What can I do faced with this colossal machine?

March 15, 2013 Comments Off on What can I do faced with this colossal machine?

Then there is the fundamental question of man’s relationship to man. This relationship is society, the society which we have created through our envy, greed, hatred, brutality, competition and violence. Our chosen relationship to society, based on a life of battle, of wars, of conflict, of violence, of aggression, has gone on for thousands of years and has become our daily life, in the office, at home, in the factory, in churches. We have invented a morality out of this conflict, but it is no morality at all, it is a morality of respectability, which has no meaning whatsoever. You go to church and love your neighbor there and in the office you destroy him. When there are nationalistic differences based on ideas, opinions, prejudices, a society in which there is terrible injustice, inequality -we all know this, we are terribly aware of all this- aware of the war that is going on, of the action of the politicians and the economists trying to bring order out of disorder, we are aware of this. And we say, ‘What can we do?’ We are aware that we have chosen a way of life that leads ultimately to the field of murder. We have probably asked this, if we are at all serious, a thousand times but we say ‘I, as a human being, can’t do anything. What can I do faced with this colossal machine?’When one puts a question to oneself such as ‘What can I do?’ I think one is putting the wrong question. To that there is no answer. If you do answer it then you will form an organization, belong to something, commit yourself to a particular course of political, economic, social action; and you are back again in the same old circle in your particular organization with its presidents, secretaries, money, its own little group, against all other groups. We are caught in this. ‘What can I do?’ is a totally wrong question, you can’t do a thing when you put the question that way. But you can, when you actually see (as you see the microphone and the speaker sitting here) actually see that each one of us is responsible for the war that is going on in the Far East, and that it is not the Americans, nor the Vietnamese, nor the Communists, but you and I who are responsible, actually, desperately responsible for what is going on in the world, not only there but everywhere. We are responsible for the politicians, whom we have brought into being, responsible for the army which is trained to kill, responsible for all our actions, conscious or unconscious. – JKrishnamurti, Talks in Europe 1968, Social Responsibility

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