Jiddu Krishnamurti: Truth Is A Land Without Paths

In this article you can read about one of the most important spiritual leaders of the 20th century. His lessons are just as relevant in the 21st century as they are in the past.
Jiddu Krishnamurti: Truth is a land without paths

Jiddu Krishnamurti is one of the most accomplished spiritual leaders of the 20th century. For his 18th birthday, the Theosophical Society chose him to show the world the wisdom of the association. He trained with the Order of the Star in the East.

He trained in this Order for over twenty years, but he declined their offer to become their leader. He then embarked on a journey around the world to preach his teachings, urging the people to effect global change.

He never took part in religious groups. He focused on understanding why humanity should get rid of fear, jealousy, pain and anger. Ultimately, his legacy still lives on in his speeches, literature, interviews, letters and articles.

A black and white image of Krishnamurti

His early life

Jiddu Krishnamurti was born into a Hindu family, in a small town in southern India. As a child he was often ill and was even convinced that he was mentally handicapped. A number of sources claim that he was abused by his father and some teachers.

When he was ten years old, his mother and his sister died. He had a very hard time with this. However, he found peace in nature. In 1909 he met Charles Webster Leadbeater, a so-called clairvoyant and theosophist, who said he was impressed by the boy’s aura. Krishnamurti was proclaimed by him as the future guide of mankind.

Webster belonged to the Theosophical Society, and under their watchful eye Krishnamurti was educated in Adyar, and later abroad. He was adopted by another member of the association, Dr. Annie Besant. She became a mother figure to Krishnamurti.

The Theosophical Society and Jiddu Krishnamurti

In 1911, the Theosophical Society established the Order of the Star in the East for their new teacher, Jiddu Krishnamurti. In the same year he moved to London. There he gave his first speech and also published his first texts.

For the next three years he traveled through Europe, closely followed by his theosophical followers. After World War II, Krishnamurti traveled all over the world.

In 1922 he traveled to California and met one of the most influential people in his life, Rosalind Williams. They founded the Happy Valley School together, but their romantic relationship broke down.

In the same year, Krishnamurti underwent what he later described as an “intense spiritual awakening”, during which he experienced a mystical union. His brother, who had accompanied him all these years, died shortly afterwards, a victim of tuberculosis.

After the death of his brother, Krishnamurti no longer believed in theosophy. He even managed to dissolve the society. This did not sit well with the members of the association.

A portrait of Krishnamurti

Lonely travels and other worries

For the next fourteen years, Jiddu Krishnamurti traveled the world, giving speeches and writing articles. He then returned to India in 1947 to conduct conferences for thousands of young intellectuals.

Krishnamurti did not allow any more religious and political ideologies into his life, as he was convinced that these were the factors that divided humanity.

His teachings went beyond man’s belief systems. As he moved away from the image of guru, he did not discuss traditions or schools of thought in his conferences. Instead, he spoke of his knowledge of the human mind and what he considered sacred. He saw the challenges of scientists and psychologists as his own.

The Legacy of Jiddu Krishnamurti

Jiddu Krishnamurti died of pancreatic cancer when he was 90 years old. His body was cremated and his ashes were scattered throughout India, England and the United States, the three countries where he had been influential.

He founded several schools around the world and also established the Krishnamurti Foundation , which still manages several schools. His followers nurture his non-profit organizations and share his lessons.

Jiddu Krishnamurti in old age

Truth is a land without paths

The core of Krishnamurti’s teaching is the statement that truth is like a land without paths, which he made in 1929. He taught us that man cannot get to it through organizations, beliefs, dogmas, priests, rituals or philosophy.

For him, the truth can only be found by understanding and observing what lives in our minds. Man has surrounded himself with symbols, ideas and beliefs.

This dominates his thoughts, and thus his life and relationships. The name and shape of our cultures should not define us, for they are traditionally superficial. Instead, we must free our minds.

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