Wednesday, July 23

a quietness

The clouds began to gather in the morning, light, fleecy ones; they were gathering from different directions, mostly from south-west; the sun raced between them and shadows covered the land. Towards the evening, the sky was dark and rain was in the air . . . it began to drizzle; it laid the all-prevading dust, washed the leaves clean and it brought that fragrance of rain on dry earth. It was a pleasant smell and the birds had taken shelter for the night . . . Suddenly two forks of lightning tore through darkness and for a second in great clarity [were] the naked branches of the trees and the straight electric poles and a man crouching under a tree. And now it had settled down to rain for the night. The little boy with the string was no longer on the road.

Attention is seeing. Seeing is an art as listening. But one hardly ever listens or sees; everyone is so occupied, so busy with the things that have to be done, with one's joys, problems and tears. One has no time to see. But time does not give you sight; time hinders seeing, listening. Time is the space for experiencing and experience only dulls the mind and heart. The mind is filled and the heart has turned away and so there is no seeing. To see knowledge must be kept in the books and not in the mind; knowledge interprets, chooses, giving colour, opinion, weighing, criticising, choosing and then there is no seeing. When the mind is so crowded and the heart dull with sorrow, how can there be seeing? What you see is your own projections, your own desires, your own fears but you don't see what is. It goes by and you are lost with your own toys. But when you do see, do listen, then that act is the miracle that transforms, that has emptied the mind and the heart of the past. You don't have to do anything, thought is incapable of this miracle; then that seeing is love, as listening is. You cannot come by these through exertion, through the dullness of discipline, through any bargaining nor through the shock of unanswerable questions. There must be emptiness to see, to listen there must be a quietness.

It was rather late in the night; lightning and rain were making great noise. Again, the brain was aware of the lightning, and the rain on the window, but it was motionless, astonishingly still, for that immensity was there with clarity and unapproachable strength.

-- J. Krishnamurti Krishnamurti's Notebook