15 Apr Why do we want to live in luxury? (JIDDU KRISHNAMURTI)
Questioner: Why do we want to live in luxury? Krishnamurti: What do you mean by luxury? Having clean clothes, keeping your body clean, eating good food – do you call that luxury? It may seem to be luxury to the man who is starving, clothed in rags, and who can’t take a bath every day. So luxury varies according to one’s desires; it is a matter of degree.
Now, do you know what happens to you if you are fond of luxury if you are attached to comfort and always want to sit on a sofa or in an overstuffed chair? Your mind goes to sleep. It is good to have a little bodily comfort; but to emphasize comfort, to give it great importance, is to have a sleepy mind. Have you noticed how happy most fat people are? Nothing seems to disturb them through their many layers of fat. That is a physical condition, but the mind also puts on layers of fat; it does not want to be questioned or otherwise disturbed, and such a mind gradually goes to sleep. What we now call education generally puts the student to sleep, because if he asks really sharp, penetrating questions the teacher gets very disturbed and says, “Let us get on with our lesson”.
So, when the mind is attached to any form of comfort, when it is attached to a habit, to a belief, or to a particular spot which it calls ‘my home’, it begins to go to sleep; and to understand this fact is more important than to ask whether or not we live luxuriously. The mind which is very active, alert, watchful, is never attached to comfort; luxury means nothing to it. But merely having very few clothes does not mean that one has an alert mind. The sannyasi who outwardly lives very simply may be inwardly very complex, cultivating virtue, wanting to attain truth, God. What is important is to be inwardly very simple, very austere, which is to have a mind not clogged with beliefs, with fears, with innumerable wants, for only such a mind is capable of real thinking, of exploration and discovery.
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