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Jiddhu Krishnamurti (1895 - 1986)


Question: You have said that in the very seeing there is action. Is this action the same as the expression of action?

In the very observation there is action. Observe greed without any distortion, without motive, without saying, "I must go beyond it" - just observe the movement of greed. That very observation sees the whole movement of it, not just one particular form of greed, but the whole movement of greed.

If in observing greed, or hatred, violence or whatever it is, the observation is completely non-directive, then there is no interval between the seeing and the acting. Whereas we normally have intervals - seeing, then concluding and extracting an idea and then carrying out that idea, in which there is the interval between the arising of ideas and the acting on those ideas. It is in this time interval that all kinds of other problems arise, whereas the seeing is the very act of ending greed.

Now, the questioner asks: "Is this action the same as the expression of action?" That is, you see, a snake, a cobra. There is the instant expression of self-preservation, which is natural; the self-protective instinct is immediate, to run away or to do something about it. There the seeing has expressed itself in physical action. But we are talking of observation with the whole of our mind, not partially observing, as we normally do; to be so attentive that the whole of the mind is giving complete attention. Such attention implies that there is no centre from which you are attending. When you concentrate it is from a centre, from a point; therefore it is limited, restricted, narrow; whereas attention has no centre, everything in your mind is alive, attending. Then you will find out that there is no point from which you are attending; in that attention there is no border, whereas concentration has a border.