Creative Thinking

Hello @voyager,

I hope you had a nice day while running your errands!

From his observable changes of language style, as you have pointed out, it seems that truth or “what is” is not static but dynamic. We may learn that conclusions can become dead when it stops the movement of “what is” and becomes certainty. Thus I think it may be beneficial to always be fresh and in a continuous observation. I got some good notes on this but I can’t find the quote but this is the closest quote to my note that may help with this one:

From the Book: Total Freedom: The Essential Krishnamurti
The book has no page numbers, it’s under the title: THE FIRST AND LAST FREEDOM

K: “So, we can have understanding of what is when we recognize it without condemnation, without justification, without identification. To know that one is in a certain condition, in a certain state, is already a process of liberation; but a man who is not aware of his condition, of his struggle, tries to be something other than he is, which brings about habit. So, then, let us keep in mind that we want to examine what is, to observe and be aware of exactly what is the actual, without giving it any slant, without giving it an interpretation. It takes an extraordinarily astute mind, an extraordinarily pliable heart, to be aware of and to follow what is; because what is is constantly moving, constantly undergoing a transformation, and if the mind is tethered to belief, to knowledge, it ceases to pursue, it ceases to follow the swift movement of what is. What is is not static, surely it is constantly moving, as you will see if you observe it very closely. To follow it, you need a very swift mind and a pliable heart—which are denied when the mind is static, fixed in a belief, in a prejudice, in an identification; and a mind and heart that are dry cannot follow easily, swiftly, that which is.”

I’m a bit slower and cannot follow well on this one…intelligence is of the mind. What or where else would intelligence happen? Intelligence is not the product of the mechanical thought. Not sure if the question is relative, if you like, please clarify.

I’m not sure if I have understood you correctly, so please forgive me if my reply is not pertinent.

The quotation you posted is quite clear. What is not clear to me is why you associated it with the issue of changes in K.'s language style. Also reading the last part of your posts it suggests me that there is something missing in our communication.

First of all it’s not only a problem of style but also of using the proper word and a proper definition and explanations. Communication is a delicate thing and more so when we are talking of things you cannot touch or see.

I may be wrong but at a first reading of the whole talk he gave in Ojai in 1934, he is contradicting himself, or at least what he said in later years.

The title of the talk is “creative thinking”, and you have read the way he talks about creativity of the thought. Maybe I’m getting senile and confuse things, but I remember K. saying in his talks and in many books that thought cannot be creative because it’s the response of memory, the past, while creativity is in the present. Right?

Then there is the question of the “movement of thought”. The talk starts with the following sentence:

What we call happiness or ecstasy is to me creative thinking. And creative thinking is the infinite movement of thought, emotion and action."

Does it make sense to you? To me it doesn’t, if I think of what is the basis of his teaching. The infinite movement of thought. What is it? In all his talks I listened he said that the movement of thought must come to an end for the “sacre” to be. And meditation is just a silent mind not disturbed by any thought.
I never heard him speaking of happiness and that ecstasy could refer to the meditative state.

Don’t worry, I’l slower than you. :slightly_smiling_face:
In the excerp you quoted K. seems to attribute intelligence to thought. While I remember him saying that thought is not intelligent (but intelligence can use thought). But as I have said in my previous post, here it could be just a matter of imprecise wording. What he probably meant was that if thought is not tied to fixed ideas then the intelligence of the mind can operate in thought. And this is OK. But what about infinite movement? I really don’t understand that. What I remember him saying is that when the movement of thought stops, there is another kind of energy (infinite energy?) or movement which goes on which do not belong to thought.

I still have to read the whole talk and perhas I’m confounding things here. So maybe you might help me to understand it better.

If I may stick in a couple of points here regarding the ‘movement’ of thought. ‘Thinking’ is a ‘sense’ along with our other senses. It accompanies what we see, hear, smell, touch, etc. Where it has ‘gone wrong’ is in its assuming a role as controller over the other senses. K put it that the “identification” of thought with sensation is the “arising of the self”. This I take to be ‘psychological thought’. It is like and dislike, etc. of what is perceived. It is of value to survival to discern danger. But psychologically ‘becoming’ this or that,brought into the psyche the idea of ‘time’ and unlike the other senses which only always function in the timeless Now, overrules them. This is the ‘thought’ that “must end” , this is the time that "must have a stop. As I see it.

1 Like

Yes, this does make sense to me. Yet it remains the question of what is the “infinite” moviment of thought. I know that practical, or technical thought has a place in life, but why infinite? And why it produces happiness or ecstasy? There must be more than that or maybe, as I suggested, he is not precise in wording and he’s speaking of the mind and not of thought. Remember it was 1934, and he had not yet developped his unique and original language.

So on the basis of K’s denunciation of paranormal abilities, you believe he would nevertheless read minds and foretell the future. Why not take him at his word and assume he eschewed all that? If you’re of the opinion that he couldn’t help but be informed by these powers, why would he speak of them at all?

It’s difficult, if not impossible, to always discern the difference between psychological thought and practical thought. The former is incoherent thought because it is based on an imaginary person, one’s self, and the latter is necessary thought because it is based on concrete facts. But these two are often fused together and the confusion results in incoherent thought.

This is not to say that it’s futile to examine every thought and intention to determine its nature, but to be mindful of the fact that the illusion of self makes clarity impossible, and incoherent thought inescapable.

Hello @voyager, @DanMcD

I forgive you @voyager voyager for anything, but only under one condition, that you forgive me for my ignorance.

I was not saying much, except that I was taking the movement of K’s style of language as an example that even his description of truth has undergone transformations. Truth is alive and not static. Probably not a good association, delete! The miscommunication may come by my poor writing abilities, please-please disregard.

I agree, creativity is in the present.

Lets see if this helps, this is my logic: I made the assumption that you can have intelligence AND have thoughts arise (as a natural function of the brain and for the usage of practical reasons). And if you are aware of those thoughts, emotions, and actions (without resistance), then that’s intelligence. The thoughts, actions, emotions may not be intelligent but the observation of them are. And the process of “creative thinking” (which is in the present) is the awareness of “what is” (could be thoughts, feeling, actions). Thus “What is” is a continuous movement of anything that arises (thoughts, feelings, actions).

And the ‘intelligence ‘ isn’t mine or yours, right? It reads between the lines of thought, emotions and actions? Is it ‘awareness’? Is it what we are?

Hello @DanMcD
And the ‘intelligence ‘ isn’t mine or yours, right?
If intelligence is operating thus no division (me, you, etc), so this question may not apply.

It reads between the lines of thought, emotions and actions?
Intelligence is not static thus it does not create conclusions, certainty, etc., of what arises but only observation, so this question may not apply.

Is it ‘awareness’?
I think so, just awareness.

Is it what we are?
If intelligence is operating thus no division(me, you, etc), so this question may not apply.

Yes, that is just what I meant,

I agree with your “logic” and your whole explanation, still I cannot cope with that expression

“And creative thinking is the infinite movement of thought, emotion and action.”

I made a research today about creativity, here it is what I have found. I think it’s worth comparing the quotation here below with your quotation.


“Creativeness is not a continuous state, it is new from moment to moment, it is a movement in which there is not the “me”, the “mine”, in which the thought is not focused on any particular experience, ambition, achievement, purpose and motive . It is only when the self is not that there is creativeness.”

(This -above- could be a clue to what he stated in your quotation)

“If we can understand ourselves as we are from moment to moment without the process of accumulation, then we shall see how there comes a tranquility that is not a product of the mind, a tranquility that is neither imagined nor cultivated; and only in that state of tranquility can there be creativeness.”

The first and last freedom, chapter 4

“Can the mind which is the result of time, be creative? Is not creativeness something out of time, beyond time, and therefore beyond the mind?”

Benares, 24 January 1954, talk 3

“because that creativeness comes only when the mind is utterly still ”.

Paris, 30 April 1950, talk 4

“Surely, creativeness comes into being only when there is absence of thought which is of the me', of the mine’”.

Poona, 19 September 1948, talk 4

“Only when every movement of thought is understood and therefore comes to an end - only then is there creativeness.”

Paris 23 April 1950, talk 3


I wonder if is there anyone in this forum who is interested in clarifying the relationship between thought and creativity. Is “creative thinking” mentioned even in other books/talks beside “Total Freedom: The Essential Krishnamurti”?

I made a second search on “creative thinking”, based on the CD-rom the foundation produced with all the texts of K.

I made an interesting discovery which confirmed my suspicion. K. used the expression “creative thinking” only in talks until about 1947, then from 1948 on he stopped talking about it and on the contrary he declared that there is no such a thing as “creative thinking”.

He also (before 1948) made a distinction between “thinking” and “thought” (Ojai 1944), something he never made afterwards and which logically has no sense.

So, to me this is the evidence that K. changed radically his way of teaching and expressing his discoveries. Probably he realized that the term “creative thinking” was ambiguous and could lead to misunderstanding. We better consider this when reading older books of K.

The quotations are only a few of the hundreds which came out, still it can be too long to read. I hope not to bore you.


“It is only when mind is freed from all this accumulation, from beliefs, ideals, principles, memories, that there is creative thinking. You cannot blindly put away accumulation; you can be free from it only when you understand it. Then there is creative thought ; then there is an eternal movement. Then mind is no longer separated from action.

1st Public Talk. Adyar, India; 29th December, 1933

“As the majority of people have lost the joy of creative thinking, naturally they turn to the mere sensation of sex,”

Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, 2nd Public Talk 17th April, 1935

“You may read many philosophies and yet not know the bliss of creative thinking, which can exist only when the mind and heart begin to free themselves through conflict, through constant awareness, from the stupidities of the past and from those that are being built up. Then only is there the ecstasy of that which is true.”

New York City,1st Public Talk 11th March, 1935

“Right thinking is a continual process born of self-discovery, of self-awareness. There is no beginning and no end to this process so right thinking is eternal. Right thinking is timeless; it is not bound by the past, by memory, not limited by formulation. It is born of freedom from fear and hope. Without the living quality of self-knowledge, right thinking is not possible. Right thinking is creative for it is a constant process of self-discovery. Right thought is thought conditioned ; it is a result, is made up, is put together; it is the outcome of a pattern, of memory, of habit, of practice…”

Ojai, California, 3rd Public Talk 28th May, 1944

(So here above he’s making a distinction between right thinking and right thought, a distinction he later on abandoned.)

“So there must be a creative revolution in thinking and that is extremely difficult. And because it is difficult we look to somebody else, to the example, to the leader. What do I mean by creative thinking? Do we think at all or do we merely respond to a certain set of conditions? Is that thinking? Because you are a Hindu, you are conditioned in a certain manner or if a Muslim, a Buddhist, or what ever it be, your response is to that particular conditioning. Surely that is not thinking.”

Madras 3rd Public Talk 2nd November, 1947

(Here above is the explanation of what he meant)

“So, thinking is always a conditioned response, thinking is a process of response to a challenge. The challenge is always new; but thinking, which is a response derived from memory, is always the old revivified. It is very important to understand this. Thinking can never be new, because thinking is the response of memory, and this response of memory becomes vital when it meets the new and derives life from the new. But thinking in itself is never new. Therefore, thinking can never be creative, because it is always the response of memory.”

Bombay, India. Public Talk 7th March, 1948

“You may have a capacity, a gift in a certain direction; but do not call it creative action, creative thinking. No thinking is creative , because thinking is merely a reaction. And can creation be a reaction?”

Saanen 2nd Public Talk 27th July 1961

“Thought is a vehicle for a creative impulse. Creative impulse, which is taken over by thought and expressed in a poem, in stone, in what you like; the impulse, then the thought comes and takes it over and expresses it, and you call that creation. Right? Creative thinking. You see, we are going away a little bit, sorry, I must come back, we may deal with it presently because this is much more important than creative thought, creative thinking.”

Ojay 15 April 1976, discussion 3

1 Like

The following is from Krishnamurti in Bombay, 1955, Talk 5:
‘Is it possible for the mind to live in a state of not knowing? (…) Beyond a certain point we cannot learn anymore because there is nothing to learn, there is no teacher to teach, and we must come to that point, which means being completely free from all sense of becoming something, from all sense of the «more». It is only when the mind is in that state of void in which there is no knowledge, in which there is no longer the experiencer who is learning, who is gathering, who is accumulating - it is only then that there is this creativity which can express itself through various skills and crafts without causing further misery. (…) If the mind is completely free from society, from every form of social conditioning, which means that it is a truly religious mind, then it is in a state of silence in which there is no acquisition of knowledge, no experiencer; and it is the action of such a mind that produces a new culture, a new civilisation’.
So, Krishnamurti knows from his own experience of his own mind that there is ‘this point of void’ free from all knowledge that can respond to different challenges society is faced with without being contaminated by this same society. Now, is this really so? What we see is that in his discussions with buddhist scholars, with David Bohm and all others, what he does is responding to the knowledge these knowledgeable people have, so he may say he has never read a book but he has as resource the knowledge acquired by these people to pronounce some beautiful statements and contentions at least for a couple of hours at a time. This is fair enough, I think, but this ‘point of void’ hasn’t created a new society at all in the sense that it is a ‘good society’ as he wanted it to be. ‘Creative thinking’ is from where krishnamurti spoke and wrote, it seems to me… ‘a point of void’ in his mind.

Do you mean to say, plainly, that K.'s statement about the possibility of changing society is wrong?
(By the way, he didn’t say “point of void” but “state of void”).

It’s true that he asked in the above excerpt if it was possible for the mind to live in a state of not knowing, but he went on by saying we must come to THAT POINT where there is nothing else to learn. This to me seems to be important because actually we have different levels of consciousness and this point he’s referring to seems to be the result of some inner work. Anyway, level, point or state just means that there are other levels or points or states that we may be aware of… And I cannot say whether Krishnamurti was right or wrong, what we see is that societies in general are as corrupt as ever and the schools and centres bearing the name of Krishnamurti are facing conflicting relationships all the time.But maybe at a spiritual level this energy of not-knowing is at work and we may there be part of a ‘good society’!

Yes, you are right here. But I don’t think that point and the state of void are the same thing. A point is a fixed thing, or just a border you can reach, while a state can and probably is dynamic.

About all the rest you say, I think it’s an interesting topic worth disussing, and I have a lot to say about that. But I think it’s better to start a new thread because it has nothing to do with “creative thinking”. My aim in this thread was that of understanding the contraddiction we can find between earlier talks of K. and later ones in the use of this expression.

You could re-post your post on the possibility or not to change society for the better, in a new thread titled something like: Is the statement of K. that the transformed individual can create a new society really well-founded? Or choose yourself another title you like. I’ll follow you.

I think you’re right in your distinction between ‘point’ and ‘state’. Krishnamurti used the term ‘point’ and for what I was trying to convey it’s exactly point that I mean and not state.
I tried to give a contribution on this matter of creativity because Krishnamurti may be at times very critical of what in general we understand by creativity (he discusses this with Alan Anderson) and ‘creativity thinking’ has to be understood as Krishnamurti puts it in this talk 5 in Bombay, 1955. The rest is complementary, I said what I wanted to say and have nothing to add just now.