The book of life

I will begin to share pieces and passages from books that I've enjoyed reading, hopefully giving you as much inspiration as they have done for me.

This one is from "The Book of Life" by sage, philosopher and thinker Jiddu Krishnamurti (1895-1986) whose life and teachings spanned the greater part of the 20th Century, and who is regarded by many as someone who has had the most profound impact on human consciousness in modern times.

Not connected to any organized religions and actively denying his role as a guru, he worked tirelessly on his greatest mission until his death at age 91: to set man absolutely and unconditionally free.

"We seek happiness through things, through relationship, through thoughts, ideas. So things, relationship, and ideas become all-important and not happiness. When we seek happiness through something, then the thing becomes of greater value than happiness itself. When stated in this manner, the problem sounds simple and it is simple.

We seek happiness in property, in family, in name; then property, family, idea become all-important, for then happiness is sought through a means, and then the means destroys the end. Can happiness be found through any means, through anything made by the hand or by the mind? Things, relationship, and ideas are so transparently impermanent, we are ever made unhappy by them.

Things are impermanent, they wear out and are lost; relationship is constant friction and death awaits; ideas and beliefs have no stability, no permanency. We seek happiness in them and yet do not realize their impermanence. So sorrow becomes our constant companion and overcoming it our problem.

To find out the true meaning of happiness, we must explore the river of self-knowledge. Self-knowledge is not an end in itself. Is there a source to a stream? Every drop of water from the beginning to the end makes the river. To imagine that we will find happiness at the source is to be mistaken. It is to be found where you are on the river of self-knowledge."

Krishnamurti's teachings are often very simple, some may find them too simplistic. But just like one reviewer of one of his books on amazon put it: "In the beginning it appears to be difficult to understand but it is important to realize that it is the mind that is complex, not Krishnamurti. He is extraordinarily simple so if our minds are unable to grasp these writings it is because of the deep conditioning that we are exposed to constantly throughout our lives."