Krishnamurti died last Monday, in Ojai, California. In the past you have spoken of him as another enlightened being. Would you please comment on his death?
The death of an enlightened being like J. Krishnamurti is nothing to be sad about, it is something to be celebrated with songs and dances. It is a moment of rejoicing.
His death is not a death. He knows his immortality. His death is only the death of the body. But J. Krishnamurti will go on living in the universal consciousness, forever and forever.
From Socrates Poisoned Again After 25 Centuries, Chapter Eight
Why are only you enlightened and for example not me, or the Pope, or the whole world?
Why are only you the journalist? Why not me? Why not the pope? Why not Ronald Reagan? Do you think these are questions worth answering? That’s why I have to see them. Idiots are all around. One thing I must say: there was another man who was enlightened who died just a few days ago, J. Krishnamurti. Without him I am feeling alone.
The question of “Why?” you should ask yourself. Why are you miserable? Why are you sleeping when you have the capacity to be awake? Perhaps you are having a beautiful dream: perhaps you are making love to your neighbor’s wife, and you don’t want to be awakened.
I simply decided that if sleep is going to be my existence, it is not for me, because it is almost close to death. Either I have to be awakened or dead, but I will not be in the limbo of a sleepy existence.
When you move like a robot, work like a robot, live like a robot and one day die like a robot, you have not decided it. The burden is on you to prove why you have not decided to be enlightened.
And you have some guts. You are asking me… It is only a question of decision, decision to be free, decision to be awake, decision to be blissful whatever the cost. You are not ready to pay the cost; that’s why you are not enlightened.
The cost means I had to lose my family, I had to lose my nation, I had to lose my religion, I had to lose everything. But I was ready: whatever the cost I am going to be enlightened. It happens only in your absolute aloneness, and for that aloneness you have to drop many things which you think are very valuable. You have to drop respectability, you have to drop ambition, you have to drop false knowledge, you have to drop your ego.
If you are ready to do it, you can become enlightened this very moment. Not even a single moment does it have to be postponed.
Enlightenment is your nature.
You already have it; you are just not aware of it.
From Socrates Poisoned Again After 25 Centuries, Chapter Sixteen
Who, according to your opinion is the most important contemporary?
I have just said, J.Krishnamurti.
From Socrates Poisoned Again After 25 Centuries, Chapter Sixteen
Can you tell us about your connection with J. Krishnamurti?
It is a real mystery. I have loved him since I have known him, and he has been very loving towards me. But we have never met; hence the relationship, the connection is something beyond words. We have not seen each other ever, but yet… perhaps we have been the two persons closest to each other in the whole world. We had a tremendous communion that needs no language, which need not be of physical presence.
Once it happened – just a coincidence – he was in Bombay. He used to come to Bombay every year to remain there for a few weeks. He had perhaps more followers in Bombay than anywhere else in the world. I came to Bombay. I was just going to New Delhi and I had to wait a few hours. Some friends who had been deeply connected with J. Krishnamurti and who were also connected with me, came to me and said, “This is a golden opportunity. You are both in the same place. A meeting will be of immense importance, and Krishnamurti wants the meeting.”
The man who said this was a much respected revolutionary of India, Ajit Patvardhan. He was one of the closest colleagues of J. Krishnamurti.
I looked into his eyes and said, “Please don’t lie. You must have said to J. Krishnamurti, ‘Rajneesh wants to meet you.’”
He was taken aback, almost shocked. He said, “But how could you manage to know? That’s exactly what we have been conspiring. We knew perfectly well that this would be the only possible way; if we say to you, ‘Krishnamurti wants to meet you,’ you cannot refuse. If I say to Krishnamurti, ‘Rajneesh wants to meet you,’ he cannot refuse. And the people who have been connected with Krishnamurti have all become connected with you too. We are all eager to see what transpires when you two both meet.”
I simply told Ajit Patvardhan an old story of two great mystics, Kabir and Farid. Kabir had his commune near Varanasi, on the opposite side of the Ganges. Farid was traveling with his disciples; he was a Mohammedan, a Sufi mystic, and he was going to pass the village where Kabir was living.
The disciples of both mystics persuaded them. “It would not be right that Farid passes here and you do not invite him,” Kabir’s disciples said. “It is simply a matter of love to invite those people to live in our commune for a few days, to rest.” Farid’s disciples said, “It will not look right to bypass the commune of Kabir. At least we should just go to pay our tribute.”
Farid and Kabir both agreed. But the real thing amongst the disciples of both was that they wanted to see what happened when they met, what they would talk about, what would be the things that were important between these two persons. But they never uttered a word.
The disciples were very much disappointed; this was not what they were waiting for. The moment both the mystics had departed they had to face their disciples, and the disciples were really angry.
The disciples of Kabir said, “You made fools of us. For two days we have been waiting to listen to something – you are always talking – and what happened to you? You became suddenly silent. We do not understand. What is this matter of laughing like madmen, weeping, tears, smiles, hugging – but not saying a single word?”
And the same was the situation with Farid. The disciples were raising the same problem, and the answer that was given was also the same. Farid and Kabir virtually said the same thing to their disciples: “We both know there is nothing to say. He has eyes, I have eyes. We have both experienced, we have both tasted the truth. What is there to say? Whoever would have uttered a single word would have been proved ignorant, that he does not know. We recognized each other; it is impossible not to recognize. Even two blind people recognize each other; do you think two people with eyes will not recognize each other?
“Of course we enjoyed each other. That’s why joy, smiles, tears were the only possible language; when it was too much, we hugged each other. We were sitting holding each other’s hands for hours and our love was flowing, and there was a communion – two bodies and one soul.
“But forgive us, we completely forgot about you. You cannot understand anything except words, and truth cannot be expressed in words. You have every right to be disappointed, to be angry, but you should consider our position also. We are helpless. When two silences meet, they become one. When two loving hearts beat, they beat in harmony; a music arises which is not mundane, which cannot be heard by the ears – which can be heard only by those who can experience it in their hearts.”
So I told Ajit Patvardhan, “It is absolutely useless, wasting Krishnamurti’s time. You are not going to hear anything.”
And when they went back to Krishnamurti he asked, “What happened? He has not come?”
They told the story, saying, “He simply told us a story.”
And he laughed and said, “He did exactly the right thing. In fact I should have told you the story but I don’t know the story. I also wanted to explain to you that it is futile, but you would not have understood.”
You are asking me about my connection with him. It was the deepest possible connection – which needs no physical contact, which needs no linguistic communication. Not only that, once in a while I used to criticize him, he used to criticize me, and we enjoyed each other’s criticism – knowing perfectly well that the other does not mean it. Now that he is dead, I will miss him because I will not be able to criticize him; it won’t be right. It was such a joy to criticize him. He was the most intelligent man of this century, but he was not understood by people.
He has died, and it seems the world goes on its way without even looking back for a single moment that the most intelligent man is no longer there. It will be difficult to find that sharpness and that intelligence again in centuries. But people are such sleep walkers, they have not taken much note. In newspapers, just in small corners where nobody reads, his death is declared. And it seems that a ninety-year-old man who has been continuously speaking for almost seventy years, moving around the world, trying to help people to get unconditioned, trying to help people to become free – nobody seems even to pay a tribute to the man who has worked the hardest in the whole of history for man’s freedom, for man’s dignity.
I don’t feel sorry for his death. His death is beautiful; he has attained all that life is capable to give. But I certainly feel sorry for the whole world. It goes on missing its greatest flights of consciousnesses, its highest peaks, its brightest stars. It is too much concerned with trivia.
I feel such a deep affinity with Krishnamurti that even to talk of connection is not right; connection is possible only between two things which are separate. I feel almost a oneness with him. In spite of all his criticisms, in spite of all my criticisms – which were just joking with the old man, provoking the old man… and he was very easily provoked. I just had to send my sannyasins to his meetings to sit in the front row, all in red colors, and he would go mad! He could not tolerate the red color. In his past life he must have been a bull; just a red flag and the bull goes crazy. Bulls have their own personality.
But even though he used to become angry – he would forget the subject matter he was going to talk on, and he would start criticizing me and my people – later on he would say about me to the hostess where he was staying, “This guy is something. He disturbs my meetings, sending red-robed people. And the moment I see them, I forget what is the subject I have decided to speak on. It happens every time, and I know that he is simply playing a joke. He is not serious, he is not against me; neither am I against him.”
From many of his intimate people I have been informed, “He is not against you. He wants you to know that howsoever angry he becomes, he is not against you.”
I said to them, “I know it. I love the man. But to love a man and once in a while to joke with him, do you think it is contradictory? In fact, I am trying to help him to become a little less serious. A little more sense of humor will not do any harm to him. Only on that point I do not agree with him – he is too serious.”
Religion needs a certain quality of humor to make it more human. If there is no sense of humor in any religious teaching, it becomes more and more intellectual, mathematical, logical, but it loses the human touch. It becomes more and more a scientific subject. But man cannot be just an object of scientific study. There is something in him which transcends scientific study.
Just look around the world. Trees don’t laugh, buffaloes don’t laugh. No animal laughs; it is only man who has the sense of humor. There must be something in it because it happens at the highest evolutionary point – man.
Krishnamurti’s teaching is beautiful, but too serious. And my experience and feeling is that his seventy years went to waste because he was serious. So only people who were long-faced and miserable and serious types collected around him; he was a collector of corpses, and as he became older, those corpses also became older.
I know people who have been listening to him for almost their whole lives; they are as old as he himself was. They are still alive. I know one woman who is ninety-five, and I know many other people. One thing I have seen in all of them, which is common, is that they are too serious.
Life needs a little playfulness, a little humor, a little laughter.
Only on that point am I in absolute disagreement with him; otherwise, he was a genius. He has penetrated as deeply as possible into every dimension of man’s spirituality, but it is all like a desert, tiring. I would like you back in the Garden of Eden, innocent, not serious, but like small children playing. This whole existence is playful. This whole existence is full of humor; you just need the sense of humor and you will be surprised.
I have heard about a man in India who used to sell Gandhi caps. Particularly at election times, everybody wants to prove that he is a Gandhian, because the followers of Gandhi had been ruling the country for forty years. If you are a Gandhian your victory in the election is certain. The Gandhian cap – a white cap – symbolizes who you are, and this man used to earn so much money just by making caps and selling them.
But this year he was sick. He was getting old, and he told his young son, “You will have to go to the marketplace” – which was a few miles away from the village – “and I have to tell you only one thing. The way is beautiful; on both sides are very shady trees so that even in the hot sun you can sit under them and it is cool. And there is one big bodhi tree so huge that hundreds of bullock carts can rest underneath it. Avoid it. If you feel like resting, don’t rest under that tree.”
The son said, “But why? – because that must be the coolest place.”
The father said, “That is the problem. It is the coolest place, but the tree is full of monkeys. And it happened with me; I was resting there and when I woke up my whole bag of caps was empty. I was surprised – what happened? Then I suddenly heard the monkeys enjoying – all were wearing caps just the way I was wearing a cap. So they knew how to put it, where to put it, and it looked as if the whole of New Delhi from the president to prime minister, the cabinet and all the parliamentarians were sitting there – all over the tree! And they were enjoying it so much.
“But I am a poor man. Suddenly I remembered the saying that monkeys always imitate, so I took off my cap so they could all see; they all took off their caps. Then I threw my cap away; they all threw their caps away. I collected the caps and went to the market. So just remember in case something like this happens, take your cap off and throw it – they will all throw theirs.”
The son was in a way excited to rest under the same tree and see what would happen. He found the tree – it was beautiful and it was the most shady, and he saw hundreds of monkeys sitting on it. He rested, went to sleep, and exactly what the father had said, happened. The bag was empty; he looked up and the monkeys were looking very happy, very proud, all Gandhians. But he was not worried because he knew the trick. So he simply took off his cap and threw it, and to his great surprise, one monkey came down and took the thrown cap, went back up the tree and put the cap on his head! They all enjoyed it, because this monkey had missed; one cap had been missing.
This must have been the second generation of the monkeys; perhaps the older generation had taught them that if it happens sometimes, “don’t throw your caps but pick up the cap thrown by the merchant. We have been befooled – once to be befooled is okay; twice to be befooled is unforgivable.”
The son looked in shock – what to do? He came back home and told his father. His father said, “I knew it: monkeys are more capable of learning than men. This is their second generation and they have remembered. And I told you specifically, you should not have thrown it so quickly. First you should have taken it off and seen whether they took theirs off or not; then at least you could have saved one cap. You lost even that.”
Existence is hilarious. Everything is in a dancing mood, you just have to be in the same mood to understand it.
I am not sorry that J. Krishnamurti is dead; there was nothing more for him to attain. I am sorry that his teaching did not reach the human heart because it was too dry, juiceless, with no humor, no laughter.
But you will be surprised to know – whatever he was saying was against religions, was against politics, was against the status quo, was against the whole past, yet nobody was condemning him for the simple reason that he was ineffective. There was no reason to take note of him. In India he used to visit only three places – Delhi, Bombay, Madras. And it was the same way around the world… some big cities, and the same people year after year listening to him saying the same things, and nothing has changed in those people because nothing reached to their hearts. It remained only intellectual.
They can argue, they can argue very well. One man I know, Dada Dharmadhikari – he is a very famous follower of Gandhi, a colleague of Gandhi, and a colleague of J. Krishnamurti. He does not believe in God, he does not believe in any traditions. He used to come to see me, and I told him, “Not believing in God is not enough; believing in God, or not believing in God, both are God-centered. I cannot say that I do not believe in God – how can I not believe in something which does not exist? Believing or not believing are both irrelevant when something is existential.” But he was too full of Krishnamurti.
I said, “Someday some opportunity may come and I will be able to point it out to you that this belief is only a reaction. It does not erase God, it simply puts disbelief in place of belief, but God remains in its place.”
His son is attorney general of the high court. One day he came very much disturbed and asked me to come immediately, “My father is dying. He had a serious heart attack, and the doctors are worried that he may have another heart attack and it will be difficult to save him. Perhaps he will be happy to see you. He always talks only of you or J. Krishnamurti.”
I went to his house. He was resting in a dark room and I entered slowly. I told his son not to announce that I had come. He was repeating “Hare Krishna, Hare Rama, Hare Krishna, Hare Rama” very silently, almost whispering. But I shook him and I said, “Have you forgotten J. Krishnamurti? Have you forgotten me? What are you doing? Hare Krishna, Hare Rama…!”
He said, “This time don’t disturb me. Who knows, God may be a reality. And just to repeat a few times before death… there is no harm. If he is there I can say, ‘I remembered you.’ If he is not there, there is no harm, just let me repeat it – no argument at this moment. I am dying.”
I said, “That’s what makes it very urgent to prevent you doing any stupid thing! This is against your whole life.” Now he is eighty years old; he followed Krishnamurti for almost fifty years, has been in contact for twenty years with me, and at the last moment all intellectual garbage disappears and the old conditionings appear again. This was what his parents had taught him in his childhood, “Hare Krishna, Hare Rama,” because Hindus believe that in this dark age of humanity only the name of God can save you. The name of God is like a boat; you simply ride on the boat and it will take you to the other side of existence, the spiritual world.
He became okay; he did not die. And when he had become almost all right, I asked him about that day. He said, “Forget all about it. There is no God. I don’t believe in God.”
I said, “Again – because now death is no longer so close? That day you were not even willing to discuss it. You were even arguing: ‘At this moment, let me repeat the mantra that is going to save me.’” I said to him, “All your intellectual garbage is useless. It has not reached to your heart; it has not given you any transformation.”
Krishnamurti failed because he could not touch the human heart; he could only reach the human head. The heart needs some different approaches. This is where I have differed with him all my life: unless the human heart is reached, you can go on repeating parrot-like, beautiful words – they don’t mean anything. Whatever Krishnamurti was saying is true, but he could not manage to relate it to your heart. In other words, what I am saying is that J. Krishnamurti was a great philosopher but he could not become a master. He could not help people, prepare people for a new life, a new orientation.
But still I love him, because amongst the philosophers he comes the closest to the mystic way of life. He himself avoided the mystic way, bypassed it, and that is the reason for his failure. But he is the only one amongst the modern contemporary thinkers who comes very close, almost on the boundary line of mysticism, and stops there. Perhaps he’s afraid that if he talks about mysticism people will start falling into old patterns, old traditions, old philosophies of mysticism. That fear prevents him from entering. But that fear also prevents other people from entering into the mysteries of life.
I have met thousands of Krishnamurti people – because anybody who has been interested in Krishnamurti sooner or later is bound to find his way towards me, because where Krishnamurti leaves them, I can take their hand and lead them into the innermost shrine of truth. You can say my connection with Krishnamurti is that Krishnamurti has prepared the ground for me. He has prepared people intellectually for me; now it is my work to take those people deeper than intellect, to the heart; and deeper than the heart, to the being.
Our work is one. Krishnamurti is dead, but his work will not be dead until I am dead. His work will continue.
From Socrates Poisoned Again After 25 Centuries, Chapter 25
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