Chapter 9: Beyond the Shadow
And you have come to this point many times, unawares of course. Seeing a beautiful sunset, you were so lost in the beauty of it that for a moment there was no idea of the self. You were not there. There was a totally different quality: you were not there. Something was there, but you cannot call it “I,” you cannot call it any frozen state of the ego. You were fluid, flowing.
This is what Krishnamurti calls the moment when the observer becomes the observed.
The sunset was there and the sunset was too much. It possessed you. The observer disappeared into the observed. The sunset was all; you were not separate, you were not standing aloof and watching, you were not a spectator. You were in it, you were part of it, you started feeling a kind of melting, merging.
Hence the liberating experience of beauty, hence the liberating experience of love, hence the liberating experience of music, great music. These moments you have known - they come naturally, and they go. But you have never been able to reduce them to a scientific approach. You have not meditated over them, you have not looked into the keys that are hidden in them.
The key is that whenever you are not, godliness is.
This can be done consciously. Then there is no need to wait for a sunset, because that will be, after all, a kind of dependence. Then there is no need to wait for love - again that will be a kind of dependence; it may liberate for a moment, but then it will become a bondage.
If you fall in love with a woman or a man, it is liberating. That’s why people fall in love. But sooner or later they find that the liberating experience has disappeared, evaporated, and instead of that liberating experience they suddenly wake up in bondage - chained, imprisoned.
What happened to the love that was so liberating? How did it become an imprisonment? You became dependent on it, you became addicted to it; it was so beautiful, it became a drug to you. And once anything becomes a drug, once you are addicted to anything, whatsoever it is, you are in bondage. Then it does not liberate, it cannot liberate. It becomes ugly; everything goes sour, bitter, poisonous.
No, one cannot be liberated by these small experiences of beauty, love, music. True, they give you glimpses, but those glimpses cannot become your state of being. You have to learn the secret of unselfing yourself.
Each experience that has given you some kind of freedom was basically an experience of unselfing. So now, rather than depending on something, start unselfing yourself. Sitting silently, disappear: don’t be. Working, disappear: don’t be. Whenever you can find time, disappear. And then, slowly, slowly, the knack arises. Then twenty-four hours you can go on working, living your ordinary life, and yet you are not there. There remains a kind of pure, silent space within you.
That silent space is godliness.