The ideal is a fiction, a myth; it is not a reality
Collected Works, Vol. XIV,69,Action
When you observe why the idea becomes important, when you are aware why the pattern has assumed such an extraordinary significance, you can see why it does. Because, first of all, it tends to postpone action: I am violent and I have this marvelous idea of non-violence, which is an ideal, and I can pursue that ideal and not act because I am still trying to be non-violent. Therefore, it is an escape from the fact of violence. If I have no ideal of non-violence, I can deal with the fact.
So the ideal becomes a distraction; the ideal is a fiction, a myth; it is not a reality. The reality is what is, which is violence. And we think that by having an ideal like non-violence, we can push violence out of ourselves -which never takes place, which can never take place. Because when we deal with facts alone, there is an operation, not when we deal with ideas. So that is one of the reasons: an idea or a pattern offers a means of postponing, of escaping from the fact; and the idea becomes important to give continuity to a particular act. I did this yesterday, I will do this today and tomorrow -it gives a continuity or becomes a habit which prevents action. This is merely carrying out a certain formula and therefore it becomes mechanical. Life is not mechanical; it has to be lived, it is action changing every minute.
So ideas offer a means of postponing action. Therefore the more ideas, the more ideals you have, the more inactive you are. Please do see this: when you act from an idea you are not active, because you are living your life in a world of fiction without any reality. So escape, postponement, offering a continuity, which gives you a habit, and functioning from a habit -that is memory and therefore mechanical. So you can see, ideas do not bring passion. I think it is very important to understand this: to act, you must have passion; to do, you must have strong feelings; otherwise, it becomes mechanical. You cannot have strong, intense, immediate feeling and passion if you have ideas.