Krishnamurti & the Art of Awakening
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Evolution


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Mon, 04 Sep 2017 #31
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

Evolutionary Memes

I read Richard Dawkins 'The God Delusion' some months back and came across this word 'memes' that I'd often heard but never really understood what was being described by it. The idea is that there are units of culture which spread around like viruses, adapting and evolving within their environments. A modern meme might be 'freedom' or 'democracy,' for example. Certainly we can see how the idea or the practice of democracy has changed since Greek times. So at that level there is 'evolution.' But it strikes me that this is a very superficial construct. Meme, of course, is itself a meme and we are entitled to ask how it itself evolved and how it functions today. Does the concept of a world of competing 'memes' actually explain how society works, why humans act as they do, or does it function of obfuscate the facts? If there are deeper processes at work then 'memes' (insofar as they exist) are just the expressions of those deeper processes.

Behind all this is the fact that human ideas have certainly evolved and human society has certainly evolved and K asked if this type of evolution is truly significant for the future of humanity. If we move from one violence to another violence we have not dealt with violence, obviously. So K was asking a bigger question: Whether it is possible for humanity to evolve at all with respect to his nature-imposed temperament? He said that it was and offered himself as an example.

I can see the truth in that but when it is posed as 'enlightenment' I also see that we have merely invented another meme, one which is being mimicked throughout the world. Up to now I have not found anyone, not even K who has radically changed. K had never been violent in the first place so even he did not evolve or mutate from this to that. In which case, it does not seem to be a rational goal for any human being to set themselves. On the other hand, to understand one's own violence, neither to accept it or to renounce it, seems to me to be intelligent.

Meanwhile, the 'enlightenment' meme has captured a whole host of people, promising them some sort of escape. I think it only adds to the misery. I would also like to ask; is K's teaching part of that meme or is it something entirely different?

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Mon, 04 Sep 2017 #32
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 5 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
I'm attracted to his idea of 'negation' but then I change it into another, subtler form of 'accumulation'.

Yes. I want to negate myself so as to accumulate 'negation'. Paul says, I can't....no one has done it. Not even K, because K. never had a self to negate in the first place. So we're left with what is...what we are....violent...in conflict...and me trying to act upon that....to understand it...to try and change it. But all my efforts are an action OF it. I can't undo me. Even K admitted that it's like trying to pull oneself up by one's bootstraps.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Mon, 04 Sep 2017.

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Mon, 11 Sep 2017 #33
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

"The speaker is questioning that. He says there is no such thing as psychological evolution. You have to understand the nature of that statement, what is implied - that there is no movement as the evolution of the psyche which means there is no becoming. I don't become noble, I don't achieve enlightenment if I practise, if I strive, if I deny this or control, and so on, which is gradation in achievement."

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Mon, 11 Sep 2017 #34
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
I can't undo me.

Yes. 'You' cannot evolve into what 'you' are not.

'Evolve' originates from the Latin, meaning 'to roll out.' That has the implication that A does not become B but that B is A plus time. It's a peculiar concept because it suggests we are constantly fooled by time into believing things are changing as if by magic from one thing into another. If however B is a continuation of A then both A and B are functions of time. A was never A, in any pure sense but only perceived at one point along a time line in which at a later point it is perceived as B.

It seems to me that there is a problem at the heart of the concept of evolution. The problem has to do with how 'time' is introduced as if it is an independent factor that determines the trajectory of all things. 'Time' has become master. By taking time as something external, something that acts upon things and changes them as if from the outside, we have fragmented the whole process. Time is not something external which somehow acts upon things in order to change them. Time is simply a word that we have coined to explain change and movement in the first place. Yet we have made something extraordinary out of it. Time, movement, distance, change are practically indistinguishable from each other. They are words pointing to the same thing. They are analytical words, not independent variables. You cannot take one element out and say 'time does this.'

The elevation of 'time' to a master of change is implicit in the concept of evolution insofar as a 'rolling out' is presumed. I don't think Darwin's use of the term implied that but we do constantly slip into it.

Then to suggest something may happen 'outside of time' is fairly much the same thing but in reverse.

Darwin suggested that gradual change through successful adaptations could only take place if accompanied by small radical changes that themselves were not governed by adaptive success but were unpredictable and non-determined by environment having more to do with internal mechanisms which he called mutations. In other words, his theory combined gradualness (through time) with radical mutations (instantaneous) but behind that was the other axis between the external dynamic concerning adaptation and the internal dynamics concerning the mechanics of reproduction.

If that is the case then how can the question be understood, whether or not psychological evolution is possible? For instance, is there this radical element or is there only slow, accumulative adaptation? And if the latter, what is psyche adapting to?

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Mon, 11 Sep 2017 #35
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
For that to occur there has to be a "radical psychological revolution", an "explosion" of the 'center'. And that can only occur with the realization that the "observer is the observed".

Great. this observer has observed that the observer is the observed. What next?

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Tue, 12 Sep 2017 #36
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
That's it, you're done! Go, and sin no more.

A pat on the head? Is that all I get for reading all those books, watching all those videos, attending all those dialogues, eating all that veggie food? I want to evolve, I want to become the next K . . . or maybe god even. So please, don't talk to me like a fluffing military barber, I'm not done till I says I'm done.

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Tue, 12 Sep 2017 #37
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
Sorry big guy, that's it. The observer is the observed.

Gameplayers get more recommendations. That's true, but you have totally evaded the point. You wrote:

Dan McDermott wrote:
For that to occur there has to be a "radical psychological revolution", an "explosion" of the 'center'. And that can only occur with the realization that the "observer is the observed".

That's fine as a proposition. The proposition is that once one realises the observer is the observed then "a radical psychological revolution" can occur. So, as I point out, I have realised that the observer is the observed, you have realised it, many have realised it, yet the ""radical psychological revolution" is absent. This is why I asked "what next?"

You do not solve the problem by merely stating one key precondition for its solution. If you do not see that, then you are only confusing yourself with radical sounding phrases. The issue is the "radical psychological revolution," not its supposed precondition. It's like K said, you have entered the restaurant, read and understood the menu but you have not eaten. The point is to end the hunger, not to understand the menu.

To those who 'recommended' your comment: the comment was a clever riposte. Do you yourselves know why you recommended it? Did you not feel you were taking sides? Did you feel your ego being sated, set to rest, comforted by Dan's riposte? Did you think he had won match-point? Do you enjoy being spectators?

I would love to hear why you recommended it.

This post was last updated by Paul David son Tue, 12 Sep 2017.

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Wed, 13 Sep 2017 #38
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
I know that I have not understood what is behind those words of his.

That's fine but look at the belief imbued in your statement. You do not understand the meaning of the key phrase but you do believe the meaning is beyond thought and that once 'realised' (whatever that means) the road to radical psychological transformation will be opened.

I think here we get to one of John Raica's 'paradoxes.' The paradox is in fact in your own mind. You believe in the transformative power of 'the observer is the observed' without understanding what 'the observer is the observed means' whilst at the same time believing that you are not believing but knowing.

Just step back and look at what you actually know and where contradictions have crept in.

For example, I say that I realise the observer is the observed but that knowing this has not led to any significant transformation in my case. I do not give my realisation any magical powers. I do not invest emotionally in the idea that knowing that the observer is the observed will be a precondition for any radical development. Therefore I am not in contradiction and there is for me no paradox.

There's nothing magic about it. When you look at yourself it is that same self which is looking at itself and that observation is necessarily limited. There is no separate 'I' that looks at its thoughts. The looking is thought, a process of thought turning back and reflecting on itself. In self-reflection, the observer and the observed are one. I have no doubt about it because I can see it very clearly and nothing else I see suggests anything other.

You probably see it clearly too only you have somehow slipped into the belief that this realisation must come with a radical bang that obliterates the 'I' and as it hasn't done so you haven't really seen it clearly at all. Can't you see the trick being played out?

Look, let's pretend I am a guru and my trademark line is "You are who you are." I tell people that everyone believes they are someone who they are not or else they are trying to be other than they are but, I say, that once you realise "you are who you are" and actually live that understanding, then you will be free of who you are not.

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Wed, 13 Sep 2017 #39
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
the "observer is the observed" seems to include 'everything' and do away totally with any individual thing. A "radical psychological revolution", an "explosion" of the 'center'...

The same could be said of "you are who you are."

Deepak Chopra has a line that goes like this: "What is a guru? Spell it out. G U R U . . . gee, you are you! That's all you need to know."

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Wed, 13 Sep 2017 #40
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

As a statement of fact, 'the observer is the observed' is a simple observation, an uncluttered truth. There is no need to give it transformative powers, no need to invest it in mystical fancy. It is radical in itself as it gets to the root of the nature of self-reflection and why self-reflection is always limited.

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Wed, 13 Sep 2017 #41
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
No , no "transformative power", they are just words that I think, attempt to convey a radically different way of seeing the world and our place in it.

What is the way of seeing the world that 'the observer is the observed" is radically different from? Could you please demonstrate what the way of seeing the world is for us now. I don't mean someone else's seeing of the world. How do you yourself see the world that is so different from what you imagine is the post-revolutionary way of seeing it? How do you see the world?

You wrote before:

Dan McDermott wrote:
the "observer is the observed" seems to include 'everything' and do away totally with any individual thing. A "radical psychological revolution", an "explosion" of the 'center'...

Now I am not sure of what you are saying, Dan. Let's take it step by step. You first wrote:

Dan McDermott wrote:
The duality of the experiencer apart from the experience, etc. Is the question, can time bring about an end to the 'self, to the 'ego', an end to this 'arrangement'? K. says no. For that to occur there has to be a "radical psychological revolution", an "explosion" of the 'center'. And that can only occur with the realization that the "observer is the observed".

So there you were saying that the end of "the duality of the experiencer apart from the experience . . . can only occur with the realization that the 'observer is the observed.'" It seemed to me you were saying (or you were explaining that K said) that for those two things to happen there needs to be "a radical psychological revolution, an explosion of the center." Is that a correct understanding of what you were saying?

So we need the psychological revolution before we realise that the observer is the observed. Is that it?

But here is the thing, I already realise that the observer is the observed yet there has been no psychological revolution. It's simply an observable fact. The ending of the ego was not required to see it.

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Wed, 13 Sep 2017 #42
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

Here is a section from a K public dialogue from Brockwood Park, Sept 1973.

K: Yes sir, we have said that. When the observer is the observed, conflict ceases. Which is the greatest thing, isn't it? You don't see it. Conflict ceases. Has conflict ceased with you when you realise the observer is the observed? Until that conflict ceases you don't see the reality that the observer is the observed. It is just words then. The moment you see that, the reality of it, conflict has come to an end, the 'me' and not the 'me'. The 'me' is the 'you' - you follow?

So what takes place when there is no conflict, which means when the observer is the observed? Have you ever meditated? I see several of you sitting under the various trees, (Laughter) with great attention. Have you ever meditated? This is meditation - you understand sir. It is the greatest meditation, to come upon this extraordinary thing, which is to discover for oneself - for the mind to discover for itself the observer is the observed, therefore no conflict, which means not vegetation, just - you follow? - just doing nothing. On the contrary.

So I have to find the answer; what takes place when the mind realises the image and the observer of that image are the same? And it has come to that point because it has investigated - you understand? - it hasn't just said, 'That is so'. It has gone into itself. It says, the learning, observing, to observe there must be no prejudice, prejudice is an image, is that image different from the observer. All that is an enquiry. Enquiry in which there is attention, therefore that enquiry brings about the realisation that the observer is the observed, and therefore the mind is tremendously alive, it isn't a dead mind. It is an original, unspoilt mind.

This post was last updated by Paul David son Wed, 13 Sep 2017.

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Wed, 13 Sep 2017 #43
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

It seems from the above that since I am still in conflict I have not seen that the observer is the observed. Yet I insist I have seen it. Perhaps I have not seen it in the right way so I ask, what is the right way to see it?

The problem, it seems to me, is this: It is not enough for the conscious mind to see that fundamentally there is no difference between the observer and the observed. That realisation does not of itself solve a thing. The mind has simply acknowledged that it is in conflict with itself, not with some other thing. The mind is realising that it's main source of conflict is within, not without. It's good that it realises it but for that realisation a revolution is not necessary, just the clearing of some wrong notions by the seeing of the fact. Neither does the realisation bring about a revolution.

It's good when facts become apparent and the debris from wrong notions is cleared away. I have no doubt of that. K was immersed from his youth in collective thought processes (Hinduism and then Theosophy) which preached separation of the mind from the soul which was supposed to possess it. That traditional view permeated most religions and he finally broke from it. The 'you' which is trying to control 'its' mind is the same mind it is trying to control, therefore we must be dealing with a fragmented process. All efforts aimed at control of one fragment by another act to further that same fragmentation. Therefore the religious path (if 'religion' is taken as meaning to reconnect, to form true integrity of the divided mind, but on an entirely new basis) cannot be one of control. That is what K saw and why he pressed the point so strongly amongst his followers who were largely from Hindu and/or Theosophical backgrounds.

But to invest the statement 'the observer is the observed' with more than it can stand kills the very thing he discovered. It darkens the thing that K brought into the light and becomes the standard-bearer for a new confusion.

This post was last updated by Paul David son Wed, 13 Sep 2017.

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Wed, 13 Sep 2017 #44
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
Yes I would say so. The "revolution" consists of the dissolution of the 'I' process which maintains the duality (distance) between the "observer and the observed"

The implication is that although I may see that the observer is the observed the seeing makes no difference to me as I have not undergone that revolution. And once I have undergone the revolution the phrase has no further use for me anyhow.

Dan, the revolution, according to K, begins and ends when there is no longer any observer to observe and therefore nothing to observe in any case. That is the meaning of dissolution. No observer and nothing to observe except that which arises out of nothing and returns to nothing every moment

Fine, we all see the logic in it but so far as I can see it cannot help me and has nothing at all to do with the life I lead. It may be or it may not be and I have no way of knowing.

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Wed, 13 Sep 2017 #45
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

If we can admit that all our thinking about it and speculation about it is a product of our own knowledge and therefore has nothing to do with it, then at least there will be some clarity.

Then we may see the difference between dialogue and collective speculation.

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Thu, 14 Sep 2017 #46
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

John Raica wrote:
In fact, Paul, we do have a way of knowing it: it is generically called 'meditation' and -if properly done - everything is coming together very nicely indeed.

This is a K site so I reference that comment back to K. K said meditation is what happens when thought is absent. When the self is no longer then life is meditation. K had very strong disagreement with those who said the path of meditation leads somewhere. He said that that was 'becoming.' First I am this. Then I meditate. Then I become that. For K there was no such thing as 'properly doing meditation.' I wonder if the difference is understood?

John Raica wrote:
The experiential proof is by 'doing' not by 'knowing'. So, you leave your 'knowing shoes' at the gate...

Personally, I do not have 'knowing shoes' with regard either meditation or what it is supposed to lead to. Also, when the measure of truth is experience ("experiential proof") K would surely have asked, who is the experiencer?

The feeling that one has improved, benefited, changed, is very subjective and the subject is, in K's terms, called the experiencer. The experiencer goes through new experience, always from the history of previous experience, and this gives him the feeling of movement and improvement. He feels something has been cleared. This partial and accumulative change may be real but it is not what K was teaching.

The gradual evolution of the self through all its changing forms is guided by its internal contradictions and is a constant source of new experience but as we see, that which gets cleared is replaced with new confusions. It is the sowing of blighted seeds.

I think K's point was that meditation begins when the self is not.

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Thu, 14 Sep 2017 #47
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

I noticed that John posted earlier but I didn't get a chance to really take it in. Now I'm back home and came back to look for it and it's gone. Strange sort of game the man plays with one. Is it a form of meditation, I wonder?

Look folks, let's get serious. No form of self-hypnosis is going to do what K says you have to do, which is to mutate. Meditation can mean whatever you want it to mean. If it simply means inquiring into the nature of the self then this can be done in many ways and if you want to call some of them meditation, feel free.

So, K says, first there must be self knowledge and that is brought about when the mind examines every thought and distraction to its end. When this self knowledge comes about the mind is clear and free of all desire and is therefore still. When the mind is still the immeasurable can enter and a marvelous transformation takes place. K states: "The understanding of all this is meditation, not just one part of it. Because, if we do not know how to meditate, we will not know how to act."

(The section of the talk I'm referring to can be found here

K in that talk was asked what "true meditation was," a question he switched to 'right meditation." For there to be 'right meditation' one thing is essential, he says, and that is for the mind to examine every thought and distraction that comes up and follow them through right to the end. And here is the conundrum: The mind cannot do that because it is fragmented and driven in many directions at once. It may start by trying to do it but it cannot keep it up for long. The very thing K says is essential is the very thing it cannot do.

This post was last updated by Paul David son Thu, 14 Sep 2017.

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Fri, 15 Sep 2017 #48
Thumb_leaping_fire_frog_by_sirenofchaos natarajan shivan India 6 posts in this forum Offline

Paul David son wrote:
I have no doubt of that. K was immersed from his youth in collective thought processes (Hinduism and then Theosophy) which preached separation of the mind from the soul which was supposed to possess it.

Paul, as I see, it's a misconception that Hinduism preached a separation of the mind from the soul; it is true that a separation was intended (as a part of Karmic cause/effect flow of events), but what was said is that: in the act of perception, there is no soul to be considered apart from the mind or the object of perception, soul essentially acts as substratum in all acts of cognition; in other words, all three (knower, known and knowledge) are illumined together in the singular act of perception, self knowing as opposed to self knowledge. There is no sense of a separate observer in observation.

contraria sunt complementa

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Fri, 15 Sep 2017 #49
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

Thank you for the clarification Natarajan. The Hindus I have known however maybe have not been so well acquainted with the roots of their dogma as you. It always seemed to me there was great effort in trying to control the mind or to channel it, whether that be through meditation or puja. I admit to being an outsider however.

If you asked me, who was brought up in the Jewish faith, what were the roots of Judaism I would have to say they are far apart from its contemporary practice.

It seems to me all organized religion has this tendency to separate the mind from itself so that one fraction is set on controlling the other by means of various practices which thereby set the mind on what is called the path of the true believer.

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Mon, 18 Sep 2017 #50
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

"What is important is to know oneself, and not what is beyond oneself."

Krishnamurti Quote of the Day | Sep 18, 2017

Yes, it is perhaps the most important thing but it is through what one actually does that one knows oneself, through what one observes oneself do in relationship, not by sticking ones head up ones own anus to take a look.

I do not doubt that many revelations are possible, revelations that are capable of leading to radical changes in direction. Too much introspection is a drag on that possibility. You get caught up in the observer/observed whirlwind, the hall of mirrors. It is easy to fool oneself through introspection, including that kind of introspection called meditation. To find out what you are you first have to observe what you do, which is a constant revelation, especially to the mind that has been caught up in observing internally.

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1 day ago #51
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 39 posts in this forum Offline

The sort of meditation K spoke of was to do with observing ones relationships in real time, not as he put it 'sitting cross-legged' etc. He disdained the various practices that go under the title 'meditation' and instead taught that meditation is life and that life is relationship. When I hear of the step by step improvements that something called 'meditation' bring I am reminded that we are in a constant state of 'improvement' in any case. Anyone who is looking at themselves and trying to more successfully adjust to their social environment is already making such improvements, which are accumulative and have gone on all our lives. The 'ego' adjusts to improve its relationships, smooth its path and increase its happiness. That happens with or without practices but when you engage in a practice you generally tend to believe those small steps forward are the result of your practices and you become beholden to the method you have adopted.

The ego evolves but this is the incremental path to social adjustment called civilisation. The ego is the means by which man becomes civil. Whatever advantage this may offer the individual, it does not change the world.

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