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Choiceless awareness, Krishnamurti-style

Making a choice involves memory as knowledge, experience, psychological time, and so on, doesn’t it?


But this process of choice can’t be “transferred” to deciding what action to take under and for turmoil, depression, anger, fear, loneliness, isolation, conflict, anxiety, obligation, the pressures of duty, obligation, conformity, authority, the unconscious, and so on.

Why not? Isn’t that what a psychotherapist does? And if you become your own psychotherapist, you can do it for yourself.

There, we don’t see clearly, we don’t know what to do, what action to take and yet we blindly make choices.

Again, a good therapist, external or internal, is not blind in the face of adversity.

In a state of chaos, can the self choose action wisely by sifting through time, knowledge, memory?

An intelligent and skilled self, perhaps. Intelligent in the sense of being able to see what’s really going on. Skilled as in not falling apart when chaos arrives.

Awareness is not a choice and it neither includes or excludes and yet action is choicelessly engendered where there is awareness. No?

Awareness is always there, yet effortless (no choice involved) action is not always there. So I’d say that action flows quasi-effortlessly from awareness that is not hijacked and distorted by thought.

What do you think?

If psychotherapy is the answer to the chaos, then we have our answer. As Dan indirectly points out, isn’t the psychotherapist (either a professional or “me” acting as my own psychotherapist) conditioned? To me, psychotherapy - which is based on knowledge and time - is powerless to determine right action or to effect meaningful change in relationship. What is needed is something fundamentally new to govern relationship and action.

In any case, is the answer we are seeking merely personal - to improve my own life, to find personal happiness or peace? Can one find personal happiness or peace where global madness is raging - war, famine, greed, corruption and so on? Is my personal happiness - in which I am happy while the world suffers - a “fundamental change”?

Jiddu discussed about choice and unawareness.

He said that if the mind does not have clarity about what it wants, then choice arises.

Please share your thought

In The Urgency of Change during a talk with a questioner, the questioner says to K, “you want me to die” and K says “yes”. The ‘death’ of the ‘me’, it seems to me IS the fundamental change. And in that sense it is a ‘non-change’,( the end of change). The dissolution of the ‘me’ is what is being called for, nothing less. Through insight the presence of this ‘me factor’ can be felt. In looking about at nature, it seems to be the factor that is generally missing. and perhaps the reason for the lack of chaos, confusion and violence there.

Why does based on knowledge and time mean powerless for right action or relationship change?

What is the fundamentally new thing that is needed?

These are good questions. I think one can find personal happiness and peace in the midst of ‘external’ chaos. But I identify more with the individual than the collective. Those who identify more with the collective might say that personal happiness is dependent on collective happiness.

If one’s understanding is that knowledge and time HAVE the ability or power to act rightly, then one has no need to question this any further, does one? If you have decided that knowledge and time can solve the human crisis, I’m not trying to convince you otherwise.

Can something that already exists, something that is already known, be totally new? To say that “something new is needed” is not to say that I know what is needed. It means that — in my understanding ---- what already exists, what is already known is incapable of bringing about a new action or a new relationship.

Is it important or necessary to identify with anything, the individual or the collective or anything else?


I question everything, my own views especially! You don’t?

Why not?

I don’t know. I identify with certain things, but am often (not always!) aware of this identification.

Which means that “one’s understanding is that knowledge and time HAVE the ability or power to act rightly”.

Will there ever be a time when we feel we understand enough, that there is no fundamental self-correction forthcoming through further looking, studying, deliberation or adjustment?

The process of self-scrutiny, enlightening as it is, perhaps needs to be turned onto itself. I have seen the enemy and the enemy is me etc. This IMHO is the ultimate challenge. How to not resort to further problem solving - to be still through understanding rather than through conviction.

Or rather, for stillness to be there as an energized background (or is it foreground?) process as we go about our daily self-improvement routine.

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Did Krishnamurti speak from an understanding he had honed to perfection in the past? Or did he arrive at the understanding sitting there in front of his audience in the present moment?

I suspect it was a mix of the two: He had worked things out, had key insights about the nature of reality and self, and then when he was speaking he retrieved these insights from memory and verified their rightness in his mind before uttering them.

So perhaps insights stored in memory can be retrieved and used as a starting point for understanding a situation in the present moment? Like a theme and variations.

Krishnamurthy participated in active discussion for many years. Every time he participated, his mind will get updated with new understandings and corrections to older ones. Therefore, I can say his mind is dynamic in nature. It is same for every one of us too (If mind is open to understand).

Dynamic, yes, always changing. Looking at greed now is not the same as looking at greed yesterday, though it may bear a kind of familial resemblance. It’s the same with the self, yes? sivaram of now bears a resemblance to sivaram of 10 years ago, but they are not identical.

Yes, change will take place. Depending on the situation faced, the person’s psychological structure will definitely change.

I found this interesting when I read it in The Urgency of Change, K. pointed out that real change is a denial of change. The only real change is “non-change”.

Hi Dan,
I think, our understanding and experience will have an impact on our personalities. Maybe Jiddu is talking about the change, after reaching some particular operating point psychologically, which I do not know exactly. For example, after understanding Jiddu to some extent there is a change in my personality. In that sense, I said the mind is dynamic and it is updated with new understandings and corrections to the older one.

Thank for sharing your view.

Choiceless awareness is being aware of whatever is happening to you at the moment without any discrimination condemnation etc.

Sounds about right, thanks, and welcome to the forum. :slight_smile:

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There is no place to arrive at. It is not something outlandish but here and now.

How does it happen without any intention to make it happen?

What intention is required to observe something?

The intention to observe visually or aurally, the intention to observe this or that, the intention to observe instead of blanking out.