Monday, March 25, 2013

Krishnamurti - Choiceless observation

Choiceless Observation

Choiceless observation or awareness is the crux of Krishnamurti's philosophy of life. To him, choiceless observation is the only 'way', the direct and 'intelligent' way of understanding the truth of 'what is'. It alone can transform the fact, the actuality by revealing its true nature. It is only 'through' it that consciousness can be emptied of its content. Krishnamurti maintains that excepting choiceless awareness, there is no other way of regenerating the human mind and the world irreversibly and instantaneously. Choiceless observation is the observation of 'what is', the fact or the actuality without the movement of thought which is knowledge or past. It is the observation devoid of the observer, the centre, the censor, the 'me' or the thinker which is thought. It is the awareness without the division as the observer and the observed. It is a holistic observation in which the observer 'is' the observed. In it there in no reaction, resistance, justification and condemnation. It is a pure observation sans remembrance, recollection, recognition and naming. It is free from ideas, ideals and opinions. It is observation without prejudice, likes and dislikes. It is without a motive and an end in view.

Choiceless awareness is an understanding in which the previous experience is totally absent. It is 'experiencing' 'what is' without the experiences. It is a 'negative' approach to the fact. It is an awareness in which the psychological past is totally negated. It is the denial of knowledge in understanding. It is a 'passive' awareness without effort. It is a 'silent' observation without the activity of thought. It is 'silence' with which thought does not interfere in any form. According to Krishnamurti, the negative and the passive approach is the most active and positive one. It alone leads to the absolute certainty which is truth. Scepticism is the basis of true spirituality. Choiceless awareness is not understanding the fact from a particular point of view. It is not moulding it according to a preconceived conclusion. It is not fitting 'what is' into the framework of a system. It does not involve intellectualisation, interpretation, explanation or theorisation. Nor does it warrant analysis or introspection. Choiceless awareness is 'perceiving' the fact without translating it to knowledge. This awareness is not evolutionary. It is not a 'progressive' or a gradual understanding of 'what is' by accumulating knowledge about it. It is not movement from the past to the future, but it is 'seeing' the fact without distorting and dividing it. It is 'remaining with' 'what is' without moving away from it. It is the complete attention of holding the totality of 'what is', like a vessel holding water. Total attention generates the energy that regenerates 'what is'

Choiceless observation is an experimental approach of allowing 'what is' to reveal itself as it exactly and essentially is. It is an unpremeditated art of 'looking' at 'what is' directly and wholly. It is a non-verbal and non-conceptual understanding. It is an acausal and a timeless 'insight' into 'what is'. Insight is the comprehension of the truth of 'what is', in a 'flash'. "The insight is not analysis, time, remembrance, all that. It is the immediate perception of something" 13 . It is an absolute observation of allowing the 'what is' to 'flower' freely and fully. The spontaneous and total flowering of the 'what is' is the ending of its bondage. "Truth is when there is the realisation that the observer is the observed. Then, in that realisation, which is truth, the conditioning disappears"

The Philosophy of Jiddu Krishnamurti

G. VEDAPARAYANA Department of Philosophy, Sri Venkateswara University, Tirupati, lndia.

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