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Brockwood Park - 22nd Entry - 8th October 1973
The monkeys were all over the place that quiet morning; on the veranda, on the roof and in the mango tree - a whole troop of them; they were the brownish red-faced variety. The little ones were chasing each other among the trees, not too far from their mothers, and the big male was sitting by himself, keeping an eye over the whole troop; there must have been about twenty of them. They were rather destructive, and as the sun rose higher they slowly disappeared into the deeper wood, away from human habitation; the male was the first to leave and the others followed quietly. Then the parrots and crows came back with their usual clatter announcing their presence. There was a crow that would call or whatever it does, in a raucous voice, usually about the same time, and keep it up endlessly till it was chased away. Day after day it would repeat this performance; its caw penetrated deeply into the room and somehow all other noises seemed to have come to an end. These crows prevent violent quarrels amongst themselves, are quick, very watchful and efficient in their survival. The monkeys don't seem to like them. It was going to be a nice day.
He was a thin, wiry man, with a well-shaped head and eyes that had known laughter. We were sitting on a bench overlooking the river in the shade of a tamarind tree, the home of many parrots and a pair of small screech-owls which were sunning themselves in the early morning sun.
He said: "I have spent many years in meditation, controlling my thoughts, fasting and having one meal a day. I used to be a social worker but I gave it up long ago as I found that such work did not solve the deep human problem. There are many others who are carrying on with such work but it is no longer for me. It has become important for me to understand the full meaning and depth of meditation. Every school of meditation advocates some form of control; I have practised different systems but somehow there seems to be no end to it."
Control implies division, the controller and the thing to be controlled; this division, as all division, brings about conflict and distortion in action and behaviour. This fragmentation is the work of thought, one fragment trying to control the other parts, call this one fragment the controller or whatever name you will. This division is artificial and mischievous. Actually, the controller is the controlled. Thought in its very nature is fragmentary and this causes confusion and sorrow. Thought has divided the world into nationalities, ideologies and into religious sects, the big ones and the little ones. Thought is the response of memories experience and knowledge, stored up in the brain; it can only function efficiently, sanely, when it has security, order. To survive physically it must protect itself from all dangers; the necessity of outward survival is easy to understand but the psychological survival is quite another matter, the survival of the image that thought has put together. Thought has divided existence as the outer and the inner and from this separation conflict and control arise. For the survival of the inner, belief ideology, gods, nationalities, conclusions become essential and this also brings about untold wars, violence and sorrow. The desire for the survival of the inner, with its many images, is a disease, is disharmony. Thought is disharmony. All its images, ideologies, its truths are self-contradictory and destructive. Thought has brought about, apart from its technological achievements, both outwardly and inwardly, chaos and pleasures that soon become agonies. To read all this in your daily life, to hear and see the movement of thought is the transformation that meditation brings about. This transformation is not the "me" becoming the greater "me" but the transformation of the content of consciousness; consciousness is its content. The consciousness of the world is your consciousness; you are the world and the world is you. Meditation is the complete transformation of thought and its activities. Harmony is not the fruit of thought; it comes with the perception of the whole.
The morning breeze had gone and not a leaf was stirring; the river had become utterly still and the noises on the other bank came across the wide waters. Even the parrots were quiet.