A collection of quotes from the collected works of Konstantin Krishnamurthi, whose recent death in a toy train accident has caused some grief across the globe:
Konstantin Krishnamurthi was born the first — and, according to his many biographers, only some of whom have been positively identified as pen names of the great Krishnamurthi himself, best — of eight children in the wealthy suburbs of a major metropolis in 1895. His early life is well documented in a series of autobiographies, including “The Brilliant Child” (1933), “Discussion as an Amphitheatre” (1947), and “The God Among Us” (1962), and need not be recounted here. During his very productive career, he wrote no less than 187 books, many autobiographical, and is almost universally hailed as the founder of the post-Vanburenist school of thought. Taking an active, but largely overlooked, part in most great philosophical, political, religious, or scientific debates of the 20th century, Krishnamurthi has left his inimical mark on such fields as epistemology, formal logic, colour theory, linguistics, aesthetics, political history, and dietetics. In 2008, he attributed his good health, despite his high age, to “putting mind over matter — and what a mind!”.
For more information, the reader is directed to his 58 volume autobiography, detailing everything he did. A leather-bound set of this series can be obtained through any sufficiently high-class book store, or from the Konstantin Krishnamurthi Appreciation Society, the address of which can be found towards the end of this text.
Now, a list of some well-known quotes from this great man, representing the width of his insight, wit, and intellect:
“It is not supposed to be funny or annoying or insightful, because it is neither; nor to convey or express any emotion or wit, because it doesn’t; nor to be any kind of art, because it isn’t; but merely to be repetitive. It is repetition for the sake of repetition; mindless, relentless, remorseless and — ultimately — redundant.” K. Krishnamurthi, “The Seven Forms of Repetition”, 1972.
“We must at all times remember that we are not dealing with ‘absolutes’, but with informal entities which only appear as absolutes to the less well-informed observer; a kind of ‘subabsolutes’, if you will. Indeed, the very word ‘absolute’ is thus itself, paradoxically, a ‘subabsolute’.” K. Krishnamurthi, “The White Ghost of Logic”, 1943.
“I would say that the matter is not as simple as you seem to think, had it not been for the observation that between your hearing of a concept and commenting upon it, nothing even remotely recognisable as ‘thinking’ seems to occur. I will invite you to the secret world of Thought one day. Until then, I suppose I will have to put up with your present breed of inanities, brought about by unknown processes.” K. Krishnamurthi, letter to L. Grijndvar dated 27th of October, 1931 (Reproduced by kind permission from the L. Grijndvar Memorial Collection, presently housed at the British Library, London.)
“There is a central issue that these modern socialists — schoolchildren, the lot of them, I say — refuse to consider. All this talk of ‘equal rights’ and ‘equal opportunities’ and ‘equal this and that’ presupposes that ‘equality’ is a meaningful concept. They refuse to entertain the suggestion that this is not the case. Nevertheless, I am no one’s ‘equal’, and I expect that to be reflected in how the world is organised. The very fact that I don’t demand that people prostrate themselves upon the ground whenever my name is mentioned is concession enough, I would say.” K. Krishnamurthi, “On the Duality between Superiority and Inferiority”, 1968.
“I suppose you could say that I owe it to mankind to continue my existence here. Every year in which I have not existed has retarded humanity’s progress — a retardation which is very evident in the present intellectual climate — and it will require many more years before I have caught up with where we ought to have been. The alternative? Bah! It is too distressing even to fantasize about.” K. Krishnamurthi, excerpt from an interview in the journal ‘Hegelism Monthly’.
“In know that [Leo Grijndvar] is of the opinion that the ‘invisible hand’ of capitalism seems to be used mainly for self-pleasuring, but as is always the case, Dr. Grijndvar’s opinions — or ‘facts’ as he likes to call them — are insufficiently nuanced for mixed company. I struggle to think of any company where his opinions are actually appropriate.” K. Krishnamurthi, excerpt from an interview in the Philosophy programme of the BBC “Illustrated History of…” series, 1962
What is your favourite quote from Konstantin Krishnamurthi? Maybe you know an amusing anecdote about the great man? Write in and tell us, either in the comment section of this page, or to the following address:
The Konstantin Krishnamurthi Appreciation Society
346 Bureaucracy Row
NOTE: The publication of this post was made possible through a generous donation from the Konstantin Krishnamurthi Appreciation Society to the main author of this page personally. The views expressed by Krishnamurthi in these quotes should not be seen as opinions held or even respected by the author of this webpage.