Πέμπτη, 3 Μαΐου 2012

Nikos Pilavios - Krishnamurti in Greece


Nikos Pilavios - Krishnamurti in Greece

Introduction

This book is primarily meant for readers already acquainted with Jiddu Krishnamurti’s work. It contains thirteen photographs, never previously published. One of them dates from his first visit to Athens in 1930, and the other twelve were taken in the summer of 1933.

The book also provides details about his various visits to Greece, including his own comments about them. It contains excerpts from his talks in which he refers to Greece and Greek culture, passages from his talks given in Greece in 1930, 1933, 1954, plus his response to three questions put to him in 1956. In addition, there are an interview which he granted an Athens newspaper in 1956, and an article written shortly after his death in 1986.


Greece And Greeks.

“...Western technology, Western outlook, Western culture, Western philosophy, Western religion, all actually derive from Greece. They are the originators of the West – right? Democracy, analysis, science, philosophy, the dialogues of Plato and so on and so on. Greece was the origin of the West – right? There is no question about it, you don’t have to doubt this.”  5th Public Dialogue, Saanen, 1979  



 Extract from his talk in 1930

The first and only talk Krishnamurti gave during his first visit to Greece was on 10th December 1930, at the Theatre Olympia. The topic of his talk was “ MAN AND EGO ” and it was published, along with a talk he gave the same year in Paris, in a special edition of the Greek Star Bulletin, in 1934. The talk was originally delivered in French, in Strasbourg on 16th October 1930, and again in Athens on December 10, and it is translated from French. It appears here by courtesy of the Krishnamurti Foundation of America, as do all extracts from Krishnamurti’s talks included in this book. 

Whenever I am faced by a western audience, I know that there are many who say, “Oh, he represents the East; he comes from India, so what he says concerns only that country and cannot be applied to the European races with their western traditions.” When I was speaking in India – and I have traveled over a great part of that country – the people, having listened to me carefully, would shake their heads and say, “He is putting forward western philosophy”, while in Europe they similarly shake their heads and say politely with a smile, “This is Hindu philosophy.” I am happy to be judged thus differently in these two parts of the world, because it is proof positive that truth is neither of the East nor of the West...

Truth offers no consolation. It cannot be tamed, nor can it be stepped down, like electricity, to supply modern amenities. Its great light cannot be dimmed to make it softer on the eye. I would like to tell you a Hindu story: Once upon a time, in spring, when the leaves were a tender green and the air was sweet with the scent of blossoms, all the butterflies in the valley gathered in the cool shade of a tree. They were having a conversation about light; some said it was like this, others like that, until one butterfly declared himself ready to go and find out what light really was.


They all waited patiently for his return. When he came back, he said that the light was much too strong to allow anyone near it. But the butterflies weren’t satisfied with this answer and desired to know more. A second butterfly set forth and, when he got back, he told them that he had not been able to get near the light, it was so powerful and blinding.

This statement was also found unsatisfactory, and a third butterfly flew off on the same quest. He returned wounded and explained to them that the light was so hot that he had been burned. At length a fourth departed, never to return; truth, which is light, had consumed him utterly.

This is about the lives of human beings, and because human beings are weak and fearful, they turn, in their suffering, toward consolations rather than truth.

But in order to heal the weariness of the heart, it is useless to seek for consolations because the fulfillment of life does not lie with them. Life is fulfilled only through experiences which do not step down the truth. Every consolation is a stepping down of truth, of life; this diminishing of life leads to beliefs and dogmas which, along with religions, attempt to offer solace to the suffering human being, instead of bringing home to him the causes of his distress. Man, seeking happiness and finding it nowhere, wanders from cage to cage and goes on suffering.


It is not my intention to build new cages, even if they should be a little bigger than the old ones; nor is it my aim to storm the prison walls, but to create in human beings the strong desire to smash every cage, to awaken the will in them to discover the truth, and to find true happiness. In his blind search for happiness, man goes from prison to prison –from which the understanding of truth is necessarily excluded– and he bases his life on never-realized hope.


Hope is a betrayal of truth, for, by focusing man’s attention on the future, it weakens and distracts him from the present. In the promise of a future paradise there is not even the shadow of truth; truth has no place in it. To the degree that one seeks hope and consolation, a balm to heal his wounds, one gets further and further away from the kingdom of happiness, from eternal truth.

Truth needs no prayer and no adoration; it does not require the structure of a religion, nor rituals, nor priests; it is absolute and is to be discovered by each one according to his wisdom and experience; it cannot be mediated by another.

Absolute truth is the truth that is in harmony with life. Life in all its variations, with all its complications and complexities, is the only truth, and when one has solved the problem posed by life, one has found the truth.


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