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International Self-preparation Group

Message from Krishnaji VI

People have often asked me to define the Path. They have asked me if I have found it, if it is something definite, something concrete; if I could point it out to them in some definite country, up some known mountain.
I think we have to guard ourselves against making the Path into something concrete, something tangible. To me the Path is myself, it is the embodiment of myself. I some- times sit in front of a beautiful picture, or a statue, or a great tree, and looking at it, I imagine the essence of the beauty of all these as the Path. One morning, with the picture of the Lord Buddha before me, I was thinking of this; and looking long enough into His eyes, I could see through them the Path; I could see all humanity, the whole essence of the Path through Him. I could see it stretching mile upon mile, never ending, with innumerable shades.
The Path is evolution. It is not something outside of us, an artificial ladder which we have to climb to reach a height. It is natural, like the mountain path. We go on ascending and we get at each step a different view, a different aspect of the valley below; and we may stay for years examining each step, each view. We are evolving, humanity is evolving, all creation is evolving, so there is constant variation, constant change. The Path is never the same, it is infinitely varied, beautiful, and dignified. It is above the Master, above everything. The Masters are the shrines along the Path at which you can stay and offer your devotion, your flower, your life, everything; but the Path, Though it is the essence of the Masters, though it is the embodiment of the Masters, is above them, stretches far beyond Them.
Imagine the Path as a road, an ordinary road; at the wayside are shrines, and worshippers wait at these shrines, enjoying the shade of the trees, and feeling the immensity of life with its constant struggle and its happiness. At every step on the road there is a shrine; and at every shrine there is a different feeling, a different devotion, a different appeal. Steps and stages are there, but they are not the Path; they are but the milestones. Our attention is fixed all the time, not on the milestones, not on the shrines - though they must be there - but on the final end, the final goal. And thus viewing the Path, we have imagination, feelings, devotion, admiration, and adoration, boundless within us. The Path is ever fresh and immense, and can never be narrowed down.
The more we advance, the greater must be the immensities of the shrines, the immensities of the images in the shrines; but yet the Path goes on. Evolution is the Path. When we begin to evolve, when we are capable of thinking, of feeling and of acting, then we are on the Path. It has no beginning and no end. On it you see people - some near, some far ahead of you, - struggling or walking happily. Such is the Path which we all must tread.
To me, as I said, the Path is myself; the Path is happiness, the Path is sorrow, pleasure, the sense of enjoyment, and the sense of perfection and well-being in the physical body. The Path is nobility of character, it is dignity, distinction, beauty and love; everything pure and great that human beings have, is the Path. It is the essence of all these things. You may study books; but if you have no real conception of this idea of the Path, no book, no Teacher, will ever satisfy you by their explanations of what it is. And that is what we have to get before we can tread it; and that is what we have to grasp with all our understanding, with our soul.
So if you have that understanding of the Path, you become yourself the Path; and thus, through you, others can achieve the same happiness. It is not the Path of the individual, the Path of the separated self, the Path of qualities, the Path of shrines or of idols; but it is above all these. To me, the Path is the embodiment of all that is beautiful or ugly, evil or good.
The Path demands of you every qualification, every experience, all the thoughts and imagination that you possess. There is no limit, there is no end to perfection, not even to the perfection of a Master. His perfection may be our ideal, our longing, our glory; but you can imagine that beyond Him there must be greater perfection, greater understanding, and greater knowledge. Thus, the idea of the Hierarchy is very simple. You have trodden the Path a certain distance; and if a person ahead of you is willing to help you onwards, to tell you of shades and of the dangerous precipices ahead of you, you can but be grateful for his guidance.
There is no essential difference between the person who is ahead of you and the person who is far behind you. We are all walking on the same Path, the same never-ending, ever-changing Path. But you want to make everyone in the world understand this. You want everyone to see for himself the glory of the Path. There should be no idea that we must struggle to help, struggle to co-operate, struggle to be happy. If you are natural, if your feelings are natural, if your enthusiasm is natural, you will come to that perfection, that glory.
I do not say that this Path is only that which I have described. I may understand it myself, after ten years, after ten days, differently; because I may then get a different view of it. I am still at a stage where I only see the landscape around me, but in a few years time I may have walked a little ahead and seen different views of it. I want to insist on this, because we must not narrow down, nor must we invent and introduce dogmas for the understanding of the Path. It is ever open and you can never close it.

J. Krishnamurti


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