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Chapter 13 - The 'I' and This Vast Stream of Sorrow - Discussion in Bombay on 10 January 1977
Chapter 13 - The 'I' and This Vast Stream of Sorrow - Discussion in Bombay on 10 January 1977
David Shainberg (DS): I wonder if we could go on with what we started with in the last discussion(1) where several people raised the question of momentum. We didn't get at what is the momentum of the creation of the thinker or what is the momentum of the adhesion that produces this identification with the thinker. In your talk last night(2) you said there is this whole sensation, contact, pleasure, thought, and desire, and then you made a jump by asking, well, if this wasn't there, what then? But I find that bit a kind of facsimile of the imagination. The fact is that we are faced with this momentum, this movement. Could we look at what is the momentum behind the constant creation of the thinker or the observer?
Pupul Jayakar (PJ): Don't you think that in order to investigate that, one should go into the problem of the dissipation of energy?
DS: I don't know what you mean by that.
PJ: It appears that just as there is an energy which propels the body, there is a kind of energy involved in the process of thinking and in the process of changing. So could we go into energy per se, into the energy which dissipates and the energy which does not dissipate, if there is such a thing?
DS: I don't think we know what we mean by energy. I think it was Maxwell who first used the word energy. And for a scientist the word energy means 'relationship'.
Achyut Patwardhan (AP): In the sense in which we have been using that word energy in these discussions, I think we refer to attention as the relevant form of energy. When you say 'dissipating energy', it really comes to that whenever we use the word energy in the context of self-knowing, I think we mean attention. Am I right, or am I oversimplifying?
(1) Small Group Discussion in Bombay on 7 January 1977
(2) Public Talk in Bombay on 9 January 1977
PJ: Maybe I am going off at a tangent, but I am raising this because of certain things Krishnaji said at a seminar in Madras. He made a statement: 'I know more about kundalini than all of you, I know everything about kundalini.' Now, kundalini basically is the awakening of a certain flow of energy in the human body which does not dissipate and which is linked to certain psychic points. And I wanted to investigate with Krishnaji what he meant by that statement, whether he thinks the problem of energy is relevant in any discussion of this kind, whether our understanding of the problem of energy will clarify our understanding of the problem of the thinker and the thought.
DS: I question whether anyone has ever accurately thought about what energy is in the psychological sense. It has been a misunderstood thing. Is energy something manifested in relationship? If so, it raises different questions.
PJ: Doesn't physics now accept that there is an energy which dissipates,? And have they come to an energy which in itself does not have the seed of dissipation?
Fritz Wilhelm (FW): As far as I know, no physicist can define what energy is. It is a basic assumption in physics that it is there; you can play around with it in mathematics. But we know that energy is necessary when there is to be a force. Without energy no force is possible, no work is possible; so energy and work are very much related. We can use force, we can see force, we can see work being done, but we can never see energy.
PJ: What is the meaning of the word entropy?
FW: In the entropic process there is no dissipation of energy. As a physicist you can make an abstraction and say you have a black box and in that black box you have some energy. Now, that energy is always conserved.
P.Y. Deshpande (PYD): When you have hot water and cold water connected through a hole, then there is an equalization of temperatures. That leads to entropy.
PJ: But isn't there an anti-entropic energy flow?
PYD: Anti-entropic energy flow is life energy. That's how scientists see it.
FW: Anti-entropic processes have not been known in physics until very recently.
PJ: They are now being recognized because the whole idea of kundalini is linked to the idea of the anti-entropic. I would like to investigate that.
K: What is that?
PJ: What you said...
K: Leave what I said.
PJ: No, I can't leave what you said.
K: We'll come to it a little later, but what are we discussing? Is there energy which is endless, without a beginning and without an end? And is there an energy which is mechanical like a motor, and which has always a motive? And is there an energy which is in relationship, in all activity? What is it that we are discussing? I would like to find out.
PJ: First Dr Shainberg asked, 'What is it that gives momentum?'
K: Let's stick to that.
PJ: He asked, 'What is it that gives momentum? Is it the thinker and then the thinker continues?'
K: What is the drive, the force, behind all our actions? Is it mechanical? Or is there an energy, a force, a drive, a momentum, which has no friction? Is that what we are discussing?
PJ: Kundalini is the second type of energy we are talking about, which is without friction and which is linked to certain psychic centres in the body.
K: We will come to that, Pupulji.
DS: Let's stay out of fantasy realms for a moment and just stay with this momentum of thought and desire. What is the momentum of the energy of thought, of desire, and the creation of the thinker? What is the momentum of this energy that gets mechanical?
K: Go on, discuss it.
PYD: Probably what he means is: yesterday(3) you talked of sensation, thought, desire, fulfilment of desire, and the whole drive of it continuing with a little modification. That is the momentum.
K: That is momentum. I understand that, sir. So you are asking what is the momentum behind desire. Is that it? Let's keep it simple, and then we will expand it as we go along. What is the drive, the momentum, behind desire? I desire a car; what is behind that desire? What is the urge, the drive, the force, the energy, behind the desire that says, 'I must have the car'?
(3) Public Talk in Bombay on 9 January 1977
DS: Is it that you desire the car, or does the car come up as a desire and then create the 'I'? Are you created out of the desire?
K: If I actually didn't see the car, didn't feel it, didn't touch it, didn't know what it means, I would have no desire for it. But I perceive the car, I see people driving in a car, feel the pleasure of driving, the energy of driving, and all the fun of driving. So what is behind all that? Go on, it is fairly simple.
Questioner 1 (Q1): I feel I am lesser without that car.
K: That is not the point-not lesser or more. Dr Shainberg is asking quite a different question. He asks, 'What is the drive, the motive, the urge, the force, the energy which makes me desire that?'
PJ: Is it only the object which creates desire?
DS: That is a big question.
K: It may be an object, a physical object, a non-physical object-a belief, an idea-anything.
FW: But in the first place it probably has to be perceived, must be perceivable by the senses. Because you perceive something with the senses, you make an image of it, and then you desire it. So could one say that whatever can be desired has to be sensed first? So from your question I ask: anything which can be desired, has it to be perceivable through the senses first? One could of course say 'God' for example; I can desire God.
PJ: If that's it, I would say no.
Q1: It is non-sensual perception.
PJ: It is not non-sensual perception. Desire is what maintains it. Desire is what keeps the world going.
DS: Would there have been a desire if there were no 'I'?
K: Sir, let's be simple. What is the momentum behind any desire? Let's begin with that. What is the energy that makes me desire? What is behind my being here? What is the urge that made me come here? I came here to find out what you are talking, discussing; I want to find out something. Here the desire is to discover something other than my usual rush of thought. So what is that? Is that desire? Now, what is behind the desire that made me come here? Is it my suffering? Is it my pleasure? Is it that I want to learn more? Put all those together, then what is behind all that?
DS: Relief from what I am.
PJ: Which is identical with the process of becoming.
K: What is behind becoming?
DS: To get somewhere that is different from where I am now, so that it'll be better.
K: Which is what? What is the energy that is making me do that? Is it punishment and reward? After all, all our structure of movement is this: punishment and reward-to avoid one, to gain the other. Is that the basic drive or energy that is making us do certain things? Reward and punishment-like a mouse caught in a trap; there is a reward, and it goes through all kind of things to get it. If it doesn't get it, it is punished. So, is the motive, the drive, the energy, derived from these two-to avoid one and gain the other?
DS: Yes, that is a part of it, but that is something we can deal with at the level of thought.
K: Not at the level of thought only. I am hungry, my reward is food. If I do something wrong, there is punishment.
FW: Is that different from pleasure and pain? Is reward the same as pleasure and pain?
K: Keep to that word, don't enlarge it. Reward and punishment-this is the basic, ordinary, common drive.
PJ: Reward and punishment-to whom?
K: Not 'to whom'. That which is satisfactory and that which is not satisfactory.
PJ: But for whom? You have to posit it.
K: I have not come to that yet-what is satisfying and what is not satisfying.
DS: That's how it is set.
K: That's how it is set. That which is satisfying I call reward, that which is not satisfying I call punishment. So there is not the 'I' saying 'I must be satisfied', 'I am hungry, food is necessary.'
PJ: That's physical. No, sir, I can't accept it.
K: I am just taking that as a beginning, I haven't enlarged it. Don't agree or disagree.
PYD: Hunger comes not because I wish it.
K: That's right, sir. It's a physiological thing.
PJ: Physiologically, that's one thing.
K: I am keeping to that for the moment. Does the physiological thing spill over into the psychological field? I need food, food is necessary, but that same urge goes into the field of psychology, and there begins a whole different cycle. But it is the same movement.
Q1: Where is all this process going on?
K: That's what Dr Shainberg is asking: where does all this begin?
Q1: If it goes on in me, if it's what I experience, where is it taking place? In the brain? Where do I find these pleasure- pain needs?
K: Both biological and psychological.
Q1: If this process of reward and punishment is to be investigated at a physiological level, then there are some responses in the brain which are in between reward and punishment.
K: You mean there is a gap between reward and punishment?
Q1: Not a gap, but an interlink, a bridge.
Ghaneshyam Mehta (GM): You mean there is a state which is neither reward nor punishment?
Q1: Yes. Where one merges into another.
PJ: There may be another state. I don't know whether there is, but I suppose there is. How does this answer the question, or how does this further the inquiry about the nature of this force which brings this momentum into being and then keeps it in movement? Basically that is the question.
DS: That is the question. Where is this momentum from? What is this momentum of reward and punishment even if there is space in between?
K: Are you asking what is it that is pushing one in the direction of reward and punishment; what is the energy, what is the momentum, what is the force, what is the volume of energy that is making me go there, avoid that? Is that the question?
DS: Right. We know that is a fact.
K: We know that is a fact. I am saying it may be satisfaction, gratification, which is pleasure.
DS: You are not going far enough when you say it is pleasure, satisfaction. What is it?
K: I am just beginning, sir. Is it mere gratification? Obviously it is, it looks like it. I am hungry, there needs to be food.
DS: And then what is gratification?
K: I am then gratified when I have food in my tummy.
DS: Yes. But what is your state of being when you are gratified?
K: It is very simple, isn't it? There is hunger, and food is given, and you are satisfied.
DS: What is that?
K: What do you mean? I am satisfied if the hunger is stopped.
DS: So that the tension is reduced.
K: It may be the same movement carried into the psychological field.
FW: But there it may not stop. Here, in the physiological field, it stops.
K: In the physiological field it stops, but that same thing is carried on [into the psychological field] and it is never ending there. I seek one satisfaction after another; it is endless. Is it that this energy, this drive, is for being satisfied biologically as well as psychologically?
Q1: But if it is to be satisfied, then in the beginning there should be an unsatisfied state.
K: Of course I am hungry. And psychologically I am lonely. There is a feeling of emptiness, there is a feeling of insufficiency. And I go off to God, to church, to gurus, to some idiocy, and all kinds of things happen. Let's keep to simple words. Emptiness is quite a difficult word, I won't use it. Let's say 'Not having enough', 'insufficiency'. Physiologically, insufficiency is satisfied very easily; psychologically, it is never satisfied.
T. K. Parchure (TKP): The physiological fulfilment of insufficiency does not involve thought.
TKP: If I am hungry, if I have sensation, I eat food.
K: Yes. The other is endless.
PYD: Because thought has intervened.
K: Wait. I don't know what has happened. We are going to examine it first.
TKP: So where does one go from physiological fulfilment to thought?
K: It may be that the physiological movement has entered into the psychological movement, and carries on.
PJ: From what you say...
K: Not what I say; is this so?
PJ: It is not a question of whether it is possible or whether it is a choice; it is so. From the moment I am born, both types of wants come to me.
K: Both begin.
PJ: Therefore I am asking about the source of both-the physiological and the psychological.
PYD: That one word insufficiency should be enough.
PJ: It isn't.
K: Leave it, go on. Insufficiency in both cases.
PJ: Both those are structured in a force which then propels.
PJ: That structuring in one is the self, the 'I'.
K: No, I don't think it is the 'I'.
PJ: Why do you say that?
K: I don't think it is the 'I'. I think it is the endless dissatisfaction, endless insufficiency.
DS: What is the source of that?
PJ: Can there be insufficiency unless there is someone who feels insufficient?
Sunanda Patwardhan (SP): That is the question. Who is insufficient? Who is it that knows he is insufficient?
K: You are already assuming something. I don't yet posit the 'I'. This is what is happening: continuous insufficiency. I go to Marxism-insufficient. I keep going, one after the other. The more intelligent, awake I am, the more dissatisfaction. Then what takes place?
SP: By that you are implying that there is a matrix without the reality of the 'I' which, in its very momentum, can act.
K: I don't know the matrix, I don't know the 'I'. All that I am pointing out is that there is physiological insufficiency which has entered into the field of psychological insufficiency, and that goes on endlessly.
DS: There is an endless sense of incompletion.
K: Insufficiency-keep to that word.
FW: From what you are saying now, it looks like this feeling of insufficiency is there; it is a fact.
K: It may not be a fact.
AP: That's why I wanted to suggest, perhaps at this point, that we cut out the physiological insufficiency.
K: Ah, I am purposely insisting on that.
AP: I know.
K: It may be the flowing out of that, and we create all this misery.
TKP: I question that. Is it a mixture of the physiological and psychological spilling over? What exactly do we mean by spilling over? One is a fact, the other is not.
K: Therefore there is only physiological insufficiency.
PJ: How can you say that, sir?
K: I don't say that, I am just investigating. I am not investigating the 'I'. I feel hungry, it has been satisfied. I feel sexual, that has been satisfied. And I say that is not good enough, I must have something more. The more- what is that?
PJ: The more is the momentum.
K: No. The more is more satisfaction.
PJ: Which is the momentum.
K: All right, keep to that word. The brain is seeking satisfaction.
PJ: Why should the brain seek satisfaction?
K: Because it needs stability, it needs security. Therefore it says, 'I thought I had satisfaction in this, there isn't any, I am going to find satisfaction and security in that, and there isn't any.' And so it keeps on going, going, going. That is so in daily life. I go from one blasted guru to another, from one theory to another, from one conclusion to another, etc., etc.
Q1: At the physiological level, the very nature of insufficiency leads to sufficiency. In the way the brain works, it goes from some inadequacy in the physiological mechanism to the completion of it. It is this cycle that operates, that's how the brain works. If the physiological spill-over is to continue in the psychological field, then this cycle of sufficiency and insufficiency must continue.
K: Sir, examine yourself, it is very simple. You are seeking satisfaction, right? Everybody is. If you are poor, you want to be rich. If you see somebody richer than you or somebody more beautiful, you want to be that, and so on. We want continuous satisfaction.
AP: I want to draw your attention again to the central feature of physiological insufficiency, which is that every activity to fulfil that leads to satiety. That is to say, between the insufficiency and its recurrence, there is always a gap as far as physiological insufficiency is concerned. In psychological insufficiency, we begin a cycle that does not know any gap.
K: Forget the gap. That is not important.
AP: All right.
K: Watch yourself, sir. Isn't the whole of your movement, energy, drive, to find gratification? No? Which is reward or whatever you like to call it.
K: What do you say about this?
DS: I think what is coming out is that this model of the physiological reward-punishment scheme is the way everything functions, whether it is logical or not.
K: That is what I am saying: the whole momentum of seeking satisfaction is captured by the 'I'.
DS: Yes. The 'I' is the manifestation of the momentum.
K: That's it, that's what I mean. It is that 'I am seeking satisfaction.' There is never a saying, 'Satisfaction is being sought' but 'I am seeking satisfaction.' It should be the other way actually: 'Satisfaction is being sought.'
DS: I thought you were going to go on even further: Satisfaction being sought creates the 'I'.
K: Of course all that is implied. So the momentum is the urge to be satisfied.
PJ: I will ask you a question which may seem to go off: isn't the 'I' sense inherent in the brain?
K: In the brain?
PJ: In the brain cells which have inherited knowledge.
K: I question it.
PJ: I am asking you a very interesting question: isn't the whole inherited knowledge of man present in the brain cells, in the depth of the racial consciousness? Isn't the 'I' sense a part of that brain?
SP: Are you here equating the whole of the past with the 'I'?
PJ: Of course, the whole of the past. I am asking whether it comes into existence because of this manifestation of seeking satisfaction, or whether the centuries of memory, the racial memory, the matrix of memory, the whole of that is not the 'I' sense.
K: You are asking: Is there the 'I', the 'me', the ego, identifying itself with the past, as knowledge?
PJ: Not identifying itself.
K: It is that.
PJ: It is that. It is time. It is time as the past.
K: I understand.
PJ: And the 'I' sense is the whole of that.
K: You asked at the beginning: does the brain contain the 'I'? I would say, temporarily, that there is no 'I' at all, but pure satisfaction. Knowledge, all that-pure satisfaction. Then that satisfaction says, 'I want more.' There is first insufficiency, and being satisfied. Then the 'I' is merely a fascio, a bundle, which says 'I am.' The 'I' is fictitious. What is not fictitious is insufficiency. Do look at it first.
PJ: I've looked at it. Is the past fictitious? Is the whole racial history, memory of man fictitious?
K: No. But the moment you say, 'I am the past', that 'I' is fictitious. There is the past.
SP: Is the past itself saying that 'I am the past' or a part of the past saying that it is the past?
K: You see, you are raising a question which is really very interesting: do you observe the past as the 'I'? There is the whole past, millennia of human endeavour, human suffering, human misery, confusion, and the appalling things of a million years. That movement, that current, that vast river-there is only the vast river, not the 'I' and the vast river.
PJ: No, sir. When this vast river comes to the surface, it comes to the surface in the form of the 'I', it is identified with the 'I'.
DS: I don't think so.
K: The 'I' may merely be a means of communication.
K: No, not journalism, not propaganda, but the 'I' is facon de parler-it is a way of talking.
PJ: Is it as simple as that?
K: No. I'm just beginning. It is not as simple as that.
SP: At one point you said the manifestation of that stream of sorrow is the individual.
K: Go slowly. There is this vast stream of sorrow; that manifests itself as a human being, in a human being.
SP: Is the 'I' present or not?
K: That's not the point yet. That vast stream manifests itself in a human being, and the father gives it a name, a form, and then I say I am 'I', which is the form, the name, the idiosyncratic environment. But that stream is the 'me'.
AP: I think if we relate it to our original question of momentum, we have come to a basis for probing further. The basis is that the momentum is provided by this activity which is a projection of the physiological insufficiency- sufficiency, to which this psychological continuity gives the momentum, and that momentum then creates the 'I'.
K: No, I wouldn't agree. Achyutji, make it very simple. There is this vast stream, which is obvious.
AP: I did not want to start with that; I wanted to start with the momentum.
K: That is the momentum.
SP: That is the momentum. It's not something separate.
PJ: How can one see that? You see, the way Krishnaji puts it, it becomes something which is not really linked to the depth of myself. The depth of myself says, 'I want', 'I am', 'I will become', 'I need'. That depth springs from the past, which is knowledge, which is the whole racial unconscious.
K: But why is the 'I' there? Why do you say 'I want'? There is only want.
PJ: This is what is being said. But still, by saying that, you don't eliminate the 'I'.
K: No. How do you observe, in what manner is your observation of this stream? Do you observe it as the 'I' observing, or is there only an observation of the stream?
PJ: What one does with observing is a different issue. We are talking of that nature of energy which brings about the momentum. I say the momentum is the very nature and structure of the 'I' which, because it is caught, is becoming.
K: I want to question whether the 'I' exists at all. It may be totally verbal, non-actual. It is only a word that has become tremendously important. The word has become important, not the fact.
FW: But isn't the imprint of the 'I' in the brain matter an actuality?
K: No. I question it.
FW: The imprint is there, but you question whether it is an actuality.
K: The whole momentum, this vast stream, is in the brain. After all, that is the brain, and why should there be the 'I' at all in that?
PJ: But when you are talking of the actual, it is there.
K: It is there only verbally.
DS: It is actually there in a bigger sense. If you and I are together, I think there are two parts to it: my identification with myself as the 'I' is in relationship to you.
K: Sir, when are you conscious of the 'I'?
DS: Only in relationship.
K: No, no. When are you conscious of the 'I'?
DS: When I want something, or when I identify myself with something, or when I look at myself in the mirror.
K: Ah, no. You don't say, 'I am looking at the mirror' when you see your face.
DS: But I am conscious of an 'I' there.
Questioner 2 (Q2): As soon as one becomes conscious of the mind, the 'I' starts.
K: Sir, don't assert anything; we are investigating. I have a bank account, there is my name, signature; all that's verbal.
DS: That is your relationship, though. Your back account is your relationship to the society which represents your assets in the society.
K: Yes, yes.
Q1: What would you say when I have some innate experiences? When I feel hungry all by myself in a forlorn place, I still identify or try to make that innate experience my experience.
K: No. I question it. When you experience, at the moment of experiencing something, there is no 'I'.
PJ: All right, there is no 'I'. But then the 'I' emerges a second later.
PJ: The 'I' emerges a second later. It emerges.
K: No, no. You are missing my point. There is experience. (I don't like to use the word experience because the root meaning of it is entirely different, so let's leave it out.) At the moment of a crisis, there is no 'I'. Then later comes the thought which says that was exciting, that was pleasurable, and that thought creates the 'I', which says, 'I have enjoyed it.' Don't agree, please. This is not an agreement; this is an investigation.
PJ: I want to ask you: is the 'I' a concentration of energy?
PJ: The energy that dissipates?
K: It is the energy that dissipates.
PJ: But still it is the 'I'.
K: No, it is not the 'I'. It is an energy that is being misused. It isn't the 'I' that uses the energy wrongly.
PJ: I am not saying that the 'I' uses energy wrongly. The 'I' itself is a concentration of energy that dissipates.
K: I question it.
PJ: As the body wears out, the 'I' in that sense has the same nature: it gets old, it gets stale.
K: Pupul, just listen to me. At the moment of a crisis, there is no 'I'. Now, is there a living at the height of that crisis all the time?
K: Wait, sir, one moment. Crisis implies, demands total energy. Right? A crisis of any kind brings about the influx of all energy. At that second, there is no 'I'.
K: Not okay. It is so.
DS: All right. That is a movement.
K: No. At that precise second there is no 'I'. Now I am asking, 'Is it possible to live at that height all the time?'
DS: Why are you asking that?
K: If you don't live that way, then you have all kinds of other activities which will destroy that.
DS: So what? I don't understand why you are clinging to that memory.
K: No, it is not a memory.
DS: Why would you ask the question? What's the point?
K: The point is: the moment thought comes in, it brings about a fragmentation of energy. I've got it! Thought itself is a fragmentary business, and so when thought enters, there is a dissipation of energy.
DS: Not necessarily.
TKP: You said that at the moment of experience, there is no 'I'.
K: Not I said so.
TKP: Yes, it is so.
K: It is so.
TKP: At that moment of experience, if that is physiological...
K: No, psychological too.
DS: It's holistic, total.
K: The whole thing. Crisis means the whole thing-your nerves, your body, your eyes.
TKP: But how has thought come now?
K: A second later.
PJ: We say it is so, but that still does not answer the question why the 'I' has become so powerful. You have still not answered the question. May I go one step further? At the moment of crisis, the 'I' is not, the whole past is not.
K: Definitely. That is the point. At the moment of crisis, there is nothing.
PJ: There is nothing. Now, why are you saying no to the 'I' being the mirror of the whole racial past?
K: I am saying no because it may be merely our habit of communication.
PJ: Is it as simple as that? Is the 'I' structure as simple as that?
K: Maybe. I think it is extraordinarily simple. What is much more interesting, much more demanding is that whenever thought comes into being, then dissipation of energy begins. So I ask myself, 'Is it possible to live at that height?'
DS: I question it. There is something wrong with saying that. There is this total crisis, and out of that total crisis I come into relationship with you, but then we start thinking about how we are going to order what is happening.
K: That's it. But the moment the 'I' comes into being, there is the dissipation of it. If you left out the 'I', and I left out the 'I', then we will organize it properly.
DS: Then I would put it another way. You say this is dissipation of energy, but I say this is a flow.
K: Call it what you like.
DS: Okay. There is energy...
K: Yes. Call it what you like.
DS: But you see what we are doing right now. What I find myself getting into is that when we say 'dissipation of energy', I immediately take up the position of the observer and say that is bad. But what I am suggesting here is that it's really a neutral event. There is a crisis and a dissipation, a crisis and a dissipation; that is the flow of existence.
K: I know it is the flow.
PJ: His point is: there is a flow of existence, but the transformation he is talking about is to negate that.
DS: I know and I question that.
K: Good. Question it.
DS: I question whether there is any such thing as a breaking out of this flow. I think that is a fantasy. We remember the intensity of the energy of the crisis and then say, 'Well, I would like to keep that all the time.' You do that.
K: No, I don't.
DS: Then why ask the question?
K: I am asking that question purposely, because thought interferes.
DS: Not all the time.
K: No. All the time. Question it, sir. The moment you have a crisis there is no past or the present, only that moment. There is no time in that crisis. The moment time comes in, dissipation begins; that is all. Keep to it for a minute that way. During World War II in England, Lord so and so told me: 'We lost all sense of class, we lived together in the underground.' That is, a crisis took place, and everything disappeared except the crisis-my class, my aristocracy, my this, my that. The moment the war was over, they went back to their castles: 'I'm Lord so and so.'
Q2: A crisis like war is a point where the energies of all are required, and therefore for the time being you forget your 'I' and become one with the group. But the 'I' still remains. One has to go above the mind.
K: There is no going above the mind. No, sir! I won't discuss with you. When you say one has to, you are not investigating.
Questioner 3 (Q3): Whether it is a moment of crisis or of bliss, it is like living at zero level.
K: If you like to call it that.
Q3: Now, are we implying that we should always be at the zero level?
K: You can't, you can't.
Q3: You can't. The vanishing of this 'I' comes at that level when there is an experience of either crisis or bliss. At the moment of bliss there is no 'I'; at the moment of crisis there is no 'I'. We all agree to that.
K: Not agree.
PJ: It is not a question of agreeing, because at a moment of crisis many things happen. So what he is talking of is a holistic position at a moment of crisis. Even to come to that, one has to have investigated very deeply.
K: Of course. You know, the word holistic implies a very sane mind and body, a capacity to think clearly, and also holy, sacred; all that is implied in that word. Now I am asking, 'Is there an energy which is never dissipated, which you can draw on?' There is dissipation when it is not holistic, right?
FW: Well, it is a logical statement; in that sense it is true because when you say something is the whole energy, how could the whole energy dissipate into something else?
PJ: That's interesting.
K: Not interesting. I made a statement; just look at it, don't step on it yet. I made a statement: a holistic way of life-in that there is no dissipation of energy. A non-holistic way of living is dissipation of energy. That's all I said.
PJ: I will ask you a question: what is the relationship of the holistic and the non-holistic to the brain cells?
K: There is no relationship.
PJ: To the brain cells.
K: To the brain cells. Let's look at it, understand the meaning of that word holistic. I want to be quite clear that we understand its meaning. Holistic means complete, whole, complete harmony, no disintegration, no fragmentation. That is a holistic life. That's endless energy. I say so. You may say, 'Nonsense'. The non-holistic life which we know, the fragmented life, is a wastage of energy. How do you receive that statement?
PJ: I will hold that question in mind. I would first like to go into what you've said just now.
K: She is saying: 'Please let me listen to that statement. Let me listen, not argue, spin around, and churn it. Just let me look at it. Not that I accept it or deny it. Let me assimilate it, let me look at it, let me observe it.' When there is a feeling of the whole, there is no 'I'. The other is the movement of thought; the past, time, all that comes in. That is our life, our daily life, and that life is reward and punishment and the continuous seeking of satisfaction. PJ: Now I will ask you a question. The non-holistic is held in the brain cells; that is, it throws up responses, challenges.
K: Yes, I understand.
PJ: The non-holistic is the whole stream of the past.
K: Yes. It is centred in the brain cells.
PJ: Now, what relationship has the holistic to the brain cells and the senses?
K: Let me get the question. Have you got the question, doctor?
K: What's the question?
DS: Her question is: what is the relationship of this holistic state in the brain to memory and the past and the senses?
K: No, no. You are caught out: you haven't listened. [Laughter]
PJ: I said there are two states: the holistic and the non- holistic. The non-holistic is definitely held in the brain cells because it is the stream of the past held in the brain cells. I am asking him, 'What is the relationship of the holistic to the brain cells and to the senses?'
Q1: What do you mean by the senses?
PJ: Listening, seeing, tasting.
K: Sir, her question is very simple. Our brain cells now contain the past, memory, experience, knowledge of millennia; those brain cells are not holistic. Keep to that for the moment. She says the brain cells are now conditioned to a non-holistic way of living. What is the relationship of-I won't call it relationship-what takes place in the brain cells when there is a holistic way? You understand? That is her question.
DS: I would put it slightly differently. I would ask, 'What takes place in the relationship of the brain cells in the holistic state of perception?'
K: I am going to answer that question.
DS: That's a different way of putting it.
K: Same thing, same thing. Does the holistic brain contain the past, and therefore can the past be used holistically? Ah, it is quite different. Because it is whole it contains the part, but the part cannot contain the whole. Therefore when there is the operation of the part, there is dissipation of energy.
PJ: Did you say the holistic contains the total past?
K: Does the holistic contain the total past? Go on, discuss it.
PJ: After going through all this, we have got to this point.
K: Yes. Marvellous point. Stick to it, stick to it.
PJ: I don't want to go into anything conceptual. I don't know the holistic state. Having gone through the non- holistic state, having seen the non-holistic state in operation, I observe my own consciousness, and I say that he makes a statement that there is a holistic state, there is a totality of energy which does not dissipate. Then I ask him: what is its place in the brain cells, which is the structure of the human mind?
K: We know only a non-holistic way of living, right? Keep to that. That's the fact-we live non-holistically, fragmentarily. That's our life, our actual life, and that is a wastage of energy. We see that too. There is contradiction, there is battle, and all that is a wastage of energy. Now we are asking, 'Is there a way of living which is not a wastage of energy?'
Q1: Yes, there is.
K: Don't say there is.
PJ: How does one know?
K: Do you live it? Sir, we are dealing with facts, not with theories.
Q1: Yes, there is a state which we can live, as you said. We do. It may not be at all times; it may be at fleeting moments.
K: Sir, this becomes purely theoretical. We live a non-holistic life, a fragmentary life, a broken life. You understand what I mean by broken?-saying something, doing something else, a contradictory, comparative, imitative, conforming life. That's a fragmentary, non-holistic way of living; that's all we know. And somebody says, 'Is there an energy which is not wasted? Let us investigate it to see if it is not possible to end this way of living.' That's all the question is.
PJ: But then I asked a question whether the one is contained in the brain cells.
K: That is what I am coming to; it is a very difficult question to answer. One lives a non-holistic life, which is a constant seepage of energy, a wastage of energy. One sees that actually. Then one asks, 'Is it possible to live a life which is not that way?' That is the question. The brain is conditioned to that, right?
Q1: Not always.
K: I am not interested in 'always'. It may have a sudden flare of the holistic.
Q1: We can't make a statement that the brain is conditioned. We can't take it for granted that the brain is conditioned to the fragmented life.
K: Sir, I may occasionally have a breath of freedom.
Q1: Yes. But that is what we are investigating-whether that breath of freedom could be a totality.
K: No! It can never be the totality because it comes and goes. We have discussed this ad nauseam with professors; which is, anything that comes and goes involves time. Time involves a fragmentary way of living; therefore it is not whole. We can discuss this later; for the moment we will get on. We live a non-holistic life. The brain is conditioned to that. Occasionally it may have a flare of freedom, but that flare of freedom is still within the field of time; therefore that flare is still a fragment. Now, the brain is conditioned to a non-holistic way of living, and is it possible for it to transform itself completely so as not to live the way it has been conditioned to for centuries? That is the question, right?
DS: My response to that is: here you are in your state of fragmentation, here you are in your state of dissipation of energy.
DS: And now you are looking for satisfaction.
K: No, I am not. I am saying this is a wastage of energy.
DS: That's all you've got.
DS: You've got nothing else.
K: Nothing else. So the brain says, 'All right, I see that.' Then it asks the question: is it possible to change all this?
DS: I wonder whether the brain can ask it?
K: I am asking it. Therefore if one brain asks it, the other brain must ask it too. Which is not based on satisfaction.
K: No. Because if it seeks satisfaction, that again becomes endless. So it has finished with satisfaction.
DS: Could you say something about how you can ask the question about such a state without seeking satisfaction?
K: Because the brain has realized for itself the game it has played.
DS: So how is the brain going to ask the question?
K: It is asking it because it says, 'I have seen through that.' Now it asks, 'Is there, not more satisfaction, but is there a way of living which is non-fragmentary, which is holistic?'
DS: And that question is asked holistically.
K: Not yet. Is there?
DS: That is what I am having trouble with-where that question is coming from. You say it is not satisfaction, it is not holistic. What brain is producing this question?
K: Because it says, 'I see very clearly the wastage of energy.'
Q2: The question is asked not from the brain, but from the heart.
K: Oh no, sir!
PJ: The very fact of your saying that it has seen through the whole problem of fragmentation-the very seeing of that whole...
K: ...is the ending of it.
PJ: Is that holistic?
K: The ending of it-that is holistic.
PJ: Is the seeing of the source of fragmentation itself holistic?
K: That is holistic.
PYD: But your question remains unanswered.
DS: No. That would be the answer, and I think it is a holistic question.
K: But she asked a much more complex question, which is: does the holistic brain contain the past?
K: The essence of the past. Not the totality of the past, but the essence of the past, the juice of it, sucking everything out of the past. What does that mean? The past is nothing. But such a brain can use the past. So now I am concerned with my life, with one's life, actual, daily, beastly, fragmentarily stupid life. And I ask, 'Can that be transformed?' Not into greater satisfaction. Can that structure end itself? Not by an imposition of something higher, which is just another trick. I say it can, if you know, if you are capable of observing without the observer. So the brain can transform itself. That is meditation, not all the nonsense that goes on. The essence is the whole. In fragmentation, there is no essence of anything. How do you put this across, analytically, psychotherapeutically?