

Wim Opdam wrote:
Thinking is relatively new in the human creation,
and as with every tool, skill is needed to act correctly.

To me, saying that thinking is relatively new introduces an unnecessary complication to the issue we’re looking at. Thinking is an integral part of the human being. When you say that skill is necessary, you’re introducing time, aren’t you? It takes time and practice to develop skill, doesn’t it?

As I see it, it’s not skill in thinking that is needed. It’s awareness, self-observation, self-understanding. Part of self-understanding is seeing the limits of thought and the need for “stillness”, isn't it? And it is out of stillness that there is “right thinking”. By “right”, I mean sane, rational, harmonious thinking, in harmony with the order of the whole, not in discord or contradiction.

This post was last updated by Huguette . Thu, 22 Feb 2018.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Thu, 22 Feb 2018 #27
Thumb_profiel Wim Opdam Belgium 743 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
To me, saying that thinking is relatively new introduces an unnecessary complication to the issue we’re looking at. Thinking is an integral part of the human being. When you say that skill is necessary, you’re introducing time, aren’t you? It takes time and practice to develop skill, doesn’t it?

If the "I" is doing the thinking yes, but biological it is a fact that that function of the brain is relatively new. By using my own words on the same subject you may get the impression I disagree with what you are saying with the vocabulaire of the teaching but that's not the case.

For a craftsman to create something needs clocktime but no psycholical time, as soon as he is in the state of psychological time he is not straight anymore, but there seems to be no borderline, and yes awareness is for this to observe.

Truth will unfold itself for those who enquire their own actions and only to them and for them and to or for no one else.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Thu, 22 Feb 2018 #28
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 624 posts in this forum Offline

Wim,

I'm not saying we fundamentally disagree. I don't think we do.

But how is abstract thinking relatively new in the human? Did the first human beings not have the ability to make abstractions? Isn't that ability one of the things which defines him as a human? If a species does not have that capacity, is it human? The human being measures, compares, makes abstractions, extrapolates, a human being has a relatively hairless body, a distinct jaw, and so on. Without the characteristics of a human being, he is not a human being.

It's like saying that standing upright is relatively new. The human being has always stood upright. The species which does not stand upright is not a human being, is it? (Leaving aside individual anomalies, disease and injuries which are not reproduced in the next generation.) The species which does not naturally stand upright (chimpanzee etc.) cannot become human by practicing to stand upright.

(As an aside, I'm personally not convinced that human beings did evolve from other creatures into human beings.)

When you say, "Thinking is relatively new in the human creation", I see it as misleading - i.e. leading us away from the issue at hand. Why bring that in? The issue here is: why does the human being pretend. Does he pretend because thinking is relatively new? Or has humanity taken a wrong turn by giving thought primacy?

Later:

I realize that some animals also think but my point is that they think and act and function according to their species. They can't graduate to being human. Humans don't have to "improve" their thinking skills but understand them fully, if you see what I mean. Are humans the only species that desecrate their "God-given" abilities through lack of awareness and understanding?

This post was last updated by Huguette . Thu, 22 Feb 2018.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Thu, 22 Feb 2018 #29
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 624 posts in this forum Offline

#38:

Dan McDermott wrote:
...not just assertion and denial...

Yes.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Thu, 22 Feb 2018 #30
Thumb_profiel Wim Opdam Belgium 743 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
In this 'expanded' way of thinking, the problems that were unsolvable in the ordinary self-centered dimension of thought can be viewed and considered from a greater 'height' which necessitates a new and different approach to understanding them.

Dan, as long as one doesn't seeing it, this is hearsaying.
It's logical and plausible but It's not reality for the humankind!

Huguette . wrote:
Humans don't have to "improve" their thinking skills but understand them fully, if you see what I mean.

Is 'understanding them fully ' something else then "improve their thinking skill"? (Expliciet use of singular).

It's accepted that this way of using the brain is new, but this doesn't explain its wrong acting and 'fully understand' is the act of right doing, no time needed at that point.

At least some of us are aware of its wrong doing but still not fully understand its working.

Truth will unfold itself for those who enquire their own actions and only to them and for them and to or for no one else.

This post was last updated by Wim Opdam Thu, 22 Feb 2018.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Displaying posts 1 - 30 of 85 in total
To quote a portion of this post in your reply, first select the text and then click this "Quote" link.

(N.B. Be sure to insert an empty line between the quoted text and your reply.)