Total Attention – Breaking Images

When talking to a friend, I noticed I was forming a screen of words between us. I was not really seeing her or even looking at her face in front of me. Rather, I was only seeing an image I had. Obviously this is no way to relate to another person.
In his book Freedom from the Known, Jiddu Krishnamurti speaks so clearly on this:

img_2909***

“When I say I know you, I mean I knew you yesterday. I do not know you actually now. All I know is my image of you. That image is put together by what you have said in praise of me or to insult me, what you have done to me — it is put together by all the memories I have of you — and your image of me is put together in the same way, and it is those images which have relationship and which prevent us from really communing with each other.

Two people who have lived together for a long time have an image of each other which prevents them from really being in relationship. If we understand relationship we can co-operate but co-operation cannot possibly exist through images, through symbols, through ideological conceptions. Only when we understand the true relationship between each other is there a possibility of love, and love is denied when we have images. Therefore it is important to understand, not intellectually but actually in your daily life, how you have built images about your wife, your husband, your neighbour, your child, your country, your leaders, your politicians, your gods — you have nothing but images.
These images create the space between you and what you observe and in that space there is conflict, so what we are going to find out now together is whether it is possible to be free of the space we create, not only outside ourselves but in ourselves, the space which divides people in all their relationships.”

***

Inner Life Exercise

“Now the very attention you give to a problem is the energy that solves that problem. When you give your complete attention — I mean with everything in you — there is no observer at all. There is only the state of attention which is total energy, and that total energy is the highest form of intelligence. Naturally that state of mind must be completely silent and that silence, that stillness, comes when there is total attention, not disciplined stillness. That silence in which there is neither the observer nor the thing observed is the highest form of a religious mind. But what takes place in that state cannot be put into words because what is said in words is not the fact. To find out for yourself you have to go through it.”

***

2 Comments

  1. Gina on September 27, 2018 at 4:20 pm

    So…in total Attention, there is pure observation ~ not one entity with a past ~ judging another entity from memory. This must be what Mr Krishnamurti means when he says “The observer is the observed”. There is really only now ~pure and simple… and only without “These images[that]create the space between you and what you observe” can there be life free of conflict. A ‘you’ and a ‘me’ must always be in conflict. But if there is just pure Attention, pure Observation, I am erased, You are erased. Beautiful indeed!!

  2. Steve on September 30, 2018 at 12:57 pm

    I have been watching this very images fact that K. writes about for quite a while now and have noticed this taking place in others when they talk to me. This whole ‘past thing’ muddies up the pure present moment. It’s like using yesterdays weather report, which was rainy and windy on today, which is a bright warm sunny day. It makes no sence to be wearing rain gear on a beautiful warm day. This all goes on un-noticed as we go about our conversations. Wow, what a nice chunk of Gold to become conscious of. Only in seeing this whole process can I then be free of it.

Leave a Comment