Friday, 16 November 2007

There is no Way to Peace - Peace is the Way

Peace cannot be attained while preparing for war. War is a wasteful and expensive anathema. There is no victor in a vengeful war - both are losers. How many beautiful and ancient cities have been razed to the ground in the name of war, beginning with Troy and Carthage? How many lives have been lost and relationships torn apart by the evils of war? In the words of another Dylan : "How many deaths will it take till we know that too many people have died?"
Wales has no quarrel with anybody yet Britain still suffers from the karma of war. When will people come to their senses and see the path of self-destruction? Is this nature's plan, to restore equilibrium to the Earth and a natural balance and harmony, by inflicting upon mankind sickness and disease, natural calamities, and the purging of an escalating population through the perpetration of violence in the name of democracy, sanctified by a fervent and wholly irrational belief in God?

So now let us consider the question of Peace.....

World Peace Talk to the U.N. by J. Krishnamurti, 1985, aged 89

1 " I am supposed to talk on World Peace beyond the 40th anniversary of the United Nations.

2 Mankind, man, has lived on this earth over fifty thousand years, and perhaps much longer, or for less duration. During all this long evolution man has not found peace on earth - 'pacem in terris' has been preached long before Christianity, by the ancient Hindus and the Buddhists. And during all this time man has lived in conflict, not only conflict with his neighbour but with people of his own community, with his own society, with his own family, he has fought, struggled against man for the last five thousand years, and perhaps more. Historically there have been wars practically every year. And we are still at war. I believe there are forty wars going on at the present time. And the religious hierarchy, not only the Catholics but the other groups have talked about 'pacem in terris', peace on earth, goodwill among men. It has never come about - to have peace on earth. And they have talked about peace when you die and go to heaven and you have peace there.

3 One wonders, if one is at all serious, why man kills another human being - in the name of god, in the name of peace, in the name of some ideology, or for his country - whatever that may mean - or for the king and the queen, and all the rest of that business. Probably we all know this: that man has never lived on this earth, which is being slowly destroyed, and why man cannot live at peace with another human being. Why there are separate nations, which is after all a glorified tribalism. And religions, whether it be Christianity, Hinduism, or Buddhism, they are also at war with each other. Nations are at war, groups are at war, ideologies, whether it is the Russian, or the American, or any other category of ideologies, they are all at war with each other, conflict. And after living on this earth for so many centuries, why is it man cannot live peacefully on this marvellous earth? This
question has been asked over and over again. An organization like this has been formed round that. What is the future of this particular organization? After the 40th year what lies beyond?

4 Time is a strange factor in life. Time is very important for all of us. And the future is, what is present. The future is now, because the present, which is also the past, modifying itself now, becomes the future. This has been the cycle of time, the path of time. And now, not beyond 40 years of this organization, but now, at the present time if there is no radical change, fundamental mutation, the future is, what is now. And that has been historically proved, and we can prove it in our daily lives.

5 So the question really is: whether human beings, you and us, sitting on the platform - I am sorry to be sitting up here - are human beings? And as long as we with each other, or with man and woman, are in perpetual conflict there will be no peace on this earth. One may talk about it endlessly. The Roman Catholic hierarchy talks about 'pacem in terris', and they have been also responsible for appalling wars in the past. A hundred years of war, torture, all kinds of horrible things they have done to man. These are all facts, actualities, not the speaker's wish. And religions, are all facts, actualities, not the speaker's wish. And religions, including Islam, Hindus, Buddhists, and so on, they have had their own kind of war. And the future beyond the 40th anniversary is what is going on now.

6 One wonders if one realizes that. The present is not only the past, but also contains the future; the past modifying itself constantly through the present and projecting the future. If we don't stop quarrels, struggles, antagonism, hate, now it will be like that tomorrow. And you can stretch out that tomorrow for a thousand years, it will be still tomorrow.

7 So it behoves us to ask ourselves whether we, as human beings, single or a community, or in a family, whether we can live peacefully with each other? Organizations have not solved this problem. You can reorganize but war still goes on. So organizations, whether it is world organization or a particular kind of organization to bring about peace, such organizations will never succeed because human beings individually, collectively, nationally, are in conflict. Strong nations, like America or Russia, are at war with each other - economically, ideologically, and actually - not bloodshed yet. So peace cannot possibly exist on this earth if there are nationalities, which, as we said, is glorified tribalism. Nationalities give certain security, man needs security and he invests in nationalism, or in a particular ideology or belief. Beliefs, ideologies and so on, have separated man. And organizations cannot possibly bring about peace between man and man because he believes in something, he believes in certain ideologies, he believes in god and others don't.

8 I wonder if one has ever considered, religions based on a book - like the Koran or the Bible - become very bigoted, narrow and fundamentalist. And religions like the Hindu and the Buddhist, they have many, many books, all considered sacred, real, straight from god's mouth! They are not so bigoted, they are tolerant, they absorb. So there is this conflict going on: those who rely, put their faith in books, and those who do not put their faith in any book. So conflict between the book and those who accept multiple books. I wonder if one is aware of all this.

9 And we are asking deeply, if you are serious at all, whether you and I, and those of us who are involved in organizations, can live at peace with each other? Peace requires a great deal of intelligence, not just demonstrations against a particular form of war, against a nuclear or atom bomb and so on. Those are the products of minds, brains that are entrenched in some particular form of belief, ideology, so they are supplying armaments - the powerful ones, whether it be Russia, America, or England or France - armaments to the rest of the world, and they also talk about peace, supplying at the same time armaments.

10 It is a vast cynical world and cynicism can never tolerate affection, care, love. I think we have lost that quality - quality of compassion. Not analyse what is compassion - it can be analysed very easily. You cannot analyse love, love is not within the limits of the brain, because the brain is the instrument of sensation, it is the centre of all reaction and action, and we try to find peace, love, within this limited area. Which means, thought is not love because thought is based on experience, which is limited, and on knowledge, which is always limited, whether now or in the future. So knowledge is always limited. And having knowledge, which is contained in the brain as memory, from that memory springs thought. This can be observed very simply and easily if one examines oneself, if one looks at one's own activity of thought, experience, knowledge. You don't have to read any book, or become a specialist to understand

11 So thought is always limited, whether it is now or in the future. And we try to solve all our problems, both technological, religious, and personal, through the activity of thought. Surely thought is not love, love is not sensation or pleasure, it is not the result of desire? It is something entirely different. To come upon that love, which is compassion, which has its own intelligence, one has to understand oneself, what we are - not through analysts, but understanding our own sorrows, our own pleasures, our own beliefs.

12 You know wherever you go, all over the world, mankind, human beings, suffer, for various reasons, it might be petty or some very, very deep incident which has caused pain, sorrow. And every human being on this earth goes through that on a minor scale or a tremendous incident, as death. And sorrow is shared by all mankind, it is not your sorrow or mine, it is mankind's sorrow, mankind's anxiety, pain, loneliness, despair, aggressiveness. So you, and we, are the rest of humanity, we are not separate human beings psychologically. You may be a woman, or a man, you may be tall, dark, short and so on, but inwardly, psychologically, which is far more important, we are the rest of mankind. You are the rest of mankind, and so if you kill another, if you are in conflict with another, you are destroying yourself. You can observe this very, very carefully if you look at yourself without any distortion.

13 So there can only be peace when mankind, when you and I, have no conflict in ourselves. And you might say, "If one achieves, or comes to an end of all conflict within oneself, how will it affect the rest of mankind?" This is a very, very old question. This has been put thousands of years before Christ, if he ever existed. And we have to ask whether in ourselves sorrow, pain and anxiety, and all that, can ever end? If one applies, looks, observes, with great attention, as you look with considerable attention when you are combing your hair, or shaving, with that quality of attention, heightened, you can observe yourself - all the nuances, subtleties. And the mirror is your relationship between human beings, in that mirror you can see yourself exactly as you are. But most of us are frightened to see what we are, and so we gradually develop resistance, guilt, and all the rest of that business. So we never ask for total freedom - not to do what you like, but to be free from choice. Where there are multiple choices there are multiple confusions.

14 So can we live on this earth, 'pacem in terris', with great understanding of mankind, which is to understand yourself so profoundly, not according to some psychologist, analyst. They too have to be analysed. So we can, without turning to the professionals, as simple laymen we can observe our own idiosyncrasies, tendencies. Our brain - the speaker is not a specialist about brain matter - our brain has been conditioned to war, to hate, to conflict. It is conditioned through this long period of evolution, whether that brain with its cells, which contain all the memories, whether that brain can free itself from its own conditioning. You know it is very simple to answer such a question. If you have been going north all the days of your life, as humanity has been going in a particular direction, which is conflict, and somebody comes along and says, "That leads nowhere". He is serious, and perhaps you are serious. Then he says, "Go south, go east, any other direction but that". And when you actually move away from that direction there is a mutation in the very brain cells themselves because you have broken the pattern. And that pattern must be broken now, not forty or a hundred years later.

15 And can human beings have the vitality, the energy, to transform themselves to civilized human beings, not killing each other?

- J. Krishnamurti / New York. United Nations 11th April 1985
(after Krishnamurti had left the conference room the Peace Medal which had been presented to him was lying on the table).


Anonymous said...

Wales may not have any argument with anyone but there are plenty of folk who would have an argument with us.

The Islamofascists certainly have an argument with anyone who refuses to live as they say.

Islamofascism, Communism, the Nazis ... basically Wales is protected from all that by the guns of the Americans and the English. If that protection had suddenly disappeared, do you think the tyrants would have left Wales alone.

alanindyfed said...

Yes, probably

Anonymous said...

I'm really reassured by your assurance Alan, can't for the life of me understand why the Baltic states haven't taken your advice - they all seem to have joined NATO?

One thing though, why all the pics of Owain's standard on your blog, surely a white flag would be more appropriate.

alanindyfed said...

1/Clever comments don't always do justice to the truth.
2/Cymry never surrender.

A snippet of info - I'm spending Christmas in Latvia, so will try to ask Madame Prime Minister about their questionable support of NATO.
However, with Russia next door, this is perfectly understandable one would presume.

Anonymous said...

Please do, a dose of Baltic reality would do Wales a world of good.

Anonymous said...

I have been recommending a book called "My Stroke of Insight - a Brain Scientist's Personal Journey" by Jill Bolte Taylor and also a TEDTalk Dr. Taylor gave on the TED dot com site. And you don't have to take my word for it - Dr. Taylor was named Time Magazine 100 Most Influential People, the New York Times wrote about her and her book is a NYTimes Bestseller), and Oprah did not 4 interviews with her.