Krishnamurti & the Art of Awakening

Krishnamurti Quote of the Day

Group Discussion 29th December, 1947 | Madras, India

You now want to know what Karma means. Karma really means either to do or to be, and it comprises (i) the instinctive responses of the physical and (ii) the cultural responses of the psychological human being. The cultural responses are educated, controlled, conditioned and disciplined. Society, by means of its discipline, impinges on the individual and changes his impulses. The individual has also inherited impulses from his past. So the present is the passage from the past to the future. His cultural and psychological responses are from the past but modified by the conjunction of the past with the present. Thus, the past is controlling and modifying the present - i.e. the cause which was in the past brings about an effect in the present. The past modified by, or flowing through, the present produces action which is also conditioned. The old, meeting the new challenge, produces modified action - i.e. the new is always modified by the old. The past is the 'me' and in conjunction with the present, the 'me', produces action. The past itself was a series of modifications- yesterday was a modification of the day before yesterday in conjunction with yesterday's present; similarly, the day before yesterday was the modification of the day before in conjunction with the present of the day before yesterday. Today is a modification of yesterday in conjunction with today's present. Thus, the 'modifier' is the continuous entity of the days before yesterday, yesterday and today. The modifier is the actor and he is the result of modification of the innumerable days before yesterday. Therefore, he is the creator of time - the time of memory not chronological time. As the actor is the result of the past, he necessarily causes modification to the present when he meets the present which is new. This meeting of the past with the challenge of the present which is new, leads to conflict which results in modification of the new into the old. In other words, your feeling now is conditioned by what you felt yesterday and all the days before. Therefore, in meeting a new challenge today you act in a conditioned manner and therefore you feel pain.

Tags: karma

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