How do you listen to a statement like this?

Thought is fear, thought is pleasure and pain, thought is suffering. Is this the direct answer?
Not if it is another theory! Another thought. Another answer by thought.
Is it a fact: It is so? Nothing to connect to, nothing to understand, nothing to think about, nothing to feel, to be sensibel of, nothing to endure, nothing to stop at or to encounter. It is so. Full stop.

Can facts be stated accurately in words?

Other than trivially? Like for instance big, small, up, down, 1, 2, 3…

Aren’t words ideas, and thus already at a distance from the whole? When we point at some idea, aren’t we necessarily ignoring everything else? Even if we manage somehow to point at an actual fact - is there such thing as an isolated fact?

All facts are connected. Therefore, is it possible to move only from one fact to another without getting caught and lost in ideas? Apart from the many trivial things, are there any other facts in thought? Is there, for example, a central fact about the nature of thought?

In order for the true meaning of the underlying fact to come through clearly in verbal communication, there needs to be no impediment to intelligence. Such as: The speaker and listener cannot be in competition with each other. Both speaker and listener must be passionately interested in the underlying fact. The inability of words alone to convey truth needs to be mutually understood. Speaker and listener both must “leave their guns” at the door of the saloon — “their guns” being their attachment to the past, to their emotions and interpretations, and so on. Anything else?


So there is a ‘responsibility’ to know what “guns” one is carrying. That is the importance of self knowledge, isn’t it? Without knowing what beliefs have been made my own, have become me, there can only be superficial communication.

Is there a resistance to seeing what one is? How I am ‘programmed’? Simply be aware of my thought with no judgement, condemnation etc? An awareness that doesn’t like or dislike…doesn’t reject or accept?

What IS responsibility? Is responsibility an issue of right or wrong, blame or praise, social morality, ideas, tradition, and so on? Is responsibility beyond personal opinion, something that life itself thrusts upon us? Is there anything one is actually responsible for in life?

It is observed that where there is love, caring (feeding, bathing, bandaging, etc.) and attention for a child, he or she thrives. It is also observed that if those actions are absent, the child does not thrive and can even die. Of course, children can die or fail to thrive for many other causes. But we are looking into responsibility and it is seen that children can actually die from inattention, lack of love and care. No?

It is also seen that if I speak in anger, if I am deceitful, arrogant, greedy, selfish, and so on, relationship does not thrive in harmony but is conflictual. Anger, deceit and greed prevent harmony.

These things are observed. So is responsibility the relationship of cause and effect that actually exists between one’s actions and their outcome? Isn’t there such a reslationship? If I eat, I live another day. If I stop eating altogether, I inevitably die. So it is my responsibility to eat - not morally, not as an obligation or duty, not as a choice to be made - but as a simple causal relationship. If I (the living being) care, if there is compassion, honesty and understanding within, then that caring, compassion and understanding act spontaneously and responsibly. Is that it?

Are we presuming that what is being said is necessarily a fact? Surely not. Do you really mean “verbal”?

Isn’t there a responsibility to end the conflict in oneself? Not by all the usual escapes but to end the source of conflict as it arises. The source of conflict is the desire for ‘what is’ to be different than ‘what is’. Isn’t it?

Here and elsewhere, it is observed and understood that the true significance of an actual fact underlying verbal communication is not to be found IN the words we use. But where there is interest, intensity, passion, attention, compassion, and so on, moving between speaker AND listener, then the actual “thing” CAN be expressed and understood through the words. Where there is that intensity and compassion in both speaker and listener in the moment of their communication, THAT - intensity, interest and compassion - bears fruit. As I see it. I might be wrong about all of this.

The relationship between conflict and time, thought, desire, attachment, self-identity, and so on, is seen. The relationship between suffering and the illusory nature of self-image, i.e. between thought and suffering is seen. One might conclude, “There’s nothing to do about it. It’s just life, dog eat dog and I will be the top dog.” Something like that. Or a passion - which is not a choice - can be awakened to look deeper into it, to find out if there is another way to live that is true, solid, and not self-deception. So it’s not saying, “I MUST or SHOULD be responsible and solve this problem.” Conclusion (which is thought) acts or passion acts.

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When the statement, “thought is entirely empty”, is contemplated without imagining the speaker or the listener, it stands as if it arose spontaneously in consciousness, and raises the question, “Why does thought say this of itself”?

What about the passion of 2 people who believe in some strange religion or philosophy - not ours obviously - some foreign rubbish (sorry, bad joke - I say this as a complete foreigner) - who are passionate etc - are they meeting at the fact?

Probably not - so neither the words nor the intensity of emotion necessarily lead to truth - what else have we pointed at?

I think we have mentioned the ending of conflict - can anyone shine a light on this?

The conflict between conclusion and “passion” being obviously a continuation of conflict.

No the identification of a fact in isolation is already an act of recognition and separation.

Actually - can I change that to a Yes - if we are wandering aimlessly.

Contemplating a statement is different from listening, isn’t it?

Yes, the identification of a fact is something else away from the fact. What is the fact before any identification takes place?

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Have both (or at least one) agents identified the facts? What do they hope to achieve now in their relationship?

PS - there is also the huge distance between the fact and its perception and interpretation.

Can thinking start from a statement?

What about the passion of a toddler having a temper tantrum for a new toy? What about the passion of the man who wants to dominate? Or the passion of the athlete who wants to be the best in the word? Or the passion of the flagellants? To me, such “passions” are based on thought.

There is passion which has no whisper of thought in it. It just IS, present and not pursued by the psyche.

Then also, we could ask: what is “strange”, what are “people”, what is religion, what is philosophy? It IS important to clarify what we mean by words, but we can’t stop to examine all the possible meanings of every word in every context. That’s how I see it.

We can’t expect or rely on words to come to or express trurh.That’s what I meant earlier by: “The speaker and listener cannot be in competition with each other. Both speaker and listener must be passionately interested in the underlying fact. The inability of words alone to convey truth needs to be mutually understood.”


Both listening and the speaking are developed or undeveloped talents of one person. In “Truth and Actuality,” Krishnamurti and Bohm make it clear that, although truth cannot be captured in words, it can resound in them. TRUTH is in It. It depends both on the quality of listening and speaking to notice this.

Hello Douglas. Thanks for asking an interesting question.

Sometimes, we may find ourselves in a situation of conflict with someone else. It could be a family member, partner, friend, work colleague or even on this forum. While in the midst of the conflict, I think it can be interesting, if possible, to just observe what is going on and ask questions - Why is this happening? Why are we reacting like this? Has this happened before? Is there a pattern in my behaviour here?

There would appear to be an opportunity in these situations to observe, look deeply and learn and this is something that K seems to have done a lot. I wonder if we ever really do this.