Jiddu Krishnamurti (1895-1986)
Bombay, 5th Public Talk, March 12, 1950
Question: How can I as an individual meet, overcome and resolve the growing tension and war-fever between India and Pakistan? This situation creates a mentality of revenge and mass retaliation. Appeals and arguments are completely inadequate. Inaction is a crime. How does one meet a problem like this?
Krishnamurti: Sir why do you call inaction a crime? There are only two ways of dealing with this, according to you, which is either to become a pacifist or to take a gun. That is the only way you respond, is it not? That is the only way most people know in which to answer a problem of this kind.
Surely, the whole thing is wrong, pacifism as well as carrying a gun, because they are mere reactions, and through reaction you will never solve any problem. You will solve the problem of war only when you yourself are the challenge, and not merely a reaction.
So, the man who carries a gun does not solve the problem, he only increases the problem; for each war produces another war, it is an historical fact.
That is why it is important to understand yourself, your conditioning, your upbringing, the way you are educated; because, the government, the whole system, is your own projection. The world is you, the world is not separate from you; the world with its problems is projected out of your responses, out of your reactions, so the solution does not lie in creating further reactions.
There can be a solution only when there is action which is not reaction, and that can come into being only when you understand the whole process of response to stimuli both from outside and inside, which means that you understand the structure of your own being from which society is created.
But all those methods are obviously mere postponement of peace. Only when you are directly in touch with the problem, when you see that without peace today you cannot have peace tomorrow, when you have no reason for peace but actually see the truth that without peace life is not possible, creation is not possible, that without peace there can be no sense of happiness only when you see the truth of that, will you have peace. Then you will have peace without any organizations for peace. Sir, for that you must be so vulnerable, you must demand peace with all your heart, you must find the truth of it for yourself, not through organizations, through propaganda, through clever arguments for peace and against war. Peace is not the denial of war. Peace is a state of being in which all conflicts and all problems have ceased; it is not a theory, not an ideal to be achieved after ten incarnations, ten years or ten days. As long as the mind has not understood its own activity, it will create more misery; and the understanding of the mind is the beginning of peace.
From the Krishnamurti Foundation of America
Selection from On War and Peace by Krishnamurti
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