“You can see what is happening. There is violence even though religions have said not to kill, not to go to war, not to hurt another, to be kind, generous, tender, to open your heart to others.
Books have said it, so the books have no value at all. What is relevant is what you are. The fact is that the world is you, not as a theory but in actuality; the world, the community, the society, the culture in which you have been brought up have been built through time by man. You are the result of that, and to bring about a change in the outward structure of the established corrupt order, one must change oneself inwardly completely. This is a logical, sane, observable fact.”
– Inward Revolution: Bringing About Radical Change in the World – J. Krishnamurti
The work of the influential 20th-century spiritual teacher Krishnamurti (1895–1986) is filled with paradoxes: don’t follow gurus, this guru advised. Philosophy is an escape, said the man whom the Dalai Lama called one of the age’s greatest philosophers. This compilation of lectures sounds again and again Krishnamurti’s key themes: learn, and live, by direct experience, not by the received wisdom of texts and teachers. Throw away what was (the past) and what should be (the ideal) in order to perceive through direct observation what is occurring each day and in each experience. Look inside to learn how the mind works and thereby change the world. While Krishnamurti asserts “there is no path to truth,” many 20th-century Eastern spiritual teachers followed Krishnamurti’s path in popularizing mysticism and meditation in the West. The origin of this book in lectures makes it repetitive at times, although those new to Krishnamurti may find that repetition helpful in clarifying themes. Krishnamurti’s influence spread via his talks throughout the world, so the flavor of his oral teaching, in all its provocation, is preserved. Krishnamurti may be too abstract for some; this book will best suit those interested in the intersection of philosophy and Eastern spirituality. (Feb. 14)
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