Krishnamurti and the Distance From the Face of the Earth

Why is Truth a pathless land (as Krishnamurti says), when every human, every living thing has to make a way? I wonder if he knows what he means by Truth.

*Is Truth what happens; what is?
The great thing about Truth is, no-one can really know what it is for sure so anyone can make up whatever rhubarb they like about it.  And Krishnamurti was a master of the art of Rhubarb.  For someone who professed to have no answers and no advice, this singularly useless individual had done a Hell of a lot of talking and writing in his lifetime.  Volumes of his transcripts and writings fill the dusty stacks of some large public libraries and that is by no means all of them.

An ex-lover of mine used to go to Kings Cross (in the 1980s) on the 2nd Saturday of every month and, dragging me with him, would stand for what seemed hours watching film of the great man – who refused to call himself a guru – talk non-stop in a kind of convoluted cerebral monologue laced with an affectation of endless, if somewhat detached love of life before crowds of attentive people.

Again and again I would strain to work out any sense of what he said, but the essence of what he said was invariably the same.  In amongst all the metaphors flowering in his great meadow of Life was the same old equation:

What is rhubarb = What is not rhubarb and vice versa

and ‘Stop trying to work out what I mean, you lot of inferior listeners!  If you are intelligent enough to understand what rhubarb I am about to say, then you will see my point’

What he did not cover was the exotic caramel-nut sweet, languorous, straw-like scent of the palm tree rustling in this dull, rainy cool afternoon and wondering what sunny tropical island it would have come from.

The day – early afternoon now – is grey and the colours under their light dusting of drizzle are fresh and vivid hues of green and yellow. The black asphalt road shines a silver sheen of damp and the air pulses with a hot, white light.  Crimson rosellas screech delightedly in the Bottle-brush trees waving gently in the breeze.  A cloud has shifted, revealing a patch of china blue sky.  Summer has remitted its debt of sun, but only for a moment.  It starts to sprinkle again and so the ephemeral moment of the present moves on.

‘A profoundly sick society…’ – says Krishnamurti. But human society is what it is, has been for all this time.  There are lots of pious pronouncements from detached saints, gurus and anti-gurus prescribing ways of changing things.  But they miss the point.  Railing against the ‘sickness’ of society – of the endless folly and empty materialism of the world can be just another excuse for refusing to accept humanity, of refusing to engage with life and this, our only world.  You have to forgive at least a part of it.  And those who feel so cleft from the face of the earth, must find a way to live on it.


*27/12/10 – personal journal entry


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