Auckland, New Zealand | 3rd Vasanta School Gardens Talk 2nd April, 1934
...there is a fear of another kind, the fear of inward poverty. There is the fear of external poverty, and then there is the fear of being shallow, of being empty, of being lonely. So, being afraid, we resort to the various remedies in the hope of enriching ourselves. Whereas, what is really happening? You are merely covering up that hollowness, that shallowness, by innumerable remedies. It may be the remedy of literature, by reading a great deal - not that I am against reading. It may be this exaggeration of sport, this continual rush, of keeping together at all costs, being in the run, belonging to certain groups, certain classes, certain societies, being in the clique, among the smart set. You know, we all go through it. All these but indicate the fear of that loneliness which you must inevitably face one day or the other. And as long as that emptiness exists, that shallowness, that hollowness, that void, there must be fear.
To be really free of that fear, which is to be free of that emptiness, that shallowness, is not to cover it up by remedies; but rather to recognize that shallowness, become aware of it, which gives you then the alertness of mind to find out the values and the significance of each experience, of each standard, of each environment. Through that you will discover true intelligence; and intelligence is deep, profound, limitless, and therefore shallowness disappears. It is when you are trying to cover it up, trying to gain something to fill that emptiness, that the emptiness grows more and more. But, if you know that you are empty, not try to run away, in that awareness your mind becomes very acute, because you are suffering. The moment you are conscious that you are empty, hollow, there is tremendous conflict taking place. In that moment of conflict you are discovering, as you move along, the significance of experience - the standards, the values of society, of religion, of the conditions placed upon you. Instead of covering up emptiness, there is a depth of intelligence. Then you are never lonely even if you are by yourself or with a huge crowd, then there is no such thing as emptiness, shallowness.