I thought I’d write a little about Jiddu Krishnamurti, as I studied his work a lot at one time and years later in numerous occasions while out of the body, I received some information about him, which can shed some light upon his work as a spiritual teacher.
Krishnamurti was a great influence upon me in my late teens, particularly as an inspiration to practice the awareness of the present moment and to observe my inner states.
I began studying his work in 1981. Two years before that I took art as a subject in school, which enabled me to spend much of the time painting outdoors in nature. My goal was to capture the spiritual I felt in nature, and so I would sit for hours perceiving its stillness, movement, peacefulness, and beauty. I wanted to communicate the spiritual I felt in nature through painting, and so I decided to study art after leaving school to pursue that goal.
When I started attending Art College in 1981, I, along with the rest of the students were sent a recommended reading list that didn’t have much art on it, but was mostly a list of philosophical and esoteric books (thankfully). Among them was one of my favorites at the time – the Tao Te Ching and several books by Krishnamurti such as The Impossible Question and Freedom from the Known. I found some of his books in the library and studied them intensively.
He spoke of the things I felt and I sensed that he had conveyed essentially the same thing in words that I had attempted to convey in art, and I was convinced that he could lead me to a greater understanding of what the spiritual at the heart of it was.
There was more than a material understanding going on with J. Krishnamurti – I sensed that he seemed to have ‘something’ else that I could feel more than think about. I had also felt that ‘something’ and I knew he had some key to unlocking spiritual perceptions within myself; although I couldn’t put into words what it was.
A friend of mine at the college called Mike was also interested in Krishnamurti and we would meet regularly to discuss whatever Krishnamurti book we were reading.
I wanted to thoroughly understand what Krishnamurti was saying and live the message in his work fully, and so I poured over line after line to see what I could use in there to experience the things he was saying. I didn’t want just a verbal understanding, I wanted to get to the core of it.
Attending Krishnamurti’s Talks at Brockwood Park
I found out that he gave talks every year at Brockwood Park in Hampshire, England, and so Mike and I decided to attend. The 1982 gathering at Brockwood Park lasted for 10 days, and being there was so different from the small, narrow-minded town I had grown up in. As we arrived, we were suddenly with people who shared the same interests; it felt surreal, there were people from all over the world. The event in itself was interesting with lots of new people to meet and in the evening many of us would gather in a circle around a camp fire to sing songs from the 60’s and early 70’s with people from the hippy days.
Unfortunately I only took the tent I had as a child to camp in; it was much smaller than I remembered it as a child. It turned out to be a toy tent, there was no ground sheet, my legs stuck out the end, and it inflated like a balloon in the wind. Mike didn’t have a tent and had to find accommodation where he could.
I had a disaster with someone else’s tent one night when I was walking and looking up admiring the stars. Suddenly I felt my foot go through the roof of it and connect with a person below – I fell spread-eagle across the tent. A couple emerged from the mess; the man was angry, but his wife calmed him down. I gave them $20 and left. The next night they had a white flag attached to their broken tent to make it visible.
It was eye-opening to meet so many different people from around the world, all interested in alternative spirituality. Mike and I played tennis against a couple of Osho’s disciples who wore their orange robes and had pictures of Osho around their necks. We won, perhaps though it was because we didn’t have the baggage of the orange robes dragging around us.
There was great anticipation when the time of the talks came around, and I sat at the front for each of the talks. When Krishnamurti came on stage my impression then was that he was so different to anyone I’d met before that he seemed to me like he was from another planet and I listened intensively to everything he said. I attended all his talks in Brockwood Park in 1982 and 1983 and I appear in the audience in some of them. I’m in the white top with my arms showing in the 1982 video and appear at the end with curly hair in the 1982 clip which is in black and white following the color clip.
At the end of one of the talks I smelt a beautiful aroma, and said to Mike “what a wonderful aroma,” but he didn’t smell it. So I asked others around and one woman said, “that is the aroma of his Master.” I somehow understood what she meant, but the aroma could have come from one of many spiritual sources.
I often spent time walking in the grove where Krishnamurti liked to spend quiet moments; the serenity of the countryside was very beautiful.
Outside the talks Krishnamurti kept away from the crowds and seemed to confine himself to a section of the main house. The only time we saw him apart from the talks was when Mike and I spotted him swatting flies in the window of his room.
At the end of the 10 days of the gathering at Brockwood Park life in the outside world resumed, and after that brief time away from “normal life” I felt more sensitive and psychic. However, I could feel the harshness of the everyday material world as I settled back into it. The talks at Brockwood gave me a glimpse of a better way of living. I tried my best to live in a spiritual way from them, but life quickly eroded the finer perceptions away from me.
The next year in 1983 I was back in Brockwood for the talks, along with Mike and the toy tent. This time it rained for days and I spent time drying my sleeping bag on the fence and near the campfire. Krishnamurti passed my drying sleeping bag on the way to give his talk and spoke about the bad weather we were having.
It was another valuable time, but over the three years I intensively studied the work of J. Krishnamurti, I began to find that the central messages contained in it were circular, in that they didn’t actually lead anywhere, they brought little or no action, and didn’t bring about real change. In spite of all my study I ended up being stuck.
On Krishnamurti’s Teachings
Truth may be a pathless land as Krishnamurti once said, but truth shouldn’t be confused with enlightenment. Enlightenment does have a defined process, and that is a path. It’s difficult to find, but it’s there.
I could go into various aspects of what he taught to highlight the reasons why his teaching never worked for me, but that can become a tedious festival of words, especially since it takes personal experience to really understand these kinds of spiritual and esoteric things. The main thing is that when you have certain kinds of more esoteric spiritual experience, you’ll find many things that directly conflict with much of Krishnamurti’s message.
Sometimes he would let slip clues that he thought more about the esoteric than he was letting on, such as when he said that when you are aware throughout the day that dreams become something else, or when he was told he had cancer at the end of his life he said “what did I do?” implying he understood the principle of karma.
Sometimes too he would admit that action was needed rather than his philosophy, that effort or doing was not required, and realization was a force enough in itself to bring change, such as when he said that self-observation is arduous to do. But his inspiring descriptions of awareness make up for it in some ways.
Krishnamurti’s work, although hinting at and sometimes implying higher realities, unfortunately led more towards living an atheistic and materialistic life, one that is mostly devoid of esoteric experience and knowledge. One of the greatest effects he had in the longer term was to promote the ideas of there being no path to enlightenment, there are no gurus and that anyone can basically do whatever they want and still be spiritual. I believe that what has indirectly emerged in society from Krishnamurtis work is harmful to a more serious esoteric spirituality.
To me, the most valuable work of Krishnamurti’s was Krishnamurti’s Journal. It notes some of his experiences of awareness, and at the time I found it particularly inspirational. Its great strength is its almost poetic description of the sense of awareness.
An Esoteric Perspective on Krishnamurti
About nine years after going to Brockwood Park I had an out-of-body experience where a spiritual Being spoke to me about Krishnamurti. He told me that he had the mission to be an inspiration, which made sense.
That is what he had been to me, and, from my perspective, he really was about that. I understood too why his message was so captivating.
A couple of years later Krishnamurti’s Spirit or Master (Atman) appeared to me in the astral world. It was the time in my path (early on) when I had to choose a guide or guru to guide me for a while. He said to me “I can help you if you like, but I’m not much more advanced (on the path) than you.” I said “Ok” while conveying gratitude at the same time, and then he vanished.
How ironic it was that Krishnamurti in life had denounced gurus with such conviction and here was his own divine Spirit offering to be mine. I chose him as my guide because I had already established a trust with the person he had manifested in, in life, and because his Spirit was of the ray of love, which I felt an affinity with. I didn’t know the name of his Spirit though; calling him Krishnamurti seemed to be fine.
He was actually quite strict as a guide, which I didn’t expect. He would ensure that I met certain standards to be able to receive teachings in the astral world. For example, there was one desire, or ego I was having difficulty with, and it was an obstacle to my progress. I walked up to him in the astral plane expecting a teaching. He was sitting down at a desk and he showed me the ego. I told him I would overcome it. He said to me “tomorrow,” and that was all he said. The next day in the physical world I was in a situation in which my ego was provoked, I gave in to it and knew I had succumbed to failure; I didn’t get to receive his teaching the next night, nor for a while afterwards.
What was teaching was his divine Spirit, a higher part of consciousness; this is normally disconnected from an individual, but upon having a certain spiritual level, which is a specific initiation of the path in the higher worlds, that Spirit is able to incarnate within a person and come in and out of the human body and psyche, by manifesting in consciousness as it wishes. Krishnamurti had reached that level in a past life and was born into this one with it. However, in this life, by the time I saw him Krishnamurti was certainly fallen, he had become disconnected from his Master, and became no more than an ordinary person, and what taught me was his separated Spirit.
Every person has their own divine Spirit waiting to be manifest within their consciousness. Although it is a higher part of consciousness, it is a smaller aspect of the Father, the Being, and later on the path it merges into the Being.
Eventually as I continued my path, my own Spirit (Belsebuub) was able to manifest within my consciousness. I never saw the higher consciousness of Krishnamurti after that; he would have reached up to that point or just before it in his life, which is a third of the way through the process of enlightenment. He hadn’t incarnated the Spiritual Son, and, if he were to do that he would lead a very different life, one of suffering and persecution. I hope one day in another lifetime, he will take up the path again and incarnate the Spiritual Son.
His first book At the Feet of the Master, which he wrote at 14, is very different from his later ones. Whether or not he is the author is debatable, but it is an esoteric book in which he gives teachings which it was alleged came from his Master, or divine Spirit. Although in my view it’s not a particularly useful book and somewhat misleading, he does mention the path and the astral world amongst many other esoteric subjects. This may have been influenced by Theosophists Leadbeater and Basant, but as he got older, Krishnamurti’s teaching underwent a big change, becoming less esoteric and more mundane.
He did not do the work of the path in his life and didn’t understand it. It is possible that at some time in a past life he backed away from the hardships and suffering of it, and instead, knowingly or not, chose a more pleasant life. Yet in doing that he still fulfilled a spiritual mission and became an inspiration to many to aspire to spirituality in a universal way and he received his reward in the fine things his life brought him, including adoration, wealth, a pleasant lifestyle, good health and a long life.
Mark Pritchard (Belsebuub)