Jiddu Krishnamurti, May 12, 1895–February 17, 1986, was born in colonial India. He was a respected writer and speaker, focusing mainly on psychological revolution, the nature of the mind, meditation, human relationships, and bringing about positive change in society.
His philosophy is powerful, underlining the interconnection between things, the principal that we are all one, and the belief that our relationship with nature should be central to our education.
Although he was, at one time, affiliated with the Theosophical religious movement, the association didn’t last. Krishnamurti’s philosophy began to part ways with the concepts of Theosophists and he struck out on his own to spread the truth as he saw it. He did not consider himself an authority, and often reminded his audiences to share and think critically about his words rather than taking them as gospel. That he has become a spiritual teacher in the eyes of many is gently ironic, but the force and truth of his philosophy is difficult to deny.
What he taught:
Meditation Rather than a control over the mind, meditation to Krishnamurti was a complex practice that involved knowing yourself, your thoughts, and your habits. In the terminology of the modern era, he urged self-awareness.
Fear and Pleasure Accepting that fear and pleasure are opposing sides of the same thought process; that of recognizing a previous experience and relating it to the future, was a tenet of Krishnamurti’s philosophy. In other words, examine something that has already happened. If it was pleasant, you will want that pleasure to recur—and you will fear the absence of that pleasure in the future. If it was unpleasant, you will fear its reoccurrence, and will take pleasure in its absence. Thus fear and pleasure are impossible to separate, and you must embrace both… or neither.
Global Outlook That a vision of the whole is distinct from each part, and that prejudice has no place in holistic thinking… and that humanity is part of nature, and cannot—nor should try to—ignore or escape that intrinsic connection.
J. Krishnamurti was renowned for his forward-thinking philosophy, and his followers continue to share his message today, believing it to be of universal importance. If you are interested in reading more about J. Krishnamurti, or reading his works directly, you can visit Jiddu Krishnamurti Books to download a variety of his books and transcribed speeches (for free!) to find out why J. Krishnamurti is one of Peter’s Top Picks for Inspiration!