Monday, February 11, 2013

Jiddu Krishnamurti on suffering

Question: What is the purpose of suffering? Is it to teach us not to repeat the same mistake?

Jiddu Krishnamurti : There is no purpose in suffering. Suffering exists because of the lack of comprehension. Most of us suffer economically, spiritually, or in our relationships with each other. Why is there this suffering?

Economically, we have a system based on acquisitiveness, exploitation, fear; this system is being encouraged and maintained by our cravings and pursuits, and so it is self-sustaining. Acquisitiveness and a system of exploitation must go together, and they are ever present where there is ignorance of oneself. It is again a vicious circle; our craving has produced a system, and that system maintains itself by exploiting us.

There is suffering in our relationships with others. It is created by an inner craving for comfort, security, possession. Then there is that suffering caused by profound uncertainty, which prompts us to find peace, security, reality, God. Craving certainty, we invent many theories, create many beliefs, and the mind becomes limited and enmeshed in them, overheated with them, and so it is incapable of adjusting itself to the movement of life.

There are many kinds of suffering, and if you begin to discern their cause, you will perceive that suffering must coexist with the demand on the part of each individual to be secure, whether financially, spiritually, or in human relationship. Where there is a search for security, gross or subtle, there must be fear, exploitation and sorrow.

Instead of comprehending the cause of sorrow, you ask what is its purpose. You want to utilize sorrow to gain something further. So you begin to invent the purpose; you say that sorrow is the result of a past life, it is the result of environment, and so on. These explanations satisfy you, so you continue in your ignorance, with the constant recurrence of sorrow.

Suffering exists where there is ignorance of oneself. It is but an indication of limitation, of incompleteness. There is no remedy for suffering itself. In the discernment of the process of ignorance, suffering disappears.

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