To Be Human
So our consciousness has been programmed for thousands and thousands of years. And we have been conditioned, programmed, wired - (laughs) if you like to put it that way - to think as individuals, to think as separate entities struggling, struggling, in conflict, from the moment you are born till you die. We are programmed to that. We have accepted that. We have never challenged, we have never asked if it is possible to live a life totally, absolutely without conflict. We have never asked it and therefore we never learn about it. We repeat - it is part of our existence to be in conflict, Nature is in conflict - that is our argument - and progress is through conflict. That's what we have been programmed with for millions of years. And the religious organisations throughout the world have maintained this individual salvation. And we are questioning very seriously whether there is an individual consciousness, whether you, as a human being, have a separate consciousness from the rest of mankind. You have to answer this, not just play with it.
So as we ended up last time we met here, we went somewhat briefly into the whole movement and the Nature of thought. Please, as we said, and we will repeat it over and over again till we are quite sure of it, that we are thinking together. The speaker is not telling you what to think. He is not doing propaganda, it is a horrible thing, propaganda. He is not telling you how to act, what to think, what to believe, and so on, but together we are investigating the catastrophe that is taking place in the world outside of us, the utter ruthlessness that is taking place, violence, thought and all the rest of it, and also inwardly in each human being, the extraordinary conflict that is going on. Together we are examining, taking the journey together, perhaps hand in hand. So it is not, if one may point out, that you are merely listening to some ideas, to some conclusions: we are not talking about conclusions, beliefs, ideas. We are together looking at this world that human beings have produced, for which all of us are responsible. So first we must be clear in our understanding, at whatever level that understanding be, whether it is intellectual understanding, which is merely verbal, or the understanding of the deep significance, and that understanding acts. We have come to a point where we have to make a decision - not by the exercise of will, but the decision that naturally will take place when we begin to understand the whole Nature and the structure of the world outside of us and inside. That perception will bring about a decision, action. Right?
Thought has created the problems which surround us. And our brains are trained, educated, conditioned to solving problems. Please understand this. Thought has created the problems, like division between nationalities, thought has created the division and therefore the conflict between various economic structures, thought has created, invented various religions and divided them and therefore there is conflict. And the brain is trained to solve these conflicts which thought has created. I wonder if you see all this. Can we go on? We understand this problem together? And unless we deeply understand the Nature of our thinking, the Nature of our reactions, which is part of our thinking; and thought dominates our lives. Whatever we do, whatever action takes place, thought is behind that action. Every activity, whether it is sensual activity, or intellectual activity or merely biological, physical activity, thought is operating all the time. Biologically through centuries it has been programmed, conditioned - the body acts in its own way, breathes, but the brain which has evolved through millennia upon millennia, that has been programmed to a certain pattern, which is obvious. If you are a Catholic, or a Hindu, or a Buddhist, whatever it is, you repeat it over and over and over again.
Is our consciousness, your consciousness, which you have accepted as separate, is it so and what is the Nature of your consciousness? Please, as we said, look at it, together. The consciousness that we think is separate from the rest of mankind, that consciousness is the sensory responses - part of it, sensory responses. And also those sensory responses are naturally, necessarily programmed: to defend oneself, to be hungry, to breathe unconsciously - you are doing this. So that biologically you are programmed. Then the content of your consciousness is the many hurts, the wounds that one has received from childhood till now, the many forms of guilt. I am beginning slowly, we are going to expand it. The various conclusions, ideas, imaginary certainties, the many experiences, both sensory, sexual, other forms of psychological experiences, and there is always the basis, the root of fear in its multiple forms. Please we are looking at it together, your own consciousness, which is you. Fear, and with it naturally goes hatred, where there is fear there must be violence, aggression, the tremendous urge to succeed, both in the physical world as well as in the psychological world. Fear has many factors which we will go into when we are talking about fear. And the constant pursuit of pleasure - pleasure of possession, pleasure of domination, the pleasure of money which gives power, the pleasure of a philosopher with his immense knowledge, the guru with his circus. Pleasure again has innumerable forms.
So: have you a prejudice? Have you a prejudice which has something common with ideals? Of course. Right? Ideals are the future, to be accomplished, and ideals become tremendously important in the process of knowledge. You understand? So can you observe without accumulation the destructive Nature of prejudice, ideals, faith, belief, and your own conclusions and experiences? Can you do this? Don't ask the speaker, 'Have you done it?' Otherwise the speaker wouldn't be here. So, see, please understand this. There is group consciousness, we went into it - I am not talking irrelevantly, I want to show, point out something - there is group consciousness, national consciousness, linguistic consciousness, and professional consciousness, racial consciousness, and fear, anxiety, loneliness, pursuit of pleasure, sorrow, love, death, all that is part - right? If you are keeping acting in that circle, you maintain the human consciousness of the world - you understand? Just see the truth of it. Because you are part of that consciousness and if you sustain it by saying, 'I am an individual. My prejudices are important. My ideals are essential' - you follow? 'My guru is a better guru than the other guru' and so on, so on, so on, you are repeating the same thing over and over again.
Now the maintenance, the sustenance and the nourishment of that consciousness comes when you are repeating that pattern - right? - you sustain it. But when you break away from that consciousness, you are introducing a totally new factor in the whole of that consciousness. You understand what I am saying? Please understand this: they are experimenting, as the speaker pointed out the other day, with various forms of group consciousness. They haven't come to that. If one group has learnt something quickly, the animals that belong to that group learn much quicker because the consciousness of that group is enlivened by a new factor. You understand? Now if we understand the Nature of our own consciousness, see how it is operating in this endless cycle of knowledge, action, division and so on, that consciousness has been sustained for millennia, million years. If when you see the truth that any form of prejudice - all this is a form of prejudice - and break away from it, you give a new factor into the old. You understand what I am saying? Which means are you, as a human being, who is the rest of mankind, of whose consciousness you are, and whether you can move away from the old pattern, the old pattern of obedience, acceptance, you know, all that, that is the real turning point in our life. Because man cannot go on repeating this pattern, it has lost its meaning, except in the biological and technical world. In the psychological world it has totally lost its meaning. What - if you fulfil, who cares? If you become a saint, what does it matter? You follow? Whereas if you totally move away from that you affect the whole of consciousness of mankind. Right, I've stopped.