Keerti explains what J. Krishnamurti calls choiceless awareness is what Buddha calls vipassana and Osho calls witnessing consciousness, the ‘sakshin’. Published in The Asian Age, India, September 27, 2015.
In the last century, the enlightened master J. Krishnamurti did not use any traditional terminology for meditation or spirituality. But what he taught his listeners was something in total harmony with Gautama the Buddha’s teachings, vigyan bhairav tantra and essence of the highest teachings of the Upanishads. I don’t mean to say that this beautiful soul had nothing original to say. No, what he said was very very original, as each time a rose blooms it is purely and authentically original, though it has the same fragrance which all the roses on the earth have. It is something eternal. It cannot be compared, as everything that is original is appearing from the origin, the source, that’s what we mean by original.
All existence is an ocean and whatever emerges from it is oceanic. That’s the exact meaning of the Upanishadic mantra:
Avashissyate Om Shaantih
This roughly translates to “The personality of Godhead is perfect and complete, and because He is completely perfect, all emanations from Him, such as this phenomenal world, are perfectly equipped as complete wholes. Whatever is produced of the complete whole is also complete in itself. Because He is the complete whole, even though so many complete units emanate from Him, He remains the complete balance.”
Here we can look at purna as existence as ocean. And in our meditation, when we come to the state of egolessness, we realise being one with the whole existence, with no limitation. This meditation is nothing else but awareness of the inner and the outer, the within and the without. The Buddha calls it vipassana. Osho calls it the witnessing consciousness, the sakshin. J. Krishnamurti calls it the choiceless awareness. Each enlightened master expresses it in the way that is understandable to the seekers of his or her time.
Krishnamurti takes us from the point where we are. He guides this with minute detail and says: “Most of us think that awareness is a mysterious something to be practised, and that we should get together day after day to talk about awareness. Now, you don’t come to awareness that way at all.
“But if you are aware of outward things — the curve of a road, the shape of a tree, the colour of another’s dress, the outline of the mountains against a blue sky, the delicacy of a flower, the pain on the face of a passer-by, the ignorance, the envy, the jealousy of others, the beauty of the earth — then, seeing all these outward things without condemnation, without choice, you can ride on the tide of inner awareness. Then you will become aware of your own reactions, of your own pettiness, of your own jealousies.
“From the outward awareness you come to the inward, but if you are not aware of the outer, you cannot possibly come to the inner.
“When there is inward awareness of every activity of your mind and your body, when you are aware of your thoughts, of your feelings, both secret and open, conscious and unconscious, then out of this awareness there comes a clarity that is not induced, not put together by the mind. And without that clarity you may do what you will, you may search the heavens and the earth and the depths, but you will never find out what is true.”
This total awareness is the best definition of what we have always called vipassana and Osho called it ‘Neo-Vipassana’.
Swami Chaitanya Keerti, editor of Osho World, is the author of Osho Fragrance
Illustration by Osho News – credit Osho Nisarga