“Who is free of myths knows love” – Krishnamurti
I just came across this quotation. It struck me. It made sense, immediately, but in a way that leads me to want to air it all out, to find and put down the connections this statement set reverberating within me.
By “free of myths,” I understand Krishnamurti to mean to be free of an un-reflexive trapped relationship to our conditioning. In this sense, myths – real myths which are transparent to those who live by them, seeming to be just the way things are, as opposed to our common sense of myth as a derogatory insult aimed at the myths of other times and other people in other places – stand-in for conditioning. In their internalized state, myths incorporate our cultural conditioning and are screens on which we project our fears and anxieties, our prejudices and habitual responses.
To be free of myths in this sense is to be aware of our conditioning and to be able to at least suspend its most virulent manifestations while remaining aware of how vulnerable we are to getting caught within habit and conditioning. This is an attitude of emotional proprioception coupled with radical humility towards the difficulties involved in being free of “myth.”
The second part, “Knows love,” needs to be teased out a bit.
In Krishnamurti’s view compassion is at the heart of being. Compassion, we may also recognize as the attitude most directly linked to experiencing the act of integrated being. Our lack of compassion, the pitfalls that grow out of our misunderstanding of the nature of thought, the incoherence this breeds in us; these all cut us off from what-is. In this way we can say that experiencing what-is is, in itself an act of the greatest compassion. The two are inextricable. The act of being and the attitude of compassion are the same thing looked at from different perspectives.
Divisions, our habits, based on our misunderstanding of thought, are healed by compassion. Compassion is the ability to recognize illusions that present themselves as divisions. If we are “free of myths” then we are within an attitude of compassion.
And, this attitude has a name,
11 thoughts on “Love is Being”
Isn’t it amazing! The space you occupy in the universe, within that infinite vastness, is uniquely yours. It didn’t exist as such until you filled it and became aware.It is a movable space, it goes where you go. it can’t precede you or follow your path.
Even more interesting is that no two beings can fill the same space. They can be in close proximity, They can share a larger space but are still alone in their own space.
Given one being’s space v.s. another being’s space, no two lives can possibly share the same perspective of their surroundings, Every being’s awareness is as unique as the particular individual’s perspective from their given space.
AH! GIVEN. An interesting slip of the tongue, but incredibly relevant.Since our space doesn’t exist prior to our occupancy, how does it become ours. Or does it only exist so long as we give it our attention? There seems to be an almost divine nature to the uniqueness of our space,our perspective, our attention and our life experience.Divine, ordained,intended. All infer an intelligent something putting things in place and in motion.
Regardless,our space, and our view of the world and the universe, is terribly unique,incredibly individual and quite defines our place in the world. It is also a lonely void we walk within. We move about in our cluttered ,movable space, with so much un-neccesary baggage. That clutter, painful emotions,desires, wants, ambition, deceit, scars of all sorts,
Those things that bind us and blind us, need to be left behind. It all stands in the way our awareness of our space’ and a clear perspective of our surroundings. When we can surrender all this, we can begin to have real dialog and compassion, and from there we can ever so slightly meld our lonely voids together and exist in love.
Division is good. Land/sea, earth/sky, male/female, day/night… division is fertile. One whole becomes teeming many through the division…
Yes. We cannot exist without divisions. But, in our habitual approach we tend to side with one side of a division and this draws us into conflict in a way that cannot be resolved by continuing to do the same thing.
If we can see division the way you present it, we are within a teeming whole.
Well… sometimes, siding with one side of a division is inevitable and healthy. For example, we side with the day, as a species. Bats side with the night. And even more so… we living side with life, not death, though both are part of the seamless whole.
Or, we side with peace and gentleness, even though some violence and harm is unavoidable… So this must mean that taking sides in a division is not the problem it’s made out to be. So what IS the problem?
And oh! I just picked this up:
No contrast, no information.
Yes. But this implies that we are looking and not just projecting.
I live in an old farm house. I ascend and descend the same stairs day in and day out. In the daytime I can certainly see my way. Yet at night I go up and down those same steps in the pitch dark, There is a distinct division. But I know the number of stairs , which way to turn at the middle landing and that stair to skip if I don’t want to awaken my wife with with it’s loud squeak. I wouldn’t even think of turning on the lights. I know the way. Is this projection?
Personally, I don’t care!
We are creatures of habit. Habit can serve us well. It can also be crippling, as in the case of extreme Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.
Tony, I think where you are going is right ,though. about being strangled by myth. Myth itself creates demons, obstacles, and chasms that stop us in our tracks. The myth of growth based
economies is one, and it prevents us from exploring economies that are sustainable. The myths about comfort( like keeping your house at sixty-five degrees) keeps us from just putting on another
I watch the torment ,anger and frustration among those affected by
Sandy. Good God! They keep flippin the switches expecting there to be power. They keep turning on the faucet looking for hot and cold potable water. Instead of looking for means to get by, and
working in collaboration with bone another. Folks! The whole infrastructure is down! Wipe away the tears, assess, triage, gather what is left and move on. The time when all was well is past, the storm came and went,you are alive. there are divisions in time, don’t let them bring you to a stop.
I will be responding to Leavergirl’s and John’s comments at length in a new post.
In the meantime, I just discovered this chart by Anthony McCann: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151317632670908&set=a.48509700907.73638.574755907&type=1&theater
It describes the dynamic surrounding enclosure and hegemony in relation to our desire to “eliminate uncertainty.”
This jumped out at me: “Discursive ‘equation’ of difference and separateness.”
This hits the spot! It’s not whether difference is “good” or “bad” or whether differences exist. It is this linkage of difference with separateness that leads us down the merry path.
When we notice difference we are not “sinning.” When we feel wholeness we are not wiping away differences. As Leavergirl pointed out, we cannot perceive without distinctions and this project has always been about discovering distinctions and looking for perspective.
John, we aren’t projecting when we take advantage of habit. We cannot exist without habit. I don’t believe life without conditioning is possible either. But an awareness of the possibilities for habit, conditioning, the kind of conditional certainty we cannot do without; to lead us into unconsidered projections like the ones you describe in the aftermath of Sandy; we will just fall into these traps again and again. Anthony describes the dynamic as autopoietic. The dynamic, once established, runs on its own steam.
The distinctions made here, including the ones about seeing difference as separateness, are not meant to sea-saw us back and forth from one side of a polarity to the other. They are intended as explorations of a way to stay out of such traps by keeping a light touch and a moving focus.
To achieve this we need to recognize, that our habitual expectation to find problems everywhere and to see value only in answers to problems leaves us totally shut-out from anything useful when we are faced with the predicaments of our enormity.
What is myth? I just read about Max Müller, and his idea of myth as disease of language (from Wikipedia) “For Müller, the culture of the Vedic peoples represented a form of nature worship, an idea clearly influenced by Romanticism. He saw the gods of the Rig-Veda as active forces of nature, only partly personified as imagined supernatural persons. From this claim Müller derived his theory that mythology is ‘a disease of language’. By this he meant that myth transforms concepts into beings and stories. In Müller’s view ‘gods’ began as words constructed in order to express abstract ideas, but were transformed into imagined personalities. Thus the Indo-European father-god appears under various names: Zeus, Jupiter, Dyaus Pita.”
I can agree with that. Myth is a step towards making visible, and consequently, making conscious. Myth is how the unknown approaches consciousness, as something that is not safely covered byt the known, familiar and safe. Giving up myth is giving up on the project of consciousness. That may be a valid choice, but not one I am willng to take. I hold hands with Faust.