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Reality Based Perception

Posted on Feb 17, 2017 by in Krishnamurti Articles | 6 comments

feel and think

J. Krishnamurti goes into detail about Reality Based Perception, discussing slaves to ideals and a look at external & internal laws.

Reality Based Perception

expectations vs. reality

J. Krishnamurti: “Like most people, you have read, listened and imitated; you have tried to find out what others have said concerning truth and God, concerning life and immortality. So you have a picture in your mind, and now you want to compare that picture with what I am going to say. That is, your mind is seeking merely descriptions; you do not try to find out anew, but only try to compare. But since I shall not try to describe truth, for it cannot be described, naturally there will be confusion in your mind.”


This article goes into more detail about J. Krishnamurti’s take on an “Experienced” reality, slaving to authority through ideals, and external laws & internal laws.


Reality Based Perception: Not a Perceived, but An “Experienced” Reality


  • According to J. Krishnamurti, life (and reality) cannot be described.  We must experience it, see it, feel the whole “atmosphere of it.”
  • When we seek answers to questions(about life and reality),  we create a picture (through reading, listening and imitating.)  What is really happening is a comparison and not necessarily a process of learning something new.
  • The actual urge to seek truth about life is born out of suffering.  Unfortunately, when an individual suffers,  they look for quick remedy and comfort.
  • The individual is always searching for a compensation for their pains.  A compensation for the effort they will be forced to make.


Reality Based Perception: Slave to External Authority Through Ideals

“When you feel that you are incomplete, you feel empty, and from that feeling of emptiness arises suffering; out of that incompleteness you create standards, ideals, to sustain you in your emptiness, and you establish these standards and ideals as your external authority.”

  • Jiddu Krishnamurti
  • J. Krishnamurti urges us to find out what we are really thinking and feeling by becoming AWARE of our whole life.  Doing so will give us an opportunity to see the extent to which we are a slave to our ideals.  Once discovering this, we can see that we have created ideals for our own consolation.
  • Our mind is always caught up on opposites such as good and bad, punishment and reward, past and future, gain and loss, etc.
  • This DUALITY can lead to an “incompleteness in action” and can create slaverysuffering and a conflict in choices.   Unnecessary effort and false authorities would be the result; leading to a longing to escape from the unessential to the essential.
  • When we feel incomplete, we feel an emptiness which leads to suffering.  Out of that incompleteness, we will create standards and ideals to HELP OURSELVES SUSTAIN in our emptiness,  This will lead to establishing and accepting standards and ideals as an external authority to follow.
  • When we feel this emptiness, we will make an effort to get rid of that emptiness.  However, that just creates opposites (a duality which increases the incompleteness and the emptiness.)
  • J. Krishnamurti warns that we shouldn’t be developing, evolving, and growing through external standards such as religion, politics, morality.  This will inevitably create an INNER STANDARD as a means of liberating ourselves from these external standards. (we can call this our “spiritual reality”)


Reality Based Perception: J. Krishnamurti’s take on External Laws & Internal Laws

“To me, the man who is bound either by an external or an inner law is confined in a prison; he is held by an illusion. Therefore such a man cannot understand spontaneous, natural, healthy action.”

  • J. Krishnamurti
  • In reality, what we are really doing is creating an external law (through external standards such as politics, religion, morality, etc.) . This will subsequently create an inner law that aims to outgrow the external law.
  • J. Krishnamurti asserts that we create this inner law because the struggle in everyday life can be so great and inharmonious.  Escaping it and creating/living with this inner law provides comfort. (having these inner laws makes it easier to reject the external laws)
  • Krishnamurti believes that a person who is bound by an external or inner law is a person confined in a prison.  This person is held by an illusion.
  • It will be difficult to find the truth when we are incomplete because we will feel suffering.  This suffering will be the consequence of the battle between the inner and external laws.  This suffering will lead to making a choice, and that will lead to duality and eventually a dual life.  A life of pretense, of hypocrisy, a life in which there is no moment of completeness.


Reality Based Perception: Solutions to Acquire It

J. Krishnamurti: “How can you find out what you really feel and think? From my point of view, you can do that only by being aware of your whole life. Then you will discover to what extent you are a slave to your ideals, and by discovering that, you will see that you have created ideals merely for your consolation.”

  • Learn to find out what YOU really think.  Avoid pretending to think the way you believe you “ought” to think.
  • J. Krishnamurti states that once we becomes fully responsible in their acts, there is no need for self analysis.  The acts itself should send a clear image of our desires.
Source: Collected Works 1 – The Art of Listening (Jiddu Krishnamurti)

Join in on the conversation!  Please comment on this article and tell me what you think.

What do you agree with and what don’t you agree with?

How do you think we can apply this knowledge in our daily lives to enrich our quality of life as individuals and as a species?


A List of Some of Jiddu Krishnamurti’s Literature:

Life Ahead: On Learning and the Search for Meaning

The Ending of Time: Where Philosophy and Physics Meet

The Collected Works of J.Krishnamurti – Volume IV 1945 – 1948: The Observer is Observed


For more thought provoking knowledge, check out the following articles:

J Krishnamurti Book of Life  Krishnamurti on Love   Self Knowledge Education  Social Condition’s Freedom    
Jiddu Krishnamurti Teachings J Krishnamurti Quotes  ‎Krishnamurti and Authority   J Krishnamurti Teachings 




  1. I don’t think that once we are responsible for our acts that we can be fully aware of ourself. I am a responsible person yet I don’t fully understand myself. I am almost middle age and feel there’s much to learn about myself.
    I agree that with experience that we truly find out our inner self.
    I am unclear as how we get away from the external laws? We are a product of external laws and isn’t our internal self shaped by that?

    • Hey Dinh,

      Thank you for coming the website and checking out this article. Extra thank you for commenting and providing feedback. Let me see if I can clear some of your questions up.

      I think what Krishnamurti meant with becoming fully aware of ourselves through the responsibility of our actions is that he states that even our actions seem to be conditioned, and many times conditioned by this external law (politics, religions, morality, etc.) The responsibility Krishnamurti alludes to is breaking past that socially conditioned action and acting according to intuition and one’s ingenuity. Once you get here, you are able to become fully aware of yourself in a sense that your actions will be derived from intuition and ingenuity, and therefore actions that “define” YOU more than actions shaped by external laws.

      Krishnamurti advocated we can’t get away per se. What we can do is slowly but surely watch our thoughts and RECOGNIZE when we are living by this external law, dissect these thoughts and ask ourselves are we adhering to external laws or this is the “real me” view. As we continue this practice, we will get better at it and eventually not adhere conform to this external law and more so living according to our own principles. The real us is connected to the higher power, however from birth, we have had to deal with these external laws shaping our inner law, and so therefore things have been blurry in exactly what it is our higher self yearns for. Recognizing these outer and inner laws is a step forward in allowing your higher self to blossom.

      Thank you again Dinh for your feedback and view on my article. Very much appreciated.

      Stay blessed!

  2. Wow. I wasn’t quite prepared today to delve into the level of thought consuming this post entailed.

    It really got me thinking. I believe I’m going to have to ponder this some more, but my visceral reaction was one that produced some doubt within the confines of my psyche.

    For example, early in my development, I realized that there were aspects that others possessed that I did not.

    I coveted these abilities. For example, I didn’t like the way I walked, I wanted to be popular, I wanted to be “cool”.

    I, therefore, started observing those that possessed the attributes that I desired and started by imitating them.

    Once the various aspects began to manifest in a way that my body and mind could truly understand and absorb them, I then began to color them with my own uniqueness.

    However, at what point did they become mine? Did they ever become mine? Am I me, or am I just an amalgamation of those others that I adopted attributes from.

    Did I ever become a whole person, or have I simply fractured myself into multiple dualities along the way?

    I can tell you that over the years few of my beliefs have become convictions, and many have fallen into disbelief within my mind. As I age, I’ve discovered that few things are truly rigid in any sense and interpretation can border on practically catastrophic speculation.

    I liked your post, but I fear it left me with more questions than answers. 🙂

    • Hey James,

      Glad you made it and got a chance to check out this article. Very grateful for your visit and feedback.

      Krishnamurti, almost on a daily basis, has my head spinning. LOL. The things he makes me think about really opens my mind up to so many possibilities.

      I can totally relate to what your saying as “imitating” attributes to be cool and fit in at a younger age. Again I can relate that once I acquired those attributes, I “colored” them with my uniqueness.

      I now live in Sri Lanka (was in Canada for the last 27 years) and I spend a lot of time monitoring my thoughts (that are mostly coming on autopilot according to each stimuli in my day to day) under the guise that my thoughts lead to my words, that lead to my actions, that lead to my habits which will sow my destiny.

      I have to say James, I am noticing a ton of thoughts that once I analyze them, are not me (or at least doesn’t “feel like me) and with more analysis i realize these thoughts are subsequent results of those adopted and colored “attributes” you speak of. This understanding was an eye opener and I have to say it began by reading Krishnamurti’s teachings and I am grateful for the opportunity to find the real me.

      James, I started off just like you. I started questioning things about myself that didn’t “feel” like me, and I am finding a lot of answers. Rather than you leave with more questions than answers, I believe you have stepped into a “path of self-discovery” and i am super excited for you and am cheering you on!

      Thank you again James for commenting and starting this very interesting dialogue. Look forward to your participation in my future articles.

      Stay blessed!

  3. Very interesting post! I have always believed that reality if based on your perception and life is what you make it out to be. You can have everything and still be unhappy or you can only have little but are always optimistic and cheerful. Although I completely agree with this, it really is much easier said than done! And truly understanding reality and perception and the world takes a lot of experiences and knowledge.
    This is a great article that makes people think!

    • Hey Olivia,

      Thank you for your compliments.

      Great to see that you found some use with this article.

      I completely agree. It is very hard to apply some of the things in this article just because we are, on a daily basis, bombarded with this illusion of reality that is technically there to keep us distracted and and feeding to the system.

      We really can find a lot of happiness from within and materialistic objects are just that. If we are not happy within, then no materialistic object is going to enrich our happiness.

      Thank you for stopping by and thank you for commenting and providing feed. It is very much appreciated.

      Stay Blessed!


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Please share this post with your friends & family and help spread the knowledge and wisdom of Jiddu Krishnamurti. Thank you & stay blessed!