The Krishnamurti Foundation of India puts together a poignant presentation based on the Master's quotes

A hundred years ago, teacher and spiritual master J. Krishnamurti said: “We are facing a tremendous crisis that the politicians can never solve. Nor can the scientists understand or solve the crisis, nor yet the business world. The turning point is not in politics, in religion, in the scientific world; it is in our consciousness.”

In its serene, sylvan surroundings, the Krishnamurti Foundation of India has put together a unique, portable presentation, “J. Krishnamurti and a World in Crisis”, which brings out the poignancy of those words and their relevance to the human condition today.

Thought process

The 24 stand-alone panels deal with as many themes, each with a powerfully, even provocatively-worded caption in the Master's words. Underneath are his quotes illustrated by photographs — by some 150 amateur and professional photo-journalists from across the globe. The pictures are snapshots of current history-in-the-making; the words were spoken a century ago. The appropriateness, the pre-vision is breathtaking.

The exhibition is visual evidence of his distilled thoughts. The Master knew — the what, why and how of the quicksand of crisis we're dragging ourselves into. The panels, painstakingly put together, make for chilling reading.

We are brought up to be violent, he said. To be exploitative, competitive and divisive — all different forms of violence. Tragically, we think the problems are external, while they come from within. The origin is us — our attitudes, outlook, prejudices, dogmatism.

You are second-hand human beings, he said, pointing to the paradox: we conform, take refuge in tradition, subscribe to a personality. We're conditioned, we're all idea clones, yet we seek identity. “Never say anything that you don't understand, you've not discovered yourself. The whole activity of your mind undergoes a tremendous change.” Can you?

Education and happiness

He saw present education as a major factor in degeneration. Have our educated leaders created a world where we can live happily? We now over-emphasise technique, we don't develop an inquiring mind. The function of education is to eliminate fear. To be truly educated is to understand our relationship to everything — to money, property, people, Nature.

JK was exquisitely lyrical when he described Nature. He lamented, “We have no love of Earth, only usage of Earth. What is your relationship with those clouds full of evening light, or with those silent trees?” Where is all the entertainment we indulge in, is leading us, he asked. He envisioned a borderless world the Internet gives us a peep into. “So long as you have a frontier, whether national, economic, religious or social, ...there cannot be peace in the world.”

He talked of love, religion, freedom and belief — every one of his arguments asking us to be aware, attentive and thinking. Shake off yesterday, meet life anew each minute, he said.

“I read the Master extensively extracting everyday mental processes,” says Vikram Pachure, the curator of the show. “As I worked, I realised JK's thoughts had a holographic quality. Each panel may contain one question, but make you ask at least 10 relating to it.” Two of the panels tell us of JK's unusual life and work of six decades. In his extraordinary vision, he perhaps walked alone. It's time we made up our minds to follow him.

The presentation is on till January 3. Call 95001-37451 for details.

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