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The Urgency of Change

Questioner: I have belonged to many organizations, religious, business and political. Obviously we must have some kind of organization; without it life couldn’t continue, so I’ve been wondering, after listening to you, what relationship there is between freedom and organization. Where does freedom begin and organization end? What is the relationship between religious organizations and Moksha or liberation?

Krishnamurti: As human beings living in a very complex society, organizations are needed to communicate, to travel, to bring food, clothes and shelter, for all the business of living together whether in cities or in the country. Now this must be organized efficiently and humanely, not only for the benefit of the few but for everyone, without the divisions of nationality, race or class. This earth is ours, not yours or mine. To live happily, physically, there must be sane, rational, efficient organizations. Now there is disorder because there is division. Millions go hungry while there is vast prosperity. There are wars, conflicts and every form of brutality. Then there is the organization of belief – the organization of religions, which again breeds disunity and war. The morality which man has pursued has led to this disorder and chaos. This is the actual state of the world. And when you ask what is the relationship between organization and freedom, are you not separating freedom from everyday existence? When you separate it in this way as being something entirely different from life, isn’t this, in itself, conflict and disorder? So really the question is: is it possible to live in freedom and to organize life from this freedom, in this freedom?

Questioner: Then there would be no problem. But the organization of life isn’t made by yourself: others make it for you – the government and others send you to war or determine your job. So you cannot simply organize for yourself out of freedom. The whole point of my question is that the organization imposed on us by the government, by society, by morality, is not freedom. And if we reject it we find ourselves in the midst of a revolution, or some sociological reformation, which is a way of starting the same old cycle all over again. Inwardly and outwardly we are born into organization, which limits freedom. We either submit or revolt. We are caught in this trap. So there seems to be no question of organizing anything out of freedom.

Krishnamurti: We do not realize that we have created society, this disorder, these walls; each one of us is responsible for it all. What we are, society is. Society is not different from us. If we are in conflict, avaricious, envious, fearful, we bring about such a society.

Questioner: There is a difference between the individual and society. I am a vegetarian; society slaughters animals. I don’t want to go to war; society will force me to do so. Are you telling me that this war is my doing?

Krishnamurti: Yes, it’s your responsibility. You have brought it about by your nationality, your greed, envy and hate. You are responsible for war as long as you have those things in your heart, as long as you belong to any nationality, creed or race. It is only those who are free of those things who can say that they have not created this society. There-

fore our responsibility is to see that we change, and to help others to change, without violence and bloodshed.

Questioner: That means organized religion.

Krishnamurti: Certainly not. Organized religion is based on belief and authority.

Questioner: Where does this get us in our original question regarding the relationship between freedom and organization? Organization is always imposed or inherited from the environment, and freedom is always from the inside, and these two clash.

Krishnamurti: Where are you going to start? You must start from freedom. Where there is freedom there is love. This freedom and love will show you when to co-operate and when not to cooperate. This is not an act of choice, because choice is the result of confusion. Love and freedom are intelligence. So what we are concerned with is not the division between organization and freedom but whether we can live in this world without division at all. It is division which denies freedom and love, not organization. When organization divides, it leads to war. Belief in any form, ideals, however noble or effective, breed division. Organized religion is the cause of division, just like nationality and power-groups. So be concerned with those things which divide, those things which bring about division between man and man, whether they be individual or collective. The family, the church, and the State bring about such division. What is important is the movement of thought which divides. Thought itself is always divisive, so all action based on an idea or an ideology is division. Thought cultivates prejudice, opinion, judgement. Man in himself, being divided, seeks freedom out of this division. Not being able to find it he hopes to integrate the various divisions, and of course this is not possible. You cannot integrate two prejudices. To live in this world in freedom means to live with love, eschewing every form of division. When there is freedom and love, then this intelligence will act in co-operation, and will also know when not to co-operate.